Israel will acquire two more C-130J Super Hercules transports from Lockheed Martin, bringing its fleet up to three aircraft. Deliveries will take place over the next two years.
Lockheed Martin announced last week that it had received an Undefinitised Contract Action (a contract for which the terms, specifications and price are not yet agreed on) from the U.S. Government for the Foreign Military Sale of an additional C 130J to Israel, with funding for advanced procurement items for a third aircraft.
The US Department of Defence announced in July 2008 the proposed foreign military sale of up to nine C-130Js to Israel. However, Israel ordered one C-130J in April 2010 and will receive that aircraft in spring 2013. The next two aircraft will be delivered in late 2013 and late 2014 respectively. The contract also covers a number of items to meet Israel’s unique operational requirements. The Israeli Air Force’s new Super Hercules are the longer fuselage or “stretched” variant of the C-130J, known as the C-130J-30.
“We are providing Israel with the most flexible and capable airlifter in the world as that country continues to expand its advanced airlift fleet. The proven multi-role and multi-mission capability and performance of the C-130J are ideally suited to the unique requirements of the Israeli Air Force,” said Jim Grant, Lockheed Martin vice president of Business Development for Air Mobility.
Israel’s aircraft are being modified during production with non-developmental items, which include an Enhanced Service Life center wing, two embedded Global Positioning Systems and a Universal Aerial Refueling Receptacle Slipway Installation aerial refueling system.
Meanwhile, the first of four C-130Js for the Qatar Emiri Air Force has been completed and will de delivered to Qatar later this year.
On April 26 Lockheed Martin announced that the first MC-130J Combat Shadow II for the United States Air Force Special Operations Command completed its first flight at the Lockheed Martin facility in Marietta. The first MC-130J will be delivered to Cannon Air Force Base, New Mexico, in September.
The new aircraft is based on a KC-130J tanker baseline and will have the Enhanced Service Life Wing, Enhanced Cargo Handling System, a Universal Aerial Refueling Receptacle Slipway Installation (boom refueling receptacle), more powerful electrical generators, an electro-optical/infrared sensor and a combat systems operator station on the flight deck.
MC-130Js will achieve initial operational capability in 2012. Lockheed Martin is building 15 MC 130Js to begin replacing the current aging fleet. The U.S. Air Force is authorized to acquire up to 20 MC-130Js against an approved requirement for 37.