This January the Army signed a new memorandum with the US Air Force for a joint Procurement of 145 of the Future Cargo Aircraft, they will select the winning contractor in December.
The Army hopes to have Initial Operational capability of the new aircraft by 2010, of the 145 aircraft the Army would procure 75 and the Air Force 70.
Both the Lockheed Martin/Alenia C-27J and the EADS/Casa C-295 are in the new competition as well as any new proposals, again they want to choose by December.
The requirements are for fixed-wing transport aircraft capable of performing rapid-response intratheater missions with cargo, equipment and soldiers, as well as medevac duties and airdrop delivery. The aircraft must be able to operate off of a 2,000ft prepared runway, and be compatible with USAF/NATO cargo pallets.
Some great C-27J pictures..
Photo © Andrea Colombo
Photo © Thierry Deutsch
Photo © Andreas Heilmann
Photo © Krzysztof Godlewski (EPGD Spotters)