According to the news release, “This Super Hercules (Lockheed Martin aircraft #5934) is a C-130J-30 aircraft assigned to the 130th Airlift Wing located at McLaughlin Air National Guard Base in Charleston, West Virginia. The 130th Airlift Wing is a longtime C-130 operator that is currently modernizing its legacy Hercules fleet with C-130Js.”
According to an article published March 9 in Defense News:
The Air National Guard is now in the midst of a multiyear effort to upgrade its mobility fleet and replace its three-decade-old C-130H Hercules planes with modern C-130Js.Advertisement
C-130Js have improved engines with six-blade propellers that provide more thrust and efficiency than their predecessor’s four-blade propeller engines, allowing it to fly farther and faster. They also have digital avionics, upgraded displays, improved navigation and radar systems, more cargo space, a digital autopilot, and the need for a smaller aircrew.
Lockheed Martin reports that the U.S. government operates the world’s largest fleet of the aircraft, and that this latest delivery is part of transition to the C-130J as the common platform across the Air Force, the Marine Corps and the Coast Guard.
“This delivery represents the thousands of people — past and present — that design, build, fly, maintain and support C-130Js around the world,” said Rod McLean, vice president and general manager of Lockheed Martin’s Air Mobility & Maritime Missions (AMMM) line of business. “Like its namesake, the C-130J is a legend defined by its strength and power. Yet, it is the people who are part of the C-130J operator, production, supplier and industry partner communities who truly define the Super Hercules and helped the C-130J Program reach this monumental achievement.”
Lockheed Martin and Cobb County
The Lockheed Martin facility in Marietta has been a major employer in Cobb County since 1951, when the Lockheed Corporation, a predecessor of Lockheed Martin, took over the former site of the WWII Bell Bomber plant.
In response to a request by the Courier for a previous article, the spokesperson for the Marietta operations of the company wrote:
The C-130 remains the largest program at the Marietta site. We are currently building the C-130J Super Hercules and I’ve attached our updated Fast Facts for insights on that program. We’ve produced every production model C-130 at the Marietta site, which means Hercs have been rolling out of Marietta for almost 66 years. It’s staple here in Cobb County! You can learn more about the C-130J in our brochure located here.
We also provide support (i.e., sustainment) for the C-5 Galaxy, which wrapped up a major modification providing 52 C-5s with new engines and avionics, in 2018. We celebrated the C-5’s 50th anniversary in 2018 and expect to see that aircraft in service – thanks to its upgrades and unique hauling capabilities – until 2045. See press release for more information. We also support the P-3 Orion through Marietta-based teams. Additionally, we manufacture F-35 center wings here in Marietta.