Tail cones for KC-46 aerial refueling tankers delivered

Korean Air has launched full-scale production of tail cones for Boeing’s new KC-46 aerial refueling tanker.

A ceremony was held recently at the Tech Center in Daejeo-dong, Busan, to celebrate the first delivery of the aft fuselage structure for the KC-46 with officials of Korean Air and Boeing attending.

The KC-46 is a state-of-the-art aerial refueling tanker being developed by Boeing and also a candidate for the aerial tankers that Korea will start importing in 2014. Korean Air will be the exclusive supplier of the tail cone until 2027 in a contract that is worth as much as 100 billion won (U.S. $93 million).

Korean Air was able to successfully produce the tail cones for the KC-46 thanks to its know-how accumulated through extensive experience in making diverse commercial aircraft parts, such as the aft fuselage cone for the B787 Dreamliner, an aircraft made with advanced composite materials.

The production of tail cones for KC-46 tankers requires advanced technology such as the addition of a mounting structure for the electronic interference device, and changing the position of the auxiliary power unit (APU) doors required for mounting the refueling tanker.

Korean Air has supplied the aft fuselage structure for the B767, the model preceding the KC-46, and succeeded in completing tail cones for KC-46 tankers composed of a total of 2,000 parts, by newly developing 690 of the parts used in the B767s.

With its successful delivery of tail cones for the KC-46 aerial refueling tanker, the company has obtained world-class technology in the production of key components of aerial refueling tankers and commercial airliners.

Korean Air is now supplying key components of next-generation commercial aircraft for Boeing and Airbus. It has also won international recognition for its superior technology and product quality in the field of overhaul maintenance of Korean and foreign commercial aircraft, and the maintenance of military aircraft of the Korean and U.S. forces.

Source / Author: Korean Air