Oklahoma-based Field Aerospace has completed – one year ahead of schedule – the flight-deck modernisation of the Turkish air force’s fleet of seven Boeing KC-135 tankers.

Conducted through the USA’s Foreign Military Sales process, the Block 45 upgrade saw Field address obsolescence issues with the legacy type.

KC 135-c-Field Aerospace

Source: Field Aerospace

An initial aircraft was inducted at Field’s Oklahoma City facility in January 2021 and work ran until December last year; the contract covered the period to 28 January 2024.

Changes under the upgrade include the installation of a new autopilot system, radio altimeter and the replacement of analogue gauges with digital alternatives.

Field had previously completed the prototype Block 45 modification on two US Air Force (USAF) KC-135s and installed the modification on the first 15 low-rate initial production aircraft.

“Our team applied lessons learned from our prior experience performing this modification on the USAF KC-135 fleet to the Turkish KC-135 programme,” says Ed Williams, Field Aerospace programme manager.