By Richard Mann
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – The first Embraer Defense and Security (EDS) military project launched after the incorporation of Boeing-Brasil Commercial, a company resulting from the purchase of Embraer’s commercial division by the US group, was unveiled on Tuesday, June 18th, in Paris, at the Le Bourget Aeronautical Exhibition.
The P600 AEW, an early warning and intelligence jet is a compact aircraft with a range of 7,500 km (4,660 miles). It will be assembled using the platform of the 12-seater Praetor 600 twin-engine executive jet, showcased to the corporate aircraft market seven months ago.
Yesterday, June 18th, EDS and Israeli firm Elta Systems signed a development agreement that will allow the use of 4th generation electronic and digital systems – the most significant of them being a multi-purpose radar able to cover the 360 degrees area of action in less than 10 seconds. The antenna will be mounted in a pod over the fuselage.
According to Jackson Schneider, president of Embraer Defense, “the P600 AEW can meet the growing market of intelligence capabilities, surveillance and recognition in countries requiring economically viable solutions”. The price of the new military aircraft will be set according to each client’s specifications. The civilian version is quoted at US$21 million (R$84 million).
The agreement between EDS and Elta, a subsidiary of Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI), stipulates that the jet, land resources, and communication and integration systems will emerge from the Brazilian industry. The Israelis will provide the early warning radar, plus information collection, surveillance and intelligence sensors.
The platform will support a wide range of applications, usually found in larger models. On-board terminals enable a variety of missions to be carried out: situational imaging, air defense, maritime recognition, and land defense. It detects threats, acts as an airborne base for command and monitoring with coverage over the horizon through satellite signals.
The Prateor 600, on which EDS will assemble the P600, is a twin-engine jet 20.7 meters (68 feet) long, operated by two crewmembers. It flies at 863 km/hour (536 mph) and has intercontinental range. It carries 8 to 12 passengers, plus 1.4 tonnes of cargo. It is part of the Legacy family of executive jets. By January of this year, 111 units had been delivered. The prototype flew in November 2012.
On Monday, June 17th, Embraer announced that it had signed a contract with United Airlines for the sale of up to 39 E175 jets, in the amount of US$1.9 billion.