The first C-130J to be based in Germany is due there on April 7.
No, it’s not a gapfiller Germany has ordered because of delays to the A400M airlifter. The aircraft belongs to the U.S. Air Force.
The aircraft, to be based at Ramstein air base, will belong to the 37th airlift squadron, replacing the C-130E. U.S. Air Forces in Europe is due to receive 14 C-130Js by 2010.
“These new aircraft will provide us greater efficiency” as the service runs missions such as “theater tactical airlift and airdrop, as well as humanitarian relief throughout Europe, Africa and southwest Asia,” according to Brig. Gen. Bill Bender, 86th Airlift Wing commander.
The aircraft should cut operating costs by 27%, the USAF says.
Ramstein is getting more ramp space with ten new parking spots, a $3.5 million C-130J aircraft part storage facility and a $22 million C-130 dual bay maintenance hangar to prepare for the new airlifter.