Embraer’s Multinational KC-390 Tactical Air Transport Program
November 23/18: FOC pending Embraer is one step closer in achieving the Final Operation Capability (FOC) for its KC-390 transport aircraft. During recently held tests at Brasília Air Force Base, Embraer was able to successfully complete troop unloading, evacuation by hatch and evacuation tests through the front and rear doors of the multi-mission medium airlift. About 370 Brazilian Air Force and Brazilian Army participated in the tests. “By completing this important stage of the testing campaign toward final military certification with excellence, the KC-390 demonstrates compliance with the industry’s most stringent operating and safety standards,” said Walter Pinto Junior, vice-president of the KC-390 Program. The Brazilian Air Force currently has 28 multi-role tankers on order, with the first expected to be delivered in the first half of 2019. Embraer hopes that its new aircraft will rival Lockheed Martin’s C-130.
Global competition in the 20-ton air transport segment continues to intensify, with Brazil’s launch of its KC-390 program. Embraer figures reportedly place the global C-130 replacement market at around 700 aircraft. In response, it will develop a jet-powered rival to compete with Lockheed Martin’s C-130J, the larger Airbus A400M, Russia’s AN-12 and its Chinese copy the Yun-8/9, and the bi-national Irkut/HAL MRTA project. Smaller aircraft like the EADS-CASA C-295M, and Alenia’s C-27J, represent indirect competition.
Embraer is extending its efforts and markets by crafting a jet-powered medium transport with a cargo capacity of around 23 tons, that can be refueled in the air, and can provide refueling services to other aircraft by adding dedicated pods. The KC-390 has now become a multinational program, and may be shaping up as the C-130’s most formidable future competitor. A tie-up with Boeing underscores the seriousness of Embraer’s effort, which is now a production program…
The KC-390: Program
The KC-390: Aircraft
Contracts and Key Events
2014 – 2018
2007 – 2009
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