The first Embraer KC-390 Millennium medium-size military transport aircraft for the Portuguese Air Force has been captured on video while conducting a test flight. The aircraft is currently undergoing a test campaign at the manufacturer’s facility at Gavião Peixoto Airport in Brazil.
The video, which was shared by Embraer on September 1, 2022, shows the military aircraft performing one of multiple flight tests that meet the specific requirements of Portuguese and Brazilian aviation authorities for the plane to be certified for Portuguese Air Force (FAP) operations.
Once flight testing is completed, Portugal’s first KC-390, registered PR-ZDK, will be sent to Portuguese aircraft maintenance, repair, and operations service provider OGMA where it will be equipped with certified features to meet NATO [North Atlantic Treaty Organization] standards.
Portugal is the first international customer of the KC-390 program, under which five KC-390 Millennium will be configured for its air force missions. The new generation multi-mission military transport aircraft is expected to modernize the FAP fleet and replace the old C-130 turboprops.
The plane, which features an aerial refueling configuration, will also significantly reduce operational costs throughout its lifecycle, the manufacturer claims. The KC-390 is expected to perform various civilian missions, including humanitarian support, medical evacuation, search and rescue, and wildfire fighting, adding superior transport and launch capabilities for cargo and troops and in-flight refueling.
Since the program launch in 2009, Embraer has built a total of eight KC-390s.
The manufacturer expects to deliver the first military transport plane to FAP in 2023.