TU-2S Dragon Lady 1078, affectionately known as the “Silver Dragon,” emerged from a nearly three-year maintenance hiatus, soaring again above the skies of Beale Air Force Base.

Following a flightline accident in April 2021, which rendered the aircraft immobile with wing damage, 1078 underwent extensive repairs. 

Unlike the usual procedure of transferring aircraft to US Air Force Plant 42 in Palmdale, California, for Program Depot-level Maintenance (PDM), the decision was made to conduct the restoration entirely at Beale. This led to a collaborative effort between a small team of Lockheed Martin technicians and personnel from the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center (AFLCMC) Detachment 4.

According to GlobalData’s intelligence on the US defence market, the US Air Force has 26 U-2S electronic warfare aircraft in its fleet. The US Air Force started acquiring the aircraft from Lockheed Martin in 1957. 

For the first time since 2014, the U-2’s silver hue entered the skies before undergoing its customary black paint job. Lt. Col. Joshua, 1st Reconnaissance Squadron student flight commander, highlighted the significance of 1078’s restoration, emphasising its role in enhancing aircraft availability for U-2 pilots, particularly in light of recent retirements and losses within the fleet.

The restoration process included a series of tests, from taxi tests to high-altitude pressure suit flights, ensuring the aircraft’s readiness for service.

How well do you really know your competitors?

Access the most comprehensive Company Profiles on the market, powered by GlobalData. Save hours of research. Gain competitive edge.

Company Profile – free sample

Thank you!

Your download email will arrive shortly

Not ready to buy yet? Download a free sample

We are confident about the unique quality of our Company Profiles. However, we want you to make the most beneficial decision for your business, so we offer a free sample that you can download by submitting the below form

By GlobalData
Visit our Privacy Policy for more information about our services, how we may use, process and share your personal data, including information of your rights in respect of your personal data and how you can unsubscribe from future marketing communications. Our services are intended for corporate subscribers and you warrant that the email address submitted is your corporate email address.