Grissom to host AC-130U Gunship at Air & Space Expo

  • Published
  • By A1C Harrison Withrow
  • 434th Air Refueling Wing

An AC-130U “Spooky” Gunship is scheduled to be on display at the Grissom Air & Space Expo Sept. 7-8.

This heavily armed aircraft incorporates side-firing weapons integrated with sophisticated sensor, navigation, and fire control systems to provide surgical firepower or area saturation during extended loiter periods, at night and in adverse weather. The sensor suite consists of a multispectral television sensors, high definition infrared sensors, and radar. These sensors allow the gunship to visually or electronically identify friendly ground forces and targets anytime, anywhere. 

The AC-130 gunship has a combat history dating to Vietnam. It has since provided close air support and armed reconnaissance in many operational theatres including Operation Urgent Fury, Operation Desert Storm, and the Global War on Terror.  

The AC-130U is just one of many attractions which will appear at the 2019 Grissom Air & Space Expo.

“Airshows allow citizens to see how their tax dollars are being spent, while static displays allow people to get close to aircraft, both past and present,” said Douglas Hays, chief of public affairs.

“We also hope to inspire future generations of Airmen and meet the pilots who help execute the Air Force mission,” Hays said.

The military aircraft, personnel and performances at these shows help demonstrate the Air Force Reserve’s readiness and role in global and national security.

The 2019 Grissom Air and Space Expo will feature demonstrations by the Thunderbirds and the U.S. Army parachute team the Golden Knights, along with other military and civilian acts.

Gates open at 8:30 a.m. Sept. 7-8, with flying scheduled to begin at approximately 11:00 a.m. both days weather permitting.

For more information about the airshow, visit and stay connected with the 434th ARW on Facebook and Twitter for continued updates.