Airlift for the Future?

Air Mobility Command has been asking EADS about its huge Airbus A380 as a potential Air Force One-class VIP transport or C-5 freighter replacement, reports Flight International. The journal says the AMC feelers “may be linked” to the problems with the C-5 modernization program. It would seem more likely this is just the usual forward-thinking effort, looking for potential competitors. Meanwhile, Air Force Research Lab is pursuing a program termed “Speed Agile Concept Demonstration.” It would produce a concept for a multi-mission mobility aircraft possibly incorporating efficient transonic flight, runway independence, and robust flight controls, among other elements. AFRL expects to award a contract in January and wants to be able to run simulated testing of the technology by 2010.