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Acquisition Update: Air Force Order Includes One C-130J Surveillance Aircraft For Coast Guard



The U.S. Air Force on Dec. 30, 2015, placed an order that included on C-130J Super Hercules aircraft for the Coast Guard. The service currently operates six of these aircraft out of Air Station Elizabeth City, North Carolina, including CGNR 2009, which was delivered June 26, 2015. Three additional aircraft are currently undergoing missionization modifications and two are in production at Lockheed Martin. U.S. Coast Guard photo.

Using funds transferred from the Coast Guard, the Air Force awarded a contract Dec. 30, 2015, to Lockheed Martin Corp. for production of one C-130J Super Hercules aircraft, with a ceiling price on the aircraft of $62.6 million. The 12th C-130J destined for the Cost Guard is contracted for delivery in 2019.

The Coast Guard aircraft was part of a $1 billion Air Force contract award that included acquisition of 31 other aircraft for the Air Force and Marine Corps. All work will be completed at Lockheed Martin's Marietta, Georgia facility. The Air Force is the government's executive agent for all C-130 procurements. The Coast Guard has a separate contract with L-3 Communications to configure its HC-130J aircraft to meet mission requirements.

This award is part of a multiyear contract that includes options for the Coast Guard to acquire up to four additional C-130Js. Constructed in alignment with the U.S. government's Better Buying Power initiative, the contract provides savings to the U.S. government through the multiyear procurement as compared to annual buys.

The Coast Guard currently operates six HC-130Js as part of its long range surveillance aircraft fleet. Two additional C-130Js are being missionized with the current system while another aircraft is being converted as the prototype for the next-generation Minotaur Mission System Suite (MSS+), which will be used to incorporate the radar, sensors and other equipment necessary to complete Coast Guard missions. Two additional aircraft are under construction with the delivery in 2016 and 2017. Those aircraft, plus this latest C-130J order, will be missionized with the MSS+ system upon delivery.

The Super Hercules carries out many Coast Guard missions, including search and rescue, drug and migrant interdiction, cargo and personnel transport, and maritime stewardship. The aircraft is capable of serving as an on-scene command and control platform or as a surveillance platform with the means to detect, classify and identify objects and share that information with operational forces.