Air Force to Identify Candidate Reserve Bases to Host New Tankers

The Air Force has released the basing criteria it will use to select candidates for the first Reserve-led KC-46A main operating base.

Officials plan to announce candidate installations in the spring of 2015, select the preferred and reasonable alternatives and begin the environmental impact analysis process in the fall of 2015, and announce a final decision in calendar year 2016, according to a press release.

The Air Force will evaluate all Reserve-led global mobility wings with a runway of at least 7,000 feet against the criteria, which will include:

  • mission — proximity to refueling receiver demand, airfield and airspace availability, fuels considerations and the potential to establish an active-duty association;
  • capacity — hangar, runway, ramp space and facility considerations;
  • environmental requirements; and
  • cost factors.

After the list of candidates is released, Air Force Reserve Command and Air Mobility Command will conduct site surveys at each base. Site survey teams will assess each location against operational and training requirements, potential impacts to existing missions, housing, infrastructure and manpower. The teams also will develop cost estimates to determine how to bed down the KC-46A.

“This basing action is another great example of the total-force relationship the Air Force Reserve Command has enjoyed for many years with Air Mobility Command,” said Lt. Gen. James Jackson, the commander of Air Force Reserve Command.

The KC-46As are scheduled to arrive at the first Air Force Reserve-led global mobility wing in fiscal year 2019.

Dan Cohen
Dan Cohen
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