Flight Refuelling, part of UK-based Cobham Aerospace, has been awarded a production order by US Special Operations Command for Hercules MC-130H Aerial Refuelling Systems (MCARS). The MCARS will be used in an upgrade to US Special Operations Command’s fleet of Combat Talon aircraft.
For the MCARS programme, Flight Refuelling will deliver refuelling pods, pylons, control systems and support services for the life of the product. The production order, support and follow on options are expected to exceed $100 million.
MCARS is said to utilise the latest 900 series refuelling pod and digital control system. This incorporates Flight Refuelling’s patented variable drag drogue technology, which allows refuelling of multiple aircraft in a single mission.
The system is now qualified on three rotocraft aircraft, namely the CH-47, CH-53 and CH-60. Qualification testing for the V-22 Osprey is scheduled for early 2005.
“Qualification of the Combat Talon II Refuelling System is a major step forward. This firmly establishes Flight Refuelling as the world leader in air refuelling,” said Andy Stevens, Group Managing Director, Cobham Aerospace Systems.
“Following our policy to align our businesses closer to the customer, Flight Refuelling is establishing a repair and support facility with Boeing near Hulbert Field, Florida, the home of the Special Forces,” added Stevens.