A commemorative postage stamp on the Induction of Lockheed Martin C–130J Super Hercules, a four-engine turboprop military transport aircraft in Indian Air Force :
Issued by India
Issued on Oct 6, 2016
Issued for : Department of Posts is pleased to release a Commemorative Postage Stamp on Induction of C-130J.
Stamp / FDC / Cancellation Cachet : Smt. Nenu Gupta
Type : Stamp, Mint Condition
Colour : Multi Colour
Denomination : 500 Paise
Stamps Printed : 401590
Printing Process : Wet Offset
Printer : Security Printing Press, Hyderabad
- The Indian Air Force’s C–130J Super Hercules is an Advanced Mobility Special Operations Platform with maximum payload capacity of 20 Tonnes. It is a highly sophisticated platform primarily designed to support India’s Special Operations requirements. The IAF inducted this aircraft in January 2011 and it is ideally suited to India’s mission environment which often involves operations from Advanced Landing Grounds (ALGs) located at high elevations under adverse weather conditions.
- The Super Hercules is a versatile platform and is equipped with state of the art avionics, navigation and advanced defensive suite. This aircraft is utilised to undertake diverse roles across varied terrain in extreme weather conditions. Modern electro-optical infra-red pod, glass cockpit, head-up displays, in-flight refueling probe, enhanced cargo handling system and external fuel tanks are an integral part of this aircraft. It has a unique feature of automated formation flight wherein 36 aircraft can be flown in formation with Station Keeping Equipment. The aircraft can also be used for mass troop deployment, Special Operations, Air to Air refueling and Humanitarian Assistance & Disaster Relief (HA/DR). Its superior onboard navigation technology enables it to perform precision low level tactical flying, supply & personnel airdrop and assault landing in adverse conditions. The platform is capable of undertaking ultra-low level missions to augment ground forces with airdrop of troops and material. The aircraft offers fully automated independent precision approach under dark night conditions with support of Night Vision Devices.
- The aircraft created history on 20 August 2013 when it was landed at Daulat Beg Oldie, a strategically placed Advanced Landing Ground. This landing with high all-up weight at an elevation of 16614 ft above mean sea level made an entry into ‘Limca Book of World Records’ as ‘Heaviest Aircraft to Land at the Highest Airfield’. This boosted the morale of not only the pilots but also the ground forces.
- Since induction, C-130J has been employed as one of the main aircraft for the IAF transport operations within and outside the confines of the Indian subcontinent. In 2013, as floods wrecked havoc in Uttarakhand, the aircraft was extensively utilised in disaster relief operations termed Operation Rahat. In addition to evacuating distressed personnel, the aircraft was also used as an innovative Fuel Bridge at a semi-prepared airfield named Dharasu. This proved vital in sustaining prolonged helicopter operations in Uttarakhand valley towards HA/DR.
- The other HA/DR missions, in which Super Hercules was used, include relief operations in Philippines post Cyclone ‘Haiyan’, Vishakhapatnam post Cyclone ‘Hud Hud’ and flood relief operations in Myanmar and Chennai. In September 2014, Srinagar valley was hit by torrential rains and flooding of Jhelum River. The C-130J was brought into action at short notice thereby becoming a part of the largest humanitarian aid operation termed Operation Megh Rahat. In 2015, the IAF used the Super Hercules to airlift necessary recovery equipment to Kathmandu. This was in the wake of the crash landing of a Turkish Airlines aircraft which left the busy Kathmandu runway unusable by any other aircraft. Barely a month later, when a devastating earthquake struck Nepal, India was the first country to send its C-130J for rescue operations. More than 600 passengers were evacuated and relief material was flown in.
- The capabilities of the C-130J Super Hercules allow it to be used towards projection of IAF’s potential in any part of the globe to protect our National interests. This versatile and potent platform is operated by thorough professionals and is located at Air Force Station Hindan. Upholding the true spirit of the professionalism of the IAF, the aircraft indeed does proudly ‘Touch the Sky with Glory’.
- Text : Based on the material received from proponent.