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The Lockheed L-100 Hercules

Country of origin  
United States of America

Photos  

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Photo © Shaun Grist

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Photo © Ian Haskell
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Powerplants  
L-100-30 - Four 3362kW (4508shp) Allison 501-D22A turboprops driving four blade constant speed propellers.

Performance  
L-100-30 - Max cruising speed 571km/h (308kt). Range with max payload 2472km (1334nm), range with no payload 8950km (4830nm).

Weights  
L-100-30 - Operating empty 35,260kg (77,736lb), max takeoff 70,310kg (155,000lb).

Dimensions  
L-100-30 - Wing span 40.41m (132ft 7in), length 34.37m (112ft 9in), height 11.66m (38ft 3in). Wing area 162.1m2 (1745.0sq ft).

Capacity  
L-100-30 - Flightcrew of three or four. Max payload of 23,158kg (51,054lb) comprising pallets or containers.

Production  
Total L-100 built 114 (incl 22 L-100, 27 L-100-20, and 65 L-100-30).

Type  
Medium range freighter

History  

Lockheed's L-100 freighters are the civil equivalents of the venerable military C-130 Hercules, and have proven to be of great utility, particularly in undeveloped countries.

Lockheed initiated design of the Hercules in response to a 1951 US Air Force requirement for a turboprop powered freighter. This resulted in the C-130 Hercules, which first flew in prototype form on August 23 1954. Design features included the high mounted wing, four Allison 501/T56 turboprops and the rear loading freight ramp. The USAF ordered the C-130 into series production in September 1952, and since that time more than 2500 have been built.

The C-130's appeal to freight operators led Lockheed to develop a civil version. The first commercial versions were based on the C-130E model, and a demilitarised demonstrator first flew in April 1964. This initial civil development, the L-100 (L-382), was awarded civil certification in February 1965. This model was soon followed up by the series L-100 (L-382B), which introduced an improved freight handling system.

Sales of these initial versions were slow, leading Lockheed to develop the 2.54m (8ft 4in) stretched L-100-20 (L-382E), which offered better freight capacity and operating economics. The L-100-20 was certificated in October 1968, but was soon followed by the even longer L-100-30 (L-382G). The -30 was 2.03m (6ft 8in) longer than the -20, first flew in August 1970, and was delivered from December that year. Most civil Hercules sales have been of the L-100-30 variant. Although basically a civil aircraft, several L-100s are in service with military operators, e.g. in Algeria, Gabon and Kuwait. The last L-100 was built in 1992, while the last military Allison 501/T56 powered C-130 was delivered in 1996.

The L-100J would be a commercial derivative of the new generation C-130J Hercules II. Improvements would include new 3425kW (4591shp) Rolls-Royce (Allison) AE-2100D3 advanced turboprop engines driving six blade props, two crew EFIS flightdeck and significantly lower maintenance and operating costs. The C-130J first flew on April 5 1996, while US FAA civil certification was awarded in September 1998. The L-100J would be based on the stretched fuselage C-130J-30, but in 2000 the program was frozen as Lockheed martin focussed on the military variants.

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The backbone of this section is from the The International Directory of Civil Aircraft by Gerard Frawley and used with permission. To get your own copy of the book click here.