Two C-17s Were Assigned as Search-and-Rescue Aircraft for SpaceX’s Manned Mission

 In Air, air force, Space, U.S. Air Force

Two C-17s were fitted with the Lightweight Airborne Radio System (LARS), a radio to locate and recover personnel in denied territory, during SpaceX’s manned mission to the International Space Station.

U.S. Space Force Capt. Richard Burges, Task Force 45 Support Operations Center training officer and military liaison, connects a Lightweight Airborne Radio System to a C-17 Globemaster III November 13, 2020, at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii. The aircraft was prepped for a contingency rescue operation, ready to rescue the first full crew of astronauts as they traveled to the International Space Station through NASA’s Commercial Crew Program. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Senior Airman John Linzmeier)


The radio helps the C-17 crew to pick up the survival beacon in event of an abort over the oceans.

Besides the radio, each C-17 carries rescue equipment and a medically trained pararescuemen team.

There was one C-17 stationed in Hawaii and the other in South Carolina.

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