Super Tucano-Operational Effectiveness at Low Operating Costs
As fighters become more complex, the need for highly effective trainer aircraft is on the rise.
Embraer's Super Tucano - a single-engine, stepped-tandem, multi-purpose military turboprop - delivers both training and operational effectiveness at low acquisition and operating costs. It offers advanced solutions for basic to early advanced and weapons familiarization training, such as in-flight virtual training, and also provides the superb operational characteristics required for successful internal security operation support and counter-insurgency (COIN) missions.
The last decade brought about dramatic changes in military aviation. Breakthroughs in avionics, sensors and armament systems have greatly influenced and rationalized the employment of a wide range of fighter, patrol and reconnaissance aircraft platforms, all of which have a significant effect on pilot training. Today's new operating scenarios demand superior skills from airmen which were unimaginable even ten years ago. Then, the aircraft and the training syllabus together simply produced a qualified pilot who was molded to fit operational realities. In these challenging times, the instruction cycle of future military pilots must now ensure an extremely fluid transition to operational units.
The end of the cold war gave rise to new threats, which were previously dormant and which could not always be satisfactorily dealt with through high-performance vectors. This was particularly true in regard to territories with extensive and relatively porous borders.
Embraer kept these aspects in mind in the development of a radically new aircraft, ideally suited to deal with current and future military fight training requirements and also deployable in scenarios that do not fit high-performance combat aircraft. Named the Super Tucano, this new multi-purpose military turboprop aircraft embodies features guaranteed to make it as legendary as its predecessor, the Tucano, a favourite of so many air forces throughout the world.
The A-29 Super Tucano is the perfect aircraft to prepare the new pilots generation in the Network-Centric Warfare scenario, by means of encrypted and interference-resistant Data Link system.
A GPS Inertial Navigation unit which allows extremely accurate Navigation and Weapon Aiming is part of the core of the weapon system. Its persistence and survival in the counter-insurgence scenario and Close Air Support / Surveillance (CAS/ISR) for day and night missions, make the A-29 Super Tucano the best-in-class light-attack platform in the market.
It's robust and efficient design was recently proved in unpaved-runway tests, as part of USAF-LAS (Light Air Support) project assessments.
Embraer spared no effort in providing the Super Tucano with an Armament System that incorporates state-of-the-art technology. The Super Tucano is designed to carry a fighter's typical array of weapons - either smart or conventional. Its armament line-up is fully integrated with its avionics system and comprises most advanced ordnance and sensors.
The aircraft features two .50" machine guns (200 rounds each) in the wings. Five hard points under the wing and fuselage allow up to 1,500 kg of weapons for most configurations. The aircraft's inboard stations, as well as its ventral one, are "wet" for external fuel tanks. In addition to its two internal machine guns, the Super Tucano can be configured with additional underwing armament, such as two 20mm gun pods or .50" machine guns, thereby significantly increasing its firepower for missions requiring air-to-ground saturation. Outboard stations allow the loading and firing of short-range air-air missiles of the AIM-9 class.
The aircraft presents a full set of training qualification, integrated via Data Link, and named Synthetics, which allows training with virtual Radar, Electronic Warfare and BLOS (Beyond Line of Sight) Missile systems. Simulator, Mission Planning and De-briefing Station, Free Play, Maintenance Station and Computer Based Training complete the A-29 Super Tucano training package - all developed by Embraer Defence & Security.
Proven in combat, the A-29 Super Tucano presents an extremely flexible and advanced avionic system, still in continuous evolution in order to fulfil the operational Customers and Operators requirements, through integrating new systems and new weapons, such as the JDAM-class intelligent armament system.