Boeing and Embraer have signed an agreement to share technical knowledge and jointly evaluate markets for the KC-390 tanker/transport program.
The new agreement builds on a broader collaboration accord signed in April between the two aerospace companies, which initially focused on exploring ways to cooperate in commercial airplane efficiency and safety, research and technology, and sustainable aviation biofuels.
“Boeing has extensive experience in military transport and air refueling aircraft, as well as deep knowledge of potential markets for the KC-390, especially those which were not considered in our original marketing plan,” said Luiz Carlos Aguiar, president and CEO of Embraer Defesa e Segurança. “This agreement will strengthen the KC-390’s prominent position in the global military transport market.”
“Embraer is a leading global innovator and we both understand the value of working in partnership to provide high-quality, affordable customer solutions,” said Dennis Muilenburg, president and CEO of Boeing Defense, Space & Security. “This collaboration matches Boeing’s proven excellence in military transport with Embraer’s KC-390 accomplishments to further advance this highly capable and efficient medium-lift aircraft.”
The KC-390 is officially a Brazilian Air Force contract for which Embraer signed a development contract in April 2009. The medium-sized tanker/transport will be powered by IAE V2500-E5 engines, and is being targeted as a replacement for C-130 Hercules transports around the world.
To date there are commitments for 54 KC-390s from the governments of Brazil, Chile, Columbia, Portugal and the Czech Republic. Argentina has signed on to the program but has not yet announced how many aircraft it expects to buy, while South Africa is also reportedly interested in participating.