What's this on a C-130? [MAFFS wildfire fighting nozzle]

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jq

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Unread post08 Mar 2015, 16:42

Hi guys,

Anyone know what this is? The caption says "discharge nozzle" but what does it do?

C-130 strange proteberance on fuselage.jpg


tx

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JetTest

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Unread post08 Mar 2015, 21:15

Seeing what looks like a US Forest Service logo in the red band, probably an aerial fire fighting system.......just a guess.
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Jon

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Unread post09 Mar 2015, 03:02

Absolutely fire fighting.
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bobdaley

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Unread post09 Mar 2015, 14:49

It is the ejection nozzle for the MAFFS II fire fighting system (Modular Aerial Fire Fighting System)
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magicdragon

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Unread post10 Mar 2015, 19:20

Bob beat me to it - MAFFS or Modular Airborne FireFighting System.

USAF Photos:

[photo]36257[/photo]
[photo]36262[/photo]
[photo]36260[/photo]
[photo]36263[/photo]
[photo]36267[/photo]
[photo]36269[/photo]
[photo]36270[/photo]
[photo]36268[/photo]

From Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Modular_Ai ... ing_System
The Modular Airborne FireFighting System or MAFFS is a self-contained unit used for aerial firefighting that can be loaded onto a C-130 Hercules, a military cargo transport, which then allows the aircraft to be used as an air tanker against wildfires.


The MAFFS consists of a series of five pressurized fire retardant tanks with a total capacity of 2,700 US gallons (10,000 l; 2,200 imp gal) and associated equipment which is palletized and carried in the aircraft's cargo bay.[2] In addition to the retardant tanks, each module contains a pressure tank where compressed air is stored at 1200 psi. The control module includes the master control panel, the loadmaster's seat, and discharge valves. An air compressor module provides air pressure for charging the system; it stays at the airtanker base during air operations and is used to recharge the system between runs. Each unit weighs about 11,000 pounds (5,000 kg). It can be installed in any C-130-E or -H equipped with the USAF 463L cargo-handling system


Aero Union, under contract to the USFS, has developed an improved version of the system, known as the MAFFS II. The new system has a capacity of up to 3,400 US gallons (13,000 l; 2,800 imp gal), replacing the five retardant tanks with one large tank, and has an on-board air compressor. The original MAFFS has to be pressurized by a compressor on the ground as a part of the loading process. The ability to pressurize the system in the air cuts turn-around time significantly.[6] The new system discharges the retardant through a special plug in the paratroop drop door on the side of the aircraft, rather than requiring the cargo ramp door to be opened; this allows the aircraft to remain pressurized during the drop sequence.[7] Far more significantly, the cargo ramp and door can remain closed, cutting drag considerably, and thereby allowing a greater performance margin than available with MAFFS I.


MAFFS equipment is stationed at eight locations around the country. They are considered a "24-hour resource", meaning that when activated, it is expected that it will take 24 hours for the aircraft to arrive on scene, as the C-130s have to be pulled from their regular military duties and fitted with the MAFFS equipmen


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jq

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Unread post10 Mar 2015, 22:33

JetTest wrote:Seeing what looks like a US Forest Service logo in the red band, probably an aerial fire fighting system.......just a guess.


Thanks JetTest & Bob! Should've recognized that UFS logo (I guess my brain just wasn't expecting to see a UFS logo on an air force C-130!)

MagicDragon, cool shots, tx for posting!!
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bobdaley

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Unread post11 Mar 2015, 16:24

Actually there are 7 units stationed at 4 bases. Charlotte,Peterson, Cheyenne and Channel Islands.
An eighth is being bought to replace the one lost by Charlotte.
Bob
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magicdragon

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Unread post12 Mar 2015, 14:14

Thanks for the correction Bob. I forgot to account for the the tragic MAFFS 7 crash.

I also realized I posted a mix of orignal MAFFS and MAFFS II images.

Original MAFFS has 5 tanks in the fuselage and 2 nozzles mounted on the rear ramp, as in the photographs below:

5 Tanks (and 2 nozzles turned upwards for loading)
[photo]36269[/photo]
Ramp open, 2 nozzles spraying
[photo]36289[/photo]

New MAFFS II has the single bigger tank, and single nozzle in the port paratrooper door.
[photo]36266[/photo]

MagicDragon

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