Lockheed Martin [NYSE: LMT] today delivered the first HC-130J Combat King II to the United States Air Force's Air Combat Command (ACC). The aircraft was flown from Lockheed Martin Aeronautics' facility to Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, Ariz., by Gen. Norton A. Schwartz, chief of Staff of the U.S. Air Force. This aircraft is the first of 11 currently on order.
"It's an honor to have flown this magnificent aircraft from Marietta today," said Gen. Schwartz during today's ceremony. "It's a significant milestone for the personnel recovery and the combat search and rescue community. The capability of the HC-130 Combat King II is an order of magnitude greater than any of its predecessors, and I have to tell you it's certainly better than any Herc of any variety that I have ever flown."
"Yet again, we see the C-130 delivering a new capability," said Lorraine Martin, Lockheed Martin vice president for C-130 programs. "This new C-130J configuration gives ACC unparalleled capability for its personnel recovery mission. As worldwide demand for the C-130J increases, we see more ways this flexible aircraft meets the demands of any operator for any mission."
The new aircraft, which is based on a KC-130J tanker baseline, has the Enhanced Service Life Wing, Enhanced Cargo Handling System, a Universal Aerial Refueling Receptacle Slipway Installation (boom refueling receptacle), an electro-optical/infrared sensor, a combat systems operator station on the flight deck, and dual Satcom. In-line production of this configuration reduces cost and risk, and meets the required 2012 initial operational capability.
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