“Like a Whisper”

That’s the way a Reserve C-5 pilot at Dover AFB, Del., describes the engines of the new C-5M Super Galaxy. “The new engines are like a whisper compared to the whine of the legacy aircraft,” said Lt. Col. Mike Semo, with Air Force Reserve Command’s 709th Airlift Squadron at Dover. The Air Force received the first of the C-5s upgraded with new engines and modern avionics in December at Robins AFB, Ga., and Dover is slated to get its first M model next week. Semo described the new engines as “like adding a fifth engine while using the same or less fuel depending on the situation,” saying, too, that they enable the aircraft to carry more cargo further as well as meeting international noise compliance levels. The new avionics, he said, are the difference between using a paper map and GPS navigation, providing a “lot more situational awareness which is very important in a combat zone.” Lt. Col. Thomas Loper, with the active duty 436th Operations Group, extolled the cargo capability, noting that the C-5M would haul increased payloads over the current C-5 routes or take loads currently transported by unmodified C-5s further. He added that the new engines “allow faster climbs to higher altitudes where the aircraft uses less fuel than the old C-5s.” (Dover report by TSgt. Kevin Wallace)