Alenia Aeronautica and AERO Vodochody Announce Partnership for the C-27J Transport Aircraft Programme
(Source: Alenia Aeronautica; issued Sept. 5, 2006)
BRNO, Czech Republic –-- Italy’s Alenia Aeronautica and AERO Vodochody a.s. (AERO), today signed a contract under which AERO will become a partner in Alenia Aeronautica’s C-27J latest generation transport aircraft programme and will manufacture and supply centre wing boxes for the C-27J Spartan.

The centre wing box is a highly complex part of the aircraft that secures the wings to the fuselage. In addition to the centre wing box production, AERO Vodochody’s participation in the C-27J programme will include responsibility for the equipment installed and final tests.

The partnership between Alenia Aeronautica and AERO Vodochody will extend from the manufacturing aspects to promotion of the aircraft abroad. The Czech company will contribute to the C-27J’s marketing in potential export markets and, therefore, will have the opportunity to expand its own contacts, with advantages for its own business. This means that AERO Vodochody is a key participant to the programme, going well beyond the role of a supplier.

The C-27J is the only aircraft of its category specifically designed as a tactical transport aircraft. The aircraft’s operational characteristics ensure unique short take-off and landing performances, from paved and unpaved surfaces; full self deployment operations thanks to its Auxiliary Power Unit; full interoperability with other aircraft in service with NATO Air Forces due to the strong and large cargo compartment that can accommodate NATO-standard pallets, and to the state-of-the art avionic and self-protection systems, in order to operate in the most difficult operational scenarios.

In the Czech Republic, the C-27J is currently under evaluation by the Czech Air Force for tasks that include transport support for Czech troops serving on peace keeping missions.

The aircraft has to date been ordered by the Italian Air Force (12 aircraft), the Greek Air Force (12 aircraft, plus 3 options), the Bulgarian Armed Forces (8 aircraft) and by the Lithuania Air Force (3 aircraft).

In the United States, the C-27J is a contender in Joint Cargo Aircraft programme (JCA), for the renewal of the US Army and US Air Force transport aircraft fleets. In Canada it is proposed for the renewal of the Search and Rescue aircraft fleet. The C-27J is also under evaluation by Ireland, United Arab Emirates and by new NATO member states, including Romania and Slovakia.


BACKGROUND NOTES:

Alenia Aeronautica, a Finmeccanica company, is the largest Italian aerospace company with worldwide operations in commercial and military aviation, unmanned aerial vehicles and aerostructures. Alenia Aeronautica also coordinates the activities of its wholly-owned companies Alenia Aermacchi and Alenia Aeronavali, respectively active in the design and manufacturing of military trainer aircraft and in the overhaul, maintenance and modification of military and civil aircraft. With its joint venture ATR, Alenia Aeronautica is the world leader in the regional turboprop market. In 2005 Alenia Aeronautica reported revenues of 2,046 million Euro. In the same year, Alenia Aeronautica secured new orders valued at 3,230 million Euro to give a total order backlog valued at 6,865 millions Euro. The total workforce is 11,198.


AERO Vodochody a.s. is the largest Czech defence company and the largest Czech manufacturer of aircraft technology. AERO is the largest jet training aircraft producer in the world. In the last 50 years, it has produced more than 6,500 units of such aircraft, which represents approximately two thirds of the worldwide production in this category. The Company’s main advantage is its advanced quality technological base comprising all workplaces and services necessary for development, production, sales and support of small to medium-size aircraft as well as deliveries of higher assemblies in aerostructures.

AERO has extraordinary experience in development and production of aircraft technology, which is documented by the fact that it has produced over 11,000 aircraft units of different types during its more than 85-year-long history. AERO employs 1,650 highly qualified employees capable of sophisticated international cooperation with foreign partners.

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