KC-46’s Troubled Vision System Replacement Suffers 19-Month Delay

The US Air Force’s KC-46 aerial refueling and transport aircraft will have to wait longer before it receives a new vision system.

Spokesman Maj. Josh Benedetti has revealed that an additional 19 months will be required before the Remote Vision System 2.0 starts operating on the KC-46 Pegasus.

The original integration date of the new system was March 2024.

The delay is reportedly due to sudden changes in sub-contractor development timelines, as well as the needed updates on airworthiness process integration.

“Our defense industrial base continues to face supply chain issues and we’re seeing effects in the acquisition schedules of technically complex systems, such as the KC-46 Remote Visual System 2.0,” US Air Force top acquisition official Andrew Hunter said.

He vowed to “examine possible opportunities” to accelerate the delivery.

With several production issues in place, the upgraded vision system would not be available until October 2025.

Remote Visual System 2.0

The KC-46’s Remote Vision System consists of high-performance cameras and sensors to assist operators during aerial refueling missions, allowing pilots to perform operations without the need to look out the window.

However, the US Air Force has claimed that the vision system’s original version does not function well in certain lighting and weather conditions.

In 2020, Boeing agreed to redesign the system to meet current and future requirements.

“I’m 100% confident in its ability,” Air Mobility Command head Gen. Mike Minihan told Breaking Defense. “I am extremely straightforward with Boeing in my concerns about quality, timelines, and costs.”

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