Airbus has announced the completion of a series of automatic air-to-air refueling between an A330 multi-role tanker transport (MRTT) and the Republic of Singapore’s Air Force’s (RSAF) F-15 Eagle fighter jets. The event, which involved over 500 automated wet and dry contacts with RSAF’s full fleet of receiver aircraft, including the F-15SG, the Singaporean variant of the US-developed F-15E Strike Eagle, is expected to support the certification of the A330/F-15 automated refueling setup. This is slated for in 2024, and it will make RSAF the first in the world to have a boom automatic refueling capability with all of its receivers.
Throughout the activity, several automatic refueling tests were facilitated in night conditions, with additional flights involving A330 MRTTs and F-16s launched to obtain further data in support of the automated system’s maturation and night capabilities. Standard air-to-air refueling with F-15SGs was also conducted in partnership with the National Institute for Aerospace Technology, a Spanish certification authority, to validate the setup in different weather conditions. In 2022, Airbus’ A330 MRTT became the first international tanker aircraft certified for automatic air-to-air refueling in daylight scenarios, with both A330s and F-16s as receivers.
(Sources: The Defense Post)