Terma and Lockheed Martin have signed a contract for the integration of the Elettronica ELT/572 directional infrared counter measures (DIRCM) on the Italian Air Force’s C-130J Super Hercules aircraft.

The contract will see the installation of DIRCM on some aircraft of Italy’s C-130J/KC-130J fleet.

Lockheed Martin C-130 Programs vice-president and general manager George Shultz said: "This integrated DIRCM system provides the Italian Air Force’ C-130Js with an essential self-defence capability that protects aircrews as they support a number of vital missions around the world."

The new development will mark the first fully integrated DIRCM solution installation on C-130J aircraft.

"The contract will see the installation of DIRCM on some aircraft of Italy’s C-130J/KC-130J fleet."

The Lockheed Martin-built C-130 is the tactical cargo and personnel transport aircraft. C-130J Hercules is the latest model that features a glass cockpit, digital avionics and a new propulsion system with a six-bladed propeller.

Terma Airborne Systems director Lars Tolstrup said: "We welcome the opportunity to partner with Lockheed Martin in providing this important enhancement for Italy’s C-130J fleet."

According to Terma, the system can be integrated into other C-130J and C-130 platforms in select markets.

Last year, Terma and Lockheed signed a contract to provide programmable interface blanking units (PIBUs), which active aircraft transmitters and receivers, and also eliminate radio frequency interference from other aircraft.

The solution has been equipped on several C-130Js, including existing airframes and new production aircraft.

The C-130J started production in 1997. It features enhanced performance in terms of its range, cruise ceiling time to climb, speed and airfield requirements.

Image: Lockheed Martin-built C-130J. Photo: courtesy of Lockheed Martin Aeronautics.