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C-130 Hercules News

C-130 Hercules News from around the web

  • Casey

    The Coast Guard is upgrading its fleet of multipurpose airplanes at an air station in Alaska to a newer model, officials said.
    The current fleet of five C-130H airplanes at Coast Guard Air Station Kodiak will be replaced with the C-130J Super Hercules model over the next two years, the Kodiak Daily Mirror reported.
    Besides moving cargo and personnel, the military transport airplanes are used for search and rescue and law enforcement operations, said Charly Hengen, a Coast Guard public affairs officer.
    The C-130J model, built by the Lockheed Martin Corp., has been updated with newer technology. It’s also equipped with capabilities allowing it to ascend higher and faster, and take off and land on shorter runways.
    The first new aircraft is expected to arrive at the air station this summer. The rest of the fleet will be replaced by 2020.
    The air station has begun construction on projects to support the new aircraft, including building a liquid oxygen facility, Hengen said. The airplanes are not pressurized, so liquid oxygen is carried to provide air. The current planes use compressed oxygen gas.
    Hengen said the new planes require a support staff of 19, who will be either trained on base or swapped out with current service members.
    The air station expects to add five personnel to the base as a result of the upgraded aircraft. About 1,000 service members operate on the base.

  • Casey

    Sgt Paul Meyer took the Hercules C-130E transporter from Mildenhall, Suffolk, in a bid to fly home to his wife Jane in Virginia in May 1969.
    It disappeared from radar in the middle of the English Channel, as Sgt Meyer flew it after a night of drinking.
    The Deeper Dorset group is to use sonar gear to search for the crash site.
    The official record of the crash recounted how after the heavy drinking session, Sgt Meyer, 23, escaped police custody, impersonated a captain and ordered the Hercules to be re-fuelled before taking to the skies.
    It described his action as a "highly irrational act" and said he was "under considerable emotional stress".
    The mechanic who had previously served in Vietnam, had been refused leave shortly beforehand.
    His stepson Henry, who was seven at the time of the crash, said he remembered Sgt Meyer as a "genuinely good young man".
    He said he had been keen to return home to help Henry's mother in a custody battle.
    "Paul was a patriot and loved his country - it seems he just loved his family more," he said.
    "This may or may not find an answer to what happened, but we are so gratified and it'll give our family some closure. It means so much that people haven't forgotten Paul."
    Simon Brown, of Deeper Dorset, said the group had studied official records, as well as tidal movements and weather conditions to identify the crash site.
    He said they had "five good targets" within 10 square miles of seabed mid-channel, about 30 miles off Portland Bill.
    Mr Brown admitted finding definitive proof of what happened to Sgt Meyer would be "very, very difficult".
    "He did a fantastic job to get a complex plane off the runway - to fly solo is quite an amazing feat.
    "Whether he flew into cloud and got disorientated, or was shot down, we're not discounting anything."
    The group has launched a crowdfunding appeal for £6,000 and aims to start sonar scans of the seabed later in the year.

  • Casey

    In one form or another, the C-130 Hercules has been associated with Hill Air Force Base for more than 50 years. 
    But by early summer, a process will begin to phase the military’s longest continuously produced aircraft off the base for good.
    In a press release, the Air Force announced this week the C-130 depot maintenance work being performed at Hill's Ogden Air Logistics Complex will begin to transition to Warner Robins Air Force Base in Georgia in June.
    The move is necessary to create more resources for an uptick in F-35 related maintenance work at the Ogden ALC, the release says.
    The Department of Defense’s 2019 budget request includes an increase in production of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, with a plan for the DOD to purchase 77 F-35s at $10.7 billion. The 77 jets are seven more than were purchased in 2018 and 14 more than in 2017.
    Hill’s ALC performs maintenance on all Air Force F-35s.
    “Given the projected (F-35 workload) growth, we're preparing for additional workload in the coming years and have postured our resources and processes to meet the sustainment needs of the F-35 now and in the future,” said a statement provided to the Standard-Examiner last week by the base’s public affairs office.
    Hill didn’t provide details on how its plan for F-35 growth would be accomplished, but it’s clear now the C-130 is a casualty of the next-generation fighter jet.
    The C-130 is one of the military’s most versatile aircraft. According to a Hill fact sheet, it’s the primary transport vehicle for airdropping troops and equipment into hostile areas. It’s used for medical and natural disaster relief missions, weather reconnaissance, firefighting, aerial refueling, search and rescue and more.
    The plane has been a familiar sight in Northern Utah skies for decades.
    In the 1960s, Hill supported operations in the Vietnam conflict by airlifting hundreds of tons of munitions into the region using the C-130 and other transport aircraft, according to the fact sheet.
    The large-scale, depot maintenance work on the plane that will move to Warner Robins began at Hill in 1988.

  • Casey

    Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) reached a major milestone with the delivery of its 400th C-130J Super Hercules aircraft on Feb. 9. This Super Hercules is an MC-130J Commando II Special Operations aircraft that is assigned to the U.S. Air Force's Special Operations Command (AFSOC).
    The C-130J Super Hercules is the current production model of the legendary C-130 Hercules aircraft, with operators in 17 nations. To date, the global fleet of C-130Js has surpassed more than 1.7 million flight hours supporting almost any mission requirement — any time, any place.
    "We celebrate this accomplishment with our employees, industry partners and the Super Hercules operator community that spans 17 countries," said George Shultz, vice president and general manager, Air Mobility & Maritime Missions at Lockheed Martin. "These first 400 C-130Js meet a global demand for the proven performance and unmatched versatility found only in a Super Hercules. Its durability, relevancy and capability will continue to set the C-130J apart as the world's choice in tactical airlift for decades to come."
    The C-130J is defined by its versatility. To date, the C-130J supports 17 different mission configurations to include transport (military and commercial), firefighting, search and rescue, Special Operations, weather reconnaissance, and aerial refueling.
    This aircraft has another distinction in addition to being the 400th C-130J delivered: it is the 13th MC-130J to be converted into an AC-130J Ghostrider gunship. It will be assigned to the 1st Special Operations Wing at Hurlburt Field, Florida. The AC-130J is a highly modified C-130J that provides close-air support, air interdiction and armed reconnaissance.
    The U.S. government operates the largest C-130J Super Hercules fleet in the world. This delivery represents the U.S. government's continued transition to the C-130J as the common platform across Air Mobility Command, AFSOC, Air Combat Command, U.S. Coast Guard and U.S. Marine Corps. The Air National Guard and Reserve still operate a mixed fleet of C-130J and legacy aircraft.

  • Casey

    In the wake of a deadly magnitude 6.0 quake which struck eastern Taiwan on Feb. 6 and caused four buildings to collapse in Hualien, Singapore is reportedly sending a crew on a transport aircraft to Taiwan to assist in rescue efforts.  
    Singaporean aviation fans at the Singapore Airshow 2018 spotted C-130 Hercules transport aircraft loaded with relief supplies taking off at 8:08 a.m. this morning at Paya Lebar Air Base.
    According to a Liberty Times report, it was confirmed by the local government of Hualien that C-130 Hercules aircraft carrying rescue staff and essential supplies took off from Singapore this morning and are set to arrive at Hualien Airport at 2:30 p.m., Taipei time, and are expected to unload the supplies by 4:30 p.m.
    However, Taiwan's National Security Council officials declined to confirm the news and remained low key about the matter. 
    According to Hualien government, the cargo includes medical supplies, tents, flashlights, etc. The Assistant Secretary-General of Hualien County, Li Hung-man will greet the rescue crew on behalf of Hualien Mayor Fu Kun-chi.

  • Casey

    Atlanta’s Scientific Research Corp. is getting a $10.98 million Air Force contract.
    This firm-fixed-price contract is for installation and installation and integration of the AN/ALR-69A(V) radar warning receiver system on C-130H aircraft. 
    Work will be performed in Warner Robins, Georgia, the Department of Defense said.
    It’s expected to be complete by Oct. 19, 2022. 
    Five offers were received in a competitive acquisition for the award. 
    Fiscal 2017 procurement funds in the amount of $10,989,711 were being obligated at the time of award. 
    The contract will be managed by the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center at Robins Air Force Base in Georgia. 
    The C-130 Hercules primarily performs the tactical portion of the airlift mission, according to the Air Force website. The aircraft is capable of operating from rough, dirt strips and is the prime transport for airdropping troops and equipment into hostile areas. 
    The C-130 operates throughout the U.S. Air Force, serving with Air Mobility Command, Air Force Special Operations Command, Air Combat Command, U.S. Air Forces in Europe, Pacific Air Forces, Air National Guard and the Air Force Reserve Command.
    Active-duty locations for the C-130 and its variations are Dyess Air Force Base, Texas; Little Rock AFB, Ark.; Ramstein Air Base, Germany; and Yokota AB, Japan. Air Force Reserve locations for assigned C-130 models include Dobbins Air Reserve Base in Georgia. Air National Guard locations for the C-130 and its variations include Savannah IAP (international airport) in Georgia. Read more here.
    Earlier this week, Scientific Research Corp. was named the winning bidder on an $86.7 million contract for the procurement of the Command, Control, Communications, Computers and Intelligence (C4I) engineering, integration and installation aboard new construction ships for the Program Executive Office C4I. Read more here.
    Scientific Research Corp., whose corporate headquarters are located at 2300 Windy Ridge Parkway in Atlanta, was founded in 1988 to provide technology services to the U.S. government, private industry, and international markets. It is focused on a broad range of information, communications, intelligence, electronic warfare, simulation, training, and instrumentation systems. The company has engineering offices located across the United States. 

  • Casey

    Marshall Aerospace and Defense Group has won the contract to support the Swedish Air Force fleet of Lockheed Martin C-130 aircraft, by providing depth maintenance services.
    Försvarets materielverk, the Swedish Armed Forces Defense Materiel Administration, awarded the contract to Marshall.  The renewal of this long-term contract will ensure that Marshall continues to provide support to its longest-standing international C-130 customer until the end of 2021, with an option to extend the contract.
    Since 1974 Marshall has supported the Swedish Armed Forces’ C-130 fleet with an unbroken maintenance program covering all levels of maintenance, engineering support, technical modifications, surge requirement support at base and supply chain services.
    Alistair McPhee, CEO of Marshall Aerospace and Defense Group, commented: “We are proud to have won this contract to support the Swedish Air Force Fleet of C-130 aircraft.  To have supported the Swedish Air Force for over four decades is incredible and I look forward to what we can achieve in the future.”
    Rupert Dix, Managing Director of Military Aerospace, Marshall Aerospace and Defense Group, commented: “The Swedish Air Force has trusted us for over 40 years to support their C-130 fleet and this new contract demonstrates, once again, both the value and service that we are committed to providing our customers”. 
    Image: One of the Swedish C-130 aircraft supported by Marshall Aerospace and Defense Group

  • Casey

    UTC Aerospace Systems, a unit of United Technologies Corp. (NYSE: UTX), today announced that it recently completed the first of two contracted Lockheed Martin C-130H propeller upgrades for the Air National Guard's 153rd Airlift Wing, based in Cheyenne, Wyoming. The company's next-gen NP2000 propeller system will help the Guard improve operational performance, and reduce maintenance time and cost.
    With its eight composite blades and enhanced electronic control system, the NP2000 offers several benefits to operators compared to legacy systems, including a reduction in vibration and noise; an increase in thrust; and associated fuel savings, depending on operating conditions. Operators can also replace individual blades on-wing without removing the entire propeller system, reducing maintenance time, while increasing the aircraft's availability.
    As an upgrade for the C-130H's legacy mechanical control system from the 1960s, the NP2000 incorporates more electric and more intelligent technologies from UTC Aerospace Systems, including a digital electronic control system that improves speed holding and blade synchronization. These innovations provide greater comfort and safety for the crew as well as valuable fault diagnostics for aircraft maintenance teams.
    "UTC Aerospace Systems is proud to support the Air National Guard by enhancing the performance and reliability of its C-130H aircraft," said Propeller Systems General Manager Jean-Francois Chanut. "For the 153rd Airlift Wing in particular, the NP2000's increased thrust will help the unit in its firefighting missions. We look forward to continuing to work with the Air National Guard to increase operational efficiency through additional upgrades to its C-130H fleet."
    The two C-130H upgrades for the 153rd Airlift Wing are part of a larger UTC Aerospace Systems contract with the Guard which includes an additional 10 LC-130 upgrades for New York's 109th Airlift Wing that are currently underway. The Guard has identified seven wings flying the C-130H that will receive engine and propeller upgrades in the coming years.
    In addition to the C-130H and LC-130, the NP2000 is currently in service on the Northrop Grumman E-2 and C-2, and is planned for use on the Lockheed Martin P-3.
    Through its legacy Hamilton Sundstrand and Ratier-Figeac businesses, UTC Aerospace Systems has been designing, manufacturing and servicing propeller systems for more than 100 years. Its Propeller Systems business has three international sites and currently supplies and services a variety of propeller systems and critical flight control systems across commercial and military platforms around the world. 

  • Casey

    The 374th Airlift Wing was recently name PACAF’s winner of the 2018 Air Force Association Verne Orr Award.
    The Air Force Association (AFA) established the award for the 14th Secretary of the Air Force Verne Orr to highlight mission-oriented accomplishments and achievements by units that made the most effective use of its human resources.
    Hoping to stand out amongst the other competitors, Yokota AB decided to take a unique approach to which unit they decided to nominate. Normally an air force installation will select a single unit who stands out amongst the rest. Yokota members looked at this and thought, ‘why not nominate the whole 374th Airlift Wing? ‘
    “I don’t think it’s normal, usually it’s a smaller unit,” said Major Duy Nguyen 374th Airlift Wing executive officer over wing award and decoration programs. “I figured if we had all the stuff that our wing does collectively, it makes for a much stronger package. You combine together everything, especially with the strategic importance of Yokota, I definitely think it makes us a powerhouse to compete.”
    Beyond the impressive numbers submitted in the actual nomination package, the 374 AW has continually shown why they deserve such a prestigious award.
    In 2017, Yokota AB participated in 17 international exercises with 28 partner nations, hosted a presidential visit, developed a wing smart app that enabled personnel on base to have real time responses and answers and completed a total over hall of it’s ageing C-130H fleet and created a new J model transition training plan for other bases to follow.
    “We have a great team and everybody is dedicated and motivated to contribute and do their best,” Nguyen said. “I think that each member of this base, service members, contractor, civilian employee or spouse truly helps to create innovation and drive a lot of success’s in our wing.”
    According to Nguyen, it seems to boil down to the Airmen of Yokota Air Base who make winning awards like this possible.
    “Everybody is making a contribution along the way,” said Nguyen. “So I think they are all a piece of the Verne Orr Award. Hopefully we can get it at the Air Force level.”
    For now, Yokota will have to wait to see how they stack up against the other MAJCOMs. The AFA, will present the final award during the Air & Space Conference and Technology Exposition 2018 this September in Washington, DC.

  • Casey

    Approximately 50 Airmen and two C-130H3 Hercules assigned to the 94th Airlift Wing, Dobbins Air Reserve Base, Georgia, arrived at Monte Real Air Base, Portugal Jan. 29, 2018 to participate in Real Thaw 18, a Portuguese-led exercise.

    The annual two-week exercise includes armed forces from multiple nations to participate in training missions aimed at merging and deploying different platforms toward a major objective, covering a vast range of activities including air-to-air and air-to-ground training, tactical air transport operations, and close air support.

    “It provides a unique training opportunity,” said Maj. Richard Konopczynski, deputy mission commander from the 700th Airlift Squadron at Dobbins. “We get to work with our coalition partners. We have other C-130 units here from different countries, and we get to not only compare our techniques, but also work in a deployed environment.”

    This year’s exercise included 1,500 participants and 35 aircraft from Spain, Denmark, Netherlands, France, Portugal, and the United States.

    The exercise also goes beyond the scope of flying missions to include support roles such as communications, security forces, maintenance, and intelligence. The scenarios will integrate daily realistic interoperability tasks in the air and on the ground between multinational units.

    “We set up a scenario that resembles a very specific situation in the world,” said Lt. Col. Joao Rosa, exercise coordinator and Portuguese air force fighter pilot. “We are simulating that we deployed a NATO force to a country…what we are going to do with all the types of aircraft we have, with all the army forces and navy forces, is to protect that small country.”

    The goal is for participants to know each other on a more personal level to establish rapport and create lasting bonds, said Rosa. The exercise brings everyone together as much as possible, whether it be flying, briefing or working together.

    These relationships have real world consequences with much of the warfighting effort involving a number of allied forces from different countries working together now and in future contingency operations.

    “It’s an opportunity to exercise a lot of our skills, tactics and procedures in a coalition environment,” said Konopczynski.

    Dobbins is participating for the first time in the exercise, which will last from Jan. 29 to Feb. 9, 2018.

  • Casey

    Kristin Hayden and her two young children watched the aircraft bursting through the clear blue sky Friday above the 911th Airlift Wing in Moon.
    The Air Force plane making its final descent on the bright but chilly afternoon carried Capt. Brice Hayden, Ms. Hayden’s husband and the father of 5-year-old Klaire and 1-year-old Justin.
    For Ms. Hayden and the kids, it was the first time in about four months they had seen Capt. Hayden, who was deployed with a C-130 unit in Qatar. Klaire, dressed in a green airman’s uniform just like her dad’s, ran out to meet him and jumped into his arms shortly after he got off the plane.     
    Advertisement   “It’s very emotional, as you can imagine,” Ms. Hayden said. “It’s more emotional seeing the kids’ reaction because they know that daddy’s coming home and he’s on that plane.”
    Friday was a special day at the 911th, not just for the Hayden family and others who were reunited after months apart. It also marked the end of the 911th as a C-130 tactical aircraft unit: two of the wing’s C-130s returned to Pittsburgh for the last time Thursday, and the other two returned Friday. 
    “This is a pretty exciting day for us and it really closes a chapter in this airwing’s history,” said Col. Jeff Van Dootingh, commander of the 911th. “This is our last deployment with the C-130s, and today marks the last time we’ll have one returning from the area of responsibility in central command.”
    The 911th now will assume a new role in the Air Force, becoming a strategic airlift mission with the C-17 Globemaster III, a much larger aircraft that has the capability to carry more cargo and personnel over greater distances.
    Advertisement   Most of the wing’s C-130s will be transferred to Air National Guard or Air Force reserve bases throughout the United States. At least one of them will be retired soon.
    The Air Force began using C-130s in 1954, and the 911th has been flying them since the 1980s, according to Col. Van Dootingh. The four-ship package that returned Thursday and Friday was used to transport food, ammunition, supplies and troops.  
    “In general, the mission of the C-130 hasn’t changed since day one,” Col. Van Dootingh said. “It’s a very unique aircraft because there are so many different versions of it that do all kinds of missions. There’s an AC-130, which is a gunship, the Hurricane Hunter is a C-130 used in search and rescue, and then, of course, what ours are, tactical airlift.”
    Whatever the mission, it’s always a great feeling to return home, said Maj. Andy Thompson of Beaver, a C-130 pilot. 
    Maj. Thompson said this was his 16th deployment, and he always looks forward to that feeling he gets when he sees his wife and four children after he steps off the aircraft.
    “It’s almost worth the trip,” Maj. Thompson said.

  • Casey

    Belgian Air Force retired his first C-130 Hercules on Dec. 27, 2017. This aircraft, registered as CH-08 c/n 4478 was in service since 1973 and has flown 22.219 flight hours. It was assigned to the 15th Wing Air Transport witch is located at the Melsbroek airbase, a part of Brussels Airport.
      The Belgian Air Force bought 12 C-130H Hercules transport aircraft in 1970 to replace the Fairchild C-119G Flying Boxcar. The first Hercules was delivered in mid 1972 and was assigned to 20 Smaldeel from 15 Wing at Melsbroek. The BAF lost two C-130s due to accidents, so it acquired an additional Hercules.   Initially, all the Belgian Hercules had received the Lizard camouflage color scheme that was replaced by a grey color during the mid-life update program.   As of 2020, the C-130 fleet will be gradually replaced by Airbus A-400M aircraft. Belgium has bought 7 Atlas and the deliveries are scheduled from 2019-2020. Currently 10 C-130s are still in service.

  • Casey

    A four-strong batch of C-130J Super Hercules airlifters ordered by France is the start of a planned larger fleet of the aircraft for the French Air Force, according to a source close to the project.
    There are plans “eventually to expand the fleet” of C-130J, the source said Tuesday on condition of anonymity. Further orders of the turboprop transports are expected from 2025.
    Armed Forces Minister Florence Parly on Monday welcomed the first of four Lockheed Martin C-130Js at a formal ceremony at the Orleans air base, south of the capital. That plane arrived Dec. 22.
    The second C-130J is expected to be delivered in May or June, said Tony Frese, Lockheed Martin’s vice president for business development for air mobility and maritime missions. The last two of the Super Hercules in the KC-130J version are earmarked for the French special forces, which are keen to have aerial refueling of helicopters, the source said. These two planes are due for delivery next year.
    There had been a plan in 2015 to arm the first two French C-130 airlifters with Raytheon’s Griffin missile, a weapon fitted on the C-130 flown by U.S. special forces.
    The French Air Force in the meantime flies an aging 14-strong fleet of C-130H Hercules, which are being modernized to meet standards set by the International Civil Aviation Organization. The service sees the C-130 as a “medium transport” that fits between the four-engine Airbus A400M and twin-engine Casa light airlifter. The C-130 will also replace the twin-engine C-160 Transall, which will be retired from service in 2023.
    Acquisition of the C-130J opens a service life of 40 years.
    There is close cooperation between French and U.S. military services, with the latter carrying 10 percent of the cargo in theater for French overseas deployments. The French and American armed forces also work together to support interoperability. French pilots of the the 1/67 Helicopter Squadron at Cazaux air base, southwest France, flew three Caracal helicopters with two U.S. Air Force MC-130J in the Dark Dune exercise last month. That exercise led to certification of the French crews for day and night in-flight refueling.

  • Casey

    France's minister of the Armed Forces, officially welcomed the country's first C-130J Super Hercules aircraft to the Armée de l'Air's 62st Transport Wing with a ceremony at Orléans-Bricy Air Base today. Government officials from France and the United States also attended the ceremony, along with representatives from Lockheed Martin.
    France will receive a total of four Super Hercules aircraft — two C-130J-30 combat delivery airlifters and two KC-130J aerial refuelers — through a Foreign Military Sale with the U.S. government, with deliveries taking place through 2019. The first of these aircraft (a C-130J-30 airlifter) was formally delivered to France in December 2017 at the Lockheed Martin facility in Marietta, Georgia, in the United States.
    France first acquired C-130Hs in 1987 and its new C-130Js will be operated with its existing Hercules fleet.
    "As a long-time Hercules operator, France has continuously demonstrated to the world the unmatched qualities and versatility found only in a C-130," said George Shultz, vice president and general manager, Air Mobility & Maritime Missions at Lockheed Martin. "France's new Super Hercules fleet delivers increased power, speed and capabilities to ensure that Armée de l'Air crews continue to meet — and exceed — mission requirements for decades to come."
    France is the 17th country to choose the C-130J for its airlift needs. The C-130J Super Hercules is the most advanced tactical airlifter in operation today, offering superior performance and enhanced capabilities with the range and versatility for every theater of operations and evolving requirements.
    C-130J 61-PO c/n 5836

  • Casey

    The EC-130H Compass Call is a modified Hercules tasked with various types of signals surveillance, interdiction, and disruption. According to the U.S. Air Force official fact sheets, “the Compass Call system employs offensive counter-information and electronic attack (or EA) capabilities in support of U.S. and Coalition tactical air, surface, and special operations forces.”
    The USAF EC-130H overall force is quite small, consisting of only 14 aircraft, based at Davis-Monthan AFB (DMAFB), in Tucson, Arizona and belonging to the 55th Electronic Combat Group (ECG) and its two squadrons: the 41st and 43rd Electronic Combat Squadrons (ECS). Also based at DMAFB and serving as the type training unit is the 42nd ECS that operates a lone TC-130H trainer along with some available EC-130Hs made available by the other front-line squadrons.
    The role of the Compass Call is to disrupt the enemy’s ability to command and control their forces by finding, prioritizing and targeting the enemy communications. This means that the aircraft is able to detect the signals emitted by the enemy’s communication and control gear and jam them so that the communication is denied. The original mission of the EC-130H was SEAD (Suppression of Enemy Air Defenses): the Compass Call were to jam the enemy’s IADS (Integrated Air Defense Systems) and to prevent interceptors from talking with the radar controllers on the ground (or aboard an Airborne Early Warning aircraft). Throughout the years, the role has evolved, making the aircraft a platform capable of targeting also the signals between UAVs (Unmanned Aerial Vehicles) and their control stations.
    Although it’s not clear whether this ability has already been translated into an operational capability, in 2015, a USAF EC-130H Compass Call aircraft has also been involved in demos where it attacked networks from the air: a kind of in-flight hacking capability that could be particularly useful to conduct cyber warfare missions where the Electronic Attack aircraft injects malware by air-gapping closed networks.
    With about one-third of the fleet operating in support of Operation Inherent Resolve (indeed, four EC-130Hs, teaming up with the RC-135 Rivet Joint and other EA assets, are operating over Iraq and Syria to deny the Islamic State the ability to communicate), the fact that a single EC-130H (73-1590 “Axis 43”) was recently deployed from Davis Monthan AFB to Osan Air Base, South Korea, where it arrived via Yokota, on Jan. 4, 2018, it’s pretty intriguing.

  • Casey

    Approximately 150 Air Force Reserve Citizen Airmen and several C-130J Super Hercules aircraft from the 403rd Wing here deployed to Southwest Asia in Support of Operations Freedom’s Sentinel and Inherent Resolve.

    Assigned to the 379th Air Expeditionary Wing based at Al Udeid Air Base, Qatar, aircrews from the 815th Airlift Squadron, maintainers from the 803rd Aircraft Maintenance Squadron and support personnel from the 403rd Wing will provide airlift, airdrop and aeromedical evacuation support to operations throughout the U.S. Central Command Area of Responsibility.

    "It is an exciting time in the 403rd Wing, as the last two years of re-building and re-training have finally culminated in a deployment to execute our primary combat airlift mission,” said Lt. Col. Stuart Rubio, 815th AS commander. “Our Airmen are willing and able to accomplish any mission they are assigned.”

    As a brand new squadron activated October 2016, this will be the first deployment for the 803rd AMXS.

    “We will show that this unit was put here for a reason and silence anyone who thinks a young squadron can’t fulfill the combat mission as good as, if not better than, a seasoned tactical maintenance squadron,” said Maj. Brian Horton, 803rd AMXS commander.

    As the deployment lead, the 815th AS “Flying Jennies” will be assigned to the 746th Expeditionary Airlift Squadron. This is the 815th’s sixth deployment since 2004 and Airmen and aircraft from the 403rd Wing have also provided airlift support for Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom.

    The most recent deployment for the Flying Jennies was in 2013, and was considered bittersweet by its personnel because the unit was scheduled to close in 2014. The Secretary of the Air Force reversed that recommendation in 2015, and the 815th AS officially reached full operational capability in November.

    “I’ve watched our Reserve Citizen Airmen train nonstop for months to prepare for this deployment,” said Col. Jennie R. Johnson, 403rd Wing commander. “They are ready, and they are capable.”

  • Casey

    Marines with the Marine Aerial Refueler Transport Squadron (VMGR) 252 out of Marine Corps Air Station (MCAS) Cherry Point, N.C., the oldest continually active squadron in the Marine Corps, along with their J-model C-130 arrived here in Reno on Wednesday, January 10th. They came to Reno to partake in Advanced Mountain Airlift Tactics School (AMATS) training with the 192nd Airlift Squadron “High Rollers” at the Nevada Air National Guard base.

    This is the first time the High Rollers have hosted the Marine Corps for “joint” flight training with members of another service branch in the AMATS course. The 192nd provides the training to those units who want to come out and fly with them.

    AMATS Instructor Pilot Maj. Joe Jaquish said, “Reno offers an exclusive training area that consists of a series of isolated mountain ranges and intervening valleys ranging from 4,000 – 11,000 feet. It also contains local drop zones (DZs) and landing zones (LZs) which are textbook for high desert and mountain training. The terrain closely correlates to that of some of the many countries to which the United States military deploys. The flying course focuses on teaching safe and effective mountain flying.”

    One of the visiting Marine Corps pilots, Capt. Nick Johnson, said that they have no specific training in the Marine Corps like this and that it serves multiple purposes, “We only fly in and around our base, and, being on the East coast, the terrain is nothing like when you deploy. The terrain around Reno is very similar to the countries we deploy to and it makes tactical sense to fly somewhere similar to the deployed locations.”

    AMATS is a two-phase C-130 flying syllabus designed to create tactical experts by instructing C-130 H and J-model aircrew in the advanced principles of planning and execution to safely and effectively employ in the high density altitude mountainous environment.

    Two other visiting Marine Corps pilots, 1st Lts. Ian Penn and Mike Carps agreed that it’s not only the flying that’s great training, “This course offers hands-on mission planning that is not Marine Corps centric, the opportunity to train with the Air National Guard is fantastic because they do things a little differently than we do and that gives us a better understanding of the C-130’s capabilities.”

    Johnson also stated that they just happened to hear about the course and feel very lucky to have been picked to attend. “We will take what lessons we learn here back to our squadron and hope to get other crews out to Reno for more training.”

    The 192nd Airlift Squadron’s local flying course, AMATS, has been a valuable training course for pilots from the active duty Air Force, Air National Guard and Air Force Reserve. The 192nd can now add Marine Corps pilots to their growing list of attendees

  • Casey

    A Tampa company has been awarded a $40 million contract to help foreign military pilots learn how to fly C-130 transport planes.
    Those are the big boys that transport everything from equipment to soldiers and even fly into hurricanes.
    The 5-year deal with the company named CAE could also benefit our local economy. 
    Located just north of Tampa International Airport, you'd never know what goes on inside the nondescript building, and that’s probably the way they like it since some of what CAE does is top secret. 
    But for this story, the company let us past security to show you why they just landed a $40 million defense contract.
    The five-year deal will help foreign militaries learn to fly C-130 aircraft using CAE’s massive flight simulators. 
    “Obviously, the U.S. Air Force wants to make sure they're properly trained so they can support not only their missions, but support missions in which the U.S. needs assistance,” said CAE USA’s President Ray Duquette.
    Every button knob and switch inside the simulator is identical to the real thing.
    The C-130 has been a versatile go-to workhorse for more than 50 years, transporting people, equipment, even flying into storms.
    One of the big reasons foreign militaries will send pilots to CAE for their training is so they don't have to use a real aircraft in their countries.
    However, CAE software can change the terrain, weather, lighting conditions, almost anything to replicate the areas those pilots come from.
    “So this is a good way of being exposed to the elements, to the environment, to the threats that are out there, and to potential emergencies at the may encounter,” said Duquette.
    CAE's simulators, which mimic the real thing in stunning detail, also cost a fraction of flying real aircraft.
    Under the military contract, each year nearly 1,500 people will come to Tampa to train from all over the globe.
    They’ll stay at local hotels and eat at local restaurants, boosting the local economy. 
    “We bring them in,” said Duquette, “They could be here for a week. Some of them are initial pilots, so they have been trained in the C-130, so they're going through that initial training. And that could be months of training.”
    CAE also manufactured the flight simulator that trains pilots to operate the KC-135. Those are the huge refueling tankers that fly out of MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa.
    The operation may be all about simulations, but the international military alliances being forged here over the next five years are very real.

  • Casey

    Uruguay is among the pioneering nations in the Antarctic Treaty, keeping military personnel and scientific staff on the frozen continent year-round to conduct research studies for the benefit of all mankind. The Uruguayan Air Force (FAU, in Spanish) already made its first and second flights for the 2017-2018 Summer Campaign in support of General José Artigas Scientific Base in Antarctica. A C-130 Hercules (FAU 591) from the 3rd Air Transport Squadron was deployed for that purpose.
    Uruguayan Minister of Defense Jorge Menéndez attended the plane’s departure and announced the signing of an agreement to process the first patent of the National Antarctic Program between the Uruguayan Ministry of Defense and the University of the Republic of Uruguay. “For more than 30 years, our nation maintained a permanent presence in Antarctica, in accordance with a state policy to promote an Antarctic policy aligned with United Nations’ goals for sustainable development,” Menéndez said prior to the first flight’s departure on November 7th, 2017. “Uruguay joined the Antarctic Treaty in 1980, and since October 7th, 1985, has been one of the 29 advisory members among the 53 nations in the treaty,” the minister added.
    Annual campaign
    FAU plans to carry out a total of five flights during the campaign, adding flights in January, February, and April to those conducted in November and December. A crew will also remain on 24-hour standby in case of emergency during Operation ANTARKOS.
    “On November 7th and December 18th, we made two flights, bringing in provisions and transferring scientific staff to the base that Uruguay has set up in Antarctica,” said to Diálogo FAU Lieutenant Colonel Martín Campoamor, commander of the 3rd Air Transport Squadron. Before each of these special flights, explained Lt. Col. Campoamor, a planning meeting is held, where all data on weather conditions, cargo and passengers is brought together. “Emphasis is always on weather conditions, which is what most limits our operations in Antarctica, where you also have to be very cautious when using the runway, due to visibility conditions.”
    Each flight departs from the 1st Air Brigade, stationed next to Carrasco International Airport, on the outskirts of Montevideo. From there, it heads to Punta Arenas, the regional capital of Magallanes and of the Chilean Antarctic, where it makes the first layover after a five-hour flight. The next leg is to King George Island in Antarctica, which takes another three hours.
    The Uruguayan Navy complements the support task to the Uruguayan scientific base. On December 2nd, 2017, the Lüneburg-class logistics supply ship General Artigas ROU-04 left port from Montevideo. Its main mission is to transfer tons of provisions, fuel, and construction materials to supply the base during the mission that will run through 2018. During its operations, the crew carries out a classification and waste treatment process, according to established environmental protocol, which requires that no waste be disposed of in Antarctica. Upon its return, ROU-04 will bring back compressed, packaged, and sealed shredded glass, plastics, and metals for final disposal in Uruguay.
    Historic flight
    The C-130 Hercules conducted a historic flight in support of Argentina, when it was deployed to transfer cargo from Rio Gallegos, in the province of Santa Cruz, Argentina, to the Argentinean Antarctic base Marambio, on December 13th. It was the first time that a FAU aircraft landed at that location.
    “We were on the first leg of the second flight to King George Island in support of the Uruguayan Antarctic Institute. Once we landed, we were enlisted to complete the mission in Marambio, given how both of the Argentine Air Force’s Hercules planes were down,” Lt. Col. Campoamor said. “They needed to transfer diesel to their base to keep everything heated and running—it was running out of supply—so we quickly requested all the information needed, such as weather and runway conditions. It was an honor to carry out that mission, which burnished the reputation of the Uruguayan Air Force and Uruguay as well.”
    FAU has made flights to support General Artigas Scientific Base in Antarctica since 1984. It made its first flight on January 28th of that year with Fairchild Hiller FH-227 aircraft and later used Aviocar C-212 aircraft. Today, FAU carries out campaigns with two C-130 Hercules acquired in 1991.

  • Casey

    Cascade Aerospace Inc. (Cascade) is pleased to announce that it has been awarded a contract for the avionics modernization of one Fuerza Aérea Mexicana (FAM) L-100 (C-130) Hercules aircraft.  This contract follows on the recent delivery of two modernized C-130K Hercules aircraft delivered to the FAM and fitted with advanced digital avionics from Rockwell Collins.
    This program will be contracted through the Canadian Commercial Corporation (CCC) under the auspices of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the Canadian and Mexican governments.
    "Completing the C-130 fleet modernization represents a significant milestone for Cascade and affirms our excellent relationship with the Mexican Air Force as a support provider of choice since 2013,"  said Cascade's COO & EVP, Kevin Lemke. "The upgrade of this aircraft will establish a common cockpit configuration for the entire FAM C-130 fleet thereby enhancing fleet capability as well as providing efficiencies in maintenance, training, and operational availability."
    This modernization program includes the installation and integration of an advanced Rockwell Collins Flight2 TM digital avionics suite. In addition, Cascade will provide operational and technical training for Mexican Air Force personnel at the company's facility and headquarters in Abbotsford, British Columbia.
    About Cascade Aerospace
    Cascade Aerospace, an operating unit of IMP Aerospace & Defense, is a leading Canadian specialty aerospace contractor that provides long-term integrated aircraft fleet support and program management, aircraft maintenance, modification, engineering & integrated logistics support to domestic and international military, government, and commercial customers.
    About Canadian Commercial Corporate (CCC)
    Established in 1946, the Canadian Commercial Corporation (CCC) is a Federal Crown corporation of the Government of Canada that acts as Canada's international contracting and procurement agency. CCC reports to Parliament through the Minister of International Trade.
    CCC acts as the prime contractor for foreign governments who wish to contract with Canadian companies and expertise through a government-to-government channel. CCC's strong relationships with international buyers and access to Canada's innovative industrial base, puts CCC in a unique position to facilitate and promote international trade.

  • Casey

    The United States Air Force (USAF) has awarded its Rolls-Royce T56 Engine Depot Overhaul contract to StandardAero, allowing the company to continue its support of the USAF fleet of C-130H aircraft for an additional 8 ½ years, as an exclusive provider.  The total contract value is more than $600M and work will be performed at StandardAero’s facilities in San Antonio, Texas and Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.
    The competition for the award was conducted in 2017, following a series of short-duration T56 maintenance contracts.  The contract was awarded in late December.
    Under the new agreement, StandardAero will continue to provide the same high quality support the USAF has experienced previously, but at a reduced cost.  In addition, the contract now includes support for the new 3.5 engine configuration and associated components.
    “This is a fantastic achievement for our T56 teams in San Antonio and Winnipeg, who have continuously earned high performance ratings for our Air Force customer,” said Mark Buongiorno, VP/GM of StandardAero San Antonio.  “With this longer duration contract, we can work with the USAF to focus on time-on-wing improvement initiatives, which will help optimize the life-cycle-cost savings for the fleet of T56 engines.”  
    “Our San Antonio facility now has a broad and continued volume of work, and strong relationship with the USAF, U.S. Navy and OEMs,” said Scott Starrett, President of StandardAero Military and Energy division.  “We will continue to leverage new growth opportunities for our facility, and for other StandardAero divisions.”

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