USAF to implement interim enhancements to KC-46 remote vision system

3 December 2020 (Last Updated December 3rd, 2020 12:04)

The US Air Force (USAF) has planned to carry out interim enhancements to the Remote Visual System of the KC-46 Pegasus military aerial refuelling and strategic military transport aircraft.

USAF to implement interim enhancements to KC-46 remote vision system
McConnell’s first KC-46A Pegasus lands on the flightline at McConnell Air Force Base, Kansas. Credit: USAF / Airman 1st Class Michaela R Slanchik.

The US Air Force (USAF) has planned to carry out interim enhancements to the Remote Visual System of the KC-46 Pegasus military aerial refuelling and strategic military transport aircraft.

The improvements, called ‘Enhanced Remote Vision System’ (ERVS), follows the review of data from the demonstration flights that took place this summer.

The ERVS implementation will be carried out at no extra costs to the US Government. It will also not pose any risk to the fielding of the agreed final comprehensive solution RVS 2.0.

The solution, which will be fielded as per schedule, is designed to resolve Category 1 issues identified with the existing RVS.

The updates to ERVS will include software-only improvements, which are expected to correct the image distortion problems and customise the display according to the specific vision characteristics on the deployed RVS of each user.

The updates are expected to be completed late next year.

Air Mobility Command commander-general Jacqueline Van Ovost said: “The implementation of ERVS will provide some benefit to our Total Force boom operators in the near-term, but most importantly will not delay the fielding of RVS 2.0.

“Installing RVS 2.0 onto our growing KC-46 fleet directly supports my priority of advancing warfighting capabilities to maximise full-spectrum readiness and generate the credible capacity required to project the Joint Force.”

The RVS 2.0 consists of 4K colour cameras featuring proper viewing geometry, air refuelling operator stations with larger screens and a distance range finder for the distance measurement of the refuelling aircraft.

It also includes boom assistance augmented reality. The system’s initial fielding is slated to take place in late 2023.

Last month, Boeing received an order to provide the Japan Air Self-Defense Force (JASDF) with the third and fourth KC-46 tanker.