Meet the Lockheed Martin
C-5M Super Galaxy.
This airplane here, we routinely fly all over the world with it," said Andrew S. Biscoe, SMSgt, USAF. "In this airplane here, which is the biggest in the US military, you can fit six Greyhound buses in it, side by side."
The Lockheed Martin C-5M Super Galaxy arrives at Cape Canaveral, Florida carrying the GOES-S satellite. Photo: Meredith Garofalo
You’re talking about an aircraft that can carry 265,000 pounds of cargo and is stocked with enough fuel for the average American car to go on 130 round trips between Los Angeles and the Big Apple!
"A big role that we have as part of being the total force in the Air Force
, is carrying humanitarian supplies and helping out with joint agency operations like this with the government," Biscoe said.
The C-5M Super Galaxy
has completed two missions transporting the next generation weather satellites, GOES-R and GOES-S from Colorado to Florida.
"There wasn’t too much of a challenge because our crews are highly experienced," said Maj. Jeff Cavaioli, GOES-S Mission, USAF. "They know what to do, when to do it, as long as they have a game plan. They are all over being on time and getting the airplane and the configuration required."
Cavaioli was part of a 15-member Air Force Reserve
Command crew from Westover Air Reserve Base
, taking part in this Air Mobility Command
"We all practice talking to each other telling us what needs to happen and a lot of good back and forth," said Master Sgt. Scott Blais, Flight Engineer Instructor, USAF. "Even the load masters, even though they are not up in the flight deck with us, they sometimes hear things that don’t sound right and they pipe up so they can even save something."
This trip not only includes safely carrying the weather satellite across the country, but closely monitoring the weather for any threats the entirety of the trip.
"It’s extremely important because we don’t want to fly into thunderstorms or severe weather, we try to stay away from it," Blais said. "It’s not good for the airplane and it’s difficult to control."
Making the mission of transporting the next generation weather satellites a little extra meaningful for the crew.
Maj. Jeff Cavaioli, GOES-S Mission, USAF, flying the C5-M Super Galaxy from Colorado to Florida. Photo: Meredith Garofalo
"It looks like we can get better data faster, more timely weather, maybe better predictions and so hopefully the aviation forecasts will be more accurate and more comprehensive," Cavaioli said.
The crew also takes part in a variety of missions, including humanitarian efforts.
"We do all kinds of missions, not only just only things in it for war," Blais said. "The hurricanes that happened this year, we took a lot of supplies for them."
A team effort that will continue to make a huge difference in the air, and on the ground, across the entire globe.
"We’re like a big family," Blais said. "We all work hard and we like to do what we do. And we keep doing it because it’s fun and we enjoy it."
For WeatherNation, I’m Meteorologist Meredith Garofalo