April 15, 2014 – Perhaps one of the most familiar series’ of airplanes in aviation history, the Lockheed Martin C-130J Super Hercules and her predecessors have played diverse roles in the success of military, humanitarian, and special operations. Additionally, the versatile aircraft has seen service in firefighting efforts as well as search and rescue missions, and the flexible craft also serves as an air refueling station for other aircraft in flight.
The C-130 family of aircraft continues to evolve, responding to the shifting needs of today’s military. The perennial workhorse is regularly used to drop personnel and supplies from the air, and the latest model can operate from relatively short airstrips, making it ideal for wide-ranging applications.
The C-130J, the newest member of the legendary line of airlifters, incorporates design and performance enhancements that push the capabilities of the model beyond those of its predecessor, the C-130E. The newest version climbs higher and faster than previous models, and can make longer trips at cruising speed. In addition to state of the art navigation and defensive capabilities, the recently revised aircraft also utilizes an enhanced cargo system.
With over 2400 C-130s delivered, the family of aircraft serves important roles for many nations. These interesting details illustrate the versatility and enduring relevance of one of the most recognizable aircraft in the sky: The C-130J Super Hercules.
1. The C-130 family represents the longest production run of any aircraft currently flown by the United States military. The design has outlived replacement platforms, serving the skies for more than 50 years. Each incarnation carries upgrades, including the C-130J, which incorporates a new flight deck and modernized engines.
2. The C-130 series has logged over one-million hours flying special missions, including combat and humanitarian efforts.
3. At least 15 countries utilize the state of the art C-130J, with dozens more nations operating other models within the C-130 family.
4. Around a dozen active operations worldwide currently rely on the service of the C-130J Super Hercules airlifter.
5. The family of aircraft represents nearly 2500 individual planes, which have been delivered since Lockheed martin began manufacturing the unique vessels. Orders for the latest model stand at around three-hundred, serving the Unites States Air Force, as well as those in Italy, Canada, Norway and Denmark.
6. The Super Hercules is capable of conveying more than 40,000 pounds of cargo and supplies. Six standard full-sized pallets of goods, for example, can be loaded directly to a single plane’s cargo bay, using the C-130’s unique fold-down ramp. The craft can accommodate 92 combat troops on personnel transport missions. And the redesign of the versatile cargo handling system found on the C-130J ensures infinite combinations of cargo are easily configured within the cargo compartment.
7. The C-130J is capable of landing and taking off on short runways of less than 2000 feet in length, allowing the craft to serve in mountainous regions and other challenging terrain.
8. With a maximum normal cargo load on board, the C-130J Super Hercules has an upper-limit cruising altitude of twenty-eight thousand feet, and is able to travel a range of more than 2000 miles.
9. The C-130J-30 is a stretched-out version of the C-130, lengthened by 15 feet in the fuselage for increased cargo handling abilities. The extra space accommodates two additional pallet-loads of equipment and supplies.
10. Variants of the C-130J include the HC-130J Combat King, which is the Air Force’s only fixed-wing personnel recovery craft. The Combat King is outfitted specifically to avoid early detection and has expanded range capabilities. The family of aircraft also includes the Weatherbird, a specially appointed craft used to enter hurricanes and other weather systems to recover data as storms unfold.
Author: Daphne Holmes contributed this guest post. She is a writer from ArrestRecords.com and you can reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org.