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Pakistan Air Force celebrates 50 C-130 overhauls
May 26, 2017
Photo credit: Associated Press of Pakistan

Pakistan Air Force celebrates 50 C-130 overhauls

The Pakistan Air Force (PAF)’s No. 130 Air Engineering Depot has successfully overhauled its 50th Lockheed Martin C-130 Hercules transport aircraft.

In a ceremony, the PAF Chief of Air Staff (CAS) Air Chief Marshal (ACM) Sohail Aman noted that the C-130 is an integral component of the PAF fleet and that it had also served in the country’s counterinsurgency (COIN) campaign in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA).

Notes & Comments:

The PAF operates 5 C-130B and 11 C-130E. The Hercules is the PAF’s mainstay cargo and utility transport aircraft since the 1960s, resulting in an operational history of more than 50 years.

In March 2014, the PAF requested a service life-extension plan (SLEP) for the aircraft from the U.S., which was valued at up to U.S. $100 million. The SLEP comprises of “avionics upgrades, engine management and mechanical upgrades, cargo delivery system installation and [for six aircraft] replacement of outer wing sets.” In January 2016, the PAF issued a $30.7 million contract for new avionics suites for the 16 C-130B/Es.

Besides transport tasks, the PAF had also used the C-130 in intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) missions over FATA. The PAF integrated a FLIR Systems Star SAFIRE III electro-optical and infrared (EO/IR) pod and BRITE Star II laser designator to the C-130’s nose, and configured a command suite in the cargo area to coordinate the C-130’s ISR tasks with the PAF’s F-16s, with the latter relying on the C-130 to guide (via the BRITE Star II) Paveway laser-guided bombs (LGB).

 

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