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C-1 / EC-1

The C-1 transport aircraft is a domestically developed aircraft, and its feature is that it considers the loading system. By opening the rear door under the tail and loading the cargo onto the loading pallet, it can be efficiently mounted in the air for a short time, whether it is a crown cannon or a jeep. A stretcher can be attached by erecting a metal rod on the floor, and 36 patients can be transported by air. It can accommodate 60 regular personnel and 45 fully armed paratroopers. In terms of performance, it has improved short-distance takeoff and landing performance and high speed at high altitudes. Since 30 years have passed since the introduction of C-1, it has been severely deteriorated, and its use has been abolished since 2012.

By the end of the 60s, the Japanese aviation industry had accumulated considerable experience in the licensed construction of foreign aircraft. By that time, the design and industrial potential of Japan made it possible to design and build independently aircraft equipment that were not inferior to world standards in terms of basic parameters.

A consortium of Japanese companies was chosen by the self-defense forces to design a new aircraft, which were supposed to develop a modern aircraft. The consortium selected Kawasaki as the main contractor. In 1966, Kawasaki, which is the main contractor at the Nihon Air Manufacturing Company (NAMC) consortium, began developing a twin-engine jet military transport aircraft (VTS) according to the specifications of the Japan Self-Defense Air Force. The designed aircraft, intended to replace obsolete American-made piston transport aircraft, received the designation C-1.

The Kawasaki C-1 was designed to replace the C-46. The first prototype flew on November 12, 1970. The second prototype flew on January 16, 1971. The first pre-production aircraft flew in 1972. The second pre-production aircraft flew in 1974. The first production C-1A (number 48-1008) flew in December 1974. By 1981, a total of 31 C-1A had been delivered. The C-1KA, featuring a redesigned nose, upgraded avionics, first flew in 1985. The time was just before the security in 1970, when the left-wing movement that continued from the Vietnam War opposition movement was showing the highest excitement, and the government and the Defense Agency decided to develop and manufacture CX by other companies in order to overcome the problem.

The aircraft is equipped with two turbojet JT8D-M-9 engines of the American company Pratt-Whitney, located in the engine nacelles under the wing, manufactured in Japan under license. The on-board radio-electronic equipment C-1 allows flying in difficult meteorological conditions at any time of the day.

The C-1 has a usual layout for modern transport design. The cargo cabin is sealed and equipped with air conditioning, and the tail ramp can be opened in flight for the landing of troops and the discharge of cargo. The C-1 crew consists of five people, and the type load includes either 60 fully equipped infantrymen, or 45 paratroopers, or up to 36 stretcher for the wounded with accompanying people, or various equipment and cargo on landing platforms. A cargo hatch located in the tail section of the aircraft can be loaded into the cabin: a 105-mm howitzer or a 2,5-t truck, or three SUVs.

The fuselage is a standard form for a military transport aircraft, with a T-tail in a high wing arrangement and a main landing gear in the bulge of the fuselage. The swept angle of the main wing is 20 degrees and the aspect ratio is 7.8. Unlike the YS-11, it uses an injection-type turbofan engine (the same engine as the Boeing 727 and DC-9 ), and two of these are mounted on the pylon of the wing. With this powerful engine, the C-1 can take off and land on a 600-meter runway, and has excellent high-speed performance at high altitudes. In addition, despite being a medium-sized aircraft, it has a high maneuverability that allows it to make sharp turns by tilting the aircraft nearly 90 degrees in the air. On the other hand, it was noisy, and there were complaints from residents near the base and anti-flight movements due to noise damage. In addition, although it is not limited to this aircraft, military transport aircraft have minimal habitability such as noise and vibration, such as the control cable running exposed in the upper part of the aircraft, especially private sector. It has a bad reputation with passengers. However, the cargo compartment is air-conditioned and pressurized. The cockpit is only analog instruments, but some aircraft have a liquid crystal auxiliary screen that displays radar on the captain's seat side.

In 1973, an order was received for the first batch of 11 machines. The upgraded and refined version of the experience gained the designation - C-1A. Its production was completed in 1980 year, a total of 31 machine of all modifications was built. The main reason for the cessation of C-1 production was pressure from the United States, which saw a Japanese competitor in its C-130 transport.

Article 9 of the Japanese Constitution forbid Japan from having offensive weapons, and the maximum range of the aircraft was limited only to the Japanese archipelago. After the United States returned Okinawa to Japanese jurisdiction in 1972, and the range of the Kawasaki C-1 was not enough to reach the distant islands. If the C-1 has only an internal fuel tank, its cruising range is centered on Gifu to Hokkaido and Kyushu, and even with the technological capabilities of that time, the cruising range of the C-1 was extremely shorter than that of transport aircraft in other countries. To reach Okinawa, a drop tank is required when flying to Ioshima in the prefecture or training area.

In general, it is said that the debate in the Diet at the beginning of the plan was influenced by the criticism from the opposition party that "the introduction of long-range transport aircraft may be the return of hegemony". In the 1970s, the Cabinet of Eisaku Sato was in sharp conflict with the innovators, due to the Vietnam anti-war movement, the Anpo Protests and the Okinawa Return Struggle. So it was planned to intentionally shorten the cruising range of the CX in order to avoid criticism from the Socialist Party and others by the Defense Agency's internal bureau. The C-1 that flies to Okinawa and Ioshima is a special specification aircraft with a drop tank installed in the cargo compartment, but the aircraft has a short cruising range for transport aircraft because the cargo load decreases when the tank is installed.

The 4th Defense Force Development Plan (4th Defense) had decided to maintain 50 aircraft, but due to special circumstances in Japan, a total of 31 aircraft were manufactured (2 prototypes, 29 mass-produced aircraft)). The final contract was delivered in March 1980 (Showa 55), and the final unit was delivered in October 1981 (Showa 56), and production of the C-1 was discontinued. C-1 is Komaki base of the 401 squadron ( 1978 (1978) to Miho base ) and Iruma base of the 402 squadron and Miho base 403 squadron has been deployed, 401 squadrons 1989 By the year (1989), it was gradually changed to C-130H, and the aircraft was distributed to both 402 and 403 Squadrons. In April 2018, the operation of the 403rd Squadron at Miho Base was completed due to the replacement with the C-2 transport aircraft, and the aircraft to which it belonged was transferred to the 402nd Squadron at Iruma Air Base.

Under the leadership of Yasuhiro Nakasone, the director of the Defense Agency, a large transport aircraft is planned as a stretch type, as well as an airborne early warning aircraft (AEW) and aerial refueling aircraft were also planned. The Defense Agency decided to domestically produce an airborne early warning aircraft equipped with a phased array radar different from Grumman's E-2 disc-shaped radome for a total of 12 billion yen since 1972 (Showa 47) , and the fifth defense period From 1978 (Showa 53), it was planned to install a phased array radar on an airborne early warning aircraft based on the C-1 and deploy it on the front line.

At that time, the Air Staff Office strongly requested the introduction of Grumman's E-2, which is also adopted by the US military, but since the E-2 is a very expensive aircraft, the total budget scale of the 4th defense was 5 trillion. It was difficult to introduce it within the range of 800 billion yen, and Yasuhiro Nakasone, the Secretary of the Defense Agency at that time, was also having a hard time making a decision. After that, the Defense Agency decided to refrain from introducing AEW of foreign aircraft, saying that the urgency of deploying airborne early warning aircraft on the front line was low, and decided to start independent development in order to improve domestic technology development capability. Regarding the phased array radar, there was a strong view that it would be difficult for Japanese companies at that time to develop it independently, and they were considering installing a radar manufactured by Hughes Aircraft Company in the United States on Kawaseki (C-1). According to a trial calculation by Kawasaki and Hughes, the number of installed aircraft was estimated to be about 6 billion yen per aircraft. After that, the domestic early warning aircraft plan was opposed by Osamu Kaihara, a defense bureaucrat who was in conflict with Secretary Nakasone (Umihara was also one who opposed the C-1 development itself), and Grumman, which\o had been selling E-2 AEW aircraft to Japan. The Socialist Party and other internal bureaucrats of the Defense Agency feared the opposition of the left wing.

As of the end of March 2020 ( Reiwa 2), the number of aircraft owned is 11 because four aircraft have been lost in an accident (described later) and the use has begun to be abolished.

 
Page last modified: 01-11-2020 15:47:35 ZULU