The aircraft arm of the U.S. Marine Corps carried out the first nighttime aerial refueling test of the CH-53K helicopter made by Lockheed Martin. The refueling was carried out with the help of night vision equipment as part of the testing of the capability of the helicopters to operate at long ranges, day and night, while carrying cargo. The CH-53 King Stallion helicopter has been chosen as the replacement for the IAF's "Yassur" helicopter.
The CH-53K helicopters have already underwent a series of air refueling tests during the daytime while carrying cargo of more than 12 tons. The plane that refueled the helicopter was a C-130. The Marine Corps plans to acquire 200 of the helicopters in the coming years, with 33 under production by Lockheed Martin and three already delivered to the corps.
Tests have already proven that the helicopters can carry heavy cargo for 110 miles in very hot weather. There were also tests of its gunfire, external lift capability, flight at a speed of 200 knots, turns, and takeoffs and landings from sloped surfaces.