Air Refueling Archive

Huge Collection of Air Refueling Pictures

Lockheed U-2 Refueling

A Lockheed U-2F refueling from a Boeing KC-135Q

A Lockheed U-2F refueling from a Boeing KC-135Q

In May 1961, in a little-known attempt to extend the U-2’s already considerable range, Lockheed modified six CIA U-2s and several USAF U-2s with aerial refueling equipment which allowed the aircraft to receive fuel from either the Boeing KC-97 Stratotanker or from the Boeing KC-135 Stratotanker. This extended the aircraft’s range from approximately 4,000 to 8,000 nautical miles (7,400 to 15,000 km) and extended its endurance to more than 14 hours. The J57-powered U-2Bs were re-designated U-2E and the J75-powered U-2Cs were redesignated U-2F. Although the modified U-2s were capable of flying for over 14 hours this took little account of pilot fatigue, and although an additional oxygen cylinder was installed on these aircraft little use was made of this capability. One aircraft was both air-refueling- and carrier-capable and was the only U-2H.


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May 10, 2009 - Posted by | 1960s, External View, KC-135Q, U-2 | ,

1 Comment »

  1. Just a quick note: I think the picture you have captioned as ‘Post AR with an SR-71’ actually shows the A-12 trainer aircraft 60-6927 in it’s bare titanium finish.

    Comment by Shane Clarke | November 22, 2016 | Reply

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