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Hercules Of The Skies Essay

1894 words - 8 pages

There were many important people, aircraft, and developments, which greatly contributed to aviation development, which ultimately impacted the World. Out of many aviation developments, I will write about an aircraft I take pleasure in seeing and hearing, the C-130 Hercules. I consider this aircraft has made a significant impact in the aviation industry, most in the dependability of the airframe and its illustrious design. Today, this aircraft is used for many organizations such as Military Ops, firefighting, and search and rescue. The military is the primary user of this aircraft, for it uses it for many tactical operations. But what makes this aircraft so grand? The ability to land on short ...view middle of the document...

It is modernized with computer systems instead of steam gauges. What I think makes the C-130 in general momentous, is the number of international countries that are using this airframe. Over 60 countries are using this aircraft and it is no surprise since it has been in operation since the 50’s! ( Air Force Technology (2011, May 5)). A big contribution to this outstanding airframe has to be given to the developers, the company Lockheed or Lockheed Martin. An astonishing fact is that the same company has made this aircraft for over 50 years; this just shows that Lockheed knows how to design and manufacture lasting aircraft to persevere with modern technology. I would say that the years this aircraft has been in service is enough in itself to say how it impacted the aviation industry, giving it new means of how to create lasting aircraft for the high demand for its operations.
A few decades ago, the military needed an upgrade on its cargo and troop carrying capabilities. In the 1950’s, the less modern World War II cargo aircraft were the C-190, C-47, and C-46’s. These did not meet the requirements for a continuously modernizing U.S. Military. (Simpson, M. (2011, October 19)). Therefore, in 1951, the U.S. Air Force put out a General Operating Requirement for a new airframe that will meet specifications in the category’s of how many passengers or paratroopers it will hold, as well as size and range of the product. This GOR was given to the top aircraft manufactures at the time. It was interesting to know that many of the companies declined the be apart of the program, however the ones that were left to compete included the companies Boeing, Chase, Douglas, Airlifts Inc, and Lockheed. (Simpson, M. (2011, October 19)). After much fighting for the contract from these companies, Lockheed took it in the end and started to the design and building of the C-130 Hercules. Robert Grouss, head of the corp, predicted that the C-130 would not only meet the demands in the present time, but far into the future. (Discovery Channel (1989))
The C-130 was a combination of truck, jeep and airplane. It was funny that Kelly Johnson, a great aircraft designer at the time, said it was the “ugliest airplane he has ever seen.” (Discovery Channel (1989). From then on, model after model started to propel off the production line, some models such as the C-130B had upgraded ailerons for more control. Increased storage for fuel so that I can travel further. The company was designing this aircraft to do just about anything from retrofitting it with skis for the snow, to rockets on the sides to make it take off on shorter runways. Lockheed was upgrading the C-130 after every model and it was only making it better and more improved. Basically, there are so many models of this aircraft, that one could not mention all of them in one sitting. Even though some of the models were not as mass-produced as others, it was their specialties that made them so significant in the wars and...

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