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The Boeing
Boeing
VC-25 is a military version of the Boeing
Boeing
747 airliner, modified for presidential transport and operated by the United States Air Force as Air Force One, the call sign of any U.S. Air Force aircraft carrying the President of the United States. Only two examples of this aircraft type are currently in service; they are highly modified Boeing
Boeing
747-200B, designated VC-25A and having tail numbers 28000 and 29000. Although technically the Air Force One designation applies to the aircraft only while the President is on board, the term is commonly used to refer to the VC-25 in general. The two aircraft often operate in conjunction with Marine One
Marine One
helicopters, which ferry the President to airports whenever a vehicle motorcade would be inappropriate.

Contents

1 Development 2 Design and configuration

2.1 The "White House"

3 Operational history

3.1 Future

4 Variants 5 Operators 6 Specifications (VC-25A) 7 Notable appearances in media 8 See also 9 References 10 External links

Development[edit]

A VC-25 at MacDill Air Force Base, Florida in June 2004

By 1985, the pair of Boeing
Boeing
707-based VC-137s used as the Presidential aircraft had been in service for 23 and 13 years respectively, and the USAF began searching for an eventual replacement. The Request for Proposal issued stated that the aircraft to be selected should have at least three engines and an unrefueled range of at least 6,000 miles (9,700 km). Both Boeing
Boeing
with its 747 and McDonnell Douglas
McDonnell Douglas
with the DC-10
DC-10
were in competition to be selected, with the Boeing
Boeing
entry the eventual winner.[1] The fabrication of the current 747s began during the presidency of Ronald Reagan
Ronald Reagan
(1981–1989). Reagan ordered two identical Boeing
Boeing
747-200Bs to replace the Boeing
Boeing
707s that he used for transport.[2] The VC-25s were completed in 1986 and first flew in 1987.[3] The interior designs were created by First Lady Nancy Reagan, who used designs reminiscent of the American Southwest.[2] Problems with interior wiring for communication systems delayed delivery of the two aircraft until 1990,[3] during the administration of George H.W. Bush. The Air Force reported that the operating cost for each VC-25A in 2014 was $210,877 per hour.[4] Design and configuration[edit]

President Barack Obama
Barack Obama
meets with Rep. Dennis Kucinich, D-Ohio, aboard Air Force One
Air Force One
en route to Cleveland, Ohio, March 2010.

The President and First Lady's private quarters. The couches can fold out into beds.

The aircraft's port-side (left) corridor. The two chairs are typically occupied by Secret Service agents.

The VC-25 is capable of flying 7,800 miles (12,600 km)—roughly one-third the distance around the world—without refueling. It can be refuelled during flight from a tanker aircraft. The VC-25A can accommodate more than 70 passengers. Each VC-25A cost approximately US$325 million. When a VC-25 taxis to an airport's ramp for events, it stops with the port side of the aircraft facing gathered onlookers.[citation needed] While the VC-25 has two main decks and a cargo area, like a regular Boeing
Boeing
747, its 4,000 square feet (370 m²) of floor space has been reconfigured for presidential duties. Its lowest level is mostly cargo space, carrying luggage and the onboard food supply. The main passenger area is on the second floor or main deck.[5] There are three entrances on board, two on the main and one on the lower deck. Typically the president boards and deplanes from the front, main deck entrance via an airstair, while journalists and other passengers enter at the rear door of the main deck. Facilities for the press and other passengers are configured like an ordinary airliner's first-class cabin.[6] The "White House"[edit] The front of the aircraft is informally called the "White House", a reference to the president's official residence in Washington DC.[5] The president's executive suite includes sleeping quarters with two couches that can be converted into beds, lavatory and shower, vanity, double sink, and a private office, or the president's "Oval Office aboard Air Force One". If necessary, the president can address the nation from the office. This capability was added after the September 11 attacks, during which the aircraft had to land at Barksdale Air Force Base in order for President George W. Bush
George W. Bush
to address the nation.[7] These offices, including the president's suite, are mostly located on the starboard (right) side, and a long corridor runs along the port (left) side. There is an area along the corridor for two Secret Service agents.[citation needed] The aircraft also contains a conference room, originally designed as a situation room but now used for meeting with staff while traveling. This room includes a 50-inch plasma screen television which can be used for teleconferencing. The aircraft has fully equipped office areas with telecommunication systems (including 87 telephones and 19 televisions).[5] On board the VC-25 is a medical annex, which includes a fold-out operating table, emergency medical supplies, and a well-stocked pharmacy; George W. Bush
George W. Bush
had a treadmill added to Air Force One
Air Force One
during his term in office. Every flight is staffed by a doctor and nurse. The aircraft is self-sufficient, such as carrying all the food it will need. Meals are prepared in two galleys, which together are equipped to feed up to 100 people at a time.[5] The President gets his own menu. An area where guests sit is near the center of the aircraft, outside the "White House".[5] There are separate quarters for guests, senior staff, Secret Service and security personnel, and the news media located in the aft area of the main deck. Protocol states that one may wander aft of wherever one's assigned seat is, but not forward.[5] Communications equipment and the cockpit are on the upper deck. There are also secure and non-secure voice, fax and data communications facilities.[5] While the aircraft's luggage capacity is adequate to carry the belongings of the passengers, the logistics train of the President means that the aircraft must fly preceded by an aerial convoy of several cargo transports, which carry the helicopters, motorcade vehicles, and other equipment required by the presidential entourage.[5] Operational history[edit] The VC-25 replaced the VC-137C
VC-137C
(a military version of the Boeing
Boeing
707) as the mainstay of the Air Force One
Air Force One
fleet. On some occasions, the VC-25s are used to transport the Vice President of the United States, for which service they adopt the call sign Air Force Two. These aircraft are maintained and operated as military operations by the Presidential Airlift Group, part of Air Mobility Command's 89th Airlift Wing, based at Andrews Field
Andrews Field
in Camp Springs, Maryland. The aircraft can also be operated as a military command center in the event of an incident such as a nuclear attack. Operational modifications include aerial refueling capability and anti-aircraft missile countermeasures. The electronics on board are connected with approximately 238 miles (383 km) of wiring, twice that of a regular 747. All wiring is covered with heavy shielding for protection from a nuclear electromagnetic pulse in the event of a nuclear attack. The aircraft also has electronic countermeasures (ECMs) to jam enemy radar, flares to avoid heat-seeking missiles, and chaff to avoid radar-guided missiles. All small arms and ammunition stores not under the physical possession of the Secret Service on board the VC-25s are stowed and secured by the Secret Service in separate locked compartments, each with a different locking mechanism for added security. Many of the VC-25's other capabilities are classified for security reasons. After a presidential inauguration resulting in a change in office, the outgoing president is provided transport on a VC-25 aircraft to their home destination. The aircraft for this flight does not use the Air Force One call sign because it is not carrying the president in office. For both Presidents Bill Clinton
Bill Clinton
and George W. Bush, the flight was known as Special
Special
Air Mission 28000, where the number represents the aircraft's tail number.[8][9]

The casket of President Gerald Ford
Gerald Ford
being lowered from the cabin of SAM 29000 at Andrews Air Force Base, Maryland, 2006.

The VC-25A has also been used to transport deceased former presidents. The guest area aft of "the White House" has chairs and tables that can be removed and the casket laid in their place.[5] The bodies of Ronald Reagan and Gerald Ford
Gerald Ford
were transported by SAM 28000 and 29000 respectively to Washington for their state funerals, and then on to their final resting places. Colonel Mark Tillman, pilot for President George W. Bush, said, "We'll take care of the president from basically when he's in office to when he lays [sic] in state."[5] For the funeral of President Ronald Reagan
Ronald Reagan
in 2004, Tillman said that the crew converted the front of the aircraft to look the way it would have appeared when Reagan was president; President and Nancy Reagan's Air Force One jackets were placed on the chairs to "make them feel at home".[5] A specially designed hydraulic lifter (similar to the type used by airline catering) with the presidential seal affixed to the sides lifts the casket up to the portside aft door to enter the VC-25A. The tradition of placing the caskets in the passenger cabin dates back to the assassination of John F. Kennedy, when the crew did not want the president's body placed in the cargo hold,[10] and again during the state funeral of Lyndon B. Johnson.[11] Future[edit] The current 747-200B aircraft are aging and have become less cost-effective to operate. The USAF Air Mobility Command
Air Mobility Command
investigated possible replacements, with early press coverage suggesting that the USAF would consider the Boeing
Boeing
747-8 and the Airbus A380.[12] On January 7, 2009, Air Force Materiel Command
Air Force Materiel Command
issued a new Sources Sought notice for a replacement aircraft to enter service by 2017 with an additional two aircraft to follow in 2019 and 2021.[13] On 28 January 2009, EADS North America
EADS North America
representing EADS
EADS
and its Airbus division confirmed it would not respond to the US Air Force notice, as assembling only three airplanes in the US would not make financial sense.[14] This made Boeing
Boeing
the only aircraft manufacturer interested in supplying the replacement aircraft,[15] and was reported to be exploring a 787 option also.[16] On 28 January 2015, the Air Force announced the selection of the Boeing
Boeing
747-8 to replace the aging VC-25A for presidential transport.[17][18] On 10 May 2016, the Air Force posted online an amendment to its Air Force One contract authorizing Boeing
Boeing
to begin preliminary design activities. However, the latest version of the contract synopsis confirmed that the government will buy just two modified 747-8 aircraft; Boeing
Boeing
was awarded a contract in January 2016 to identify cost reduction opportunities in areas including maintenance, aerial refueling and communications.[19][20] On 15 July 2016 Boeing
Boeing
received a second tranche of pre-engineering and manufacturing development (EMD) risk-reduction funding to address “system specification, the environmental control system, the aircraft interior, the electrical and power system and sustainment and maintenance approaches.” The contract notice confirms that this will lead to "a lower-risk EMD program and lower life-cycle costs.”[21] On 1 August 2017, Defense One reported that in an effort to pay less for the replacement program, the U.S. Air Force has entered into a contract to purchase two of a bankrupt Russian firm's (Transaero) undelivered 747-8 Intercontinentals from Boeing, which is storing them in the Mojave Desert
Mojave Desert
to prevent corrosion. These aircraft are to be retrofitted with telecommunications and security equipment to bring them to the required security level for the presidential aircraft.[22] On 27 February 2018, the White House
White House
announced a $3.9 billion agreement with Boeing
Boeing
to modify two unsold 747-8s to replace the current VC-25A fleet. The new aircraft will be designated VC-25B.[23] Variants[edit]

Play media

Boeing
Boeing
VC-25 Air Force One
Air Force One
video

VC-25A based on Boeing
Boeing
747-200B VC-25B based on Boeing
Boeing
747-8I

Operators[edit]

 United States

United States
United States
Air Force

89th Airlift Wing, Presidential Airlift Group (PAG) - Andrews AFB, Maryland

Specifications (VC-25A)[edit] Data from Boeing
Boeing
BDS[24] General characteristics

Crew: 26: 2 pilots, flight engineer, navigator,[3] and cabin crew Capacity: 76 passengers Length: 231 ft 10 in (70.6 m) Wingspan: 195 ft 8 in (59.6 m) Height: 63 ft 5 in (19.3 m) Max. takeoff weight: 833,000 lb (375,000 kg) Zero fuel weight: 526,500 lb (238,800 kg) Powerplant: 4 × General Electric CF6-80C2B1 turbofans, 56,700 lbf (250 kN) each

Performance

Maximum speed: Mach 0.92 (630 mph, 1,015 km/h) at 35,000 ft altitude Cruise speed: Mach 0.84 (575 mph, 925 km/h) at 35,000 ft altitude Range: 6,800 nmi (7,800 mi, 13,000 km) Service ceiling: 45,100 ft (13,700 m)

Notable appearances in media[edit] Main article: Aircraft in fiction §  Boeing
Boeing
747 The VC-25 "Air Force One" is a prominent symbol of the American presidency and its power; with the White House
White House
and presidential seal, it is among the most recognized presidential symbols. Air Force One has often appeared in popular culture and fiction, including the setting of the 1997 action movie Air Force One
Air Force One
where the aircraft had an escape pod and a parachute ramp, unlike the actual Presidential aircraft.[25] See also[edit]

United States Air Force
United States Air Force
portal

Air Force One
Air Force One
photo op incident Air Force Two Air transports of heads of state

Related development

Boeing
Boeing
747 E-4 "Nightwatch"

Aircraft of comparable role, configuration and era

VC-137C
VC-137C
SAM 26000 VC-137C
VC-137C
SAM 27000 Boeing
Boeing
C-32 Boeing
Boeing
C-40 Clipper

References[edit]

Notes

^ Thomas, H. "U.S. considers Air Force One
Air Force One
from Airbus." heraldnet.com, January 17, 2009. Retrieved: June 26, 2009. ^ a b Williams, Rudi. "Reagan Makes First, Last Flight in Jet He Ordered." United States
United States
Department of Defense, June 10, 2004. Retrieved: July 28, 2013. ^ a b c Jenkins 2000, pp. 55–56. ^ Butler, Amy, and Guy Norris, "Foregone Conclusion", Aviation Week and Space Technology, 9 June 2014, pp. 40-41. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k Wallace, Chris (host). "Aboard Air Force One."[dead link] Fox News, November 24, 2008. Retrieved: November 28, 2008. ^ Harris, Tom. "How Air Force One
Air Force One
Works." HowStuffWorks.com. Retrieved: October 10, 2006. ^ Stebner, Greg (narrator). "On Board Air Force One." Archived February 3, 2009, at the Wayback Machine. National Geographic Channel, January 25, 2009. Retrieved: June 26, 2009. ^ Felsenthal, Carol. "When Bill Clinton
Bill Clinton
Left the White House". Chicago Daily Observer, January 22, 2009. Retrieved: June 26, 2009. ^ "Bush flies to Texas to begin post-presidential life." New York Times, January 20, 2009. Retrieved: September 9, 2011. ^ Bernstein, Adam (April 29, 2006). "Col. James Swindal; Piloted Air Force One After Kennedy's Death". The Washington Post. Retrieved August 16, 2011.  ^ Foley, Thomas (January 25, 1973). "Thousands in Washington Brave Cold to Say Goodbye to Johnson". The Los Angeles Times. p. A1.  ^ "US considers Airbus A380
Airbus A380
as Air Force One
Air Force One
and potentially a C-5 replacement". Flight Global. 17 October 2007.  ^ "USAF Presidential Aircraft Recapitalization (PAR) Program." USAF Materiel Command, January 7, 2009. Retrieved: January 8, 2009. ^ " EADS
EADS
waves off bid for Air Force One
Air Force One
replacement". Flight Global. January 28, 2009.  ^ "USAF Presidential Aircraft Recapitalization (PAR) Program, Interested Vendors List." USAF Materiel Command, January 7, 2009. Retrieved: January 8, 2009. ^ Butler, Amy. " Boeing
Boeing
Only Contender for New Air Force One." Aviation Week, January 28, 2009. Retrieved January 28, 2009. ^ AF Identifies Boeing
Boeing
747-8 platform for next Air Force One. ^ Mehta, Aaron. " Boeing
Boeing
Tapped for Air Force One
Air Force One
Replacement". Defence News, 28 January 2015 ^ "Presidential Aircraft Recapitalization". FedBizOpps. 10 May 2016.  ^ "A new Air Force One
Air Force One
for Trump or Clinton is on the way". Air Force Times. 11 May 2016.  ^ " Boeing
Boeing
Wins Second Air Force One
Air Force One
Contract". Aviation Week. 21 July 2016.  ^ "Trump Wanted a Cheaper Air Force One. So the USAF Is Buying a Bankrupt Russian Firm's Undelivered 747s". Defense One. Retrieved 2017-08-02.  ^ https://www.cnbc.com/2018/02/27/the-white-house-has-cut-a-deal-with-boeing-for-two-new-air-force-ones-nbc-news.html ^ " Air Force One
Air Force One
Technical Specs." Boeing
Boeing
Defense, Space and Security. Retrieved: March 26, 2016. ^ Hardesty 2003, p. 15.

Bibliography

" Air Force One
Air Force One
Fact Sheet." United States
United States
Air Force, (Current as of May 2014). Albertazzie, Ralph and Jerald F. Terhorst. Flying White House: The Story of Air Force One. Book Sales, 1979. ISBN 0-698-10930-9. Braun, David. Q&A: U.S. Presidential Jet Air Force One. National Geographic News, May 29, 2003. Dorr, Robert F. Air Force One. St. Paul, Minnesota: Motorbooks International, 2002. ISBN 0-7603-1055-6. Hardesty, Von. Air Force One: The Aircraft that Shaped the Modern Presidency. Chanhassen, Minnesota: Northword Press, 2003. ISBN 1-55971-894-3. Harris, Tom. "How Air Force One
Air Force One
Works". HowStuffWorks.com. Retrieved: October 10, 2006. Jenkins, Dennis R. Boeing
Boeing
747-100/200/300/SP (AirlinerTech Series, Vol. 6). North Branch, Minnesota: Specialty Press, 2000. ISBN 1-58007-026-4. "Technical Order 00-105E-9, Segment 9, Chapter 7." Walsh, Kenneth T. Air Force One: A History of the Presidents and Their Planes. New York: Hyperion, 2003. ISBN 1-4013-0004-9.

External links[edit]

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Boeing
Boeing
VC-25A.

USAF VC-25 fact sheet USAF Photo gallery

v t e

Boeing
Boeing
military aircraft

Fighters/attack aircraft:

PW-9/FB F2B F3B F4B XF6B P-29/XF7B XF8B P-12 P-26 818 F-15E F-22 AV-8B F-15SE F/A-18E/F EA-18G

Bombers

YB-9 XB-15 B-17 Y1B-20 B-29 XB-38 XB-39 YB-40 XB-44 B-47 B-50 B-52 B-54 XB-55 XB-56 XB-59 B-1

Piston-engined transports

C-73 C-75 C-97 C-98 C-108

Jet transports

C-135 C-137 CC-137 YC-14 C-17 C-22 VC-25 C-32 C-40

Tanker-transports

KB-29 KB-50 KC-97 KC-135 KC-137 KC-10 KC-46 KC-767

Trainers

PT-13 PT-17 PT-18 PT-27 XAT-15 T-43 T-45 T-X

Patrol and surveillance

XPB XPBB XP3B P-8 EC-135 EC-18 E-3 E-4 E-6 E-8 E-10 E-767 737 AEW&C

Reconnaissance

NC-135 OC-135B RC-135 WC-135

Drones/UAVs

CQM-121 MQ-18 X-50 ScanEagle

Experimental/prototypes

X-20 X-32 X-36 X-37 X-40 X-45/Phantom Ray X-50 X-51 X-53 YAL-1 Phantom Eye Bird of Prey

v t e

Boeing
Boeing
747 non-commercial variants

Military

E-4 VC-25 YAL-1

Civilian

Shuttle Carrier (SCA) Stratospheric Observatory (SOFIA)

Proposed

C-33 KC-33

v t e

United States
United States
military transport aircraft designations, Army/Air Force and Tri-Service systems

Army/Air Force sequence (1925-1962)

C-1 C-2 C-3 C-4 C-5 C-6 C-7 C-8 C-9 C-10 C-11 C-12 C-131 C-14 C-15 C-16 C-17 C-18 C-19 C-20 C-21 C-22 C-23 C-24 C-25 C-26 C-27 C-28 C-29 C-30 C-31 C-32 C-33 C-34 C-35 C-36 C-37 C-38 C-39 C-40 C-41/A C-42 C-43 C-44 C-45 C-46 C-47/T C-48 C-49 C-50 C-51 C-52 C-53 C-54 C-55 C-56 C-57 C-58 C-59 C-60 C-61 C-62 C-63 C-64 C-65 C-66 C-67 C-68 C-69 C-70/A/B/C/D C-71 C-72 C-73 C-74 C-75 C-76 C-77/B-D C-78 C-79 C-80 C-81 C-82 C-83 C-84 C-85 C-86 C-87 C-88 C-89 C-90 C-91 C-92 C-93 C-94 C-95 C-96 C-97/KC-97 C-98 C-99 C-100 C-101 C-102 C-103 C-104 C-105 C-106 C-107 C-108 C-109 C-110 C-111 C-112 C-113 C-114 C-115 C-116 C-117 C-118 C-119 C-120 C-121/F C-122 C-123/A C-124 C-125 C-126 C-127 (I) C-127 (II) C-128 C-129 C-130/J C-131 C-132 C-133 C-134 C-135/KC-135 C-136 C-137 C-1381 C-1391 C-140 C-141 C-142

Tri-service sequence (1962-present)

C-1 C-2 C-3 C-4 C-5 C-6 C-7/B C-8 C-9 C-10 C-11 C-12 C-131 C-14 C-15 C-161 C-17 C-18 C-19 C-20A-D/F-H C-21 C-22 C-23 C-24 C-25 C-26 C-27/J C-28 C-29 C-301 C-31 C-32 C-33 C-341 C-35 C-36 C-37A/B C-38 C-391 C-40 C-41 C-421 C-431 C-441 C-45 C-46

Revived original sequence (2005-present)

C-143 C-144 C-145 C-146

Non-sequential designations

C-767 C-880

1 Not assigned See also: AC-47  • AC-119  • AC-130  • DC-130  • EC-130  • HC-130  • KC-130  • LC-130  • MC-130  • WC-130  • CT-39  • CT-43

v t e

Callsigns of aircraft carrying the President and Vice President of the United States

Army One Air Force One Navy One Marine One Coast Guard One Executive One

Army Two Air Force Two Navy Two Marine Two Coast Guard Two Executive Two

89th Airlift Wing

VC-25 C-32 C-40

HMX-1

VH-3D VH-60N

Transportation of the President of the United States White House
White House
Tra

.