Saab has been steadily building its airborne ISR portfolio and hopes to secure its first deal in the maritime surveillance/patrol market in the near future. Saab has two offerings in this sector: the Saab 340 MSA (maritime surveillance aircraft), for which the company has produced a demonstrator that was on show at Farnborough; and the larger and more capable Swordfish. Saab has been keeping the UK aware of its developments in this field, although any formal requirement for a UK maritime patrol aircraft is not expected until after a strategic defense review next year.
Embraer believes it stands to benefit from the Indian military’s desire to maximize commonality in its fleet of aircraft in a bid to control maintenance costs. Five of the Brazilian manufacturer’s Legacy jets are in use with the Indian Air Force (IAF) and Border Security Force for functions such as transporting government officials and visiting foreign dignitaries.
In a ceremony at the Gavião Peixoto plant on June 19, Embraer marked three milestones as part of its activities to support the Brazilian air force. The most notable was the first flight of the first A-1 AMX upgraded to A-1M configuration. The A-1M is a refurbished aircraft upgraded with a number of new systems, including Mectron SCP-01 Scipio multimode radar, onboard oxygen generating system and an Elbit avionicssuite that includes a new glass cockpit and the Dash helmet-mounted display. Embraer is modernizing 43 aircraft to the A-1M standard in a program scheduled for completion in 2017.
Embraer’s plans for the new Legacy 650 signal that the Brazilian airframer is not cowering during the recession but continuing to look ahead at promising market niches that it can fill. The Legacy 650 is based on the ERJ-135 regional jet platform
but has new wings, Honeywell Primus Elite avionics and new 9,020-pound-thrust Rolls-Royce AE3007A2 engines.
Rolls-Royce received FAA certification of the AE3007A-1E turbofan, the powerplant for the Embraer ERJ-145XR. The XR, which is scheduled to enter service later this year, features a 2,000-nm range, or an increase of about 450 nm over the standard ERJ-145. The -1E provides 8,110 lb of thrust, some 686 lb more than the -1 on the standard ERJ-145.
On Sunday night a Brazilian air force Embraer EMB-145 ANEW&C landed at the Dubai airshow to make the type’s first appearance outside South America, at the start of Operação Guardião–a demonstration tour that will also take the aircraft to December’s LIMA show in Malaysia. The aircraft flew from Brazil with six stops along the way.
Embraer, which is already developing two new light jets, announced on the eve of the European Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition that starts tomorrow in Geneva, that it is breaking into the bizliner market with the launch of the Lineage 1000. The $40-million jet, derived from Embraer’s ERJ 190 regional airliner, is expected to enter service in 2008.