The RC-135U Combat Sent is an electronic intelligence reconnaissance and surveillance aircraft in use by the United States Air Force (USAF). It is employed as a Scientific and Technical ELINT Collection System and designed to collect technical intelligence on adversary systems. The Combat Sent provides strategic electronic reconnaissance information to the president, secretary of defense, Department of Defense leaders, and theater commanders.
The RC-135U is equipped with an aerial refueling system, giving it an unlimited flying range. The navigation equipment incorporates ground navigation radar, a solid state Doppler system, and an inertial navigation system that combines celestial observations and Global Positioning System data. Communication equipment includes high frequency, very high frequency, and ultra high frequency radios. The aircraft has distinctive antennae arrays on the chin and wing tips, large cheek fairings, and an extended tail. Its crew consists of two pilots, two navigators, two airborne systems engineers, and a minimum of ten electronic warfare officers, also known as Ravens, and six or more electronic, technical, and area specialists.
There are only two Combat Sents in the USAF, both assigned to the 55th Wing at Offutt Air Force Base, Nebraska. The RC-135U has with a wide array of commercial off-the-shelf and proprietary hardware and software. Its current configuration allows for both manual and automatic analysis of electronic signals. It locates and identifies foreign military land, naval and airborne radar signals to collect and examine each system, providing analysis for warfighters. Collected data is recorded for future reference or for extensive analysis by electronic systems theorists. Any information gathered from the data will help determine detailed operating characteristics and capabilities of foreign systems. Evasion techniques and equipment are then developed from this knowledge that will detect, warn of, or defeat these electronic systems. The Combat Sent deploys worldwide and is employed in peacetime and contingency operations.
- 1/100 Scale Model
- 16.25 Inch Wingspan
- 17 Inch Length
- Material Mahogany Wood