Tag Archives: Peruvian Air Force

Peru in talks to triple C-27J fleet

The Peruvian Air Force has plans to triple the size of its Alenia Aermacchi C-27J Spartan fleet. According to the Italian aircraft manufacturer’s mother company talks are ongoing for the possible purchase of 6 to 8 additional tactical airlifters of the type.

The first Peruvian Spartan at the Alenia Aermacchi facility in Turin, Italy. (Image © Alenia Aermacchi)
RELATED POST: AHF↑Inside: Spectacular Spartan for Peru

The Latin American country ordered four C-27Js already, the first and second of which were delivered this year. The third is expected to arrive before the end of the year. Apparently Peru is very happy with the aircraft’s performance and capabilities and is therefore looking for more. The news about the talks was broken by CEO Mauro Moretti of Finmeccanica, the mother company of Alenia Aermacchi.

Las Palmas Airbase near the Peruvian capital Lima saw introduction of the first new aircraft on 27 March 2015, with the C-27Js tasked to perform passenger and cargo transport, humanitarian operations, fire-fighting, medevac, airdrops and search and rescue missions.

An Alenia Aermacchi spokesperson on Friday 30 October confirmed talks are being held, but formal negotiations have still to start. The Italian company cannot confirm the number of aircraft Peru would likely order, but it is no secret the country in the past talked about a requirement of 12 Spartans.

Meanwhile Alenia Aermacchi is “pimping” its C-27J to a even better standard. Airheadsfly.com visited the C-27J production line in Italy and saw the Peruvian C-27J with our own eyes.

© 2015 Airheadsfly.com editor Marcel Burger
Featured image: Image released on 28 November 2014 of the construction of the first two C-27J for the Peruvian Air Force, manufactured by Alenia Aermacchi (Image © Oficina de Prensa del Ministerio de Defensa)

AHF↑Inside: Spectacular Spartan for Peru

Look up ‘Spartan’ in a dictionary, and you’ll see the word means a) ‘of or relating to the Greek city of Sparta or its people’, b) ‘rigorously self-disciplined or self-restrained’, or finally c) ‘courageous in the face of pain or danger’. That sounds about right for the Alenia Aermacchi C-27J Spartan, that saw its first delivery to Peru last week. However, the multi-mission, benchmark-setting C-27J is not from an ancient Greek city, it is from modern day Turin in Italy, where a visit to the Alenia Aermacchi production line proves that putting together a tough Spartan is actually a delicate and dedicated task.

To be specific, the birth place of all 65 Spartans built to date, is a large assembly hall in the northwest corner of Turin Caselle airport. “And to be even more specific”, says Francesco Dogliatti, C-27J product coordinator, “major components such as the fuselage, cockpit and rear fuselage are built in Capodichino near Naples, after which they are brought by truck or by boat to Turin, where all comes together. Here, we build the best and most cost effective solution for tactical airlift and other missions.”

The C-27J production line at Turin Caselle airport. (Image © Dennis Spronk)
The C-27J production line at Turin Caselle airport. (Image © Dennis Spronk)

Order sheet
It’s talk that sounded like music in the ears of Italy, Greece, Bulgaria, Lithuania, Rumania, Chad, Morocco, the US, Mexico, Australia and Peru. Slovakia is the latest in the list of customers, confirming an order for two aircraft in October last year. In total, the order sheet for the C-27J Spartans shows 80 entries so far. Among those are aircraft that were purchased by the US Air Force, but eventually see use by the US Coast Guard and United States Special Operations Command (USSOCOM).

(Image © Dennis Spronk)
The flags in the background represent all customers so far. (Image © Dennis Spronk)
(Image © Dennis Spronk)
Quality is key in every stage of the build process. (Image © Dennis Spronk)

Flexible
Alenia Aermacchi is confident it will sell more Spartans, with interest drawn from other Latin American countries than Peru. Dogliatti: “The strength of this aircraft is its flexibility. In standard configuration, it can transport up to 60 troops or up to 11,100 kg of payload. In a medevac role, it takes up to 36 stretchers and six attendants.” It offers the capability to fly into places that are unfit for ‘that other’  transport aircraft named after Greek mythology, the Lockheed C-130 Hercules. While the Hercules carries more load, the Spartan is certainly more flexible and not Spartan at all in its performance. The Spartan is a known airshow crowd pleaser, with barrel rolls unthinkable for any other aircraft this size. For the large part, its two Rolls Royce AE 2100D2 engines are key, as there’s plenty of power in those.

Kits
A range of roll-on/roll-off mission kits adds to the Spartan’s flexibility, with even a forest fire fighting kit available. Most impressive kit is the one that turns the C-27J into the combat MC-27J Praetorian, complete with a L-3 Wescam MX-15Di Electro-Optical and Infrared Turret mounted under the nose to support gunship, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) and search and rescue (SAR) missions. The ATK GAU-23 30mm gun sticking out of the fuselage will convince anyone not to mess with the Praetorian. Tests in the US proved successful in 2014, and Alenia Aermacchi has high hopes as well for selling the MC-27J.

(Image © Dennis Spronk)
A company demonstrator outfitted as a MC-27J Praetorian. (Image © Dennis Spronk)
(Image © Dennis Spronk)
The second company demonstrator was in maintenance during Airheadsfly.com’s visit.(Image © Dennis Spronk)

New things
More developments are on the way,  details about which remain a company secret right now. “We’re trying out some new things on our two C-27J demonstrators”, says Dogliatti, who oversees the Spartan program. During Airheadsfly.com’s visit to Turin in February, production was in full swing with C-27Js in various stages of the build process. Alenia Aermacchi is currently producing aircraft for Peru and Australia. The ‘Down Under’ aircraft are first flown to the US, where further modifications and flight training for Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) crews are done.

Engine run of the first RAAF C-27J Spartan A34-001 (Image © Alenia Aermacchi)
Engine run of the first RAAF C-27J Spartan A34-001 (Image © Alenia Aermacchi)

Quality
Alenia Aermacchi focuses on giving these crews a top notch product in every sense. “We strive for daily perfection. One specialist is dedicated every day to quality control, randomly choosing one aircraft on the production line and monitoring just about everything, from the installation of a complete vertical tail to the fitting of the tiniest screw. It’s a very delicate task.”

But it doesn’t stop there. Once the aircraft leaves the production hall, it heads to the south side of Turin Caselle, where extensive testing takes places in the hands of Alenia Aermacchi test pilots and customer personnel. Every single switch and functionality is tested in the Spartan’s NVG-adaptable cockpit, which was purposely designed to show commonality with the C-130 flight deck, to ease conversion training. After these tests, it’s time to fly the Spartan.

When accepting their first of four Spartans on 27 February 2015 in Turin, Peruvian officials said that the aircraft ‘exceeded expectations’. To the Alenia Aermacchi workers, it’s no surprise. The Peruvians then took their brand new aircraft for a long flight over Italy, in preparation for the even longer delivery flight to its new home. The Fuerza Aerea del Perù is welcoming the spectacular Spartan.

© 2015 Airheadsfly.com editor Elmer van Hest
Featured image (top): A Fuerza Aerea del Perù Spartan. (Image © Alenia Aermacchi)

Image released on 28 November of the construction of the first two C-27J for the Peruvian Air Force, manufactured by Alenia Aermacchi (Image © Oficina de Prensa del Ministerio de Defensa)
Under construction: one of four C-27J Spartans for the Peruvian Air Force. (Image © Oficina de Prensa del Ministerio de Defensa)
(Image © Dennis Spronk)
Work being done over and under the wing….(Image © Dennis Spronk)
(Image © Dennis Spronk)
… and work being done on the nose gear. (Image © Dennis Spronk)
(Image © Dennis Spronk)
In fact, work is being done all over this brand new Spartan. (Image © Dennis Spronk)

The Spartan becomes Peruvian

The first two C-27J Spartan tactical transport aircraft for the Air Force of Peru are steadily showing more of their beauty at the Alenia Aermacchi plant in Italy, according to pictures released by the Peruvian Ministry of Defence on 28 November 2014.

> See our entire C-27 coverage

The Fuerza Aérea del Perú (FAP) has a total requirement of twelve aircraft, with the first quartet already in the books. The C-27Js are the core pieces of the modernisation of the Latin America country’s airlift capabilities. Lima will deploy the planes throughout the country, where they will operate in coastal, mountain and forest areas, each being able to move twice the load of the Antonov An-32B of which currently five are on strength with the FAP while being able to operate from smaller airstrips than the pair of Lockheed C-130 Hercules aircraft still operational.

The two first pair of Peruvian Air Force C-27Js are scheduled to arrive between March and April 2015.

© 2014 Airheadsfly.com editor Marcel Burger, based on source information provided by the Oficina de Prensa del Ministerio de Defensa

Image released on 28 November of the construction of the first two C-27J for the Peruvian Air Force, manufactured by Alenia Aermacchi (Image © Oficina de Prensa del Ministerio de Defensa)
Image released on 28 November of the construction of the first two C-27J for the Peruvian Air Force, manufactured by Alenia Aermacchi (Image © Oficina de Prensa del Ministerio de Defensa)
Image released on 28 November of the construction of the first two C-27J for the Peruvian Air Force, manufactured by Alenia Aermacchi (Image © Oficina de Prensa del Ministerio de Defensa)
Image released on 28 November of the construction of the first two C-27J for the Peruvian Air Force, manufactured by Alenia Aermacchi (Image © Oficina de Prensa del Ministerio de Defensa)
Image released on 28 November of the construction of the first two C-27J for the Peruvian Air Force, manufactured by Alenia Aermacchi (Image © Oficina de Prensa del Ministerio de Defensa)
Image released on 28 November of the construction of the first two C-27J for the Peruvian Air Force, manufactured by Alenia Aermacchi (Image © Oficina de Prensa del Ministerio de Defensa)

Peru selects C-27J Spartan

Peru has selected the C-27J Spartan as its new tactical airlifter. Two aircraft of the type have been ordered for a price of about 100 million euro with Italian manufacturer Alenia Aermacchi. The contract was confirmed on 18 December 2013.

The Fuerza Aerea del Perù (Peruvian Air Force) will have a great asset when the aircraft have been delivered, with the C-27J being able to carry an substantial cargo, passenger or troop load and being able to operate from relatively short landing strips in relative difficult terrain. The C-27J is commonly considered the better option for those kind of circumstances than the bigger Lockheed C-130 Hercules.

The C-27J already had an operational run in Peru, performing a variety of missions including transport of civilians, troops, materials and medicines, logistical re-supply, MEDEVAC, airdrop operations, search and rescue (SAR), humanitarian assistance and operations in support of homeland security and Civil Protection, with the capability to operate on a large number of airfields where its competitor is unable to land.

The Spartan has already been ordered by the air forces of Italy, Greece, Bulgaria, Lithuania, Romania, Morocco, Mexico and Australia. Including a yet to name African country and the US Special Operations Command the Peruvian deal will bring the total order number to 74 aircraft. Alenia Aermacchi is currently in negotiations with Slovakia to strike a similar deal.

Source: Alenia Aermacchi

The C-27J in action  (Image © Alenia Aermacchi)
The C-27J in action (Image © Alenia Aermacchi)