British Military Receives First Revamped Aircraft Refueler Trucks

The British Armed Forces have received the first tranche of their new large-capacity aircraft refueler (LCAR) vehicles.

The handover included 14 refurbished trucks to be distributed across the UK Royal Air Force, Royal Navy, and British Army.

Each LCAR can carry 20,000 liters of fuel for bulk replenishments of military aircraft. By 2025, around 80 trucks will be delivered to the UK joint forces.

Work for the initiative is led by UK Defence Equipment & Support (DE&S) in partnership with Terberg DTS, MAN Truck, and Tasca Tankers.

‘Backbone’ Military Capability

The delivery is part of the LCAR Life Extension Program, which supports the “deployability, availability, and flexibility” of British aerial vehicles.

“The Large Capacity Aircraft Refueller is a vital Defence-enabling capability, providing the backbone of our aircraft refuelling fleet,” DE&S Air Systems, Equipment & Training Head Air Cmdr. Simon Young stated.

“These vehicles are out there every day ensuring our aircraft have the fuel they need to deliver their tasks, whether that be securing the skies above the UK, transporting people and equipment around the world or delivering on operations.”

“This project is not only extending the life of these vehicles but, through the upgrades being delivered, will provide a more operationally capable vehicle and one that is safer and easier for our personnel to use and maintain.”

A new refuler being presented to an Air Commodore at Terberg DTS in Halifax on the 31st of January 2023.
Large-capacity aircraft refueler trucks. Photo: UK Royal Air Force

UK’s Increasing Refueler Fleet

Last year, the LCARs completed ground and on-aircraft refueling trials with several planes, including Eurofighter Typhoons, Hawk multirole fighters, P-8 Poseidon maritime patrol aircraft, and Merlin helicopters.

Once employed, the future LCAR fleet is expected to supply British military aircraft for 15 years.

“Refurbished vehicles are now being returned to front-line units across the globe and put to work supporting essential operational activity,” Young said.

“I would like to thank all those involved in the project for their fantastic contributions in getting us to this point despite some of the significant challenges of the last three years. This project is a great example of collaborative working across Defence and with our industry partners.”

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