The Kalashnikova Show: Russia’s Military Secrets with Anna Knishenko

Il-78 Flying Filling Station | The Kalashnikova Show. Episode 27

Russia’s Il-78 airborne tanker is a flying filling station that allows fighters and strategic aeroplanes extend their flying time. The enormous Ilyushin Il-78 is a complex machine that uses the ‘probe-and-drogue’ system. For mid-air refuelling, the receiving aircraft has to fly as close as possible to reach the refuelling line. The Il-78 can carry up to 130 tonnes of fuel and top up two planes simultaneously.



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