Lamz.Taking Flight: Hungarian Air Force Unveils C-390 Millennium Transport Aircraft on Its Maiden Voyage

Hungarian Air Force C-390 Millennium Transport Aircraft Makes Its Maiden Flight
Hungarian Air Force C-390 Millennium Transport Aircraft Makes Its Maiden Flight

The first C-390 Millennium of the Hungarian Air Force has successfully completed its maiden flight yesterday in Gavião Peixoto. Embraer Defense & Security team flew the aircraft for approximately 4 hours, carrying out a complete assessment of the aircraft, which will now undergo a test campaign ahead of the entry into service with the Hungarian Air Force. In November 2020, the Hungarian government signed a contract with Embraer to acquire two C-390s. The Hungarian Defence Forces’ aircraft will be the first in the world to have an Intensive Care Unit in its configuration, an essential resource for carrying out humanitarian missions. Hungary is the third country to have chosen the C-390, after Brazil and Portugal. The C-390 is redefining military air transport and challenging the logic behind current and future generation platforms, offering multi-mission capability, reliability, and interoperability built by design.

“This maiden flight is a major milestone for the Hungarian C-390 program. The C-390 Millennium is receiving international recognition on the back of its remarkable operational performance and capabilities, and Embraer is ramping up production to address increasing market demand. It is an honor to work with the Hungarian Defence Forces in strengthening their capabilities with the best military airlift solution available. We are keen in further deepening this partnership with the Hungarian Defence Forces, and supporting them well into the future,” said Bosco da Costa Junior, President and CEO of Embraer Defense & Security.

The first C-390 Millennium of the Hungarian Air Force has successfully completed its maiden flight yesterday in Gavião Peixoto.
The first C-390 Millennium of the Hungarian Air Force has successfully completed its maiden flight yesterday in Gavião Peixoto. (Photo by Embraer)

The Embraer C-390 Millennium is a medium-size, twin-engine, jet-powered military transport aircraft designed and produced by the Brazilian aerospace manufacturer Embraer. It is the heaviest aircraft the company has constructed to date. The C-390 can carry more payload (26 tons) compared to other medium-sized military transport aircraft and flies faster (470 knots) and farther, being able to carry out a wide range of missions, such as transporting and launching cargo and troops, aeromedical evacuation, search and rescue, firefighting and humanitarian missions, even operating on unpaved runways, on surfaces such as compacted earth and gravel. It can carry payloads of up to 26 t (57,000 lb), such as two fully-tracked M113 armored personnel carriers, one Boxer armoured vehicle, a Sikorsky H-60 helicopter, 74 litters with life-support equipment, up to 80 soldiers or 66 paratroopers with full gear, and loads of up to 42,000 lb (19 t) can be air dropped.

The aircraft configured for aerial refueling, with the designation KC-390, has already proven its capacity both as a tanker and as a receiver, in this case receiving fuel from another KC-390 using pods installed under the wings. Since entering service with the Brazilian Air Force in 2019, and more recently with the Portuguese Air Force in 2023, the C-390 has proven its capacity, reliability and performance. The current fleet of aircraft in operation has accumulated more than 11,500 flight hours, with operational availability of around 80% and mission completion rates above 99%, demonstrating exceptional productivity in the category. Several export customers for the C-390 have been secured, including the Portuguese Air Force, Austrian Air Force, Hungarian Air Force, Czech Air Force, Republic of Korea Air Force and the Royal Netherlands Air Force.

 Embraer team flew the aircraft for approximately 4 hours, carrying out a complete assessment of the aircraft.
Embraer team flew the aircraft for approximately 4 hours, carrying out a complete assessment of the aircraft. (Photo by Embraer)

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