Marshall Aerospace and Defence Group has been awarded a study contract to modernise the French Air Force’s (ALAT) C-130 Hercules military transport aircraft fleet.
Awarded by the French Direction Générale de l’Armement (DGA), the €1.25m contract requires the company to design an avionics glass cockpit upgrade, and integrate modifications and role equipment required to increase the tactical capabilities of the C-130H fleet.
Collaborating with Air France Industries KLM Engineering and Maintenance (AFI KLM E&M) and Thales, the company will specifically deliver comprehensive technical reports outlining potential solutions to lessen risk and provide a priced proposal for the engineering and modification installation phases.
Marshall Aerospace and Defence Group CEO Steve Fitz-Gerald said: "We’re delighted to have won this study phase contract as we are extremely familiar with the C-130 platform and the application of avionics upgrades, special modifications and Integrated Operation Support (IOS) programmes, which are project managed to ensure a timely return to service for their operators."
Manufactured by Lockheed Martin, C-130 Hercules is a military transport aircraft, powered by Allison T56 engines, designed to support airborne assault, search and rescue, scientific research support, weather reconnaissance, maritime patrol and aerial firefighting missions worldwide.
Equipped with a glass cockpit, digital avionics and a new propulsion system with a four-bladed propeller, the heavy-lift tactical cargo and personnel transport aircraft is capable of accommodating a payload of up to 20t, or more than 90 passengers.
Around 14 C-130 aircraft are currently used by the French air force for tactical transport missions.
The aircraft is also operational with the air forces of Australia, Indonesia, Canada, Denmark, India, Italy, Norway, Qatar, the US and the UK.
Image: A French Air Force’s C-130 aircraft waiting to take off for a training mission during Red Flag-Alaska Exercise. Photo: US Air Force Photo by Airman 1st Class Jonathan Snyder.