OFFUTT AIR FORCE BASE, Neb. — Fortunately, it has never come to this. But if the United States ever found itself in the middle of a nuclear war, it would need the ability to get a command and control center off the ground and away from potential attack targets in just minutes.
That’s precisely what the National Airborne Operations Center (NAOC) is all about. A set of four E-4Bs — which are Boeing 747-200s modified to support the military’s doomsday communications needs — these planes were designed to allow the country’s most senior military officials to stay in charge and control during a nuclear crisis, or something approaching that level of seriousness.
The planes are based out of this Air Force Base, which is also home to U.S. Strategic Command, and was the longtime home of U.S. Strategic Air Command, just south of Omaha. CNET reporter Daniel Terdiman got a rare opportunity to look inside and out of one of the Doomsday planes as part of Road Trip 2013