MANUFACTURER(S): Boeing Company - USA
OPERATORS: United States (cancelled)
LENGTH: 131.73 feet (40.15 meters)
WIDTH: 129.00 feet (39.32 meters)
HEIGHT: 48.39 feet (14.75 meters)
WEIGHT (EMPTY): 117,749 pounds (53,410 kilograms)
WEIGHT (MTOW): 250,996 pounds (113,850 kilograms)
ENGINE: 2 x General Electric CF6-50D turbofan engines developing 51,000lb of thrust each.
SPEED (MAX): 503 miles-per-hour (810 kilometers-per-hour; 437 knots)
RANGE: 3,191 miles (5,135 kilometers; 2,773 nautical miles)
CEILING: 44,997 feet (13,715 meters; 8.52 miles)
RATE-OF-CLIMB: 1,935 feet-per-minute (590 meters-per-minute)
Detailing the development and operational history of the Boeing YC-14 (Model 953) Tactical Airlifter Transport Aircraft Prototype.
Entry last updated on 10/23/2017.
Authored by Staff Writer. Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com.
The United States Air Force (USAF) attempted to replace the long-running, prop-driven Lockheed C-130 "Hercules" tactical transport during the mid-1970s. With production beginning in 1954, the high-winged, four-engined C-130 had been in service for several decades up to that point and a myriad of variants were ultimately realized when the USAF established the Advanced Medium STOL Transport (AMST) competition of 1968 to seek a standardized successor. From the RFP (Request For Proposal) of 1972, Boeing's entry into the competition became its "YC-14" and this was set against the McDonnell Douglas "YC-15" prototype.
The C-130 set the standard for successful medium-class transports with its high-mounted wings and elevated empennage. The mounting of the engines along these wing elements forced a "T-style" tail unit to be used to help clear prop-wash. The cockpit was set over the short nose assembly for a commanding view and the elevated tail unit allowed for excellent access to the cargo hold from the rear. Performance-wise, the C-130 could operate from little-prepared airfields which added a rugged quality to the series still appreciated today.
With this in mind, Boeing engineers returned with a similar design arrangement in the Model 953 - save for propeller-driven propulsion. Instead, a pair of large turbofan engines took their place on the wing leading edges in the form of 2 x General Electric CF6-50D engines of 51,000lb thrust each - the exhaust blowing over the trailing edge flaps. The operating crew numbered three and internal capacity ranged from 150 combat-ready troops to 69,000lb of cargo. Overall length became 131.7 feet with a wingspan of 129 feet and height of 48.3 feet. Empty weight was 117,500lb against a Maximum Take-Off Weight (MTOW) of 251,000lb.
Boeing and McDonnell Douglas each had their designs selected from a field of five entries and each were awarded prototype contracts for two examples. Boeing prototype 72-1873 went to the air for the first time on August 9th, 1976 and the second example followed as 72-1874 in time. The formal USAF head-to-head competition began in November of 1976 at Edwards AFB and this phase lasted into mid-1977.
In the end, neither design was adopted for further development nor serial production due to the fact that the USAF had begun moving away from tactical-minded airlifters and towards strategic-minded types. To rework the two designs would have required considerable modifications so the AMST program was ended before the start of 1980. From there, the USAF moved on a new initiative - the "C-X" program which yielded the C-17 "Globemaster III" still in service today.
McDonnell Douglas was eventually merged into the Boeing brand label in August of 1997 - thus the C-17 design, originating from McDonnell Douglas, today exists as a Boeing product.
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Our Data Modules allow for quick visual reference when comparing a single entry against contemporary designs. Areas covered include general ratings, speed assessments, and relative ranges based on distances between major cities.
This entry's maximum listed speed (503mph).
Graph average of 562.5 miles-per-hour.
Graph showcases the Boeing YC-14's operational range (on internal fuel) when compared to distances between major cities.
Useful in showcasing the era cross-over of particular aircraft/aerospace designs.
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