Embraer Defense & Security this month celebrates the historic milestone of 30 years‘ operations of the EMB-121A Xingu with the French Air Force (Armée de l’Air) and French Navy (Marine Nationale). The Xingu, operated by the French Ecole de l’Aviation de Transport (EAT) from Airforce Base 702 in Avord, France, has, to date, been used to train more than 1,900 cadets from France but also pilots from Belgium, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Gabon, Luxembourg, and Madagascar.
The EMB-121 Xingu first landed at Air Force Base 702 on March 29th, 1983 as a training aircraft replacement for the Dassault 312 Flamant. In 1984, the first batch of newly qualified pilots concluded their training. Since that time, over 330.000 flight hours have been flown by the 43 Xingus of EAT and today, a total of 33 aircraft remain in operation.