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C-17 RECORDS BEST FLIGHT TEST MONTH

 C-17 RECORDS BEST FLIGHT TEST MONTH
 EDWARDS AIR FORCE BASE, Calif., May 6 /PRNewswire/ -- The U.S. Air


Force/McDonnell Douglas (NYSE: MD) C-17 airlifter completed its most successful month of test flying to date during April, flying 16 missions for 55 hours and accomplishing its first aerial refuelings.
 From April 21-25, T-1, the first C-17 test aircraft, flew missions on five consecutive days totalling 19.8 hours, a new weekly record for the aircraft since it began the flight test program here last September. To date, the C-17 has recorded a total of 192 flight hours on 62 missions.
 "A very successful month of flying during April has put us back on track in T-1's flight testing," said David O. Swain, executive vice president of Douglas Aircraft Co.'s Government Segment. "Since solving fuel leak problems that grounded the aircraft for several weeks in March, we are meeting or exceeding our goal of 45 flight hours per month."
 Two successful aerial refuelings were accomplished successfully during April with fuel being transferred from KC-135 tankers. The C-17 also reached its limit speed of Mach .875, flying 510 knots or 590 miles per hour at 35,000 feet, and reached an altitude of 40,000 feet.
 The first C-17 also successfully deployed its high angle-of-attack recovery parachute (HARP) and has begun the initial phase of high angle- of-attack (high-alpha) flight testing.
 Other flight test milestones accomplished by T-1 to date include structural aerodynamic damping investigations at various altitudes and airspeeds with light, medium and heavy fuel loads; flying qualities evaluations with different flap settings, and airstarts using JP-4 and JP-8 fuel.
 Earlier test milestones included flying at airspeeds as low as 83 knots, simulated engine-out approaches and go-arounds, and a short field landing using less than 2,000 feet of runway.
 Test plans this month include in-flight thrust reversing of the C-17's Pratt & Whitney F117-PW-100 turbofan engines plus opening of the cargo door in flight for the first time.
 The C-17, designed to fulfill airlift needs well into the next century, can carry large combat equipment and troops or humanitarian aid across international distances directly to forward, austere airfields anywhere in the world. It has a maximum payload of 172,000 pounds and can be refueled in flight.
 The Air Force plans to acquire 120 C-17s, with the first full squadron operational by the end of 1994.
 -0- 5/7/92
 /CONTACT: Larry McCracken of Douglas Aircraft Co., 310-522-2552/
 (MD) CO: Douglas Aircraft Co. ST: California IN: ARO SU:


AL -- LA015 -- 7634 05/07/92 12:35 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:May 7, 1992
Words:427
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