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Here Comes Spartan: Howard Yellen, general manager of Global Military Aircraft Systems,  says the C-27J Spartan—competing for the Army-Air Force Joint Cargo Aircraft program—has some unique capabilities. Up armored Humvees and C-130 pallets can be directly loaded into the Spartan’s cargo bay without having to be broken down and reconfigured, which could save up to 30 minutes coming and going, Yellen told reporters Wednesday at AFA’s Air & Space Conference in Washington. He also emphasized survivability of the C-27J, which comes with a spare generator and an auxiliary power unit to restart the engine at altitude, if necessary, and has new avionics and engines, among other advances over the C-27A model flown by the State Department in South America. Yellen claims, the aircraft is ideal for hurricane and earthquake relief, concluding that the C-27J will “fill a niche” that has yet to be filled. The JCA program, though, is still on slightly shaky ground. Appropriators have not restored all the funding the Army requested for 2007.