Massive C-17 Globemaster III Gets Rid of Its Cargo, Trucks Look Tiny Next to It

The U.S. Air Force (USAF) says the C-17 Globemaster III is perfect for “tactical and strategic airlift missions, transporting troops and cargo throughout the world and is involved in additional roles including medical evacuation and airdrop duties.” Quite an expansive description, but one that kind of sums up what this plane is all about.
C-17 Globemaster III unloading in Alaska 14 photos
Photo: USAF/Airman 1st Class Elizabeth Schoubroek
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We’ve seen this particular breed of airplane here on autoevolution before, given how it is one of the favorite targets for USAF photographers. This particular pic shows one of the planes based at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, while unloading its cargo at Eielson Air Force Base in the same state.

The image, captured earlier this month, shows just how impressively large the behemoth is, with the base’s trucks looking tiny sitting next to it. For us all to better understand just how large, here’s a quick look at the numbers that come with it.

The plane, made by Boeing, has a wingspan of over 169 feet (almost 52 meters) and is 174 feet (53 meters) feet long. Towering 55 feet (17 meters) over the ground, it can weigh a maximum of 585,000 pounds (265,352 kilograms) at takeoff.

The four Pratt & Whitney engines dangling on its wings develop 40,440 pounds of thrust each, and can take the plane to the sky from airfields that are just 7,740-foot (2,359 meters) long.

Inside, the Globemaster can hold either cargo or troops, with 102 soldiers able to fit inside at any given time. Whatever the transport, the plane can deliver it to the destination, which can be located all the way around the globe, thanks to aerial refueling, at speeds of 518 mph (834 kph).

First introduced in 1993, the C-17 Globemaster III is one of the most widespread military transport aircraft in use, with over 220 in the service of various USAF units.
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Editor's note: Gallery shows other Globemasters.

About the author: Daniel Patrascu
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Daniel loves writing (or so he claims), and he uses this skill to offer readers a "behind the scenes" look at the automotive industry. He also enjoys talking about space exploration and robots, because in his view the only way forward for humanity is away from this planet, in metal bodies.
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