UK defense firm opens OKC office to support Pegasus tanker
Cobham plc will open an Oklahoma City office to support components it makes for the U.S. Air Force's newly acquired KC-46A Pegasus.
The United Kingdom-based defense contractor provides key refueling components for the tanker aircraft, which was designed by Boeing Corp. and delivered to the Air Force this year. The KC-46 uses Cobham's hose and drogue equipment that are fitted to refueling tankers. The drogue is the cone-shaped basket that helps guide the hose that connects the two aircraft.
“Recognizing the need to improve our customer service and response efficiency, we are excited to establish a regional support facility in Oklahoma, which will strengthen our close working relationship with the U.S. Air Force,” Ken Kota, senior vice president for Cobham Mission Systems, said in a news release.
Cobham will have an customer service office at Tinker Air Force Base, which is where the KC-46 will go for maintenance, repair and overhaul operations. The tankers and their crew are stationed at an air base in Kansas, but some aircraft are also assigned to Altus Air Force Base for training.
“Aerospace is the second largest industry in our state, and Tinker is a mainstay of maintenance, repair and overhaul operations for the U.S. Department of Defense,” said Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt. “Cobham and Oklahoma are a natural fit, and I am excited to watch the company get up and running in our state.”
The Oklahoma Department of Commerce and Cobham began discussions during the 2016 Farnborough International Air Show. After those talks, the company made multiple visits to the state to explore the options available.