Rugged and versatile, the C-17 Globemaster doesn’t need a paved runway to make deliveries.
The C-17 Globemaster can be considered a master of its domain. The four-engine transport is the perfect component for the modern U.S. military and its ability to rapidly deploy troops and equipment anywhere in the world.
The Globemaster can also be described as the four-wheel off-road vehicle of the U.S. air fleet. It’s rugged enough that it doesn’t need a paved runway. The C-17 doesn’t mind getting dirty.
This video is a prime example of the C-17 delivering cargo to an area that is near the front lines. A hard-packed dirt runway is sufficient for both landing and takeoff.
The C-17 has the cargo space to deliver a 69-ton M-1 Abrams battle tank. But on this mission, the cargo is a Boeing AH-64 Apache attack helicopter. The Globemaster’s cargo bay can be converted to handle either pallet cargo or rolling stock like the Apache.
The AH-64 is versatile in that there’s some assembly required after delivery. Being able to stow and transporter a helicopter requires attaching the four blades after landing. The ground crew also must work as a team to de-plane the copter as even with the large accommodation of the C-17’s interior, it’s a tight fit.