End in sight for major avionics and engine overhaul for Air Force C-5 long-haul aircraft fleet
WRIGHT-PATTERSON AFB, Ohio, 6 Oct. 2015. A multi-year effort to make major avionics and engine upgrades to the U.S. Air Force fleet of C-5 Galaxy long-haul military transport aircraft finally may be wrapping up as the final 11 of 52 aircraft are set to receive new engines.
Officials of the Air Force Air Mobility Division at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, announced a $32.5 million contract modification Friday to the Lockheed Martin Corp. Aeronautics segment in Marietta, Ga., to provide the final lot of 11 aircraft to the C-5M fleet as part of the C-5 Galaxy Reliability Enhancement and Re-engining Program (RERP).
The RERP is second of two major upgrades to Air Force C-5 jumbo transport jets. The RERP modifications consist of more than 70 improvements and upgrades to the C-5 airframe and aircraft systems, and include new high-thrust and reliable turbofan engines.
The RERP follows the first upgrade project, the C-5 Avionics Modernization Program (AMP), which has provided the aircraft with a state-of-the-art glass cockpit with modern avionics and flight instruments. The C-5 avionics upgrades include new open-systems mission computer and color weather radar.
Ultimately the Air Force is scheduled to take delivery of the final models of 52 C-5M Super Galaxy cargo jets with the RERP and AMP upgrades sometime in 2017.
The C-5 is larger than a Boeing 747 and is one of the largest military transport aircraft in the world. The aircraft, which has been in the Air Force transport fleet since 1970, is large enough to fit six Greyhound buses, lined up two abreast. The aircraft is designed to perform strategic airlift, emergency aeromedical evacuation, move brigade-size forces and equipment, and deliver oversize cargo.
The C-5 avionics upgrades include Core Mission Computer (CMC) and Weather Radar replacements to mitigate the obsolescence of the old CMC and weather radar. AMP also includes a glass cockpit with digital avionics including autopilot and automatic throttles, and communications, navigation, and surveillance components for air traffic management.
Upgraded mission computers are will have sufficient capability and capacity for future requirements, clear-up information-assurance problems, and offer greater reliability and simplified fleet-wide training.
The distributed-architecture core mission computer has a 100-megabit-per-second Ethernet interface over copper wire, and several sources of supply for components, such as MIL-STD-1553 interface chips, single-board computers, and I/O cards.
The computer separates classified and non-classified data, and supports the weather radar, flight management system (FMS), and communication navigation surveillance (CNS) and air traffic management (ATM) subsystems, including automatic dependent surveillance-broadcast (ADS-B) Out, and identification friend or foe (IFF) Mode 5.
The new computers are designed to accommodate future capability like the Joint Tactical Radio System into the communication system; memory expansion and processing necessary for the Joint Position Approach and Landing System algorithms; and memory and processing power necessary for new data links on the C-5M such as Link 16 or the conceptual Mobility Air Force Data Link.
On this contract modification Lockheed Martin will do the work in Marietta, Ga., and should be finished by April 2018. For more information contact Lockheed Martin Aeronautics online at www.lockheedmartin.com/us/aeronautics, or the Air Force Air Mobility Division at www.afcent.af.mil.