Sept. 24 (UPI) -- Harris Corp. has been awarded a $255.4 million contract for B-52 and C-130 Special Operation Forces aircraft parts.
Work on the contract, announced by the Department of Defense on Friday, will be performed in New Jersey and is expected to be completed by May 2026. Air Force fiscal 2018 through 2023 appropriation capital funds are designated for the program.
The C-130J cargo plane has replaced C-130Es and some of the more aged C-130Hs. Compared to older C-130s, the C-130J climbs faster and higher, has a faster cruising speed at higher altitudes and can take-off and land on shorter airfields.
C-130J improvements include a two-pilot flight station with digital avionics, color multifunctional head-up displays and improved navigation systems with dual inertial navigation and GPS.
It has integrated defensive systems, low-power radar, digital moving map display, improved engines with composite propeller blades and a digital autopilot.
The B-52 Stratofortress has been one of the primary heavy bombers of the U.S. Air Force since 1961. It is powered by eight jet engines and has intercontinental range with refueling. It was originally designed for nuclear strike missions on the former Soviet Union but has seen extensive conventional service in conflicts from Vietnam to Afghanistan.
It has been upgraded many times since entering service, with the B-52H capable of carrying up to 20 cruise missiles such as the ALCM. Seventy-six are available for service.