by Airman 1st Class Christopher Thornbury
22nd Air Refueling Wing Public Affairs
3/3/2015 - MCCONNELL AIR FORCE BASE, Kan. -- The construction of three new hangars is underway, preparing for the arrival of the KC-46A Pegasus, here.
The hangars will have the capability of storing of six KC-46As for the
22nd Aircraft Maintenance Squadron and the 931st Air Refueling Group to
perform routine maintenance.
"We laid a new foundation system to support the new buildings and then
foundation walls on top of those footings," said Neal Ridgeway, senior
project manager. "Now we are in the process of running underground
utilities, electric lines and sanitary lines."
Construction workers are working six days a week pouring concrete,
welding and raising steel. The steel beams are scheduled to be raised
within the next week and will hold the roof on Hangar 1126.
"Hangar 1124 is the most critical because it will have one side
dedicated to repair fuel systems and one side for corrosion control,
taking care of paint and repairing all of the surfaces on the new
aircraft," said Ridgeway.
It is a big project to complete considering the size and the features the buildings will offer.
"The hangars being built are a lot larger than the previous hangars were
to accommodate the larger aircraft," said Master Sgt. Danny Rutland,
KC-46A Program Integration Office maintenance representative. "The major
difference is that these hangars have a corrosion facility being built
that will have the capability to paint a full aircraft. We have never
had that capability here at McConnell before."
Hangar 1124 and 1125 are scheduled for completion by the end of the
year, followed by the arrival of the first KC-46s in 2016. Hangar 1126
is slated to be finished in 2017.
"We were all given a mission to get these hangars built and everyone is
working toward getting that done," said Ridgeway. "You couldn't get
buildings of this size done in time without the cooperation of all the
people involved. We are very lucky to have a good diverse team, a team
with a lot of experience with these types of structures. We call on that
experience every day."
McConnell Air Force Base is the first main operating base for the KC-46A
with the first aircraft scheduled to arrive in fiscal year 2016. The
new tankers will offer greater refueling capacity, increased
capabilities for cargo and aeromedical evacuation and will provide
aerial refueling support to the Air Force, Navy, Marine Corps as well as
allied nation coalition force aircraft.