The AWACS MMF and NATO E-3A fleets have completed the initial AAR test campaign

The Multinational Multipurpose Tanker Transporter (MRTT) (MMF) has successfully completed the first part of an aerial refueling (AAR) test campaign with NATO’s E-3A fleet.

Announced NATO Support and Procurement Agency (NSPA), the test campaign is conducted under the direction of the Royal Netherlands Air Force (RNLAF) Test Organisation.

It also involves the active participation of the United States Air Force (USAF), which maintains an AWACS aircraft unit consisting of experimental test pilots.

The first part of the campaign included in-flight assessments with NATO E-3A airborne warning and control systems (AWACS)..

The tests were conducted to obtain technical and operational approvals and certificates for the E-3A to perform aerial refueling operations with MMF aircraft.

Once all relevant tests are completed, the allied E-3A AWACS will be the first heavy aircraft to receive fuel from NATO’s aerial refueling fleet.

The initiative will lead to an increase in NATO’s overall operational capability after receiving certificates from the relevant military airworthiness authorities, as well as the completion of a test campaign.

It will give the MMF fleet the ability to refuel NATO E-3A AWACS aircraft as well as US Air Force E-3G aircraft.

The ability to refuel in the air is a critical factor for NATO forces conducting long-range air operations.

NSPA MMF System Manager Jan Der Kinderen said: “This is an important milestone for the alliance and a great collaborative effort between many organisations.

“For the first time, both the receiver and the tanker belong to NATO.

“Once we are certified, MRTT will be able to conduct aerial refueling operations using AWACS, expanding the range of NATO’s Eyes in the Sky missions.”

last month, The MMF unit has started operations test company AAR p Saab Gripen fighter. The AWACS MMF and NATO E-3A fleets have completed the initial AAR test campaign

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