US Air Force Researching New FMS, Displays for C-130s

By Woodrow Bellamy III  | January 11, 2017
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[Avionics Magazine 01-11-2017] The U.S. Air Force is considering an expanded effort to upgrade the avionics featured on a fleet of C-130 Hercules military transport aircraft. According to a new Request for Information (RFI) released Jan. 11, the Department of the Air Force is requesting industry proposals to expand its current efforts to upgrade a total of 172 C-130s. 
MC-130J Commando II. Photo: Lockheed Martin.
The latest RFI is for “Increment 2” of a two-phase program to upgrade the C-130s. Under a separate program called “Increment 1,” which is ongoing, the C-130s are being upgraded with new Very High Frequency (VHF) radios with 8.33 kilohertz (kHz) channel spacing, Automatic Dependent Surveillance – Broadcast (ADS-B) Out, Mode S Enhanced Surveillance (EHS), cockpit voice recording and flight digital data recording capabilities.  
Under “Increment 2,” the Air Force is considering the installation of a new Flight Management System (FMS) with a coupled autopilot and Terrain Awareness Warning System (TAWS). The current RFI also seeks information on a dual central processing capability, digital avionics bus architecture, ARINC 739 compliant Control Display Units (CDU) and independent Multi-Functional Displays (MFDs) with access to digital primary flight instruments and engine instruments.   
The RFI notes that the goal for Increment 2 is to “replace aging, unreliable and non-sustainable equipment; allow for more efficient flight profiles and or selection of optimal routes; provide improved Required Navigation Performance (RNP) capability; and provide compliance with global Navigation directives for unrestricted flight in worldwide airspace.”

Check out the full RFI here

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