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casey

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Everything posted by casey

  1. Here’s a blend of two video B-Roll segments from the California Air National Guard showing the preparation of he 146th Airlift Wing’s C-130s for use as firefighters, and then actual fire duty from the cockpit in July 2020. Look closely and you will see the lead plane put out a stream of smoke where the C-130 is supposed to drop. And listen to the sounds of the drop from the cockpit. Video Credit: Fred Johnsen of AIRAILIMAGES View full article
  2. Here’s a blend of two video B-Roll segments from the California Air National Guard showing the preparation of he 146th Airlift Wing’s C-130s for use as firefighters, and then actual fire duty from the cockpit in July 2020. Look closely and you will see the lead plane put out a stream of smoke where the C-130 is supposed to drop. And listen to the sounds of the drop from the cockpit. Video Credit: Fred Johnsen of AIRAILIMAGES
  3. Several persons have reportedly been injured after a plane accident in Maroua, Cameroon's Far North region. Sources say the military plane missed the tarmac of the airport, crashing into a nearby plain. It is suspected that heavy rains might have contributed to the incident. View original post: https://twitter.com/MimiMefoInfo/status/1289998178880638977?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1289998178880638977%7Ctwgr%5E&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Faviation-safety.net%2Fwikibase%2F239000 Additional info can be found here: https://aviation-safety.net/wikibase/239000
  4. Several persons have reportedly been injured after a plane accident in Maroua, Cameroon's Far North region. Sources say the military plane missed the tarmac of the airport, crashing into a nearby plain. It is suspected that heavy rains might have contributed to the incident. View original post: https://twitter.com/MimiMefoInfo/status/1289998178880638977?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1289998178880638977%7Ctwgr%5E&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Faviation-safety.net%2Fwikibase%2F239000 Additional info can be found here: https://aviation-safety.net/wikibase/239000 View full article
  5. I think I added that photo, lol. I sometimes forget that most everyone is flying Js these days.
  6. A U.S. military plane crashed into an Iraqi military base north of the capital on Monday without causing fatalities, the U.S.-led coalition said. Separately, a rocket landed on the periphery of Baghdad airport, the Iraqi military said, without providing further details. There were no reported casualties or damage. The crash of the C-130 in Iraq’s Camp Taji injured four servicemen and was deemed an accident, spokesman for the U.S.-led coalition Myles Caggins told the Associated Press. Caggins said the plane had overshot the runway and crashed into a wall, resulting in damage to the aircraft and a small fire. View original article at stripes.com View full article
  7. A U.S. military plane crashed into an Iraqi military base north of the capital on Monday without causing fatalities, the U.S.-led coalition said. Separately, a rocket landed on the periphery of Baghdad airport, the Iraqi military said, without providing further details. There were no reported casualties or damage. The crash of the C-130 in Iraq’s Camp Taji injured four servicemen and was deemed an accident, spokesman for the U.S.-led coalition Myles Caggins told the Associated Press. Caggins said the plane had overshot the runway and crashed into a wall, resulting in damage to the aircraft and a small fire. View original article at stripes.com
  8. A rainy June 2, 2020, was a historic day for the 39th Rescue Squadron as aircrew members flew the first fully operational HC-130J Combat King II training mission. This first operational flight marks an important milestone for the 39th RQS because the HC-130J replaced the HC-130 P/N as the only Air Force dedicated fixed-wing personnel recovery platform. The new aircraft came directly off the production line from Lockheed Martin and went straight to the flight line earlier just two months ago. “The Combat King II, flies faster, higher and further. It’s capabilities, far exceeds that of its predecessor” said Col. Ian, the 920th RQW vice commander. “This is not your grandfathers C-130. This is the beginning of exciting new era for our wing.” Despite the rain outside, the atmosphere inside the briefing room was that of excitement and anticipation. The discussion centered on a crawl, walk, run mentality for the introduction of the new aircraft. The first flight is the start of the crawl phase where pilots, combat systems officers (CSO) and loadmasters become comfortable in this new, state-of-the-art, aircraft. The crew consisted of Lt. Col. Matt and Lt. Col Bobby, both 39th RQS instructor pilots, Lt. Col. Rich, CSO, as well as loadmasters Senior Master Sgt. Bob, “BK”, and Master Sgt. Dean. “Since I began training a year ago, I have been waiting for this moment,” said Master Sgt. Dean. “The HC-130J is amazing in every aspect. I can’t wait to see how it adds to our mission, given its capabilities.” The HC-130J has improved technology, to include a full glass cockpit, with digital heads up displays, improved navigation, threat detection, and new capabilities, such as satellite and data-burst communications and the ability to receive inflight refueling to travel longer distances In order to become qualified to operate in the HC-130J, the aircrew members returned to training in Little Rock, Arkansas and Kirtland Air Force Base, Albuquerque New Mexico. Even though the majority of the aircrew were highly experienced and skilled in the HC-130 P/N platform, the formal school training took an average of seven months to complete; but that was just the beginning. Due to the unique mission of the 920th RQW, additional hours in the J model are required for full proficiency. The 39th RQS uses the HC-130 in its vital mission of personal recovery in combat and peacetime situations, including helicopter air-to-air refueling, airdrop, humanitarian aid and disaster relief. {ADD A SENTENCE OR TWO ABOUT WHY WE USE IT, REFUELING CAPABILITIES, EXTENDS OUR REACH, ETC} The mission included multiple take off and landings at various airfields, weather, navigation and systems training. The crew debriefed the lessons learned of the first flight and discussed the way forward for the squadron and crew members as the new HC-130J becomes thoroughly integrated into the 39th RQS. “These five rocked it and I was incredibly proud to have been in the seat for the 39th’s first sortie,” said Lt. Col. Steve, 39th RQS commander. Based at Patrick Air Force Base, Florida, the 920th Rescue Wing is the only Air Force Reserve Command combat-search-and-rescue wing. The wing trains and equips over 2,000 Airmen who carry out its mission, to search for, locate and recover U.S. Armed Forces personnel during military operations. View full article
  9. A rainy June 2, 2020, was a historic day for the 39th Rescue Squadron as aircrew members flew the first fully operational HC-130J Combat King II training mission. This first operational flight marks an important milestone for the 39th RQS because the HC-130J replaced the HC-130 P/N as the only Air Force dedicated fixed-wing personnel recovery platform. The new aircraft came directly off the production line from Lockheed Martin and went straight to the flight line earlier just two months ago. “The Combat King II, flies faster, higher and further. It’s capabilities, far exceeds that of its predecessor” said Col. Ian, the 920th RQW vice commander. “This is not your grandfathers C-130. This is the beginning of exciting new era for our wing.” Despite the rain outside, the atmosphere inside the briefing room was that of excitement and anticipation. The discussion centered on a crawl, walk, run mentality for the introduction of the new aircraft. The first flight is the start of the crawl phase where pilots, combat systems officers (CSO) and loadmasters become comfortable in this new, state-of-the-art, aircraft. The crew consisted of Lt. Col. Matt and Lt. Col Bobby, both 39th RQS instructor pilots, Lt. Col. Rich, CSO, as well as loadmasters Senior Master Sgt. Bob, “BK”, and Master Sgt. Dean. “Since I began training a year ago, I have been waiting for this moment,” said Master Sgt. Dean. “The HC-130J is amazing in every aspect. I can’t wait to see how it adds to our mission, given its capabilities.” The HC-130J has improved technology, to include a full glass cockpit, with digital heads up displays, improved navigation, threat detection, and new capabilities, such as satellite and data-burst communications and the ability to receive inflight refueling to travel longer distances In order to become qualified to operate in the HC-130J, the aircrew members returned to training in Little Rock, Arkansas and Kirtland Air Force Base, Albuquerque New Mexico. Even though the majority of the aircrew were highly experienced and skilled in the HC-130 P/N platform, the formal school training took an average of seven months to complete; but that was just the beginning. Due to the unique mission of the 920th RQW, additional hours in the J model are required for full proficiency. The 39th RQS uses the HC-130 in its vital mission of personal recovery in combat and peacetime situations, including helicopter air-to-air refueling, airdrop, humanitarian aid and disaster relief. {ADD A SENTENCE OR TWO ABOUT WHY WE USE IT, REFUELING CAPABILITIES, EXTENDS OUR REACH, ETC} The mission included multiple take off and landings at various airfields, weather, navigation and systems training. The crew debriefed the lessons learned of the first flight and discussed the way forward for the squadron and crew members as the new HC-130J becomes thoroughly integrated into the 39th RQS. “These five rocked it and I was incredibly proud to have been in the seat for the 39th’s first sortie,” said Lt. Col. Steve, 39th RQS commander. Based at Patrick Air Force Base, Florida, the 920th Rescue Wing is the only Air Force Reserve Command combat-search-and-rescue wing. The wing trains and equips over 2,000 Airmen who carry out its mission, to search for, locate and recover U.S. Armed Forces personnel during military operations.
  10. New Zealand's military said Friday it will buy five Super Hercules transport planes from Lockheed Martin for $1 billion. The planes will replace the military's existing fleet of Hercules, all of which are more than 50 years old and have been involved in a series of embarrassing breakdowns over recent years. Defense Minister Ron Mark said the new planes will be used for operations in New Zealand, the South Pacific and Antarctica. “Generations of New Zealanders have grown up and grown old with the Hercules, and they know these aircraft are an essential first line of response," Mark said in a statement. Three of the nation's current C-130 Hercules planes date back to 1965 and the other two to 1969. They have been upgraded over the years, but frequent breakdowns have hampered some high-profile missions. At one point last year, the entire fleet was temporarily grounded. New Zealand will take delivery of the first of the new C-130J-30 aircraft in 2024 with the full fleet operating by 2025. The price tag of 1.5 billion New Zealand dollars ($1 billion) includes a flight simulator and supporting infrastructure. View original article at thehour.com View full article
  11. New Zealand's military said Friday it will buy five Super Hercules transport planes from Lockheed Martin for $1 billion. The planes will replace the military's existing fleet of Hercules, all of which are more than 50 years old and have been involved in a series of embarrassing breakdowns over recent years. Defense Minister Ron Mark said the new planes will be used for operations in New Zealand, the South Pacific and Antarctica. “Generations of New Zealanders have grown up and grown old with the Hercules, and they know these aircraft are an essential first line of response," Mark said in a statement. Three of the nation's current C-130 Hercules planes date back to 1965 and the other two to 1969. They have been upgraded over the years, but frequent breakdowns have hampered some high-profile missions. At one point last year, the entire fleet was temporarily grounded. New Zealand will take delivery of the first of the new C-130J-30 aircraft in 2024 with the full fleet operating by 2025. The price tag of 1.5 billion New Zealand dollars ($1 billion) includes a flight simulator and supporting infrastructure. View original article at thehour.com
  12. Lockheed Martin provided the final of 86 C-130 Super Hercules aircraft that were part of a Multi-Year 2 contract announced in December 2015 when it delivered a KC-130J tanker-transport platform to a US Marine Corps (USMC) reserve squadron on 28 May. The KC-130J is assigned to Marine Aerial Refueler Transport Squadron (VMGR-452), the Marine Forces Reserve squadron at Stewart Air National Guard Base in New York. KC-130s are operated in support of the Marine Air-Ground Task Force (MAGTF) commander by providing tactical in-flight refuelling for fixed-wing, rotary-wing, and tiltrotor aircraft; aviation-delivered ground refuelling of aircraft or tactical vehicles; and air assault transport or air-landed or aerial delivered (parachute) personnel and equipment. The aircraft also provides pathfinder support, battlefield illumination, tactical aeromedical evacuation, and tactical recovery of aircraft and personnel support. Lockheed Martin spokesperson Stephanie Stinn said on 2 June that this Multi-Year 2 contract also delivered C-130J-30s, MC-130Js, and HC-130Js to the US Air Force (USAF), nine KC-130Js to the USMC, and HC-130Js to the US Coast Guard (USCG). Lockheed Martin, in total, delivered 86 C-130Js through the Multi-Year 2 contract. Stinn said the original contract was for 78 aircraft with an optional five to acquire. In addition to the original 78, 3-of-6 options were exercised, plus five more aircraft were added, for a total of 86 aircraft procured through Multi-Year 2. View original article at janes.com View full article
  13. Lockheed Martin provided the final of 86 C-130 Super Hercules aircraft that were part of a Multi-Year 2 contract announced in December 2015 when it delivered a KC-130J tanker-transport platform to a US Marine Corps (USMC) reserve squadron on 28 May. The KC-130J is assigned to Marine Aerial Refueler Transport Squadron (VMGR-452), the Marine Forces Reserve squadron at Stewart Air National Guard Base in New York. KC-130s are operated in support of the Marine Air-Ground Task Force (MAGTF) commander by providing tactical in-flight refuelling for fixed-wing, rotary-wing, and tiltrotor aircraft; aviation-delivered ground refuelling of aircraft or tactical vehicles; and air assault transport or air-landed or aerial delivered (parachute) personnel and equipment. The aircraft also provides pathfinder support, battlefield illumination, tactical aeromedical evacuation, and tactical recovery of aircraft and personnel support. Lockheed Martin spokesperson Stephanie Stinn said on 2 June that this Multi-Year 2 contract also delivered C-130J-30s, MC-130Js, and HC-130Js to the US Air Force (USAF), nine KC-130Js to the USMC, and HC-130Js to the US Coast Guard (USCG). Lockheed Martin, in total, delivered 86 C-130Js through the Multi-Year 2 contract. Stinn said the original contract was for 78 aircraft with an optional five to acquire. In addition to the original 78, 3-of-6 options were exercised, plus five more aircraft were added, for a total of 86 aircraft procured through Multi-Year 2. View original article at janes.com
  14. Following on from the Night Vision System upgrade modification of the Flight Management System in 2017, Marshall ADG will now design and update the Electronic Flight Instrument System displays, Standby Instrument and Flight Management System across the fleet. “We’re thrilled to be awarded the contract to do this avionics modification work, which will extend the current capabilities of the aircraft,” said Duncan Eldridge, Managing Director of Marshall ADG’s Military Aerospace business. “The Austrian Air Force is an important customer and we know that their C -130 fleet is used extensively to perform supply tasks in support of their troops around the globe, as well as being on standby for other critical missions. Marshall ADG has a strong pedigree for carrying out modifications on C-130 aircraft and we are pleased that the Austrian Air Force has shown continued trust in our comprehensive engineering capabilities.“ Marshall ADG will begin the design phase of this project through the middle of this year and complete the embodiment of the modification on the fleet as the aircraft are inducted into Marshall’s Cambridge facility for scheduled maintenance. Head of Air Material Staff Austrian Air Force, Brig Gen Peter Wessely, said: “The AAF has had 18 years of good relationship with Marshall ADG. With their experience and their competence, they have carried out many modifications and maintenance to our full satisfaction. “This smart modification designed by Marshall will solve our known problem with the Heading Indication on our Primary Flight Instruments without replacing our highly integrated Inertial Navigation Units. “They also found a smart solution to solve current obsolescence problems in our navigation installation. The software upgrade to our integrated Secondary Flight Display iSFD will improve the reliability of our VSI system and subsequently the availability of the aircraft.” The Austrian Air Force purchased the three transport aircraft from the UK Ministry of Defense in 2003 when the Royal Air Force started the transition of their fleet to C-130Js. Marshall has been supporting these aircraft ever since, providing depth maintenance, engineering and logistics support. View original article at cambridgenetwork.co.uk View full article
  15. Following on from the Night Vision System upgrade modification of the Flight Management System in 2017, Marshall ADG will now design and update the Electronic Flight Instrument System displays, Standby Instrument and Flight Management System across the fleet. “We’re thrilled to be awarded the contract to do this avionics modification work, which will extend the current capabilities of the aircraft,” said Duncan Eldridge, Managing Director of Marshall ADG’s Military Aerospace business. “The Austrian Air Force is an important customer and we know that their C -130 fleet is used extensively to perform supply tasks in support of their troops around the globe, as well as being on standby for other critical missions. Marshall ADG has a strong pedigree for carrying out modifications on C-130 aircraft and we are pleased that the Austrian Air Force has shown continued trust in our comprehensive engineering capabilities.“ Marshall ADG will begin the design phase of this project through the middle of this year and complete the embodiment of the modification on the fleet as the aircraft are inducted into Marshall’s Cambridge facility for scheduled maintenance. Head of Air Material Staff Austrian Air Force, Brig Gen Peter Wessely, said: “The AAF has had 18 years of good relationship with Marshall ADG. With their experience and their competence, they have carried out many modifications and maintenance to our full satisfaction. “This smart modification designed by Marshall will solve our known problem with the Heading Indication on our Primary Flight Instruments without replacing our highly integrated Inertial Navigation Units. “They also found a smart solution to solve current obsolescence problems in our navigation installation. The software upgrade to our integrated Secondary Flight Display iSFD will improve the reliability of our VSI system and subsequently the availability of the aircraft.” The Austrian Air Force purchased the three transport aircraft from the UK Ministry of Defense in 2003 when the Royal Air Force started the transition of their fleet to C-130Js. Marshall has been supporting these aircraft ever since, providing depth maintenance, engineering and logistics support. View original article at cambridgenetwork.co.uk
  16. The Air Force is asking for proposals to conduct electronic evaluations of one of its key assets, the C-130 weapon system family. In a notice posted June 2, the service stated it is conducting a market survey to see which companies might be able to study, analyze, develop or test advanced technology, including microelectronics, software and algorithm solutions to resolve obsolescence issues. It addition, the service would want to add capabilities and improve performance, reliability, maintainability and availability of EC-130J Commando Solos, EC-130J Super Js and AC-130Js. Moreover, the post notes that this requirement’s main purpose is to perform analysis and investigate the vulnerability of these platforms. The Commando Solo is broadly an information operations platform conducting military information support operations — formerly known as psychological operations — and civil affairs broadcasts. The AC-130J conducts close-air support and armed reconnaissance. Documents associated with the post state this effort is a follow-on of the current effort performed by Raytheon. This effort has existed in one instantiation or another since 2016, and used two contract vehicles as well as two different contractors. The project will take a minimum of two years. The tasks contractors must conduct include tabletop and red team assessments on the highest impact items identified on the EC-130J; an analysis report with mitigation strategies and analysis; and investigations on modifications concerning electronic vulnerabilities on the Commando Solo and Super J. View original article at c4isrnet.com View full article
  17. The Air Force is asking for proposals to conduct electronic evaluations of one of its key assets, the C-130 weapon system family. In a notice posted June 2, the service stated it is conducting a market survey to see which companies might be able to study, analyze, develop or test advanced technology, including microelectronics, software and algorithm solutions to resolve obsolescence issues. It addition, the service would want to add capabilities and improve performance, reliability, maintainability and availability of EC-130J Commando Solos, EC-130J Super Js and AC-130Js. Moreover, the post notes that this requirement’s main purpose is to perform analysis and investigate the vulnerability of these platforms. The Commando Solo is broadly an information operations platform conducting military information support operations — formerly known as psychological operations — and civil affairs broadcasts. The AC-130J conducts close-air support and armed reconnaissance. Documents associated with the post state this effort is a follow-on of the current effort performed by Raytheon. This effort has existed in one instantiation or another since 2016, and used two contract vehicles as well as two different contractors. The project will take a minimum of two years. The tasks contractors must conduct include tabletop and red team assessments on the highest impact items identified on the EC-130J; an analysis report with mitigation strategies and analysis; and investigations on modifications concerning electronic vulnerabilities on the Commando Solo and Super J. View original article at c4isrnet.com
  18. The U.S. Air Force is looking at arming otherwise unarmed cargo planes, pressing them into service as makeshift bombers. The service believes future wars with adversaries like Russia or China will require plenty of aerial firepower and transport planes, loaded with pallets of cruise missiles, could provide an inexpensive solution. According to Defense News, the Air Force thinks aircraft such as the C-130J Super Hercules and C-17 Globemaster III could become part-time missile trucks. The unarmed aircraft typically shuttle troops and equipment, but in a pinch, would be equipped with “smart pallets” carrying long-range cruise missiles and other munitions. The pallets would be capable of feeding position, navigation, and targeting data to their onboard missiles. Once dropped from the rear of the aircraft, the pallets would quickly release their missile cargoes, sending them downrange to their targets. The larger the aircraft, the more missiles it could carry. The missile truck concept pairs aircraft with large cargo boxes, of which the U.S. military has hundreds, with advanced missiles like the Joint Air to Surface Standoff Missile (JASSM). The latest version of JASSM, JASSM-XR, will have a range of 1,000 nautical miles—far enough for slow, lumbering, non-stealthy transports like the C-17 to launch dozens of missiles at enemy targets while staying out of missile and interceptor range. Once a mission is over, the aircraft could be loaded with more smart pallets or go back to its traditional cargo carrier role. The Air Force has been converting cargo planes into armed warbirds since the Vietnam War, when it added banks of Gatling guns to C-47 and C-130 transports. These gunships proved effective in providing close air support firepower and hunting Viet Cong forces traveling along the Ho Chi Minh trail. Most armed transport conversions are permanent, with an unarmed transport aircraft transformed into a heavily armed gunship for good. In 2010, however, the U.S. Marine Corps introduced Harvest Hawk, a conversion kit for its KC-130 transport/tanker planes. Harvest Hawk allowed the Marines to launch Hellfire, Griffin, and Viper Strike air-to-surface missiles from a KC-130 against targets on the ground. A KC-130 equipped with Harvest Hawk can still perform aerial refueling and transport missions. Ideally, the perfect choice for launching swarms of cruise missiles at an enemy is the upcoming B-21 Raider stealth bomber—the coolest plane we've never seen. A B-21 could penetrate enemy defenses, attack targets, and slip out of enemy territory, ideally all without being detected. But at $621 million per aircraft, the B-21 is relatively expensive, and large numbers of the aircraft are a decade away. The Air Force has hundreds of transport planes that are paid for and ready to fly right now. he Air Force expressed hesitation in the past in arming transport planes—after all, a future conflict will find them moving and resupplying their own far-flung forces worldwide. Recent tests at Dugway Proving Ground, however, seem to have changed the service’s opinion. The tests saw a MC-130J Combat Talon special operations transport successfully airdrop three pallets, each carrying a simulated load of long range cruise missiles. The bomb truck concept, if successful, could greatly increase the number of cruise missiles available to U.S. forces at the start of a conflict. After their initial combat mission, the transports could quickly return to their traditional roles. If the concept gains traction, the bomb truck concept could give the Air Force a tremendous boost in firepower—all without buying a single new plane. View original article at PopularMechanics.com View full article
  19. The U.S. Air Force is looking at arming otherwise unarmed cargo planes, pressing them into service as makeshift bombers. The service believes future wars with adversaries like Russia or China will require plenty of aerial firepower and transport planes, loaded with pallets of cruise missiles, could provide an inexpensive solution. According to Defense News, the Air Force thinks aircraft such as the C-130J Super Hercules and C-17 Globemaster III could become part-time missile trucks. The unarmed aircraft typically shuttle troops and equipment, but in a pinch, would be equipped with “smart pallets” carrying long-range cruise missiles and other munitions. The pallets would be capable of feeding position, navigation, and targeting data to their onboard missiles. Once dropped from the rear of the aircraft, the pallets would quickly release their missile cargoes, sending them downrange to their targets. The larger the aircraft, the more missiles it could carry. The missile truck concept pairs aircraft with large cargo boxes, of which the U.S. military has hundreds, with advanced missiles like the Joint Air to Surface Standoff Missile (JASSM). The latest version of JASSM, JASSM-XR, will have a range of 1,000 nautical miles—far enough for slow, lumbering, non-stealthy transports like the C-17 to launch dozens of missiles at enemy targets while staying out of missile and interceptor range. Once a mission is over, the aircraft could be loaded with more smart pallets or go back to its traditional cargo carrier role. The Air Force has been converting cargo planes into armed warbirds since the Vietnam War, when it added banks of Gatling guns to C-47 and C-130 transports. These gunships proved effective in providing close air support firepower and hunting Viet Cong forces traveling along the Ho Chi Minh trail. Most armed transport conversions are permanent, with an unarmed transport aircraft transformed into a heavily armed gunship for good. In 2010, however, the U.S. Marine Corps introduced Harvest Hawk, a conversion kit for its KC-130 transport/tanker planes. Harvest Hawk allowed the Marines to launch Hellfire, Griffin, and Viper Strike air-to-surface missiles from a KC-130 against targets on the ground. A KC-130 equipped with Harvest Hawk can still perform aerial refueling and transport missions. Ideally, the perfect choice for launching swarms of cruise missiles at an enemy is the upcoming B-21 Raider stealth bomber—the coolest plane we've never seen. A B-21 could penetrate enemy defenses, attack targets, and slip out of enemy territory, ideally all without being detected. But at $621 million per aircraft, the B-21 is relatively expensive, and large numbers of the aircraft are a decade away. The Air Force has hundreds of transport planes that are paid for and ready to fly right now. he Air Force expressed hesitation in the past in arming transport planes—after all, a future conflict will find them moving and resupplying their own far-flung forces worldwide. Recent tests at Dugway Proving Ground, however, seem to have changed the service’s opinion. The tests saw a MC-130J Combat Talon special operations transport successfully airdrop three pallets, each carrying a simulated load of long range cruise missiles. The bomb truck concept, if successful, could greatly increase the number of cruise missiles available to U.S. forces at the start of a conflict. After their initial combat mission, the transports could quickly return to their traditional roles. If the concept gains traction, the bomb truck concept could give the Air Force a tremendous boost in firepower—all without buying a single new plane. View original article at PopularMechanics.com
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