Brazilian Air Force about to deactivate its Hercules while awaiting arrival of the 7th Embraer KC-390

New tactical transport aircraft will be delivered by the end of the year, according to schedule. There would remain three active C-130 turboprops that could go out of service in 2024

The Brazilian Air Force (FAB) is about to take delivery of its seventh KC-390, Embraer tactical transport aircraft. The multirole jet is expected to be delivered by the end of the year and will be based at the 1st/1st GT, known as Gordo Squadron, in Rio de Janeiro, according to data obtained by ADN.

It will be the third KC-390 to operate at Galeão Air Base, which already has the aircraft registration FAB2853 and FAB2857. The Gordo Squadron has also operated the KC-390 FAB2854, but which officially belongs to the Zeus Squadron (1st GTT), based in Anápolis, central region of Brazil.

According to the FAB schedule, the 19 Millennium jets ordered from Embraer should be delivered by 2034, at a rate of one aircraft per year, with the exception of 2023 and 2034 (two aircraft).

Embraer KC-390 (FAB)

In the final plan, the Gordo Squadron will have 12 aircraft and the Zeus Squadron, another seven KC-390s. The FAB, however, is considering adding new detachments to operate the jet, which will be its most important transport aircraft.

C-130 near farewell

While incorporating new KC-390s, the Air Force continues with the plan to retire the C-130 Hercules turboprops. The goal, according to another official document, is to remove all planes from operation by 2024.

The plan, however, may be postponed depending on the availability of Millenniums. If the service concludes that the Embraer plane has not yet reached a stage where it can assume all missions, some C-130s may remain in service for a while longer.

Brazilian Air Force C-130 Hercules (FAB)

Currently, the FAB would have three operational C-130s, registrations FAB2462, FAB2472 and FAB2476. A fourth Hercules (FAB2473) was scheduled to be decommissioned in December, however, it had not flown for several months.

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At the beginning of 2021, the Brazilian Air Force had nine Hercules in its fleet, two of them the KC-130 version, for aerial refueling, a task that all KC-390s can perform.


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