HomeNewsArticle Display

Little Rock Airmen test first C-130J with Block 8.1 upgrades

U.S. Air Force Capt. Kyle Gauthier, 61st Airlift Squadron C-130J pilot and flight commander, conducts a preflight checklist for a training sortie flight Feb. 3, 2017, at Little Rock Air Force Base, Ark. During the flight, aircrews tested the operability of recent hardware and software upgrades. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Harry Brexel)

Capt. Kyle Gauthier, a 61st Airlift Squadron C-130J Super Hercules pilot and the flight commander, conducts a preflight checklist for a training sortie flight Feb. 3, 2017, at Little Rock Air Force Base, Ark. During the flight, aircrews tested the operability of recent hardware and software upgrades. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Harry Brexel)

LITTLE ROCK AIR FORCE BASE, Ark. (AFNS) -- Airmen conducted a training flight using the first C-130J Super Hercules with a Block 8.1 upgrade at Little Rock Air Force Base Feb. 3, 2017.

The Block 8.1 upgrade enhances GPS capabilities, communications systems, updated friend-or-foe identification and allows the C-130J to comply with worldwide air traffic management regulations. Additionally, the upgrade program will standardize aviation systems to improve interoperability.

“This update will truly allow us to have unhindered global access,” said Capt. Kyle Gauthier, a 61st Airlift Squadron C-130J instructor pilot and the flight commander. “It will also provide pilots improved situational awareness, and a greater ability to communicate with command and control around the world.”

Over the next two years Airmen from the 19th and 314th Airlift Wings will team together to test the only two Block 8.1 upgraded C-130J’s in the world at Little Rock AFB. Loadmasters, pilots and maintainers will work with Lockheed Martin to report any bugs or potential issues.

“We have put thousands of maintenance hours into this plane since it arrived,” said Master Sgt. Brian Johnson, the 19th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron production superintendent. “We’re excited to see it finally up in the air.”

Gauthier said, “Flying with such a new system can be difficult, but it is exciting to know you’re shaping the future of C-130J operations worldwide.”

Engage

Facebook Twitter
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
RT @VP: Happy 72nd birthday to the @usairforce! On behalf of a grateful nation, thank you to the amazing men and women of the Air Force for…
#ASC19: There's a challenge to maintain warfighting capabilities until new bombers and missiles arrive. Hear more f… https://t.co/SWB3VjNod8
#ASC19: Want to know which three acquisition trends #AirForce acquisition experts believe should "go viral?" Click… https://t.co/hsiH3oQXOX
RT @NSAGov: Happy Birthday to the @usairforce! For 72 years you've taught us to aim high. We look forward to continuing to fly, fight, and…
RT @AFGlobalStrike: The Air Force is celebrating 72 years of service, so here is 72 seconds of Global Strike Command! #USAFBday #ThisIs72 h…
Moments like this one between @GenDaveGoldfein and retired Col. Charles McGee remind us of where we've been as we f… https://t.co/LlhJhfdHQb
ICYMI: @ActingSecAF Matthew Donovan announced Sept. 16 at #ASC19 that the B-21 Raider is being produced in Northrop… https://t.co/XTsOnLwrTw
ICYMI: @ActingSecAF Matthew P. Donovan announced on Sept. 16 at #ASC19 that the Air Force’s all-new advanced traine… https://t.co/9MULuV7vFN
RT @USNavy: To be young again... #HappyBirthday, @usairforce! Congrats on 72 years playing a key role in the National Defense Strategy. He…
RT @USArmy: Join us in wishing the @usairforce a #happybirthday! They may have separated from the Army in 1947, but they have been trail br…
RT @ActingSecAF: Thanks @EsperDoD for speaking at @AirForceAssoc #ASC19 & chatting with our exceptional #Airmen who are dedicated to sharpe…
.@CMSAF18: Be a good human being... https://t.co/mxT3sLg4fp
.@CMSAF18: The RTP was a call to action for all of us to be leaders of conviction. Provide Airmen hope. Provide the… https://t.co/FEdmldGHXj
.@CMSAF18: Persistence, passion, perseverance. Being an #Airmen is tough. We must have grit in us. We can't quit wh… https://t.co/iPj3wRx0fl