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C-17 Globemaster III - Royal Air Force
 

The Boeing (formerly McDonnell Douglas) C-17 Globemaster 111 first flew on 15th September, 1991. The requirement for a new military transport aircraft grew from the need to replace the rapidly ageing fleet of C-141 Starlifter aircraft serving with the United States Air Force. This very capable transport aircraft is currently in service with the United States Air Force, the Royal Air Force, the Royal Australian Air Force and the Canadian Forces. NATO and Quatar also placed orders for the airlifter.

In July 1998, the Goverment Strategic Defence Review detailed a requirement for an aircraft capable of deploying the Joint Rapid Reaction Force. The aircraft would need to carry outsize loads such as helicopters and large military vechicles. On 16th May 2000, it was announced that the proposed Airbus A400M would provide the UKs strategic airlift requirements, but as a stop gap measure, four C-17A Globemaster III would be leased.

It was announced during May 2000 that the RAF would lease four C-17s from Boeing for an initial seven year period with an optional two year extension. At this point the RAF had the option to purchase these aircraft.

The first C-17 was flown to RAF Brize Norton in Oxfordshire on 17th May, 2001. The flight crew were drawn from 99 Squadron, its new RAF operator. The RAFs fourth C-17 was flown into RAF Brize Norton on 24th August, 2001 and the four aircraft wore the serial numbers ZZ171 to ZZ174 (Ex USAF serials 00-0201 to 00-0204).

Since introduction into service, the RAF has been delighted with the overall performance of its Globemasters and the decission was made on 21st July, 2004, to purchase the four aircraft, even though the Airbus A400M had been ordered as a strategic transport aircraft.

Due to a critical shortage of heavy lift capability in the war campaigns being fought in Iraq and Afghanistan, the Ministry of Defence (MOD) ordered another two aircraft, ZZ175 (ex USAF serial 06-0205) and ZZ176 (ex USAF serial 08-0206).

With fears about the A400M programme slipping behind schedule, further aircraft have been ordered with Boeing and these have been allocated the serial numbers ZZ177 to ZZ180.

C-17 Globemaster III - ZZ174 - 99 Squadron - Royal Air Force
 

Photos per serial

C-17 Globemaster III - ZZ171 - 99 Squadron - Royal Air Force ZZ171   C-17 Globemaster III - ZZ171 - 99 Squadron - Royal Air Force ZZ171   C-17 Globemaster III - ZZ171 - 99 Squadron - Royal Air Force ZZ171   C-17 Globemaster III - ZZ171 - 99 Squadron - Royal Air Force ZZ171

C-17 Globemaster III - ZZ172 - 99 Squadron - Royal Air Force ZZ172   C-17 Globemaster III - ZZ172 - 99 Squadron - Royal Air Force ZZ172  

C-17A Globemaster III - ZZ173 - 99 Squadron - Royal Air Force ZZ173   C-17A Globemaster III - ZZ173 - 99 Squadron - Royal Air Force ZZ173   C-17 Globemaster III - ZZ173 - 99 Squadron - Royal Air Force ZZ173   C-17A Globemaster III - ZZ173 - 99 Squadron - Royal Air Force ZZ173

C-17A Globemaster III - ZZ174 - 99 Squadron - Royal Air Force ZZ174   C-17 Globemaster III - ZZ174 - 99 Squadron - Royal Air Force ZZ174   C-17 Globemaster III - ZZ174 - 99 Squadron - Royal Air Force ZZ174  

C-17A Globemaster III - ZZ175 - 99 Squadron - Royal Air Force ZZ175  

C-17 Globemaster III - ZZ177 - 99 Squadron - Royal Air Force ZZ177   C-17 Globemaster III - ZZ177 - 99 Squadron - Royal Air Force ZZ177  
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