19 May 2014

29th November 1981

LARK 52 departed Mildenhall 13:04, 55n 00 13:33 (EGTT - London ATCC FIC), F280, 58n 00 14:06, 65n 00 15:05, 82n 15e 17:20, ETA Offutt AFB 00:25, outside temp' -37°C, wind 330/95

USAF, WC-135, 61-2672 from the 55th Weather Reconnaissance Squadron, McClellan AFB, CA (working Croughton Airways on 11176)
[This aircraft arrived into Mildenhall earlier on the 27th November]

[Photo: 'stable-mate' WC-135B, 61-2666 in 1978]

61-2672 was converted from a C-135B in 1965 into a WC-135B. It received the 'Star Cast' modification in January 1989, which involved the installation of an optical tracking and collection capability behind the cargo door. In early 1990 it was noted in a new paint scheme of a white fuselage top, vertical stabilizer, engine turbofan nacelles and nose. During 1994 it began conversion into the second of the OC-135B's, 'Open Skies' (see image below). The implementation of this 'Open Skies Treaty' was signed in March 1992 by 25 nations to verify the military activities of the signatories by teams of observers. Accordingly the aircraft was subsequently assigned to the 55th Wing at Offutt AFB.

[Photo: at Mildenhall on 16th August 2008 as on OC-135B © Keith Burton]

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