Workers at Warner Robins Air Logistics Center at Robins AFB, Ga., have delivered to Air Force Special Operations Command the 12th and final C-130H2 aircraft that WRALC technicians converted to the new MC-130W Combat Spear configuration for use as covert infiltration and helicopter refueling platforms. Maj. Gen. Polly Peyer, Warner Robins commander, formally turned over the airplane to Lt. Gen. Donald Wurster, AFSOC boss, during a ceremony at Robins on March 30. The ALC delivered the first MC-130W in June 2006, completing the entire modification initiative under budget and ahead of schedule, according to Air Force and industry officials. The MC-130Ws are meant to replace combat losses of AFSOC MC-130 Combat Talon special-mission aircraft. Some of the MC-130Ws have been fitted with weapons to give them a gunship-like attack capability to quickly bolster AFSOC’s aging and high-in-demand AC-130 gunship fleet. (Includes Robins report by Wayne Crenshaw)
Boeing’s receipt of the 10th lot contract award for the KC-46 Pegasus this week leaves just three lots left to complete the Air Force’s buy of the tanker, although a further buy of 75 additional aircraft as a “bridge” to the Next-Generation Aerial-refueling System (NGAS) seems increasingly likely.