The Coast Guard took a step toward introducing the C-27J into its medium range surveillance fleet with the commissioning of the C-27J Asset Project Office (APO) at Elizabeth City, N.C., June 25, 2014.
The C-27J APO’s primary mission is to provide a purposeful, sequential plan to incorporate 14 C-27Js into Coast Guard operations. The aircraft are being transferred from the U.S. Air Force as required by the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2014.
Among the C-27J APO’s responsibilities will be development of Coast Guard-specific operational and maintenance procedures, training plans, technical manuals and crew duties.
The C-27J APO is also leading efforts to obtain airworthiness certifications for the aircraft, 13 of which are currently being stored in a preserved status with 309th Aerospace Maintenance and Regeneration Group at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base in Tucson, Ariz.
The C-27J APO and the U.S. Air Force are monitoring original equipment manufacturer efforts to address remaining items prior to delivery of the 14th and final C-27J to the U.S. government. Following acceptance by the Air Force, this aircraft is scheduled to be transferred to the Coast Guard later this year and will serve as the Coast Guard’s initial training aircraft.
The C-27J APO will develop a logistics program, including acquisition of spare parts and plans for training devices. Test and evaluation plans will be developed and executed by the C-27J APO as the project transitions from acquisition of the base aircraft to the missionization stage. As originally delivered, the C-27Js are outfitted with weather radar and communications equipment designed for transport missions, but no specialized components such as surface search radar and electro-optical/infrared sensors.
The C-27J APO was located in Elizabeth City to leverage resources already available at the Aviation Logistics Center, including training expertise from the Aviation Technical Training Center, engineering and maintenance talent, administrative support and facilities and supply. The APO staff includes 56 military and civilian positions that are in the process of being filled. Initial training of C-27J pilots and loadmasters has already begun in anticipation of receiving the first aircraft.The C-27J will join the HC-144A Ocean Sentry as part of the Coast Guard’s Medium Range Surveillance Aircraft fleet. The C-27Js will be instrumental in helping the Coast Guard fulfill its maritime patrol, drug and migrant interdiction, disaster response and search and rescue missions more effectively.