KC-46A Pegasus Completes Historic 45-Hour Nonstop Mission Around the Globe

A KC-46A Pegasus from the 22nd Air Refueling Wing at McConnell Air Force Base has completed Project Magellan, the world’s first nonstop westbound circumnavigation endurance flight. The mission, lasting from June 29 to July 1, marked a significant milestone by showcasing the KC-46A’s maximum endurance capabilities.

On July 1, 2024, a KC-135R Stratotanker from the 350th Air Refueling Squadron at McConnell Air Force Base refueled a McConnell AFB KC-46A Pegasus over the United Kingdom. Source: Airman 1st Class Gavin Hameed.

During the 45-hour mission, the KC-46A conducted multiple air refuelings, including B-2 Spirits, C-17 Globemaster IIIs, F-15E Strike Eagles, and another KC-46. This operation highlights the aircraft’s ability to provide rapid global mobility without ground refueling, underscoring its critical role in future air operations and global reach.

The crew, including Col. Brent Toth and Capt. Cody Donahue, undertook various fatigue and cognitive assessments to ensure safety and performance throughout the flight. This achievement demonstrates McConnell AFB’s readiness and adaptability in supporting the joint force’s strategic objectives.

Overall, Project Magellan exemplifies the advancements and capabilities of the KC-46A and its importance in sustaining global operations. The successful completion of this mission solidifies McConnell AFB’s position at the forefront of air mobility and global power projection.