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C-5C 68-0216

Spongthrush

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Of mild interest to those of us in the UK is that Space Cargo modified C-5C 80216 arrived at Mildenhall yesterday.

The aircraft (along with 80213) has been subject to a degree of interest over the years in connection with various projects, alleged Boscombe Down debris retrieval etc and rarely visit the UK. Whatever the stories, I guess it's not brought over something for use in space but am fully expecting speculation that it arrived direct from Groom Lake with Bob Lazar and his flying saucer who are off to Libya.

cheers
ian
 

Byeman

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I would like to hear all the stories associated with these aircraft
 

grcoffman104

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Pleas...any stories on these in the sunlight "black" aircraft.
 

quellish

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Spongthrush said:
Of mild interest to those of us in the UK is that Space Cargo modified C-5C 80216 arrived at Mildenhall yesterday.

The aircraft (along with 80213) has been subject to a degree of interest over the years in connection with various projects, alleged Boscombe Down debris retrieval etc and rarely visit the UK. Whatever the stories, I guess it's not brought over something for use in space but am fully expecting speculation that it arrived direct from Groom Lake with Bob Lazar and his flying saucer who are off to Libya.

cheers
ian
The C-5Cs are currently operated by the 349th Air Mobility Wing out of Travis AFB, a reserve unit. The do more than carry satellites, they also carry Shuttle SRBs and other space-related cargo. The C-5Cs have some structural changes, slightly different doors, and different landing gear, but overall are not all that different from "regular" C-5s. I have never been able to find anything that connects the C-5Cs with Groom, TTR, or other classified flight test facilities. Everything I have been able to find points to "regular" aircraft being used, though some crews may able in higher demand than others for this role.

In the 80s it was the 22nd Airlift Squadron, also out of Travis, that moved completed F-117s from Burbank and Palmdale to Groom Lake. Units at Travis also provide tanker support for operations at TTR and Groom.

In southern California it is not unusual at all to see strange shapes, covered under tarps, being moved by rail, aircraft, or roadway late at night. In El Segundo and Redondo Beach this is a regular occurance, and the "packages" get quite the convoy of protection from the highway patrol.
 

SOC

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Byeman said:
quellish said:
they also carry Shuttle SRBs
I know they don't carry those because they are too heavy
They could carry inert SRBs, just not loaded ones: the propellant alone is more than a C-5's MTOW. They also used to carry shuttle payload bay modules.
 

quellish

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SOC said:
They could carry inert SRBs, just not loaded ones: the propellant alone is more than a C-5's MTOW. They also used to carry shuttle payload bay modules.
The C-5C modifications are to support the use of the "Space Container Transportation System". You can think of the SCTS as a wrapper, or packaging, for a space payload (like an ISS module, the HSCT, etc.). The container is environmentally controlled and filled with shock absorbers to keep the payload happy. The cargo area of the C-5C has extra plugs to provide power to the SCTS, and the aft doors are different to open wider. The SCTS takes up the ENTIRE cargo bay. There is basically no clearance between the SCTS and the aircraft.

I've never been able to get clarity on wether the SCTS refers to specific hardware, or describes a specification/design contract for the container and its interface to the aircraft.

You can see one of these containers here:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/jimntexas/109270549/in/faves-aussierupe/
 

Byeman

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SOC said:
They could carry inert SRBs, just not loaded ones.
No they don't, never have and never intended to. The SRB casings are returned by train,
 

Byeman

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SCTS stands for Space Cargo Transportation System. It refers to the container and its support hardware.

Here are some better photos

http://www-pao.ksc.nasa.gov/kscpao/images/medium/99pc0165-m.jpg

http://mediaarchive.ksc.nasa.gov/imageviewer.cfm?mediaid=4040&mr=m&w=742&h=504&fn=99pc0170&sn=KSC-99PC-0170

http://mediaarchive.ksc.nasa.gov/imageviewer.cfm?mediaid=4038&mr=m&w=742&h=517&fn=99pc0168&sn=KSC-99PC-0168
 

aim9xray

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Somewhat surprisingly, the C-5Cs have shown up at airshows; this example being 68-0213 seen at MCAS Miramar in 2009.

Discussion with a crew member indicated that the C-5C's were pretty much without a mission with the upcoming retirement of the Shuttle. Indeed, this example was available for airshow duty because the C-5A/B was heavily tasked. At the time, the C-5Cs were being used as trainers and "bounce" birds.

Nonetheless it was related that the C-5Cs would be inducted into the AMP and RERP programs. (Note that this info is a little dated and is based on what the crewman chose to tell me.)

Attached is an image of the aft cargo area; note the bi-fold cargo doors, highly modified upper deck (torque box) and absent upper cargo deck (area where the beige insulation is present).

Edit: Speeling.
 

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Byeman

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aim9xray said:
Discussion with a crew member indicated that the C-5C's were pretty much without a mission with the upcoming retirement of the Shuttle.
The crewmember really doesn't know what he is talking about. There are spacecraft on other launch vehicles that SCTS and C-5c support.
 

aim9xray

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aim9xray said:
(Note that this info is a little dated and is based on what the crewman chose to tell me.)
Hence my caveat. Crewdawg information expressed at an airshow is what it is, and should not necessarily be treated as gospel.
 

flateric

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thanks for photo, btw!
 

SOC

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Byeman said:
No they don't, never have and never intended to. The SRB casings are returned by train,
I had no idea if they did or not, I just meant that an inert SRB was clearly not too heavy.
 

Byeman

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quellish said:
SOC said:
The SCTS takes up the ENTIRE cargo bay. There is basically no clearance between the SCTS and the aircraft.
Actually, the container takes up the volume between the rear door and wing box. The volume forward of the wing box is used for the prime mover. I believe the aft bogies have to fly on another plane.
 

RavenOne

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I imagine the newer C-5M Super Galaxy will carry on NASA support, does anyone know if they have modified any?

Cheers
 
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