NL KLu C 390M image by Embraer 640Embraer C-390M for Royal Netherlands Air Force

On 16 June 2022, the State Secretary for Defence of the Netherlands, Christophe van der Maat, wrote to the House of Representatives that a successor for the Koninklijke Luchtmacht (KLu, Royal Netherlands Air Force) C-130H/C-130H-30 Hercules transport aircraft has been found in the Embraer C-390M Millennium.

On 1 June 2022, Scramble Magazine reported on the Netherlands Defence Note where the replacement of the Hercules with the addition of an extra aircraft was named.

Where it was originally thought that the Super Hercules would have been the most obvious replacement aircraft, it became more clear when rumours within the Dutch military indicated a possible preference for the Embraer (K)C-390 Millennium transporter.

The initial plan was to acquire four new aircraft, this has now become five. Within the KLu there is a need for more flying hours and with an expansion from 2,400 to 4,000 flying hours, units can be supported better and more often. The Netherlands also contributes to filling a European deficit. Additional transport capacity also benefits the speed to respond to calamities.

The official reading for choosing the Millennium is that this aircraft came out better than the C-130J Super Hercules. For example, the availability of the C-390M is higher, the transporter scores better on a number of operational and technical requirements and it requires less maintenance. In addition, the C-390M can already meet the minimum requirement of 2,400 flying hours with four aircraft. The C-130J needs five aircraft for this.

According to the information, it is expected that the first C-390M Millennium will be delivered in 2026.

Image by Embraer

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