Show Reports

Marrakech 2014

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Marrakech-Ménara (Morocco)

Marrakech AeroExpo

23 - 26 April 2014

From the 23 until 26 April 2014, the biennial ‘Salon International de l’Aéronautique et de l’Aérospatial’, also known as      
Marrakech Air Show or AeroExpo, was held for the fourth time already at the Royal Moroccan Air Force Base Marrakech-      
Ménara. During the three previous events Marrakech Air Show, organised under the patronage of His Majesty King      
Mohammed VI, has established itself as the meeting place for civil and military aerospace industries in the world with      
special attention to the African continent. The show cannot yet be compared with the big trade shows, like Farnborough      
or Le Bourget, but the international aviation industry has shown a growing interest for the African continent. The statistics      
prove this, over 150 exhibiting companies, over 230 accredited media representatives, over 40 foreign delegations      
and approximately 15.000 visitors from over 50 different countries attended the Marrakech Air Show. The show      
was officially opened on Wednesday, 23 April, by the Prime Minister of Morocco, Mr. Abdelilah Benkirane. The first three      
days of the expo are designated for trade attendees and press only, but on the final day, the Saturday, the showground is      
also open to the general public.      
During the opening day and the public day a full flying display is held in the afternoon. This display starts by dropping      
some paratroopers from a CN235, followed with the fly-by off the various types of the Moroccan Air Force. Highlight      
of this fly-by is the pass of the KC-130H together with two F-5Fs, two Mirage F-1s and two F-16s. The F-5Fs actually      
fly with their refuelling probes attached to the refuelling drogue baskets of the KC-130H, a sight you do not see often      
at any other air show. Furthermore, two CL415s show their firefighting abilities and two AB205s their insect-spraying      
capabilities. Also a small demonstration is given of the air assault capacity of the Moroccan Air Force, carried out by      
several AB206 Jet Rangers, SA330 Pumas and SA342 Gazelles. Of course, the national aerobatic team, Marche Verte (Green      
March), is showing their skills in flying of close formations, with ropes tied between the wings of the aircraft. The special      
guests of this year air show was the Spanish aerobatic team Patrulla Aguila’ and they were present for the closing act of      
the flying program. During the intervening days a limited show is performed. This often means that there is no paradropping,      
no tanker formation fly-by and no air assault demonstration. Also only one of the CL415s and one of the AB205      
is doing their demonstration. However, on the days prior to the actual show some flying activity can be watched, like this      
year there was a small rehearsal of the fly-by already on the Monday and even two rehearsals on Tuesday.      
Civil news
During the air show, Heliconia placed an order for two AW139s, which will be used at their offshore department,      
with an option on more. Pending the delivery of the helicopters, Heliconia has meanwhile begun its offshore transportation      
missions with two AW139, which are leased from AgustaWestland. The delivery of the new helicopters is set      
for June or July 2014 already. At the moment Heliconia, which has its main base at Marrakech-Ménara airport, is operating      
the AS350B2 & B3 & BA, AS355N, AS365N1 & N3, EC130B4 and R44-II.      
Probably the civil star of the show was the Legacy 500 EMB550) of Embraer Executive Jets, which made its debut.      
Scheduled to enter service in the first half of 2014, this midsize aircraft is the first in its class with full fly-by-wire      
technology. The Legacy 500 has a range of 3.000 nautical miles (approximately 5550 kilometres) and a six-foot flatfloor      
cabin, even wider than most other aircraft in the same category. Also at the show were the Phenom 300 (EMB505),      
the industry’s most delivered business aircraft in 2013, the larger Legacy 650 (ERJ135), the business jet with the highest      
utilization rate in the market and the ultra-large business jet the Lineage 1000 (ERJ190).      
Military news
The most important military news came from LH Aviation. This French company and manufacture of the LH-10      
Ellipse announced already last month that they will establish a subsidiary in Morocco, named LH Aviation Maroc. The      
new assembly plant, whose total investment amounts to 10 million euros, will be established near Casablanca and should      
be operational around 2015. The plant will have a capacity of 80 LH-10Ms per year and may eventually reach up to 200      
aircraft per year. During the Marrakech Air Show the official agreement of this joint-venture was signed during a signing      
ceremony by Mr. Mohammed Zouhair El Aoufir, the Managing Director from ONDA (Office National des Aéroports), and      
Mr. Karim Bennani Mohsine, the Chief Executive and main shareholder of LH Aviation Maroc. The LH-10M will be the      
first aircraft ever to be entirely made in Morocco. A prototype of the new M-model was present at the show. The main      
difference between the LH-10 Ellipse, such as have been delivered to the air force of Benin and to the UAE company Jet      
Energy, and the LH-10M is the non-retractable nose wheel on the M-model. According to a spokesperson of LH Aviation the      
air force of Morocco is going to buy at least two LH-10Ms, but an official contract for this delivery is not yet been signed.      
Some excellent news for us spotters was the information that, beside some rumours, the Mirage F1s and the F-5s will not be      
retired any time soon. In fact the modification program of the Mirage F1s has been completed by now and so we can      
enjoy this beautiful aircraft for at least another decade. The Mirage F1s are updated to the Mirage MF-2000 standard, but      
are locally designated as Mirage F-1xM-VI (x can be C or E). M-VI stands for ‘Modernisation à Version Intégrale’. Quite      
a coincidence is the fact that this also is the abbreviation for the King of Morocco, Mohammed VI. The Alpha Jet had      
undergone a similar update program at SABCA (Charleroi, Belgium) and these are also designated as MVI. Some other      
small news facts are:      
• The Chinese offers industrial cooperation with Morocco for the replacement of the F-5, they are hoping to sell the FC-1 Xiaolong to them;      
• Bell Helicopters offers the UH-1Y as replacement for the AB205s;      
• A second batch of F-16s is not expected in a short term;      
• The Air Force of Morocco is still interested in the KC-135 but no purchase is expected in the near future (prior to      
the show, some F-16s did some air-to-air refuelling training with the Utah Air National Guard KC-135R which was also present at the air show);      
• The SA342 Gazelles will most probably not be upgraded but replaced. Candidates are not confirmed yet but most likely this will be an American or European model;      
• The Moroccan Navy will receive at least one NH90.      
Air Show 2016
In all likelihood the show is held again in 2016 and given that the Moroccan Air Forces then will celebrates its 60th anniversary,      
this may be become a nice air show.      
Because most of the unit designations are too long, the following abbreviations are used:      
CIPC = Centre d’Instruction de Pilotes Combat      
CIPH = Centre d’Instruction de Pilotes d’Hélicoptère      
CIPT = Centre d’Instruction de Pilotes Transports      
EATB = Ecole de l’Aviation Transport Bimoteur      
EC = Escadre de Chasse      
EdC = Escadron de Chasse      
EH = Escadre de Hélicoptère      
ET = Escadre de Transport      
Escadre stands for Wing and Escadron for Squadron      
The construction numbers in the report are those that were actually noted during the show.      
CN-AKA/27 AB205A EH 1 4349
CN-AQR/18 AB206B EH 1 8635
228 Alpha Jet H(MVI) CIPC  
245 Alpha Jet H CIPC named “Al Ghait’
CN-AIZ AS355F1 Gendarmerie Royale 5248
112/(CN-AHB) AS565MB 11 Flotille  
CN-ANA/A Beech A100 EATB  
CN-ANG Beech B200 CIPT  
CN-AMQ/MQ C-27J ET (4)171
CN-ABG CAP10C Marche Verte 183
CN-ABH CAP10C Marche Verte 184
CN-ATQ/TQ CL-415MP ET 2088
CN-AMA/MA CN235M-100 ET AL05-1-C023
CN-BZK EC135T2+ Gendarmerie Royale 0978
CN-BZF EC145 Gendarmerie Royale 9369
91933 F-5E EdC ‘Borak’  
CN-AZX S2R-T660 Gendarmerie T660- T660-118DC
CN-TWF S2R-T34 Gendarmerie T34-109DC
CN-AIJ SA330L Gendarmerie Royale 1393
CN-ARZ/26 SA330L EH 1 1470
(CN-AC)P SA342L CIPH 1946
CN-AZF SE3130 Gendarmerie Royale 1651
08-8004 F-16C-52 EC ‘Atlas Falcon’  
08-8011 F-16C-52 EC ‘Atlas Falcon’  
173 Mirage F1EM-VI EdC ‘Atlas’  
(CN-B)TN/14 T-6C Ecole de Pilotage PM-14
(CN-B)TT/20 T-6C Ecole de Pilotage PM-20
(CN-B)TU/21 T-6C Ecole de Pilotage PM-21
CN-AHX Titan Tornado II Gendarmerie Royale  
CSX62127 MC-27J Alenia Aeronautica  
MM81796/15-40 HH139A 81°Centro AE  
08-8607/RS C-130J-30 37th AS 5616
60-0360 KC-135R 191st ARS UT ANG  
SA341F Aerotec 1415
CN-COG ATR72-212A Royal Air Maroc Express  
CS-HER A109E INAER 11083
F-HGHF Falcon 7X Dassault Av.  
F-HLTI P68OBS2    
F-WWNX LH10A TY-41L Benin A.F. 002
HB-ZSU Bell 429 Air Zermatt AG 57067
M-CESB Ce560XLS Cessna Aircraft Co.  
N280GC G280 Gulfstream Aerospace  
N511EX Ce208B Cessna Aircraft Co.  
N550GA G550 Gulfstream Aerospace  
N585EE EMB505 Embraer Exec. 50500185
N620AT AT-6C Beechcraft Corp. AT-002
N698EE ERJ135BJ Embraer Exec. 14501198
N800EU Beech 350i   FL-840
N981EE ERJ190BJ Embraer Exec. 19000559
N2060K Beech C90GTx   LJ-2060
OE-VRX DA42M-NG Diamond Aircraft 42.M013
PT-ZHY EMB550 Embraer Exec. 55000004
The T-6C CN-BTN/14 and CAP10C CN-ABH were only noted on 23 and 24 April. The other days these were in the hangar      
behind the static. The AT-6C, N620AT, arrived on Thursday 24 April, in the evening. The CN-AHB registration of the      
AS565MB was only on a small paper inside the cockpit. The ATR72 CN-COG left the air show on the 24th.      
Hangar static:
(CN-ACO) SA342L stripped 1945
The Gazelle was read on the c/n-plate in the cockpit. The tail of the Mirage F1CH 154 was also in this hangar, same as the      
front fuselage of an unknown CM170.      
Hangar (closed for public):
AS202/18A-1, Ecole de Pilotage:
CN-AUA/110, (CN-AUB)/111, (CN-AUC)/114, CN-AUD/115, CN-AUE/116,      
CN-AUH/119, CN-AUI/(121(, CN-(AUJ)/122, CN-AUK/29, (CN-AUL)/128,      
(CN-AUM)/165, (CN-AUN)/174.      
CN-AMD/MD CN235M-100 ET AL05-4-C026
CN-ASG/33 SA330L EH 1 1489
Under sunsheds:
T-6C, Ecole de Pilotage:
(CN-B)TB/(02), (CN-B)TK/(11), (CN-B)TP/(16), (CN-B)TR/(18), (CN-B)TX/(24)      
CASA 101EB, Patrulla Aguila:
E.25-06/79-06/5, E.25-14/79-14/5, E.25-22/79-22/2, E.25-23/79-23/3,      
E.25-52/79-34/4, E.25-62/79-17/4, E.25-63/74-17/1, E.25-78/79-02/6, E.25-86/79-32/7.      
The E.25-14/79-14/5 was noted inside a hangar on the 23rd an left home on the 24th.      
In the grass:
CN-AJV/22 AB205A EH 1  
CN-AJW/23 AB205A EH 1  
CN-AQE/05 AB206A EH 1  
CN-AQH/08 AB206B EH 1  
CN-AQI/09 AB206B EH 1  
CN-AQK/11 AB206B EH 1  
CN-AQM/13 AB206B EH 1  
CN-ARG/07 SA330L EH 1 1347
CN-ARL/12 SA330L EH 1 1372
CN-ASA/27 SA330L EH 1 1471
(CN-A)CC SA342L EH 1 1894
(CN-A)CN SA342L EH 1 1937
(CN-A)CT SA342L EH 1 1963
(CN-A)CV SA342L EH 1 1972
(CN-A)CX SA342L EH 1 1985
The AB205 CN-AJV was seen flying on the 21st, 23rd, 25th and 26th, while the CN-AJW flew on the 21st, 23rd, 24th and 26th.      
On the 21st, 23rd and 26th the flowing helicopters flew, from the Pumas the CN-ARG and CN-ARL, from the Gazelles the      
CN-ACC, CN-ACT, CN-ACX and CN-ACV and from the AB206 the CN-AQI, CN-AQH, CN-AQK and CN-AQM.      
Flypast 21 April:
50613, 50617, 91924 F-5E EC 2 ‘Tigre’  
91932 F-5E EC 2 ‘Tigre’  
91942, 91944 F-5F EdC ‘Borak’  
127, 128, 133, 1?4 Mir.F1CM-VI EdC ‘Assad’  
170, 171 Mir.F1EM-VI EdC ‘Atlas’  
231, 233, 236 Alpha Jet H CIPC  
08-8016, +1 F-16C-52 EC ‘Atlas Falcon’  
Flypast 22 April (morning):
231, 233, 234, 236, 244 Alpha Jet H CIPC  
50613, 50617, 91924 F-5E EC 2 ‘Tigre’  
91932 F-5E EC 2 ‘Tigre’  
08-8003, 08-8005, F-16C-52 EC ‘Atlas Falcon’  
08-0810, +1 F-16C-52 EC ‘Atlas Falcon’  
127, 128 Mir.F1CM-VI EdC ‘Assad’  
170, 171 Mir.F1EM-VI EdC ‘Atlas’  
(CN-B)TC/03, (CN-B)TG/07 T-6C Ecole de Pilotage  
(CN-B)TH/08, (CN-B)TW/23 T-6C Ecole de Pilotage  
Flypast 22 April (afternoon):
233, 234, 246, +2 Alpha Jet H CIPC  
50613, 50617, 91924 F-5E EC 2 ‘Tigre’  
91932 F-5E EC 2 ‘Tigre’  
08-8009, 08-8014, +2 F-16C-52 EC ‘Atlas Falcon’  
127, 128 Mir.F1CM-VI EdC ‘Assad’  
170, 171 Mir.F1EM-VI EdC ‘Atlas’  
(CN-B)TC/03, (CN-B)TG/07 T-6C Ecole de Pilotage  
(CN-B)TH/08, (CN-B)TW/23 T-6C Ecole de Pilotage  
Flypast 23 April:
231, 233, 234, 236, 246 Alpha Jet H CIPC  
50613, 50617, 91924 F-5E EC 2 ‘Tigre’  
91932 F-5E EC 2 ‘Tigre’  
91942, 91944 F-5F EdC ‘Borak’  
127, 128, 133, 1?4 Mir.F1CM-VI EdC ‘Assad’  
170, 171 Mir.F1EM-VI EdC ‘Atlas’  
08-8003, 08-8005 F-16C-52 EC ‘Atlas Falcon’  
08-8009, +3 F-16C-52 EC ‘Atlas Falcon’  
(CN-B)TC/03, (CN-B)TG/07 T-6C Ecole de Pilotage  
(CN-B)TH/08, (CN-B)TJ/10 T-6C Ecole de Pilotage  
Flypast 24 April:
231, 233, 234, 236, 246 Alpha Jet H CIPC  
50613, 50617, 91924 F-5E EC 2 ‘Tigre’  
91932 F-5E EC 2 ‘Tigre’  
127, 128, 144 Mir.F1CM-VI EdC ‘Assad’  
171 Mir.F1EM-VI EdC ‘Atlas’  
(CN-B)TC/03, (CN-B)TG/07 T-6C Ecole de Pilotage  
(CN-B)TH/08, (CN-B)TJ/10 T-6C Ecole de Pilotage  
Flypast 25 April:
231, 233, 234, 236, 246 Alpha Jet H CIPC  
50613, 50617, 91924 F-5E EC 2 ‘Tigre’  
91932 F-5E EC 2 ‘Tigre’  
08-8005, 08-8009 F-16C-52 EC ‘Atlas Falcon’  
08-8010, 08-8014 F-16C-52 EC ‘Atlas Falcon’  
127, 128, 144 Mir.F1CM-VI EdC ‘Assad’  
170 Mir.F1EM-VI EdC ‘Atlas’  
(CN-B)TC/03, (CN-B)TH/08 T-6C Ecole de Pilotage  
(CN-B)TM/13, (CN-B)TV/22 T-6C Ecole de Pilotage  
Flypast 26 April:
231, 233, 234, 236, 246 Alpha Jet H CIPC  
50613, 50617, 91924 F-5E EC 2 ‘Tigre’  
91932 F-5E EC 2 ‘Tigre’  
91942, 91944 F-5F EdC ‘Borak’  
127, 128, 144 Mir.F1CM-VI EdC ‘Assad’  
170, 171 Mir.F1EM-VI EdC ‘Atlas’  
08-8002, 08-8003, 08-8005 F-16C-52 EC ‘Atlas Falcon’  
08-8009, 08-8010 F-16C-52 EC ‘Atlas Falcon’  
08-8016 F-16C-52 EC ‘Atlas Falcon’  
(CN-B)TC/03, (CN-B)TH/08 T-6C Ecole de Pilotage  
(CN-B)TJ/10, (CN-B)TM/13 T-6C Ecole de Pilotage  
On base, the following aircraft are preserved, stored or dumped. Only the aircraft that were actually seen are mentioned.      
Near Technical school:
(0-37862)/862 C-119G (CN-AMH), white special colours  
At the roundabout near main gate:
CM170 Blue colours, yellow tanks  
MH1521M Yellow/blue colours  
MiG-17F Yellow colours  
Sea Fury FB.11    
T-6G Black/red colours  
T-6G Yellow colours  
Both MiGs and the CM170 were visible from the static area.      
Near the parade ground:
… (2x) CM170   On pole, white/blue colours
T-6G   On pole, blue/yellow colours
All were visible from the outside.      
On the parade ground:
CM170 On pole, white/red special colours  
226 CM170 On pole, white/red special colours  
T-6G Blue special colours  
85? T-6G White special colours  
The CM170s and the blue T-6 were visible from the outside.      
In front of Ecole Royale de l’Air:
... CM170 red special colours, green tanks  
Storage ramp:
10x CM170 7 camo + 3 silver special colours  
11x T-34C-1 all bagged  
13x T-37B all bagged  
26676, 27732/51, 27787/70 SNJ-4 Dumped  
…/28, …/53, .../54 +1 SNJ-4/T-6G Dumped  
114702/78 T-6G Yellow special colours, no tail, no  
T-28A Dumped, Fuselage only  
All were visible from the outside.      
CN-BZJ AS550C2 Gendarmerie 22
CN-ANX Beech 300 EdT (VIP) 23
CN-AOF/OF C-130H ET 27
CN-AMK Ce560XLS+ EdT (VIP) 23
CN-AMG CN235M-100 EdT (VIP) 23 (white Colours)
CN-ARS/19 SA330F EH 1 27
CM01 Falcon 20E-5 21Sm 26
MM62172 Falcon 900EX 93° Gruppo 24
MM62245 F900EX-EASy 93° Gruppo 26
T.21-09/35-47 C295M 353Esc 26
(T.21-10/35-48) C295M 353Esc 22
TR.20-01/403-11 Ce560 403Esc 23, 24
84-0109 C-21A 76th AS 22, 23, 24, 25
Serial of the C295M T.21-10 came from SBS and so was not read!      
On Monday, 28 April, the following T-6Cs returned from Ben Guerir:
(CN-B)TA/01, (CN-B)TC/03, (CN-B)TD/04, (CN-B)TE/05, (CN-B)TF/06,      
(CN-B)TG/07, (CN-B)TH/08, (CN-B)TI/09, (CN-B)TJ/10, (CN-B)TL/12,      
(CN-B)TM/13, (CN-B)TO/15, (CN-B)TQ/17, (CN-B)TS/19, (CN-B)TV/22 and      

Credits: Edwin de Geeuw, Mark de Geeuw, Andy Marden, Coen Pasterkamp, Peter Steenhouwer, Bob Sutherland, Leonard van Teeffelen, Hans van der Vlist and Scramble forum.

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