An Italian Air Force KC-767 during a mission over Iceland (Image © Cpt. Jiri Cermak / Czech Air Force)

Italian airlift and tankers join European Air Transport

Italy became the seventh nation to join the European Air Transport Command on 5 December 2014. The EATC is a pool of airlift and air tankers that makes it possible for the partners to easily use available resources for their military operations. Target is to make the most use of all available aircraft contributed.

With the addition of the Aeronautica Militare’s transport and in-flight refuelling fleet, the EATC partners gain Boeing KC-767s, Lockheed C-130J Hercules’s and Alenia Aermacchi C-27J Super Spartans. The Italian aircraft join Airbuses, Hercules’s, A400Ms, Transalls, Falcon jets, Embraers, KDC-10s and more exotic planes.

Headquartered at Eindhoven Airbase in the Netherlands Belgium, Germany, France, Luxemburg, the Netherlands were the first partners in the EATC, with Spain joining the training, planning and ops co-operation last Summer. All aircraft operate from their normal bases in their own countries, while those nations combined contributed 200 personnel to the EATC HQ at Eindhoven.

Among the recent results of the EATC was the airlift of emergency and military hardware to Northern Iraq and the pick-up of the flight recorders of Malaysian Airlines Boeing 777 MH17 that was shot down over Eastern Ukraine.

Source: Koninklijke Luchtmacht / EATC

The Alenia C-27J Spartan tactical transport aircraft (Image © Marcel Burger)
The Alenia Aermacchi C-27J Spartan tactical transport aircraft (Image © Marcel Burger)

An Italian Air Force KC-767 during a mission over Iceland (Image © Cpt. Jiri Cermak / Czech Air Force)
An Italian Air Force KC-767 during a mission over Iceland (Image © Cpt. Jiri Cermak / Czech Air Force)