Cape Town, South Africa…BAE Systems is marketing the BAe 146M as a cost-effective military transporter to Air Forces worldwide and is promoting the aircraft to African air forces by exhibiting at the African Aerospace and Defence Show (AAD) 2010 at Ysterplaat Air Force Base, Cape Town, South Africa (21-25 September).
AAD is the premier aerospace and defence exhibition in Africa and attracts visitors from a large number of African countries, allowing BAE Systems to showcase the BAe 146M to a wide potential market base.
BAE Systems believes that a market is developing on the African Continent for a capable jet transport aircraft such as the BAe 146M. Many air forces in Africa are using ageing air transport aircraft that need replacing. It is estimated that there are currently around 500 such aircraft in service on the African Continent of which around 40 percent are in excess of 30 years old.
The BAe 146M could also be used by Air Forces to complement existing fleets of tactical air transports such as C130 Hercules, by taking on a wide variety of non tactical air transport roles, thereby prolonging the fatigue life of their valuable tactical assets. The BAe 146M, however, has a performance capability that allows it to undertake some of the more challenging air transport support roles, including operations from short and unpaved runways.
Within Africa the BAe 146/Avro RJ airliner is proving increasingly attractive and nearly 20 aircraft have been delivered to seven customers across six countries. In South Africa itself four customers now operate the aircraft. BAE Systems offers an extensive range of Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) support and engineering capability from its Prestwick, Scotland facility.
The Asset Management business of BAE Systems has a number of BAe 146 and Avro RJ series aircraft that are due back off lease from European airline customers over the next few years, which could be made available to military air transport operators.
The BAe 146/Avro RJ is a reliable, robust and affordable aircraft and many of those being offered have yet to reach half life. Given typical military utilisations, these could offer reliable service for many years. BAE Systems believes the BAe 146M offers cost-effective replacement or additional airlift capability for interim or long-term requirements and is available at a time when defence budgets increasingly are under review.
The BAe 146M will be sold to military air arms in either passenger or freighter configuration. As pure passenger aircraft these aircraft will seat between 80-109 passengers; as freighters they will carry between 11-12.5 tonnes of freight. Availability of passenger variants is such that aircraft can be put into service relatively quickly to meet current airlift shortfalls. Freighter aircraft would be converted and delivered to order only.
A range of Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) modifications can be made available such as additional fuel tanks, LCD Flight deck displays, steep approach and unpaved runway capability.
The BAe 146M also has potential as a platform for specialist multi-role concepts such as combined passenger and freight (Combi), as a paratroop transport, for medical evacuation, as a forward air refuelling, border security and search and rescue.
The BAe 146M is one of five distinct market segments that is being addressed by BAE Systems for placement of its used jet airliner portfolio. In addition to the military market, aircraft are also being offered to the airliner market, as a freighter (the BAe 146QT), or converted for business aircraft use (the Avro Business Jet) or converted as airtankers for the waterbombing role (BAe 146AT).
About BAE Systems
BAE Systems is a global defence, security and aerospace company with approximately 107,000 employees worldwide. The Company delivers a full range of products and services for air, land and naval forces, as well as advanced electronics, security, information technology solutions and customer support services. In 2009 BAE Systems reported sales of £22.4 billion (US$ 36.2 billion).
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