Launched in 1997, the C-27J Spartan tactical transport aircraft incorporates the same propulsion system and advanced avionics as the C-130J Hercules Transporter.
The C-27J has been developed by Lockheed Martin Alenia Tactical Transport Systems (LMATTS). LMATTS is a joint venture company based in Marietta, Georgia, which was set up by Lockheed Martin and Alenia Aeronautica, which is part of the Finmeccanica company of Italy.
C27J Spartan visits Bradley Air National Guard Base – A C27J Spartan is shown on the ramp during a familiarization visit to the Bradley Air National Guard Base in East Granby, Conn. on Thursday, Oct. 21, 2010. The aircraft visit afforded the Flying Yankees of the 103rd Airlift Wing an opportunity to experience its future mission capabilities first hand. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Erin E. McNamara) – Image: 103aw.ang.af.mil
In July 2012, Alenia rolled out a new multi-mission variant designated MC-27J. Derived from C-27J Spartan, the MC-27J is an armed aircraft specially designed to meet the requirements of air forces and Special Forces. The aircraft is being jointly manufactured by Alenia and ATK.
MC-27J ATK: Details
Image: Defense News
US Army / US Air Force C-27J joint cargo aircraft (JCA)
In June 2007, the C-27J was chosen as the US Army / Air Force new joint cargo aircraft (JCA). The initial contract is for 78 aircraft (54 for the army and 24 for the USAF). L-3 Communications Integrated is prime contractor and is teamed with Alenia North America, Boeing Integrated Defense Systems and Global Military Aircraft Systems (a joint venture of L-3 and Alenia). The C-27J JCA’s maiden flight was in June 2008 and the first aircraft was delivered to the US Army and Air Force in September 2008. The first JCA training class began in November 2008.
US Air Force C-27J – Image: Fighter Control
Finmeccanica received a $319m contract from the USAF in June 2010 to supply eight C-27J JCA for delivery in 2012.
The US Special Operations Command will receive seven C-27Js from the USAF, as part of intra-service transfer. All the aircraft are expected to be transferred by April 2014 and will be operated by the US Army Special Operations Command. The USAF will also transfer 14 C-27Js to the US Coast Guard.
A C-27J Medium Range Surveillance airplane sits on the runway at Coast Guard Aviation Logistics Center in Elizabeth City, North Carolina, Thursday, March 31, 2016 – Image: travelforaircraft.files.wordpress.com
C-27J Spartan design and construction
The aircraft design is based on the proven G-222 airframe from Alenia, with turboprop engines from Allison and advanced systems from Lockheed Martin.
G-222 – Image: defenceindustrydaily.com
Data from Jane’s All The World’s Aircraft 1988–89
- Crew: Four – commander, co-pilot, radio-operator/flight engineer on flightdeck, loadmaster
- Capacity: 9,000 kg (19,840 lb) of cargo, 53 troops or 36 litters
- Length: 22.70 m (74 ft 5½ in)
- Wingspan: 28.70 m (94 ft 2 in)
- Height: 9.80 m (32 ft 1¾ in)
- Wing area: 82.0 m² (893 ft²)
- Empty weight: 14,590 kg (32,165 lb)
- Max. takeoff weight: 28,000 kg (61,730 lb)
- Powerplant: 2 × General Electric T64-GE-P4D turboprop, 2,535 kW (3,400 shp) each
- Maximum speed: 540 km/h (336 mph, 291 knots) at 4,575 m (15,000 ft)
- Cruise speed: 439 km/h (273 mph, 237 knots) at 6,000 m (19,700 ft)
- Range: 1,371 km (852 mi, 740 nmi) at max payload
- Ferry range: 4,633 km (2,879 miles, 2,500 nmi)
- Service ceiling: 7,620 m (25,000 ft)
- Rate of climb: 8.7 m/s (1,705 ft/min)
G-222 source revolvy.com
Final assembly of the C-27J Spartan takes place in Italy. Lockheed Martin is responsible for the propulsion and avionics and takes lead responsibility for product support and worldwide marketing. Alenia Aeronautica takes responsibility for the certification process and for most of the manufacturing and flight testing operations.
The C-27J Spartan has the same logistical and maintenance characteristics of the Lockheed Martin C-130J Hercules medium tactical airlifter, and also shares commonality of the cargo capacity. The primary roles of the C-27J are cargo transport, troop transport, and material and paratroop air drop. Other missions include maritime patrol, tactical operations, medical evacuation, ground refuelling, fire-fighting and aerial spraying.
Global Military Aircraft Systems (GMAS) is a joint venture that has been set up between Alenia and L-3 Communications for the US Army future cargo aircraft (FCA) and the USAF combat rescue tanker requirement.
C-130J Hercules: Details
The two-pilot cockpit is night-vision-goggle (NVG) compatible. The flight deck is very similar to that of the C-130J Hercules. The electronic flight instrumentation system (EFIS) incorporates five liquid crystal head-down colour displays.
Aircraft Italy – Air Force Alenia C-27J Spartan Reg.: MM62215 MSN: 114 Code: 46-80 Berlin – Schonefeld (SXF / EDDB) Germany – September 12, 2012 – Image: airliners.net
The Spartan also has an inbuilt ability to withstand battle damage when it is placed in harm’s way, with a three-spar wing design incorporated for strength, an optional on-board inert gas generating system to prevent a fuel-air explosion in its fuel tanks, dual redundant control systems and an armoured cockpit floor. Source flightglobal.com
C27J Spartan cargo systems
The Spartan is constructed with a floor strength equal to that of a Hercules transporter, and the large cargo cabin cross-section is able to accommodate Hercules pallets.
Without modification, HMMWV (high-mobility medium wheeled vehicle), AML-90, Perentie 6×6 armoured vehicle, M113 armoured personnel carrier or similar military vehicles can be driven on and off the Spartan via a hydraulically operated rear-loading ramp. The aircraft is constructed to offload vehicles quickly while taking fire.
An upward-opening door is installed in the underside rear fuselage, which is used for air drops of pallets or CDS (container delivery systems) units. The air-drop speed is typically in the range 110kt to 140kt.
The 17,500kg (38,600lb) empty weight C-27J has a maximum payload capacity of more than 11,400kg and can carry three and a half NATO-standard 463L pallets inside its 3.33m (10.9ft)-wide and 2.6m-high cargo compartment. Source flightglobal.com
NATO-standard 463L pallets
Image: brinkley.ccC-27J – Image: stripes.comA C-27J Spartan practices airdropping bundles during flight testing of the plane at Yuma Proving Grounds, Ariz., in early 2009. In April, through Resource Management Decision 802, Defense Secretary Robert Gates moved the C-27J program and its related direct support mission from the Army to the Air Force. (U.S. Air Force Photo) – Image: amc.af.mil
The aircraft is pressurised and air conditioned in the cockpit and cargo compartment. In the medical evacuation role, the aircraft can carry 24 casualties on litters (stretchers) and four medical attendants. The cargo compartment is equipped with a dedicated aero-medical oxygen supply and 12 power centres for medical or auxiliary equipment.
SAR (Search And Rescue) configuration pitched to Canada
FSX RCAF C-27J | by Peter BrownImage of the C-27J SAR configuration (Alenia Aermacchi)
For the paratroop role, the aircraft is equipped with door-jump platforms and static lines, and can carry up to 24 fully equipped paratroops. Paratroop jumps can be carried out from the paratroop doors on both sides of the cargo compartment or from the cargo ramp and rear door.
The C-27J is equipped with a digital avionics suite integrated by Lockheed Martin Aeronautical Systems. The mission computers are supplied by Sanders, a Lockheed Martin company, and the displays by ADC. Honeywell provides the autopilot and the standby instruments are supplied by BF Goodrich.
IntegriFlight™ CMA-5024 GPS Landing System Sensor
CMC’s IntegriFlight™ CMA-5024 GPS Landing System Sensor meets the requirements for an Instrument Flight Rules, civil certified Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS). The CMA-5024 provides Wide Area Augmentation System (WAAS) Satellite Based Augmentation System (SBAS) GPS capability from departure to approach that complies with published Communication Navigation Surveillance/Air Traffic Management (CNS/ATM) navigational mandates. WAAS/SBAS augments GPS to provide an extremely accurate navigation solution that will support all flight operations from en route to GNSS and WAAS/SBAS Localizer Performance with a Vertical Guidance (LPV) CAT-1 equivalent approach. The CMA-5024 is provisioned for growth to GBAS with a built-in VHF Data Broadcast (VDB) receiver. Source esterline.com
CMA-9000 Flight Management System
- The CMA-9000 is a compact flight management system well suited for modern digital cockpits in fixed and rotary wing aircraft. It is intended for civil and military transport as well as helicopter FMS applications. It is the next generation FMS derived from the successful CMA-900 FMS/GPS and the CMA-3000 helicopter FMS. The CMA-9000 conforms to the ARINC-739 MCDU standard making suitable as display and control unit for other systems such as ACARS, ACMS, SATCOM. Moreover, it has the capability to act as Radio Management Unit.Full fledged Flight Management function in a single cockpit unit with civil certified multi-sensor (GPS, INS, DME, EGI, Doppler) navigation capabilities.
- Optional FMS-resident AOC (ARINC 702A FMS-loadable messages) and ATS (ADS and CPDLC) datalink applications.
- Optional comprehensive Radio Management functions in a single cockpit unit.
- Optional helicopter specific tactical features including bi-directional DMAP interface.
- Sunlight readable color AMLCD
- ARINC 424 legs with SIDS, STARS and GPS Approaches
- RNP-1 (TGL-10 PRNAV) compliant with growth to RNP-RNAV
- Barometric VNAV Approach
- Optional vertical navigation for all phases of flight with limited performance trajectory prediction
- ARINC-739 MCDU for ACARS, SATCOM and ACMS
- Triple synchronized operation
- FANS-1/A compatible datalink option (AOC, ADS and CPDLC)
- Comprehensive I/O for retrofit and new build installation
- Interfaces to navigation radios and sensors, communications radios, digital moving map displays and other equipment
TacView® Portable Mission Display
The TacView® Portable Mission Display (PMD) is a compact, self-contained mission computer designed specifically to enhance situational awareness for military, paramilitary, law enforcement, and civil aircrews. TacView provides mission enhancing functionality at the flight crew’s fingertips, with a data interface no other airborne portable computer can provide.
High vibration and temperature extremes associated with demanding airborne operations will not affect TacView’s performance, nor will they cause untimely system shut-downs. A removable minimum 64GB solid state memory ensures continuous operation in the most challenging cockpit conditions, and allows for instantaneous declassification of critical data when necessary.
TacView’s unique high contrast display offers an exceptional viewing experience in both day and night lighting conditions, and is fully dimmable from 800 to 0.5 Nits. The unit is also NVIS compatible to MIL-STD-3009, including keyboard and bezel buttons.
Accommodating User Interface
Rugged film-on-glass touch technology puts TacView ahead of the competition, offering reliable single or dual touch input capability, while its multi-function bezel buttons are designed to accommodate gloved-hand tactile feedback. In addition, a uniquely integrated “QWERTY-style” sliding keyboard optimizes text input in all conditions.
Power to Spare
Never again does the aircrew need to limit the amount of data displayed on a PMD at the same time. TacView comes equipped with a powerful Intel Core™ i7 processor with integrated video processing capability, which allows multiple applications to run simultaneously.
Helmet Mounted Display for the C-27J
As suggested by Alenia, the HMD can be effectively used as an alternative or as a complement to Head Up Displays for the most demanding segments of the C-27J missions. As the pictures show, the HMD LITE has been tested on the C-27J in flight, demonstrating its potential in meeting tactical aircraft needs and ease of installation. The HMD LITE, that is ready for being integrated with the C-27J, was tested in different operational scenarios and in all weather conditions, demostrating the advantages of displaying the main mission parameters directly in front of the pilot, enhancing his ability to scan the terrain, for example, during an Ultra Low Level flight. Noteworthy, the HMD LITE can be quickly and easily reconfigured from day to night configuration and it is compatible with the NVG (Night Vision Goggles). An experimental avionics integration will follow the initial phase of testing activities just completed: the HMD concept will be explored more in-depth, by developing tactical airlift symbology and customized mission profiles. At the end of this second phase, customers will be able to evaluate the HMD LITE on the Spartan’ Simulator, before proceeding into the final integration with the C-27J. Source theaviationist.com
AN/APN-241 Digital Mapping Radar
The only radar in the transport class with a high resolution SAR mapping mode
The AN/APN-241’s capability remains unmatched by the competition as the only radar in the transport class with a high resolution SAR mapping mode. In addition to meeting needs for precision navigation, this unparalleled mapping capability enables operators to execute landing missions with confidence on unimproved runways without aid from ground-based landing systems.
No other radar in the industry can compete with the range and accuracy of the AN/APN-241. It is the only radar with a 10nm range Windshear mode and its unique two-bar can technology eliminates false alarms. And, unlike other systems, the AN/APN-241 windshear mode is not restricted by altitude. At 20 nautical miles, the AN/APN-241 provides the longest range air-to-air situational awareness mode of any transport radar. The Skin Paint mode also features computer generated target-sizing, a clutter-free display, and hands-free operation to the crew.
Simultaneous multifunction capability
The AN/APN-241 is designed to allow pilots to focus on the mission rather than “working” the radar. Automatic tilt and gain adjustments reduce operator tasking, and with simultaneous mode interleaving, crews can select independent radar modes according to mission requirements. The AN/APN-241 provides overlays of flight plan or TCAS information on weather or ground maps for greater situational awareness. Operators may also ‘freeze’ the AN/APN-241 into a non-emitting mode to gain a tactical advantage.
The AN/APN-241 was built with growth in mind. Modifications to current modes and technologies will provide a maritime patrol capability suitable for fisheries protection, smuggling interdiction, and Search and Rescue missions. With the development of ‘Ballistic Wind’ mode, a modification which will measure drop zone winds, the AN/APN-241 provides a unique air drop capability to support both military and humanitarian missions.
The highly adaptable AN/APN-241 is currently fielded on four aircraft: C-130H, C-130J, C-27J and C-295. Northrop Grumman has integrated the AN/APN-241 with five different avionics architectures and two antenna systems. As the baseline radar for the LMCO C-130J and Alenia C-27J, it has a solid, long-term production base with logistics and maintenance support through 2030 and beyond. Source northropgrumman.com
Hamilton Sundstrand auxiliary power unit
Image: redstar.grT-62T-40-1 Auxiliary power unit for illustration – Image: wikimedia.org
The auxiliary power unit installed in the Alenia Aeronautica C-27J Spartan is a Hamilton Sundstrand Power Systems T-62T-46-C16 unit, not a Honeywell APU (AW&ST Apr. 29, p. 73). Source aviationweek.com
Image: redstar.grImage: redstar.gr
The C-27J is equipped with two AE 2100D3 turboshaft engines, supplied by Rolls-Royce Defence North America (formerly Allison). The engines are rated at 4,637shp. Messier-Dowty supply the six-bladed composite propellers.
2 x AE 2100D3 turboshaft engines
|Specification||AE 2100D2||AE 2100D3||AE 2100J||AE 2100P|
|Power shp (kW)||4,637 (3,410)||4,637 (3,410)||4,591 (3,376)||4,152 (3,054)|
|Dry weight lb (Kg)||1,776 (806)||1,740 (789)||1,666 (756)||1,627 (738)|
|Length in (m)||117.0 (2.97)||124.1 (3.15)||118.1 (3.00)||118.1 (3.00)|
|Height in (m)||52.5 (1.33)||46.3 (1.18)||52.9 (1.34)||52.9 (1.34)|
|Width in (m)||31.8 (0.81)||28.7 (0.73)||32.8 (0.83)||32.8 (0.83)|
|Compressor||14 HP||14 HP||14 HP||14 HP|
|Turbine||2HP, 2PT||2HP, 2PT||2HP, 2PT||2HP, 2PT|
|Applications||Lockheed Martin C-130J Hercules, Alenia C-27J Spartan, Saab 2000 AEW&C, ShinMaywa US-2 Kai|
*Technical data (ISA SLS)
Dowty six-bladed composite propellers – Image: RAAF Video Portal – Royal Australian Air Force
The aircraft’s propulsion system allows the C-27J Spartan to access a wide range of airfields, including short, unprepared strips in hot-and-high altitude conditions while transporting heavy loads.
The Spartan can perform 3g tactical airlift operations under severe conditions. The navigation and night piloting systems allow the aircraft to fly just above tree height even at night.
The propulsion system provides an increase in aircraft range by 35% and cruise ceiling by 30%, in comparison to the current G-222 tactical transporter configuration from Alenia.
The C-27J can fly with a maximum speed of 602km/h. The maximum cruise and stall speed of the aircraft are 583km/h and 194km/h respectively. Its range is 1,852km. The ferry range and service ceiling are 5,926km and 9,144m respectively.
C-27J transporter orders and deliveries
The first flight of the development aircraft was in September 1999 and the aircraft received full Italian military type certification in December 2001. The Italian Air Force ordered 12 aircraft to replace the G.222. Deliveries began in January 2007 and were completed in May 2009.
In January 2003, LMATTS received the first export order for the C-27J when Greece signed a $272.72m contract to buy 12 aircraft with three on option. The first was delivered in August 2005.
In February 2006, the Defence Ministry of Bulgaria signed a contract for five C-27J aircraft, with an option for three more. Deliveries began in November 2007. Two C-27J Spartans were delivered to the Bulgarian Air Force by December 2010. Bulgaria reduced the C-27J orders from five to three due to financial crisis. The Bulgarian Air Force received the third and final C-27J Spartan aircraft in March 2011. These aircraft replaced the existing An-26s fleet.
In June 2006, Lithuania placed a €75m ($97.5m) order for three C-27J aircraft. The first was delivered in December 2006, the second in December 2008 and the third was delivered on 21 October 2009.
In December 2006, it was announced that Romania had selected the C-27J with a requirement for seven aircraft. A €217m ($308m) contract was signed in December 2007 after facing legal appeals from Romania’s public procurement controlling authority. The first C-27J Spartan was delivered to the Romanian Airforce in July 2009 to the Bucharest-Otopeni Air Base. The second was delivered in April 2010 with the remaining five delivered by 2012.
In December 2008, the Slovakian government announced the selection of the C-27J with a requirement for up to four aircraft.
Slovakia receives first Spartan airlifter: Here
Slovakia officially inducted into its inventory the first of two Alenia Aermacchi C-27J Spartan tactical transport aircraft on 31 October.
The twin-engined turboprop, which actually arrived in-country the previous week, was welcomed into service during a ceremony at Malacky-Kuchyna air base near the Austrian border. Malacky-Kuchyna is home to the Slovak Air Force’s (Vzdusné sily Slovenskej Republiky) transport wing which currently fields the Let L-410 Turbolet twin-turboprop cargo aircraft.
Slovakia has acquired the C-27J to replace the already-retired Warsaw Pact-era Antonov An-26 ‘Curl’ airlifters it inherited with the split from the Czech Republic in 1993. Following a protracted procurement process that lasted about six years, a contract was signed in 2014 that was estimated to be worth EUR120 million (USD152 million at the time).
Ten C-27J Spartans had been delivered to the Hellenic Air Force by July 2010.
In November 2010, the first C-27J full flight simulator was delivered to the Italian Air Force at its base in Pisa, Italy. The simulator is principally used for training the C-27J crews at a competitive operating cost.
Mexico placed a $200m contract for four C-27J aircraft in July 2011. The first aircraft was delivered in September 2011 and the remaining three were delivered by 2012.
In May 2012, Australia confirmed the acquisition of 10 C-27J Spartan aircraft for its Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) through a €800m Foreign Military Sales (FMS) agreement with the US. The first aircraft completed maiden flight in December 2013. Deliveries are expected to begin in 2015 and the initial operating capability is expected by the end of 2016.
Australia declares IOC for C-27J fleet: Here
A №35 Squadron C-27J Spartan flies at low level shortly after departing RAAF Base Townsville for its new home of RAAF Base Richmond on 25 June (Source: Commonwealth of Australia, Department of Defence) – Image: dmitryshulgin.com
The Peruvian Ministry of Defense selected the C-27J in November 2013 and placed a contract worth €100m ($135.8m) for two aircraft in December 2013.
C-27J operators: Here
Royal Moroccan Air Force C-27J Spartan transport aircraft Copyright © : Alenia Aeronautica – Image: deagel.com
Main material source airforce-technology.com
Primary Function: Cargo and tactial transport aircraft
Prime Contractor: Airframe: Alenia Aeronautica (Finmeccanica); Integration: L-3 Communications
Power Plant: 2x Rolls-Royce AE 2100-D2A turboprop engines with 4,637 shp (each engine)
Wingspan: 94.2 ft (28.7 m)
Length: 74.5 ft (22.7 m)
Height: Main fuselage: 11.8 ft (3.6 m); Incl. tail: 31.8 ft (9.7 m)
Weight (Empty): 37,500 lbs (17,010 kg)
Maximum Takeoff Weight (MTOW): 70,100 lbs (31,800 kg)
Payload: Max. 25,350 lbs (11,500 kg)
Capacity: Troop transport: up to 68 + 2 loadmasters;
Paratroop transport: up to 46 + 2 loadmasters;
Medevac: 36 stretchers + 6 medical attendants;
Cargo transport/Low Velocity Air Drop (LVAD): Up to 25,350 lbs/19,840 lbs 12E (54″x88″) 7 HCU-12E (54″x88″)
12 A22 CDS Bundles with a maximum weight of 19,842 lbs;
LAPES: up to 11,200 lbs wheeled and tracked vehicles, spare engines, etc.
Fuel Capacity: 3,255 gallons (12,320 liters); Optional fuel tank 402 gallons (1,520 liters)
Speed: 315 kts/363 mph (584 km/h) at MTOW
Service Ceiling: 30,000 ft (9,144 m)
Range: w/22,046 lbs payload: 1,000 nm/1,151 miles (1,852 km);
w/13,227 lbs payload: 2,300 nm/2,647 miles (4,260 km);
Ferry: 3,200 nm (5,926 km)
Crew: Two or three (pilot, co-pilot, and loadmaster if needed)
Technical data source fi-aeroweb.com
Updated Nov 02, 2017