The 193rd Special Operations Wing, Pennsylvania Air National Guard, recently went on a flight with an aerial refueling. The EC-130J Commando Solo’s crew powered up their broadcasting equipment to do refresh their training as the pilots got ready to perform an aerial refueling with a KC-135 Stratotanker.
Modified from the adaptable C-130 Hercules airframe, the EC-130J Commando Solo is used for Military Information Support Operations (MISO), psychological operations (PSYOPS) and civil affairs broadcast missions in the standard AM, FM, HF, TV and military communications bands. These missions are typically flown at night to reduce probability of detection in politically sensitive or hostile territories.
Primary function: military information support operation
Secondary function: special operations forces – air mobility
Cruise speed: 335 mph
Ceiling: 28,000 feet (8,534 meters)
Maximum takeoff weight: 164,000 pounds (74,390 kilograms)
Range: 2,300 nautical miles
Crew: Pilot, Copilot, combat systems officer, mission crew supervisor, three electronic communications systems operators and two loadmasters
Initial operating capability: 2004
Unit cost: $110 million
Inventory: 3, Air National Guard