Lockheed Martin has completed production of the first Tentara Nasional Indonesia-Angkatan Udara (TNI-AU, Indonesian Air Force) C-130J-30 Super Hercules.
The US manufacturer released an image of the aircraft on August 6 after it had been fully painted in TNI-AU markings. It carries the last two digits (‘39’) of the serial number on the nose. Although the full serial has not yet been confirmed, it seems likely that it will be A-1339, following on from A-1338, the last of nine acquired from the Royal Australian Air Force. An image released on September 7, 2021, showing the cockpit section for the first TNI-AU aircraft on the production line in Marietta, Georgia, showed construction number 5951 and it is assumed that this is the same airframe.
Indonesia had been considering purchasing the type for some years and although there were rumours of a deal having been agreed, nothing was officially announced until the image of the cockpit under construction was released. At that time, Lockheed Martin finally made the deal public, saying that a contract for five Super Hercules had been agreed as a direct commercial sale, although it remains unconfirmed whether all are the stretched C-130J-30 variant. This was finalised in 2019. First delivery is anticipated in early 2023.
All five will be operated by Skadron Udara 31 (SkU 31, Air Squadron 31) at Halim Perdanakusuma Air Base, Jakarta, which currently flies the C-130H-30 and L100-30. The TNI-AU also operates half-a-dozen elderly C-130Bs which are flown by SkU 32 at Abdulrachman Saleh, Malang. It is expected that delivery of the new C-130Js will enable the retirement of some of these C-130Bs.