Hercules Drop

RAF 47 Squadron Airborne Delivery

RAF 47 Squadron C-130J Hercules air drop (Crown Copyright, 2018)[1180crop]

RAF 47 Squadron C-130J Hercules air drop (Crown Copyright, 2018)

Pictured is a load being dropped from a Royal Air Force C130J Hercules, 47 Squadron. The aircraft were taking part in an airborne delivery training sortie that saw them drop two different loads, ranging in weight from 100 kilograms to a tonne, over Abingdon, Oxfordshire. After completing that part of the sortie, they then linked up to a Voyager to complete some low-light air to air refuelling over the West Coast of England. The Hercules is the RAF’s primary tactical transport aircraft and in its current C.Mk 4 and C.Mk 5 versions of the C-130J-30 and C-130J, respectively, has been the backbone of UK operational tactical mobility tasks since it was brought into service in 1999. It is frequently employed to operate into countries or regions where there is a threat to aircraft; its performance, tactics and defensive systems make it the ideal platform for such tasks. The aircraft is highly flexible, with the ability to air drop a variety of stores and paratroopers and operate from natural surface landing zones. To conduct these missions, it is vital that Hercules crews are highly skilled in low-level flying. The aircraft performs in the same roles at night using night-vision goggles (NVGs), while station keeping equipment (SKE) enables it to remain in formation during poor weather. Long-range capabilities are enhanced with air-to-air refuelling, while the Air Survival Rescue Apparatus may be mounted in the cabin for search and rescue missions, enabling the Hercules to air drop life rafts and emergency supplies.

Military Units Featured

47 Squadron, Royal Air Force

Based at RAF Brize Norton the home of the RAF’s transport and air-to-air refueling capability, 47 Squadron was established as a Home Defence Unit in 1916. Former aircraft include the Bristol Scout,the DH.9, the Halifax A9 and the Mosquito FBVI. The Squadron received the Hercules C1 in 1968


Cpl Lee Matthews, RAF. Crown Copyright, 2018.

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