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Lockheed C-130 Hercules

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Jeffry Fontaine:
According to a recent AINon-line.com report, the C-130XJ (X = Expandable) is Lockheed's response to the C-27 Spartan.  Click on html to view article, click on thumbnail to view larger image of the conceptual artwork. 

(Image source: AINon-line.com)

Apparently the AINon-line informatoin was derived from this From Lockheed Martin announcement:

--- Quote ---(Source: http://lockheedmartin.tumblr.com/page/3)

Lockheed Martin launches new lower cost version of the proven C-130J Super Hercules

The Lockheed Martin C-130J Super Hercules is the most advanced airlifter ever built. The C‑130J combines the latest in aerospace technology with a proven, rugged airframe design.  The result is an aircraft that gives an operator more capability with greater operational efficiency than any other airlifter.

To meet the demands of the new economic environment, while still providing unmatched tactical airlift capability, Lockheed Martin has launched at the Singapore Airshow the C-130XJ.  The C‑130XJ, X referring to expandable, has at its heart the proven and highly successful C-130J program.

The C-130XJ is being offered across international markets to those operators that do not require all of enhanced capabilities inherent in C-130J.  As such, it will have a significantly lower price.  Despite this it will have growth capability, post delivery, in many mission areas.  The only exception will be those items that have to be part of the initial build such as the Enhanced Cargo Handling System.

The C-130XJ will be especially attractive in two main areas - the special mission market that utilize roll on/roll off mission packages and those countries or operators that primarily use their airlift aircraft for low threat air/land movement of troops and equipment

The C-130XJ has been carefully tailored to provide the very best the proven C-130J model has to offer in air/land movement of personnel and equipment and delivery of humanitarian relief and aero medical evacuation.  The C-130XJ retains all the provisions necessary to fully configure the aircraft for combat operations should the need arise.

The C-130XJ retains the current C-130J propulsion and avionics suite, and there are no changes to the current C-130J airframe design.  The primary airframe focus is on the short body C-130J, but the XJ solution could be offered for the C-130J-30 stretch version if requested.

The C-130XJ will be have the capability to fly the same full spectrum of missions that the C-130 has always flown  which includes compatibility with a wide range of roll-on/roll-off special mission packages that enable the aircraft to perform search and rescue, fire fighting, surveillance and reconnaissance, signals intelligence and close air support missions.

The C-130XJ design is established and is already generating interest and requests from around the world.
--- End quote ---


Other related links:

Wikipedia - Lockheed C-130
USAF Fact Sheet - C-130 Hercules
US Navy fact file - C-130 Hercules
C-130Hercules.net - C-130 images and forum
USAF Air Mobility Command Museum - C-130 Hercules

Alvis 3.1:
Yanno, I really need to just slap Warp pods onto a herk and call it a day. That plane is never going to retire.

Alvis 3.1

The Big Gimper:
Nice. Canada will be looking for a new SAR bird. Makes for ease of maintenance and one-stop shopping for the flight crew.

The KC-390 is quite cool too:

http://www.jrlucariny.com/Site2008/embkc390/embkc390.html
http://www.militaryphotos.net/forums/showthread.php?199814-Embraer-s-KC390-to-fly-in-2014

Jeffry Fontaine:
One of my favorite C-130 images is this November 1963 image showing a USMC KC-130F aboard the USS Forrestal (CV-59) for compatibility testing for the proposed Super COD aircraft. 

Click thumbnail to view larger image.


(Image source: Wikipedia via US Navy)

kitnut617:
I think this pic is really cool too:

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