Jul 28, 2014 17:54 UTC
The Philippine Air Force has devolved in many ways since the 1980s, but China’s ongoing pressure is finally focusing high-level attention on the need to rebuild it. A country of islands means a special premium for sea and air transport, but the country’s aerial transport fleet has declined especially badly. At the high end, it has crashed from a high of 18 C-130 medium transports to just 3 aged C-130B and L-382 (converted civil C-130H) aircraft. Poor storage and practices mean that only 3 other PAF airframes can even hope for refurbishment now, and the country is also looking to buy second-hand C-130s from the United States.
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Jul 22, 2014 16:10 UTC
Latest updates[?]: India orders 6 more C-130J-30s, 1st sale of up to 10 civil LM-100Js; LM-100J explained.
RAAF C-130J-30, flares
The C-130 Hercules remains one of the longest-running aerospace manufacturing programs of all time. Since 1956, over 40 models and variants have served as the tactical airlift backbone for over 50 nations. The C-130J looks similar, but the number of changes almost makes it a new aircraft. Those changes also created issues; the program has been the focus of a great deal of controversy in America – and even of a full program restructuring in 2006. Some early concerns from critics were put to rest when the C-130J demonstrated in-theater performance on the front lines that was a major improvement over its C-130E/H predecessors. A valid follow-on question might be: does it break the bottleneck limitations that have hobbled a number of multi-billion dollar US Army vehicle development programs?
C-130J customers now include Australia, Britain, Canada, Denmark, India, Israel, Iraq, Italy, Kuwait, Norway, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, South Korea, Tunisia, and the United States. American C-130J purchases are taking place under both annual budgets and supplemental wartime funding, in order to replace tactical transport and special forces fleets that are flying old aircraft and in dire need of major repairs. This DID FOCUS Article describes the C-130J, examines the bottleneck issue, covers global developments for the C-130J program, and looks at present and emerging competitors.
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