HomeAbout UsFact SheetsDisplay

HC-130P/N King

The HC-130P/N is an extended-range version of the C-130 Hercules transport. Its mission is to rapidly deploy to execute combatant commander directed operations to austere airfields and denied territory for expeditionary, all weather personnel recovery operations to include airdrop, airland, helicopter air-to-air refueling and forward area refueling point missions.

The HC-130P/N is an extended-range version of the C-130 Hercules transport. Its mission is to rapidly deploy to execute combatant commander directed operations to austere airfields and denied territory for expeditionary, all weather personnel recovery operations to include airdrop, airland, helicopter air-to-air refueling and forward area refueling point missions.

OVER ARIZONA -- An HH-60G Pave Hawk with the 55th Rescue Squadron maneuvers into position to refuel from an HC-130P/N with the 79th Rescue Squadron.  (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Veronica Pierce)

OVER ARIZONA -- An HH-60G Pave Hawk with the 55th Rescue Squadron maneuvers into position to refuel from an HC-130P/N with the 79th Rescue Squadron. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Veronica Pierce)

An Air Force Reserve Command HC-130 monitor flies over Lake Pontchartrain, La., following in-flight refueling operations with AFRC HH-60 Pave Hawk helicopters involved in Hurricane Katrina rescue efforts in New Orleans. Photos by Master Sgt. Bill Huntington

An Air Force Reserve Command HC-130 monitor flies over Lake Pontchartrain, La., following in-flight refueling operations with AFRC HH-60 Pave Hawk helicopters involved in Hurricane Katrina rescue efforts in New Orleans. Photos by Master Sgt. Bill Huntington

OPERATION IRAQI FREEDOM (AFPN) -- An HH-60G Pave Hawk receives fuel from an HC-130 on May 5 in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.  Both aircraft belong to Air Force Reserve Command's 920th Rescue Wing at Patrick Air Force Base, Fla.  (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Shane A. Cuomo)

OPERATION IRAQI FREEDOM (AFPN) -- An HH-60G Pave Hawk receives fuel from an HC-130 on May 5 in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. Both aircraft belong to Air Force Reserve Command's 920th Rescue Wing at Patrick Air Force Base, Fla. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Shane A. Cuomo)

The HC-130P/N "King" is the only dedicated fixed-wing Personnel Recovery platform in the Air Force inventory.
The HC-130P/N is an extended-range version of the C-130 Hercules transport. HC-130 crews provide expeditionary, all weather personnel recovery capabilities to our Combatant Commanders and Joint/Coalitions partners worldwide.

Mission
The mission of the HC-130P/N "King" is to rapidly deploy to austere airfields and denied territory in order to execute , all weather personnel recovery operations anytime...anywhere. King crews routinely perform high and low altitude personnel & equipment airdrops, infiltration/exfiltration of personnel, helicopter air-to-air refueling, and forward area refueling point missions.
When tasked, the aircraft also conducts humanitarian assistance operations, disaster response, security cooperation/aviation advisory, emergency aeromedical evacuation, casualty evacuation, noncombatant evacuation operations, and, during the Space Shuttle program, space flight support for NASA.

Features
Modifications to the HC-130P/N are improved navigation, threat detection and countermeasures systems. The aircraft fleet has a fully-integrated inertial navigation and global positioning systems, and night vision goggle, or NVG, compatible interior and exterior lighting. It also has forward-looking infrared, radar and missile warning receivers, chaff and flare dispensers, satellite and data-burst communications.

The HC-130 can fly in the day; however, crews normally fly night at low to medium altitude levels in contested or sensitive environments, both over land or overwater. Crews use NVGs for tactical flight profiles to avoid detection to accomplish covert infiltration/exfiltration and transload operations. To enhance the probability of mission success and survivability near populated areas, crews employ tactics that include incorporating no external lighting or communications, and avoiding radar and weapons detection.

Drop zone objectives are done via personnel drops and equipment drops. Rescue bundles include illumination flares, marker smokes and rescue kits. Helicopter air-to-air refueling can be conducted at night, with blacked out communication with up to two simultaneous helicopters. Additionally, forward area refueling point operations can be executed to support a variety of joint and coalition partners.
Background

The HC-130P/N is the only dedicated fixed-wing combat search and rescue platform in the Air Force inventory. The 71st and 79th Rescue Squadrons in Air Combat Command, the 550th Special Operations Squadron in Air Education and Training Command, the 920th Rescue Group in Air Force Reserve Command and the 106th Rescue Wing, 129th RQW and 176th Wing in the Air National Guard operate the aircraft.
First flown in 1964, the aircraft has served many roles and missions. It was initially modified to conduct search and rescue missions, provide a command and control platform, in-flight-refuel helicopters and carry supplemental fuel for extending range and increasing loiter time during search operations.

In April 2006, the continental U.S. search and rescue mission was transferred back to Air Combat Command at Langley AFB, Va. From 2003 to 2006, the mission was under the Air Force Special Operations Command at Hurlburt Field, Fla. Previously, HC-130s were assigned to ACC from 1992 to 2003. They were first assigned to the Air Rescue Service as part of Military Airlift Command.
They have been deployed to Italy, Kyrgyzstan, Kuwait, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, and Turkey in support of operations Southern and Northern Watch, Allied Force, Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom. HC-130s also support continuous alert commitments in Alaska and the Horn of Africa.

General Characteristics
Primary function: Rescue platform
Contractor: Lockheed Aircraft Corp.
Power Plant: Four Allison T56-A-15 turboprop engines
Thrust: 4,910 shaft horsepower, each engine
Wingspan: 132 feet, 7 inches (40.4 meters)
Length: 98 feet, 9 inches (30.09 meters)
Height: 38 feet, 6 inches (11.7 meters)
Weight:  83,000 pounds (37,648 kilograms)
Maximum Takeoff Weight: 155,000 pounds (69,750 kilograms) 
Fuel Capacity: 73,000 pounds (10,724 gallons)
Payload:  30,000 pounds (13,608 kilograms)
Speed: 289 miles per hour (464 kilometers per hour) at sea level
Range: beyond 4,000 miles (3,478 nautical miles)
Ceiling: 33,000 feet (10,000 meters)
Armament: countermeasures/flares, chaff
Crew: Three officers (pilot, co-pilot, navigator) and four enlisted (flight engineer, airborne communications specialist, two loadmasters). Additional crewmembers include a Guardian Angel team consisting of one combat rescue officer and three pararescuemen
Unit Cost: $77 million (fiscal 2008 replacement cost) 
Initial operating capability:  1964
Inventory: Active force, 13; ANG, 13; Reserve, 10

Engage

Facebook Twitter
RT @AFResearchLab: Let's celebrate the beginning of Fall and the changing of leaves with this optical microscopy of deformation twins in hi…
RT @624RSG: Are you facing a challenge or dealing with a struggle? People find hope in many different ways, whether it's through family, fa…
RT @AF_Academy: You can’t beat this view. You just can’t. 📸@USAFWingsofBlue https://t.co/JLZcPVp7uP
RT @AirMobilityCmd: #Mobilty #Airmen will move heaven and earth to keep America’s promises to its service members. Check out this story of…
RT @DeptofDefense: Bringing them home. More than 82,000 Americans remain missing from #WWII through the Gulf Wars and other conflicts. The…
RT @USAF_ACC: Today is POW/MIA Day. We will forever remember and honor the lives lost fighting for our country. 🇺🇸 #USAF #POWMIARecognitio
Weren't able to make #ASC19 this year? No problem. We've got the goods. Push ▶️ to hear from first-time attendees a… https://t.co/rEOE1eukwz
Howdy Texans! #AmerciasAirForce is heading to the #lonestarstate on Sept. 27. Hear this #Airman share his love for… https://t.co/BS1ysk4ST3
The return of great power competition requires the U.S. military services to change and adapt quickly. Hear from De… https://t.co/kKiNeHywzp
RT @AirMobilityCmd: The four fans of freedom are blowing strong as a U.S Air Force C-130J Hercules from Little Rock Air Force Base, Arkansa…
RT @ActingSecAF: Kudos to @AirForceAssoc on #ASC19 👏🏻 What a wonderful professional opportunity for #Airmen & industry to expand our compe…
.@ACC_Commander designates the 16th Air Force as a new information warfare numbered #AirForce at #ASC19. As… https://t.co/LMiMJ3rWNO
RT @AstroHague: Thank you to the Airmen across the globe who make the human exploration of space possible. Wishing the @usairforce a happy…
RT @Hanscom_AFB: “The @usairforce is leading the charge across @DeptofDefense. No one else in #government has as much ... of this software…
RT @PACAF: Commanders from Australia, Indonesia, Republic of Korea, Philippines, Thailand and the U.S. met for the 2019 Logistics and Safet…
To all those who helped establish the long blue line past, present and future, we honor you and we remember with th… https://t.co/teymF7proy
#ASC19: "We’re all in this together trying to make your service to country the best experience on the planet. We w… https://t.co/rdbCDBJr2c
#VCSAF Gen. Stephen Wilson speaks on what makes the #AirForce unique. #ASC19 https://t.co/gStwUZoaQC
RT @AFSpace: @AstroHague takes #aimhigh to the extreme by celebrating the @usairforce's birthday from the @Space_Station! #FrontiersofBlue