A Northrop Grumman-built E-2D Advanced Hawkeye aircraft equipped with an aerial refueling system completed its first in-flight fuel transfer mission in July alongside a U.S. Navy KC-130 Hercules tanker.
Northrop said Tuesday pilots conducted 10 dry plugs and two wet plugs throughout the four-hour flight transferring approximately 1,700 pounds of fuel to the tactical airborne early warning platform.
Capt. Keith Hash, program manager for E-2/C-2 airborne tactical data systems at the Navy, said the milestone builds on efforts to develop capacities that can help boost the range as well as the command-and-control persistence the E-2D aircraft offers U.S. and allied forces.
“Developing aerial refueling capability for the E-2D is another demonstration of Northrop Grumman’s unwavering commitment to provide our Navy customer with increased operational capability,” said Jane Bishop, vice president and program manager of Northrop’s E-2/C-2 program.
The company currently develops two additional aircraft for the aerial refueling test program in support of the Navy Hawkeye community.