US Coast Guard to acquire three HC-130J surveillance aircraft
Lockheed Martin received a $218 million contract for three additional HC130Js for the US Coast Guard. This will increase the US Coast Guard fleet of HC-130Js from six to nine. The contract also includes funding for two mission suites, which are critical in supporting US Coast Guard search and rescue operations. The new aircraft are scheduled to be delivered in early 2015.
“The Coast Guard, like many services in the Hercules family, continues to recapitalize with the C130J,” said Jack Crisler, Lockheed Martin Vice President for Air Mobility. “The C130J is without equal in terms of its multi-role, multi-mission flexibility and availability. No aircraft in production — or in development — can match the capabilities of the Super Hercules.”
The current fleet of HC-130Js, based at Air Station Elizabeth City, meets long-range maritime patrol requirements in areas that cannot be patrolled efficiently by medium-range surveillance aircraft or cutters. The long-range surveillance (LRS) aircraft also provide heavy air transport for maritime safety and security teams, port security units, and National Strike Force personnel and equipment.
The HC-130J’s special mission suite is comprised of a two mission system operator station located behind the pilot and co-pilot, a belly-mounted 360-degree longrange search radar, nose-mounted forward looking infrared radar and an advanced mission communications suite. The missionised HC-130J is designed to deliver enhanced search, detection and tracking capabilities. this type of radar. The RBE2 AESA brings the Rafale a number of key operational benefits —extended range capabilities supporting low-observable target detection and full use of new weapon systems such as the Meteor air-to-air missile—higher reliability for reduced maintenance and lower through-life support costs—greater waveform agility for SAR (synthetic aperture radar) imaging and improved resistance to jamming.