Embraer Responds to New Zealand RFI for Airlift, Surveillance Aircraft

By: Nigel Pittaway, November 17, 2016

 

MELBOURNE, Australia — Embraer has responded to a recent New Zealand request for information (RFI) for a Future Air Mobility Capability (FAMC), with an offer for five KC-390 multimission transport aircraft.

The KC-390 is under development against a contract for 28 aircraft to replace the Brazilian Air Force’s fleet of Lockheed C-130H Hercules, with first deliveries beginning in 2018. The Brazilian aircraft manufacturer said it also holds letters of intent, for a further 32 aircraft, from five different countries and is actively marketing the aircraft to potential customers in Europe, the Middle East and Latin America.

The New Zealand proposal marks the company’s first opportunity for the KC-390 in the Asia-Pacific region, and the bid is supported by Boeing defense products division under the terms of a teaming agreement announced at the Farnborough International Airshow in July.

The Royal New Zealand Air Force’s FAMC program seeks to acquire a fixed-wing transport capability to replace the country’s five C-130Hs and two Boeing 757s, either with two new aircraft or a single type able to meet essential requirements in both strategic and tactical airlift roles.

Delivery of the first aircraft is required by February 2020 and for initial operational capability (IOC) to follow in February 2021. Final operational capability (FOC) is required no later than February 2024. The first replacement aircraft for the 757 fleet is required to arrive in New Zealand before Feb. 1, 2025, and IOC declared by Feb. 1, 2026.

“We are very positive that we can provide the best solution for New Zealand for the mission requirements that they have presented to us (and) I think they are very interested in the KC-390. But we understand and respect that this is a competition and we will fulfill all the required steps of the process,” Embraer Defense & Security President and CEO Jackson Schneider said at the company’s corporate headquarters in São Paulo, Brazil, last week.

The KC-390, shown here, is under development against a contract for 28 aircraft to replace the Brazilian Air Force’s fleet of Lockheed C-130H Hercules, with first deliveries beginning in 2018. Photo Credit: Nigel Pittaway/Staff
“We are in advanced talks with New Zealand (but) we are not negotiating contracts at the present time. The process is advanced, but it is a competition and we’re not the only bidder,” he said.

Schneider said that the only other manufacturer with a product in the same class as the KC-390 currently in production is US giant Lockheed Martin, with the C-130J Super Hercules.

He also revealed that Embraer is negotiating with what he considers a global civil customer for the KC-390, which will be certified to US Federal Aviation Administration and European Aviation Safety Agency airworthiness requirements, but declined to provide specific details.

“There is one specific discussion with a global company for a fully civil application. It will not require too much customization for the specific mission that they are talking to us about,” he said.

Another senior Embraer executive also revealed that the manufacturer is considering the development of a maritime patrol version of its new E190-E2 commercial airliner at the invitation of the New Zealand government to meet a forthcoming RFI for a Future Air Surveillance Capability.

The RFI will canvas proposals to replace the Royal New Zealand Air Force’s recently updated Lockheed P-3K2 Orion maritime patrol aircraft in the mid-2020s, for an FOC planned sometime between 2023 and 2025.

Embraer Defense & Security’s commercial senior vice president, Fernando Ribeiro de Queiroz, said the company will develop a maritime patrol version of the 190-E2, the latest version of its successful commercial « E » jet family, if required by the customer, but he also suggested that a KC-390 configured for the maritime patrol role might provide greater synergy with the FAMC response if New Zealand’s requirements are not inflexible.

“We are responding to the maritime patrol requirement with the -E2, because the requirements that New Zealand has asked for fits better with that platform. But our proposal for the tender is that, if they are able to adjust some of the requirements a little bit, we are able to support it with the KC-390,” he said.

“For example New Zealand wants the airplane to achieve M0.82, but if this speed is not a strong requirement we can support them with the KC-390, which is capable of M0.80,” he added.

Embraer is proposing to modify the KC-390 with a 360-degree surface search radar installed in the nose, similar to the configuration offered to Canada in that country’s long-range search-and-rescue competition, together with a palletized maritime patrol mission system.

“A palletized mission system and radar equipment in the nose and other equipment would fulfill the requirements for maritime patrol, but it does not compromise the other missions that the aircraft is already capable of performing,” de Queiroz explained.

“You can take out the mission system and fly with cargo, passengers, medevac, etc., so it would be a single fleet with perhaps two aircraft capable of being configured for maritime patrol and five dedicated to air mobility. It is how we can show synergy between both projects, but at the same time we have a solution that is 100 percent dedicated to maritime patrol with the E190-E2.”

Source: defensenews.com

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Embraer concepts reveal work continues on all-new narrowbody airliner

By:   Stephen Trimble São Paulo

23 Aug 2012

Embraer is carefully preparing for a narrowbody airliner that could succeed a re-engined and possibly re-winged E-Jet family sometime after 2025.

Early concepts showing a new airliner with high-aspect ratio wings and ultra-high-bypass ratio engines mounted over the aft fuselage between a noise-shielding split-tail were revealed by Embraer in a presentation at LABACE in mid-August.

However, the new configurations are likely only initial designs. Antonini Puppin Macedo, a conceptual aircraft designer for Embraer, calls them « very preliminary ».

But they offer a window into Embraer’s ongoing effort to prepare to defend its hard-won turf in the commercial aircraft sector against new competitors from China, India, Japan and Russia.

Embraer had been close to launching a new narrowbody airliner until last November, but then took a step back to avoid challenging the re-engined and upgraded Boeing 737-7 Max and Airbus A319neo in the 130-seat class.

Embraer instead decided to re-engine its current E-Jet family that occupies the market segment just below the 120-seat threshold, with entry-into-service scheduled no later than 2018.

But it is clear that decision only postponed Embraer’s goal to eventually field an all-new narrowbody aimed at the 130-seat market provided that Airbus and Boeing vacate the segment, with their all-new narrowbodies in the future ranging between 150-220 seats.

Macedo’s presentation revealed that Embraer is steadily and deliberately working on the technologies that will be necessary to compete for orders in a market segment that has been dominated by the Airbus-Boeing duopoly for 25 years.

The presentation showed pictures of new laboratories managed jointly by Embraer and Brazilian universities. One slide showed an image of a laboratory focused on developing manufacturing techniques for low-weight composite materials. Another slide revealed a facility aimed at developing automated drilling systems for a complete fuselage barrel.

Macedo also described Embraer’s methodical development of fly-by-wire technology, which is typical of the airframer’s strategy to make incremental advances with every new product.

Embraer first developed a rudimentary fly-by-wire system with Aeritalia (now AleniaAermacchi) for the AMX fighter-trainer. The next system that appeared on the 170 airliner was a partial, open-loop fly-by-wire governing pitch and yaw but not roll, as the ailerons are controlled by a hydro-mechanical system.

With the Legacy 500, Embraer is integrating – with acknowledged difficulties – a closed-loop, three-axis fly-by-wire system for the first time. However, the system on the Legacy 500 and its sister 450 aircraft, developed by Parker Aerospace, could be the last time Embraer outsources the system. The KC-390 airlifter offers Embraer an opportunity to develop its own software for the flight control computer, which translates the sidestick inputs to the control surfaces and monitors the feedback.

By the time Embraer unveils an all-new commercial aircraft, it will have steadily matured an almost entirely in-house capacity to design and integrate a fly-by-wire control system.

Meanwhile, Embraer has steadily increased its usage of composites to now include all primary control surfaces and the fuel-carrying sponson of the KC-390. Embraer also is building a composite manufacturing facility in Evora, Portugal. « When it comes to the point of using these technologies, it’s all linked, » says Mauro Kern, executive vice-president for engineering and technology. « There’s consistency to what’s being developed in [the research and technology portfolio] to what’s being used in the next programmes, » Kern says.

Embraer’s strategy is shaped by developing performance improvements and new technologies that reduce the cost of operating the next generation of commercial aircraft, especially in terms of fuel cost. Each year, a technology roadmap with a 10- to 15-year horizon is reviewed and updated, Kern says.

« We have today 40 – a little over 40 – different [research and technology] projects going on here in several different areas – cabin comfort and biofuels, for example, » he explains. « We understand that in some areas we are maybe at the forefront of the technology already. In others, we are lagging behind, so we need to catch up. »

Source: Flight International

Honda out to shake up market with first jet next year

By Chang-Ran Kim

TOKYO | Mon Jan 30, 2012

(Reuters) – Honda Motor Co (7267.T) expects to grab at least a quarter of the world market for small business jets soon after delivering its first aircraft next year, achieving the company’s long-standing goal of taking to the skies, an executive said.

Honda, Japan’s No.3 car maker and the world’s biggest manufacturer of motorcycles and engines, is in the final stages of getting its $4.5 million HondaJet certified. It aims to ramp up the pace of production to 80 a year in the first half of 2013.

Honda received more than 100 orders for the seven-seater jet in three days when it began taking orders in 2006, promising a quieter engine, 20 percent better fuel economy over competing models and operational costs of two-thirds or less.

It has not disclosed an updated number of orders, but Michimasa Fujino, a Honda executive and CEO of its North Carolina-based subsidiary, Honda Aircraft Company, said it held a backlog of about three years from orders taken through its nine dealerships in North America and Europe.

« I’m very optimistic about our prospects, » Fujino, who initiated Honda’s foray into aviation research in 1986, told a small group of reporters at the automaker’s Tokyo headquarters on Monday.

« We’re doing with HondaJet what the Civic did to American cars from the 1960s. Our competitors are still producing with technology from the 1990s, » he said, referring to Textron Inc’s (TXT.N) Cessna and Brazil’s Embraer SA (EMBR3.SA), which now dominate the 200-a-year small business jet market.

The Civic, known for its reliability, durability and mileage, has consistently been among the United States’ best-selling cars since its launch in 1973, forcing industry giants such as General Motors Co (GM.N) to follow suit with cars to meet the country’s tighter emissions regulations.

Honda’s ambition of making jets traces back to its iconic founder, Soichiro Honda. The HondaJet will make Honda the only car maker in the world to build its own aircraft.

Its engine is made by a joint venture between Honda and General Electric Co (GE.N).

Honda Aircraft is aiming to turn a profit by 2018, Fujino said.

BRAZIL, CHINA CLAMOURING FOR JETS

The business jet industry is expecting a rebound in sales this year after the global economic crisis hammered sales over the past three years.

While the small business jet market has traditionally been limited to North America and Europe so far, Fujino said he was fielding about a call a week from China, both from prospective buyers and eager dealers, while interest was also greater than he anticipated in Brazil, India and the Middle East.

« Right now we want to focus on delivering on the orders that we have, but I’d like to enter Brazil and China earlier than we’d initially planned, » he said, declining to specify a timeframe. New demand from emerging markets could expand the global small-jet market to about 300 a year, he said.

Fujino said he was also seeing more interest in the smallest end of the market as medium-sized jet users look to downsize to get more for their fuel, much like the trend in the car industry.

« Most of our customers are owners of small- and medium-sized businesses, and many are looking to get the most out of the jets that they need, » he said.

With operational costs of about $1,000-$1,200 an hour, HondaJet could make travelling in a group of five or six cheaper and more efficient than flying commercially between small cities, he said. Competitors offer at best $1,800 by comparison, he added.

Honda Aircraft will add 300-350 factory staff to bring its total workforce to around 1,000 in the first half of 2013, Fujino said.

(Editing by Edwina Gibbs)

Source: Reuters

Argentina aerospace firm delivers first project

26.07.2011

One year after its revival, Argentina’s state-owned aerospace manufacturer has announced delivery of its first major project to the national air force. On 8 July, Fabrica Argentina de Aviones (FAdeA) handed over an IA-58 Pucura counter-insurgency aircraft with a new set of maintenance upgrades.

It is the first step in a series of moves to upgrade the maintenance, communications, navigation and engines for the IA-58 fleet, which is entering its fifth decade of service.

The project is also the first step in the government’s attempted revival of a domestic aerospace industry. The IA-58 work re-establishes core operations of FAdeA, along with a similar programme involving the IA-63 trainer fleet.

Beyond those projects there are plans to further strengthen FAdeA and the company has launched development of a new jet trainer with Chile the IA-73.

Argentina has also committed to join the Embraer KC-390 twin-jet airlifter programme. The arrangement includes a deal allowing FAdeA to supply spoilers, flap fairings, tail cone, and electronic cabinet and doors for the nose landing gear and ramp for all KC-390s.

FAdeA was revived after the Argentinian government re-nationalised the company after a 15-year ownership by Lockheed Martin. The company traces its roots to 1927, when the former Fabrica Militar de Aviones began building European aircraft under licence.

Source: Flight International

Embraer Selects Messier-Bugatti-Dowty for KC-390 Military Transport Jet

SÃO JOSÉ DOS CAMPOS, Brazil — Embraer Defense and Security has announced today, at an event during the 49th Paris Air Show, in France, the selection of Messier-Bugatti-Dowty to supply the wheels, brakes, landing gear extension and retraction system, and nose wheel steering manifold for the KC-390 military transport aircraft.

« The choice of Messier-Bugatti-Dowty will provide the necessary toughness to meet the demanding requirements of the KC-390 applications, » said Eduardo Bonini Santos Pinto, Sr. Vice President Operations and COO, Embraer Defense and Security. « The experience of this company, together with the highly integrated development process with Embraer, will result in the best solution, in terms of operations and maintenance costs, thus contributing to making the KC-390 highly competitive. »

The system consists of carbon brakes, electronic brake-by-wire units and the hydraulic components responsible for controlling the braking of the aircraft, including auto-brakes and anti-skid. The items supplied also include aluminum wheels for the main and auxiliary landing gears, the nose wheel steering manifold and the hydraulic components for extending and retracting the landing gears.

« We are delighted to start a new partnership with Embraer in this innovative and ambitious aircraft program, and to contribute systems and equipment that will lower the total life cycle cost and increase the dispatch reliability of the KC-390, » said Messier-Bugatti-Dowty Chairman and CEO Alain Sauret.

Pour EADS, il y a trop de constructeurs d’avions

Pour Louis Gallois, le président exécutif de la maison-mère d’Airbus, des rapprochements entre avionneurs sont inévitables.

Cela revient si souvent dans la bouche de Louis Gallois que cela semble cacher quelque chose. Dans une interview publiée vendredi par le quotidien espagnol Expansion, le président exécutif d’EADS a une nouvelle fois estimé que des alliances entre avionneurs devront forcément se nouer. « La demande ne sera pas suffisante pour tout le monde et cela obligera à former des alliances. La concurrence entre ces géants pour sceller des accords stratégiques sera encore plus rude et plus agressive que le concurrence sur la vente de leurs produits », explique-t-il.

En effet, alors qu’il n’y a qu’Airbus et Boeing aujourd’hui sur le marché des avions moyen-courriers, il y en aura six d’ici à la fin de la décennie avec les projets chinois (C919) et russe (MS 21) prévus en 2016, ceux du canadien Bombardier et peut- être brésilien avec Embraer. Au regard des coûts de développement de ces programmes, le marché aura effectivement du mal à justifier autant d’acteurs sur ce marché des avions de 110 à 220 sièges qui représente 70 % des livraisons d’avions.

Cela permettrait en particulier d’éviter que ces nouveaux acteurs à coûts réduits, chamboulent le secteur aéronautique avec des avions moins chers comme les low-cost l’ont fait dans le transport aérien.

Source : La Tribune.fr – 29/04/2011

Embraer Defense and Security Decides on Avionics of KC-390 Jet

SÃO JOSÉ DOS CAMPOS, Brazil — Embraer Defense and Security has selected the Pro Line Fusion avionics system, manufactured by Rockwell Collins, to equip the KC-390 military transport aircraft.

“Embraer has chosen the best solution in latest-generation avionics available on the market, which will provide greater operational efficiency for the KC-390. The already solid commercial and technical relationship between Embraer and Rockwell Collins will be further strengthened by this new partnership in the defense and security area,” said Eduardo Bonini Santos Pinto, COO, Embraer Defense and Security.

“Embraer’s selection of our integrated avionics system will provide pilots with the most advanced commercial avionics capability, ruggedized to meet military mission requirements,” said Dave Nieuwsma, Vice President and General Manager of Mobility and Rotary Wing Solutions for Rockwell Collins. “Pilots will benefit from the enhanced situational awareness and reduced workload to achieve mission success.”

The Pro Line Fusion by Rockwell Collins brings to the KC-390 the most modern avionics available, meets current and future needs of the aircraft and complies with the most recent Communication, Navigation and Surveillance for Air Traffic Management (CNS/ATM) requirements, with an advanced man-machine interface, automatic reconfiguration capability in case of damage, and high-capacity data exchange bus.

The beginning of flight tests of the KC-390 with the new avionics is expected for 2014 and the aircraft should go into service at the end of 2015.

Rockwell Collins is a pioneer in developing and putting into service innovative solutions for communications and embedded electronics for application in the commercial and government markets. Rockwell Collins’ expertise in avionics and cabin electronics, mission communications, information management, simulation and training is accomplished by 20,000 employees and a services and support network in 27 countries.

Embraer, Elbit subsidiary enter UAV market

QADIMA, Israel, April 14 (UPI) — Brazil’s Embraer Defense and Security division and AEL Sistemas, a subsidiary of Israel’s Elbit Systems, are partnering for the UAV market in Latin America.

Defense Update, an Israeli publication, said the two companies have yet to define the specific programs to be pursued, but officials from the two companies said a main goal of the partnering agreement is expanding joint activities in the area of unmanned aircraft systems, including the anticipated creation of a jointly owned company.

One of the primary goals of the joint venture would be to promote the introduction and use of Elbit Systems’ Hermes 450 UAV in the service of the Brazilian air force.

« This cooperation with Embraer will leverage new business opportunities and enhance Brazilian know-how in the development and manufacture of unmanned systems, offering latest generation technology in order to meet the specific demands and needs of our country, » said Shlomo Erez, director general of AEL.

« The agreement foresees the evaluation of joint activities in marketing, development, systems integration, manufacturing and support of UAS, as well as in simulators and activities for the modernization of avionics systems, and the anticipated participation of Embraer Defesa e Seguranca in the capital of AEL. »

Embraer also announced a cooperative agreement with Brazil-based UAV specialist company Santos Lab. The agreement is aimed at establishing foothold in the area of small UAVs

Source : UPI

Israeli arms firms target Latin America

TEL AVIV, Israel, April 25 (UPI) — Elbit Systems, one of Israel’s leading defense companies, has won an $85 million contract to upgrade 11 Brazilian air force F-5 fighter-bombers as well as a joint venture with plane maker Embraer to build Israeli-designed unmanned aerial vehicles.

The deals, signed at the Latin American Aerospace and Defense Exhibition LAAS 2011 this month in Rio de Janeiro, underline the Israeli defense industry’s new focus on opening up the Latin American arms market.

Elbit didn’t disclose the value of the contract between its Brazilian subsidiary, AEL Sistemas, and Embraer Defense and Security but the deal to develop, manufacture and market Elbit’s Hermes 450 UAV is expected to catapult the Israeli outfit into the regional defense market.

Even before that deal, Elbit had made its mark in Brazil, secured two large defense contracts, including one in January 2010 to supply Hermes 450 surveillance drones to the Brazilian air force.

The Israeli business daily Globes reported that Embraer has a long-standing relationship with AEL, which supplies the avionics for Embraer’s EMB-312 Super Tucano light attack/advanced trainer aircraft and for the F-5M jets Embraer is upgrading for the Brazilian air force.

« We woke up late to globalization and there’s now a need to close gaps and even get ahead of competitors, » declared Itzhak Nissan, chief executive officer of Israel Aerospace Industries, state-owned flagship of Israel’s defense industry.

« We can do this thanks to our portfolio of products in various fields, including satellites, UAVs, missiles and planes. »

IAI unveiled its new intelligence-gathering and observation vehicle, which can travel across difficult terrain, at the Brazilian expo. The vehicle was jointly developed by IAI subsidiary Elta and Brazil’s Tac Motors.

Another Israeli defense major, Rafael Advanced Defense Systems was also at LAAD 2011 and its main display was its Tamir interceptor missile used in the Iran Dome air-defense system. Iron Dome made its combat debut against Hamas rockets unleashed on southern Israel in March.

In recent years, Latin America has emerged as a major defense spender, the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, which monitors global defense spending, reported in a recent study.

The increase in Latin American defense expenditure in real terms was 5.8 percent in 2010, compared to 5.2 percent for Africa, 2.8 percent for North America and 2.5 percent for the Middle East.

SIPRI said this was due to the strong economic growth Latin America, particularly Brazil and Chile, has experienced in recent years, even though there are no major conflicts in the region.

Globes reported April 7 that Israel’s military exports in 2010 exceeded $7.3 billion, according to provisional figures from defense companies.

That’s expected to hit $7.4 billion when the final tally is completed, equaling the all-time high recorded in 2009, Defense Ministry officials said.

Israel’s military exports have been rising steadily over the last five years. But Defense Ministry officials caution that trend is likely to be reversed in the years ahead because of stiff defense budget cutbacks in Europe and other factors.

So the increased focus on Latin America is intended to compensate for the anticipated downturn in exports.

Nissan of IAI observed that Brazil in particular has opened for Israel because of « new understandings. »

In 2010, Brazil signed a confidentiality agreement with Israel guaranteeing that it won’t transfer classified technology to third parties. That opened the door for Israeli companies to offer some of their most advanced systems.

« The new understandings … will enable Israeli companies to offer products which were previously forbidden, » Nissan said.

« Whereas for years, business ties amounted to sales of specific, unclassified technologies, Israeli industry can now offer a much broader range of products to Brazil, creating a real dimension of worthwhile contracts with this market. »

Israeli defense firms, many of them state-owned, and private security companies have been dealing with Central and South America since the 1970s. Some of these firms have maintained sales of around $500 million annually to Brazil, The Jerusalem Post reported.

In May 2010, IAI won a $350 million contract to supply Brazil’s federal police force with long-range Heron unmanned aerial vehicles. IAI has a $150 million contract, signed in late 2007, to upgrade the Colombian air force’s 24 IAI-built Kfir fighter jets and supply additional aircraft.

Source : UPI

India Likely To Award Trainer Contract In Q3

Apr 25, 2011

By Jay Menon

NEW DELHI — India is poised to shortlist a manufacturer to provide much-needed basic trainer aircraft.

The contenders — Grob’s G-120 TP, Embraer’s EMB-312 Super Tucano, Korea Aerospace Industries’ KT-1, Finmeccanica’s M-311 and Pilatus’ PC-7 — emerged following a request for proposals issued in early 2010. The deal is estimated to cost $1 billion.

“The flight trials [of the competitors] have been completed and we are assessing the evaluation made by the Indian air force,” an Indian defense ministry official says. “We expect to award a contract in the third quarter of 2011 and the [deliveries] are expected to commence some time [in] 2012.”

India is seeking to procure 75 aircraft off the shelf, with 106 to be built by Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd. (HAL) under a joint venture agreement.

The selected manufacturer will be required to deliver an initial batch of 12 aircraft within two years of signing the contract. The project is aimed at replacing HAL’s HPT-32 Deepak aircraft, which were grounded following several crashes due to technical glitches.

“We are in urgent need of trainer jets for our pilots,” the official says. The air force has been without a basic trainer jet since July 2009.

India’s arms build-up has been hampered by a series of delayed or canceled deals. Analysts say that a delay in awarding the contract for basic trainers could deflate profits for both the bidders as well as the prime domestic recipients of offset work.

Under defense ministry procurement procedures, original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) that win Indian contracts must support the Indian industrial base by purchasing defense goods and services locally, as well as other direct and indirect investments in defense manufacturing and R&D infrastructure. Offset levels begin at 30% of the contract value and may be higher in certain cases.

The addition of Hawk 132 Advanced Jet Trainers and Intermediate Jet Trainers also is part of the air force’s flight training modernization. Last July, BAE Systems and Rolls-Royce signed an agreement valued at ₤700 million ($1.1 billion) to supply Hawk trainers to India.

The deal for 57 aircraft was signed with HAL at the company’s headquarters in Bengaluru during the visit of British Prime Minister David Cameron. The order is valued at more than ₤500 million for BAE and as much as ₤200 million for Rolls-Royce.

An earlier order for 66 BAE trainers took two decades to negotiate and was hampered by a lack of parts. The deal was finally signed in 2004, and 24 of these airplanes were completed in December 2009. Of the remaining 42 to be built by HAL, 10 have been delivered, and the entire batch is expected to be completed by 2012.

Source : AviationWeek.com