Here’s how a large rigid inflatable boat is airdropped by U.S. Air Force MC-130J Special Ops aircraft

Boat delivery Air Force Special Operations Command-way.

The picture in this post shows an MC-130J Commando II belonging to the 9th Special Operations Squadron airdropping a Rigid Inflatable Boat (RIB) Maritime Craft Aerial Delivery System over the Gulf of Mexico on Nov. 12, 2015.

MCADS enable special operations forces members to rapidly deploy anywhere around the world in a maritime environment: anti-pirate ops, beach assault, forces infil and exfil missions may require the use of airdropped vessels.

Produced by Airborne Systems, the MCADS is the only system capable of delivering large RIBs by parachute-dropping them into the water. It is made of the PRIBAD and PURIBAD airdrop platforms, attached to an extractor parachute used to pull the load from the aircraft cargo bay.

The boat and platform separate immediately after leaving the aircraft and both descend to the water under their own parachutes. The Special Forces parachute from the aircraft following the load, and land near the ready-for-use boat in the water.

Image credit: U.S. Air Force


About David Cenciotti
David Cenciotti is a journalist based in Rome, Italy. He is the Founder and Editor of “The Aviationist”, one of the world’s most famous and read military aviation blogs. Since 1996, he has written for major worldwide magazines, including Air Forces Monthly, Combat Aircraft, and many others, covering aviation, defense, war, industry, intelligence, crime and cyberwar. He has reported from the U.S., Europe, Australia and Syria, and flown several combat planes with different air forces. He is a former 2nd Lt. of the Italian Air Force, a private pilot and a graduate in Computer Engineering. He has written five books and contributed to many more ones.