Brazilian upgraded AEW&C E-99M makes first flight

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The Airborne Early Warning and Control (AEW&C) EMBRAER E-99M had its first flight this Friday 16th. This is an updated version of already existing E-99 AEW&C from the Brazilian Air Force which has been developing since September 2018.

According to the Brazilian AF, the E-99M is receiving newly updated mission control equipment, the aircraft is based on the ERJ-145 airframe. “We began by dismounting all the equipment and then redesign the interior to have a new configuration. Today’s flight closes one upgrade stage demonstrating that the aircraft is airworthy after such an update”.

The E-99M will be operated by the Guardiao Squadron of the 2nd Wing in Anapolis. According to the Squadron Commander, Lt Col. Felipe Espinha, the aircraft’s upgrade will improve significantly its performance. “It will allow a better presentation of actual traffic, with more information gathering and the ability to operate in a complex electronic warfare environment with a better integration of such airborne systems”.

The main difference is the integration of the SAAB Erieye airborne radar at its newest version, Erieye ER, the same as has been implemented on the Globaleye with a Bombardier Global 6000 airframe. Limited before to air and naval targets, the E-99M now will be capable to detect land targets. Additional improvements show on detection of small RCS vessels such as jet skis, boats and even helicopters in stationary flight. The actual instrumented range with the Erieye ER has gone from 450 to over 730km.

Other electronic warfare modifications include the Identification Friend or Foe (IFF) transponder Thales TSC 2030 paired with updated Rohde & Schwartz Software Defined Radios, Electronic Support Measures (ESM) and self-defense as seen on new protuberances in the exterior of the aircraft. The Brazilian AF plans to upgrade its five aircraft between 2019 and 2022.

Other electronic warfare modifications include the Identification Friend or Foe (IFF) transponder Thales TSC 2030 paired with updated Rohde & Schwartz Software Defined Radios, Electronic Support Measures (ESM) and self-defense as seen on new protuberances in the exterior of the aircraft. The Brazilian AF plans to upgrade its five aircraft between 2019 and 2022.

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