The U.S. Air Force has selected Louisville Air National Guard Base, Kentucky; McLaughlin ANGB, West Virginia; Naval Air Station Joint Reserve Base, Texas; and Savannah ANGB, Georgia as the preferred locations to receive C-130J Super Hercules aircraft to replace their aging C-130Hs, pending the outcome of environmental assessments. The U.S. Air Force evaluated all C-130J candidate locations against objective criteria based on mission requirements. The preferred alternatives were the highest scoring locations based on that criteria. The C-130J reduces manpower requirements, lowers operating and support costs, and provides life-cycle cost savings over earlier C-130 models. Compared to older C-130s, the “J” model climbs faster and higher, flies farther at a higher cruise speed, and takes off and lands in a shorter distance.
C-130J major system improvements include advanced two-pilot flight station with fully integrated digital avionics, color multifunctional liquid crystal and head-up displays, and state-of-the-art navigation that includes a dual inertial navigation system and GPS. The aircraft also features fully integrated defensive systems, low-power color radar, digital moving map display, new turboprop engines with six-bladed all-composite propellers and a digital autopilot. The C-130J also includes improved fuel, environmental and ice-protection and an enhanced cargo-handling system. Kentucky, West Virginia and Texas will begin receiving eight aircraft, each in 2021. Georgia will receive new aircraft if they become available in the future.
The Lockheed Martin C-130J Super Hercules is a four-engine turboprop military transport aircraft. The C-130J is a comprehensive update of the Lockheed C-130 Hercules, with new engines, flight deck, and other systems. The C-130J is the newest version of the C-130 Hercules and the only model still in production. Externally similar to the classic Hercules in general appearance, the J-model features considerably updated technology. These differences include new Rolls-Royce AE 2100 D3 turboprop engines with Dowty R391 composite scimitar propellers, digital avionics (including head-up displays (HUDs) for each pilot), and reduced crew requirements. The Super Hercules has been used extensively by the USAF and USMC in Iraq and Afghanistan. Canada has also deployed its CC-130J aircraft to Afghanistan.