The C-21 is a twin turbofan engine aircraft used for cargo and passenger airlift. The aircraft is the military version of the Lear Jet 35A business jet. In addition to providing cargo and passenger airlift, the aircraft is capable of transporting one litter or five ambulatory patients during aero medical evacuations.
Battle Creek Air National Guard Base currently flies the C-21 "Cougar". This aircraft was originally assigned to Battle Creek in 2009 to help transition the base from the previous A-10C mission to the new C-27J mission projected to begin in 2012. The mission of this aircraft is to carry cargo and passengers in support of a variety of state and federal missions.
Throughout 2011, the 110th successfully executed DV transport, communications security, inspector general support, and Red Cross missions. Additionally, the aircraft was used to train new pilots and prepare them for the arrival of the C-27J as well as maintain the qualifications of transitioning pilots and maintenance personnel.
C21 General Characteristics
Primary Function: Passenger and Cargo Airlift
Contractor: Learjet, Inc.
Power Plant: Two Garrett TFE-731-2-2B turbofan engines
Thrust: 3,500 pounds each engine
Maximum Takeoff Weight: 18,300 pounds (8,235 kilograms)
Length: 48 feet, 7 inches (14.71 meters)
Height: 12 feet, 3 inches (3.71 meters)
Wingspan: 39 feet, 6 inches (11.97 meters)
Fuel Capability: 931 gallons (3,537.8 liters) [1,120 gallons (4,256 liters) with ferry tanks]
Speed: 530 mph (Mach 0.81, 461 knots at 41,000 feet (12,496.8 meters)
Range: 2,306 miles (3,689.6 kilometers)
Ceiling: 45,000 feet (13,716 meters)
Maximum Load: : Eight passengers and 3,153 pounds (1,433 kilograms) of cargo, one litter patient or five ambulatory patients.
Crew: Two (pilot and co-pilot); aero medical evacuation adds medical crew of three (one flight nurse and two medical technicians). Minimal medical crew may be one flight nurse and one medical technician as required
Unit Cost: $3.1 million (fiscal 1996 constant dollars)
Initial operating capability: April 1984
Inventory: Active forces, 35; ANG, 21; Reserve, 0
The turbofan engines are pod-mounted on the sides of the rear fuselage. The swept-back wings have hydraulically actuated single-slotted flaps. The aircraft has a retractable tricycle landing gear, single steer-able nose gear and multiple-disc hydraulic brakes.
The C-21 can carry eight passengers and 42 cubic feet (1.26 cubic meters) of cargo. The fuel capacity of the C-21 is 931 gallons (3,537.8 liters) with refueling accomplished at ground level through each wingtip tank. The safety and operational capabilities of the C-21 are increased by the autopilot, color weather radar and tactical air navigation system, as well as high frequency, very high frequency and ultra high frequency radios.
The aircraft has a crew of two and may be flown from either cockpit seat. It is equipped with an automatic navigation system to enhance crew efficiency. Four cathode ray tubes display essential information to the pilots.