The legendary C-130 Hercules airplanes have undergone a facelift. With technology from defense electronics company Elbit Systems Ltd. (Nasdaq: ESLT; TASE: ESLT) and Israel Aerospace Industries Ltd. (IAI) (TASE: ARSP.B1), the upgraded aircraft has new radar and digital screens, and a replaced main wing, which are just part of the improvements that will keep the heritage planes flying for at least another decade. The first improved plane has taken off from Nevatim Airbase in southern Israel.
The first improved C-130 Karnaf (Hebrew for Rhino) heavy transport airplane has taken to the air after a long upgrading process. It is expected that within a few years the pilots of the Israel Air Force "Knights of the Yellow Bird" squadron, which has operated the C-130 for the past 30 years, will fly only with improved aircraft. The improved planes are expected to fly until 2040.
"We celebrate the completion of the process and the beginning of the meaningful period of integration", said Brig. Lihu Hacohen, the commander of Nevatim Airbase, during a ceremony celebrating the improved C-130 first sorties. "We are going out on a new flight path, with a new and better fighting aircraft. I am proud to see the plane taking off in the Negev desert".
"With the improved C-130 we can perform our missions in a better, simpler way", said Lt. Col. A, the commander of the "Knights of the Yellow Bird" squadron. "We get excellent aircraft with high operational capabilities".
Colonel Ariel Manor, Head of the IAF's Aircraft Engineering Department said, "The IAF is basically receiving a new aircraft. The improved planes will possess significantly upgraded operational capabilities, especially in the field of low altitude flight and flying in dark nights."
Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on October 14, 2015
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