Embraer will deliver two KC-390 medium-lift transport aircraft to the Brazilian Air Force in 2018.
As two prototypes advance through the flight testing campaign, the first production aircraft is already being assembled at the Embraer facility in Gavião Peixoto, Sao Paolo state, the air force said in a press release Monday.
"It is a very important project, and it is in the final stages of development. We need to already have the aircraft operating in our units from the middle of next year," says the Air Force Commander, Lt. Gen. Nivaldo Luiz Rossato.
The 28 aircraft on order will replace the C-130 Hercules fleet operated by the FAB since 1964. The new aircraft will perform missions such as operations on small runways in the Amazon, dropping paratroopers, in-flight refueling, landing in Antarctica and air-dropping cargo in flight, among others.
"The KC-390 will be the backbone of the Brazilian Air Force's transport aviation. From the Amazon to the Antarctic, the fleet of 28 aircraft will play a fundamental role for the most diverse projects of the Brazilian state, from scientific research to the maintenance of sovereignty," explains the Commander of the Air Force. "The importance of the KC-390 is explained not only by the ability to export and generate wealth, but the creation of 8,500 jobs," says Lieutenant-Gen. Rossato.