Lockheed Martin has introduced an aerial refuelling tanker called LMXT in response to the US Air Force’s (USAF) KC-Y programme.
In a statement, Lockheed Martin said that LMXT will complement USAF tanker capabilities as an in-flight refuelling tanker for immediate and long-term mission requirements.
Lockheed Martin Aeronautics executive vice-president Greg Ulmer said: “Lockheed Martin has a long and successful track record of producing aircraft for the USAF, and we understand the critical role tankers play in ensuring America’s total mission success.
“The LMXT combines proven performance and operator-specific capabilities to meet the airforce’s refuelling requirements in support of America’s National Defense Strategy.”
In June, the US Air Force Life Cycle Management Center (AFLCMC) released a sources sought notice for the Bridge Tanker programme, which is also known as KC-Y.
The notice was aimed to identify companies capable of providing solutions for the proposed ‘non-developmental tanker recapitalisation programme’.
The KC-Y programme aims to replace the KC-135 Stratotanker fleet.
According to Lockheed Martin, LMXT is based on the Airbus A330 Multi Role Tanker Transport (MRTT) aircraft. It is modified to meet USAF requirements.
The aircraft is equipped with a fully automatic boom/air-to-air refuelling (A3R) system and offers an improved range and fuel offload capacity.
It also features an operational and combat-proven advanced camera and vision system, and a multi-domain operations node that connects the LMXT to the larger battlespace boosting on-board situational awareness.
Lockheed Martin will work as the primary contractor for LMXT under the KC-Y programme.
Earlier this month, the company secured annualised contracts to support operations and sustainment of the global F-35 fleet.