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NATO operates a fleet of three C-17 Globemaster transporters from Papa Air Base in Hungary, operated by the Heavy Airlift Wing (HAW). The HAW is part of the Strategic Airlift Capability (SAC) that provides its 12 member nations with the capability to transport cargo and personnel over long distances. 2018 marks the first visit of a NATO C-17 to the Air Tattoo.
The C-17 is a four engine high-wing aircraft with a large cargo hold capable of holding a payload of 77 tonnes across continents. The C-17 is capable of rapid strategic delivery of troops and all types of cargo to main operating bases or directly to forward bases in the deployment area. The aircraft can perform tactical airlift and airdrop missions and can transport litters and ambulatory patients during aeromedical evacuations when required.