Embraer expects its revenues from the defense sector to grow by almost a third this year, reaching approximately $650 million compared with $500 million in 2009. Its military backlog going into 2010 stood at $3.2 billion and could increase if Indonesia’s defense minister signs off on a deal for eight EMB 314 Super Tucano trainer/light attack aircraft.
Embraer EMB 312 Tucano
In late July the U.S. Air Force’s Air Combat Command issued a request for information for what it calls the light attack/armed reconnaissance (LAAR) aircraft. The RFI covers the potential procurement of 100 OA-X aircraft optimized for irregular warfare missions, which could see the U.S. Air Force back in the business
Marshall Aerospace is proposing a significant upgrade for the RAF’s Tucano trainer, in conjunction with the original manufacturer, Bombardier subsidiary Short Brothers.
A fighter pilot is as expensive as the aircraft he or she flies. The current trend for containing costs is to concentrate as much of the training syllabus as possible on cost-efficient turboprop trainers, including a large part of the lead-in phase and weapon training, and to limit the use of high-performance jet trainers. Operating costs of jet trainers are estimated to be three to six times those of a turboprop.
Embraer last week formally responded to Turkey’s request for proposals for a new military trainer, offering its Super Tucano for a requirement expected to result in 36 firm orders and 19 options. The Brazilian jet has also been technically approved for Singapore’s trainer RFP with this bidding process due to be finalized by the end of July, ahead of the final commercial and financial proposals.
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