A-29
First NAF A-29 Tucano take to the air. (Embraer)

Embraer Defense & Security and Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC) have announced that the first of 12 A-29 Super Tucano light attack, combat and reconnaissance aircraft for the Nigerian Air Force (NAF) successfully completed its inaugural flight at the production facility in Jacksonville, Florida.

Jacksonville facility

The full fleet of A-29 Super Tucano aircraft for the NAF are currently in production by SNC and Embraer at the Jacksonville facility with delivery to the NAF expected on schedule in 2021. The NAF A-29 aircraft will now begin mission modification and final testing in Centennial, Colorado. Following final testing before delivery, NAF pilots will train in the aircraft.

Milestone for Nigerian Air Force

“This is an exciting milestone in the production of these A-29s for the Nigerian Air Force. The Jacksonville production line is active, and Embraer and SNC look forward to seeing these aircraft continue to roll off the line in the coming months,” said Jackson Schneider, president & CEO, Embraer Defense & Security.

A-29 Super Tucano

The combat-proven A-29 Super Tucano is a respected light attack combat and reconnaissance aircraft around the world and is designed and built for the mission in Nigeria. The A-29 Super Tucano is claimed to be a reliable and cost-effective solution for basic and advanced flight and combat training, close air support operations, Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance (ISR), armed over-watch, counterinsurgency and irregular warfare scenarios.

Contract

In December 2018, SNC and Embraer Defense & Security were awarded the contract to deliver 12 A-29 Super Tucano light attack aircraft to the NAF. The contract includes ground training devices, mission planning systems, mission debrief systems, spares, ground support equipment, alternate mission equipment, CONOS US interim contractor support, Outside of Continental US (OCONUS) contractor logistic support and field service representatives for support.

US Air Force officials announced on 10 April that Moody Air Force Base will host a stateside mission to train NAF pilots and maintenance personnel on the A-29 Super Tucano aircraft.

by David Oliver