This is the only picture you might ever see of an airline fleet that doesn’t actually exist. Popularly known as “JANET”, short for Just Another Non Existent Terminal, it operates as a ferry for scientists, engineers, and other key personnel from Las Vegas’s McCarran International Airport to the legendary top secret US Air Force facility deep in the Nevada Desert. Of course, I’m referring to none other than Area 51, the testing grounds for some of the most incredible and highly classified aircraft to have ever flown including the SR-71 Blackbird and U-2 Dragon Lady.
Taken from the window of a civilian airliner, an especially observant aviation buff was able to capture this quick picture of JANET’s fleet, parked on a private ramp at McCarran very recently. Pictured are five Boeing 737-600 airliners, decked out in the now-distinct all-white/red-stripe livery, along with what appear to be two Beech King Air B200Cs and a Beech 1900C. There are six 737-600s in the JANET fleet, as of 2010, alone with two 1900Cs, and three King Airs.
JANET is actually operated by AECOM, a private defense contractor, on behalf of the US Air Force, and flies between a handful of other air bases outside of Area 51 as well, including Naval Air Weapons Station China Lake and Plant 42 in Palmdale CA. In November last year, we reported that AECOM was on the lookout for new First Officers for their 737-600 fleet, but the job posting has since been taken down.
No official word just yet on whether or not these aircraft are powered by alien hyperdrives instead of the usual CFM56s found on most 737s.
Special thanks to MP for allowing us to use his photograph in our article!