Tag Archives: C295

Recap: defense orders at Paris Air Show

UPDATED 19 June | As always its the orders for airliners that fight for attention at the Paris Air Show, but on the military side, things are happening as well. Most interesting little fact was the apparent first export order – announced on Monday – for the Pakistan-made JF-17 Thunder, although no country was mentioned. Let’s not be surprised however when it turns out to be Myanmar.

Pakistan Air Force officials only described the country that soon may add the JF-17 to its military inventory, as ‘Asian’. The same officials reported that current turmoil in the Middle East has slowed down export talks. The JF-17’s development meanwhile continues, with a possible two seat version on the way.

On the slower spectrum, Mali and Ghana agreed to buy six and five A-29 Super Tucano light attack aircraft respectively, while Saudi Arabia signed for four Airbus C295W medium transport and patrol aircraft. Perhaps the most prominent deal was the purchase of four Boeing C-17s for the Qatar Emiri Air Force.

As far as helicopters are concerned, Malaysia placed an order with Airbus Helicopters for two AS365 Dauphins for SAR duties.

Unnoticed by many was the first sale for Aero Vodochody of its new L-39NG aircraft. More on that is here.

Flying
Dassault’s Rafale was the most numerous aircraft. Three Rafales were on the ground, while a fourth gave a flying display. In the trade halls, models of Rafales in the colours of Qatar, India and Egypt were seen. Given the recent orders from those countries, further Rafale sales are unlikely.

Also in the halls, Alenia Aermacchi was pitching its M-345 jet trainer. France is reportedly interested in this trainer aircraft. Elsewhere, Antonov was pitching its new An178 transporter. The Ukrainian company also announced the An188, a military transport aircraft in the A400M and Boeing C-17 category, powered by four turbofan engines.

© 2015 Airheadsfly.com editor Elmer van Hest
Featured image (top): Caught by its tail: a Black Panther’s JF-17 from Pakistan. (Image © Dennis Spronk)

Indian Air Force buys 56 Airbus C295

Big decisions are made in New Delhi these days. Apart from a giant deal with Russian Helicopters, the Defence Acquisition Council said “yes” on Wednesday 13 May to the Airbus-TATA offer to replace the Hawker Siddeley 748 aircraft with the Airbus C295 medium airlifter.

A total of 56 Avro aircraft – licence-produced in the sixties by Hindustan Aeronautics (HAL) – are to be replaced. Sixteen of the aircraft will be bought directly from the former CASA – now Airbus – plant in Spain, while TATA Advanced Systems and the Indian Production Agency (IPA) will locally produce the other 40 twin-propeller aircraft under license.

The Airbus/TATA deal doesn’t come as a big surprise. Airheadsfly.com already announced the pitch in October 2014.

© 2015 Airheadsfly.com editor Marcel Burger
Featured image: One of the world’s air forces already flying the C295 is the one of Kazakh Air Force (Image © Airbus Military)

A Lion’s Effort into airborne photography

Czech, Hungarian and Swedish Saab JAS 39 Gripens fighters show themselves from every angle during exercise Lion Effort 2015 in the Czech Republic these days. In-flight pictures are a top priority for many. However, not all are aware of the effort and preparations that goes into air-to-air footage.

See here and here for more recent air-to-air footage on Airheadsfly.com.

The actual release of the camera shutter is the culmination of a complex process which eventually makes the day for some of the photographers who get the chance to zoom in on the Gripen flying over Čáslav airbase, where over two dozen Saab Gripens operate alongside each other for two weeks.

This photo shoot was attended by a total of five Gripen jets – one Czech and two Hungarian and Swedish each – as well as one Czech Air Force L-159 ALCA and a CASA C-295.

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(Image © Martin Král)
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(Image © Tomáš Soušek)
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(Image © Martin Král)

Preparing
Preparations begin long before the aircraft are launched. It takes a lot of coordination for the fighter pilots to join up with a Czech Air Force CASA C-295 transport aircraft from Prague-Kbely airbase, carrying the photographers and their equipment – on a space available basis.

Planning the mission involves a pilot briefing to decide which jets will be chosen for the photo session. Subsequently the choreography of the birds is coordinated with the photographers. Together with the pilots they arrange formations that allow unique and visually interesting aspects.

When everything is sorted out and agreed, the participants – jet and transport aircraft crews, the photographers – have to wait for their take off times and hope that the weather will hold.

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(Image © Martin Král)
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(Image © Martin Král)
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(Image © Rostislav Lukáš)

Safety
The top priority is always on the safety of all involved. Various other factors need to be taken into account such as the speed, positioning and altitude of the fighters and the photo platform. Therefore pilots have designed each passing manoeuvre and brought it to perfection – all pilots exactly know their role in the photo shoot.

Once airborne the CASA and Gripen pilots maintain radio contact permanently to handle any challenges that may occur. Everyone involved – the jet pilots and the transport aircraft crews as well as ground controllers and ground handling crews – did an excellent professional job. And as you can see for yourself, the results show.

Lion Effort continues until 23 May, when an airshow at  Čáslav celebrates the end of the exercise as well as ten years of flying the Gripen in the Czech Republic.

© 2015 Tomáš Maruščák
Featured image (top): Looking down on three Saab Gripens and the yellow rapeseed fields below. (Image © Martin Král)

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(Image © Tomáš Soušek)
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(Image © Tomáš Soušek)
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(Image © Martin Král)

Mexican Navy launch customer for C295W

The Mexican Navy (Marina) will be the first in the world with the Airbus C295W, the winglets version of the medium-size C295 tactical airlifter originally designed by CASA of Spain.

Thanks to the winglets, the C295W will be able to transport more payload to a longer distance with around a 4 percent fuel savings, according to Airbus even in hot and high conditions.

The Mexican Navy has specified the winglets for two C295s, for which the order was already announced, and winglets will be standard for all new C295s ordered from now on. The Fuerza AeroNaval operates four C295Ms. They fly with 4/to Escuadrón de Transporte based at Tapachula/Chis IAP.

Source: Airbus Defence & Space / Marina Mexicana
Featured Image: Impression of the C295W, in a unfortunately low resolution released by Airbus (Image © Airbus Defence & Space)

One of the Mexican Navy C295Ms, seen here in 2012 (Image © EM Company / Airbus Defence & Space)
One of the Mexican Navy C295Ms, seen here in 2012 (Image © EM Company / Airbus Defence & Space)

First C295 for Philippines Air Force

The Philippines Air Force has taken delivery of the first of three Airbus C295 medium transport aircraft ordered from Airbus Defence & Space. The aircraft was formally handed over in Seville, Spain, where the final assembly line is located. The aircraft has been ferried to the Philippines.

In Philippines Air Force service the C295 will play a key role in the modernization of the force´s transport fleet and will undertake a wide variety of military and humanitarian missions.

Source: Airbus Defence & Space
Featured image: The first C295 for the Philippine Air Force handed over on 18 March 2015 (Image © Airbus Defence & Space)