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The CASA, now Airbus C-295 is a medium transport aircraft that was developed from the CN-235 medium transport which was originally developed for the Spanish and Indonesian Air Forces. The key differences between the types being that the C-295 has a stretched airframe and more powerful engines providing a 50% increase in cargo carrying capability. Following its first flight in November 1997 the C-295 has been ordered by over 35 militaries worldwide. In addition to its primary transport role, the C-295 has either been developed for or proposed in a variety of different roles including maritime patrol, search and rescue, AWACS, as a gunship, and as an aerial refuelling tanker.
Spain were the launch customer for the C-295 and designate the type as the T.21 after ordering an initial batch of nine aircraft during 2000 to replace a fleet of C-235s which had been converted to the maritime patrol role. The C-295 now forms the backbone of the Spanish Air and Space Force medium transport capability with a total of 13 airframes currently on strength.
The C-295 appearing at RIAT 2023 will be provided by Ala 35 from Getafe Air Base in Central Spain. The aircraft will be providing support for the Patrulla Aguila but will remain at RAF Fairford on static display for the duration of the weekend. Photo credit: RIAT Volunteer