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The C-32A, a military versions of Boeing's 757-200, have replaced the VC-137 aircraft that are being retired from the presidential airlift fleet. The new planes will carry cabinet members, secretaries, and other dignitaries stateside and around the world. The first of four C-32As left Boeing's Seattle plant 19 June 1998, and the second aircraft arrived at Andrews three days later. The remaining two C-32As arrived in November and December.

The Air Force purchased the new aircraft, known to the civilian world as the Boeing 757-200, under a new streamlined acquisition procedure that saved money and allowed the aircraft to be purchased from the existing Boeing production line. Under the plan, the Air Force is treated the same as any commercial customer, from construction and painting to test and evaluation. The new aircraft, flown by the 89th Airlift Wing, were acquired through benchmark acquisition processes adopted as acquisition practices by other military services and government agencies. Specifically, the Air Force streamlined its acquisition techniques by developing requirements compatible with commercially available aircraft and components. The acquisition team that managed procurement of the C-32, with members from Aeronautical Systems Center's Mobility Mission Group, won the Vice Presidential Hammer Award for significantly reinventing the way the Air Force acquires aircraft.

The C-32A, configured for 45 passengers and 16 crew, is designed for a 4,150 nautical mile mission, roughly the distance from Andrews to Frankfurt, Germany. The aircraft is also Stage III noise level compliant. Inside the C-32A, communications take a front seat. The vice president, heads of state and other decision-makers can conduct business anywhere around the world using improved telephones, satellites, television monitors, facsimiles and copy machines. Additional equipment on the C-32As includes Tacan military navigation equipment, a military Identification Friend/Foe transponder, a UHF satellite communications radio, secure voice and data transmission capability, and a passenger flight information display system that airs videos and broadcasts real-time global positioning on a moving world map. Increased storage was also a priority when the designer included large storage areas in the overhead bins in the cabin and the cargo compartments below. Like many high-standing aircraft it's easy to see under and around the C-32A -- an important security factor for protecting the plane and its passengers. Heading the safety equipment list is the Traffic Collision Avoidance System that gives advance warning of possible air crashes.

The 757-200 is equipped with two wing-mounted Pratt & Whitney 2040 engines, producing 41,700 pounds static thrust each. The aircraft is far more fuel efficient and quieter than the 707-based C-137s they are replacing. Each engine of the C-32A has 40,000 pounds of thrust, compared to the VC-137 engine that delivers 14,000 pounds. Yet, the C-32A's high-bypass-ratio engines, combined with an advanced wing design, help make the plane one of the quietest, most fuel-efficient jetliners in the world.



155 feet 3 inches (47.3 m)


124 feet 10 inches (38.0 m)

Tail height

44 feet 6 inches (13.6 m)


Pratt & Whitney PW2000

Maximum takeoff weight

220,000 pounds (99,790 kg)

Fuel capacity

11,526 U.S. gallons (43,625 L)

Maximum range

3,950 nautical miles; 4,550 statute miles; 7,315 kilometers
Altitude capability 39,000 feet (11,885 m)
Cruise speed
Mach 0.80

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Maintained by Robert Sherman
Originally created by John Pike
Updated Thursday, January 07, 1999 4:27:39 PM