U.S. Coast Guard Accepts Fourth HC-130J Super Hercules Retrofitted with Minotaur Mission System

The U.S. Coast Guard accepted the fourth HC-130J Super Hercules long range surveillance aircraft retrofitted with Minotaur Mission System from L3 Technologies, on June 14.

The aircraft, CGNR 2005, entered missionization at L3 Technologies Inc. Integrated Systems Platform Integration Division located in Waco, Texas in May 2017, and has returned to Coast Guard Air Station Elizabeth City, North Carolina, to perform operations alongside seven other HC-130Js.

Minotaur Mission System Suite is a proven, government-owned and -operated mission system architecture, which is also used by the U.S. Navy and U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP). Minotaur incorporates sensors; radar; and command, control, communications, computers, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance equipment that enables aircrews to gather and process surveillance information for transmission to other platforms and units during flight.

The Coast Guard is integrating the mission system across most variants of its fixed-wing aircraft; this process is known as missionization. The fixed-wing aircraft to be retrofitted by the Minotaur system are HC-130J Super Hercules long range surveillance aircraft, HC-144 Ocean Sentry medium range surveillance aircraft and C-27J Spartan medium range surveillance aircraft.

The first aircraft to undergo a retrofit was the Minotaur mission system prototype, CGNR 2003, which was delivered to the fleet June 6, 2017.

Last month, U.S. Coast Guard awarded L3 Technologies a contract option worth approximately $3.6 million to retrofit Minotaur Mission System Suite on one additional HC-130J Super Hercules aircraft.

The aircraft covered in this option, CGNR 2001, will enter the integration process in early 2019, with delivery scheduled for late 2019. This is the last aircraft in the Coast Guard HC-130J fleet outfitted with the legacy mission system; all new aircraft are being outfitted with the Minotaur mission system upon delivery.

Another aircraft, CGNR 2002 is scheduled to be inducted into the Minotaur integration process in Waco in November and the next delivery of a Minotaur-missionized aircraft, CGNR 2006, is planned for the same month.

The location and missionization status of all Coast Guard HC-130Js is as follows: (Courtesy: USCG)

Missionization Status Aircraft Location
Under contract for Minotaur retrofit CGNR 2001, CGNR 2002 Elizabeth City,
North Carolina
Minotaur prototype CGNR 2003 Elizabeth City,
North Carolina
Missionized with Minotaur from
CGNR 2009, CGNR 2010 Elizabeth City,
North Carolina
Retrofitted with Minotaur CGNR 2004, CGNR 2005,
CGNR 2008
Elizabeth City,
North Carolina
Undergoing missionization from
baseline C-130J configuration
CGNR 2011 Waco, Texas
(L3 Technologies)
Undergoing a Minotaur retrofit CGNR 2006, CGNR 2007 Waco, Texas
(L3 Technologies)
On order CGNR 2012, CGNR 2013,
CGNR 2014
Marietta, Georgia
(Lockheed Martin)

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