The Brazilian Air Force (FAB) inducted its first A330-200, designated as KC-30, this week at Galeão Air Base in Rio de Janeiro.
The aircraft and another similar model were sold by the carrier Azul earlier this year for around $80 million in an auction in which there were no other participants.
The KC-30 FAB 2901 will be part of the Corsair Squadron, of the Second Transport Group (2nd/2nd GT) which also operates aircraft such as the C-130 Hercules and the KC-390.
The A330-200, which had the PR-AIS registration, keeps the cabin with Azul seats and only received the gray paint and the Air Force emblems.
According to FAB Commander Brigadier Carlos de Almeida Baptista Junior, the contract for the conversion of the two Airbus jets to the MRTT (Multi Role Tanker Transport) standard will be signed in 2022.
The Air Force, however, has not yet released the tender for the conversion, which must be done with Airbus, the owner of the program. The manufacturer will adapt the A330 to receive two aerial refueling probes on the wings, as well as internal modifications to allow the KC-30 to be used in troop transport and aeromedical evacuation, among other missions.
Currently, the FAB has two aircraft capable of aerial refueling, the C-130 and the new KC-390, from Embraer, but which do not offer the range and capacity intended by the force.
The Brazilian Air Force operated four Boeing 707s converted to oil tankers under the designation KC-137, but they were retired in 2013. Since then, the Brazilian government has been looking to find a replacement for these aircraft.