Sierra Nevada to provide avionics production kits for special forces C-130J secure data communications

June 2, 2023
The AbMN enables air crews of MC-130J aircraft to send and receive mission-critical data to and from tactical and operational nodes in war zones.

ROBINS AIR FORCE BASE, Ga. – U.S. Air Force avionics experts needed production kits as part of the low-rate initial production (LRIP) phase of the C-130J Airborne Mission Networking (AbMN) program. They found their solution from Sierra Nevada Corp. in Sparks, Nev.

Officials of the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center at Robins Air Force Base, Ga., announced a$56.1 million order to Sierra Nevada on 19 May for production kits, spares, interim-contractor support, program management, and provisioning support for the AbMN system to provide mission-critical secure data communications for special operations versions of the Lockheed Martin C-130J four-engine turboprop aircraft.

The AbMN tactical networking system enables aircrew and mission personnel aboard MC-130J aircraft to send and receive mission-critical data to and from tactical and operational nodes in war zones.

AbMN capabilities include secure line-of-sight and beyond-line-of-sight voice and data communications, friendly force identification, mission tracking, threat identification, full-motion video, collaboration, chat, email, and data links.

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AbMN avionics enables Special Forces MC-130 aircraft to streamline command and control, improve situational awareness, and reduce operational risk through real time exchange of digital information among aircraft, components, and other tactical and operational nodes.

The special operations MC-130J Commando II aircraft flies clandestine, or low-visibility single or multiship low-level air refueling missions for special operations helicopters and tiltrotor aircraft.

The MC-130J also performs infiltration, exfiltration, and resupply of Special Forces by air or by land inside of politically sensitive or hostile territories. The MC-130J primarily flies missions at night to reduce probability of visual acquisition and intercept by airborne threats. Its secondary mission includes the airdrop of leaflets.

On this contract modification Sierra Nevada will do the work in Centennial, Colo., and should be finished by May 2023. For more information contact Sierra Nevada Corp. online at, or the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center-Robins at

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