A C-130 Hercules with the 107th Airlift Wing fires off flares during a night formation training mission. A flare is an aerial infrared countermeasure to counter and infrared homing (heat seeking) surface-to-air or air-to-air missile.With the Air Force intending on killing the C-27J program (aircraft seen below) the C-130 will face the responsibility of making up for the lift capacity lost.
The ongoing argument over the C-27J, with congressional players fighting to keep the aircraft as they are operated by the guard and provide a mission for their state guardsmen and the DoD insisting that it can’t afford the aircraft, the C-27J isn’t entirely settled yet. But the Air Force continues to insist that the C-130 can pick up the load. Advocates for the C-27J point to its ability to operate using shorter runways while opponents say that the C-130 can handle most of the airfields in use and the C-27J is a luxury.