France’s Armée de l’Air has officially received the country’s first C-130J Super Hercules aircraft for the airforce’s 62nd Transport Wing.
Under a foreign military sale (FMS) with the US Government, the French Air Force will procure a total of four Super Hercules aircraft, which includes two C-130J-30 combat delivery airlifters and two KC-130J aerial refuellers.
The deliveries of the jets are slated to take place throughout next year.
Developed by Lockheed Martin, the first of these aircraft, C-130J-30 airlifter, was formally delivered to France in December last year at the company’s facility in Marietta, Georgia, the US.
Lockheed Martin Air Mobility and Maritime Missions vice-president and general manager George Shultz said: “As a long-time Hercules operator, France has continuously demonstrated to the world the unmatched qualities and versatility found only in a C-130.
“France’s new Super Hercules fleet delivers increased power, speed, and capabilities to ensure that Armée de l’Air crews continue to meet and exceed mission requirements for decades to come.”
The C-130J aircraft is currently the most advanced tactical airlifter in operation and provides improved performance. It also delivers enhanced capabilities with a range and versatility for every theatre of operation and evolving requirements.
The aircraft is capable of conducting a wide range of global operations such as flying combat, humanitarian, special operations, aerial refuelling, firefighting, and search-and-rescue missions.
France’s new C-130Js will be operated with its existing Hercules aircraft fleet.