The third and final Dassault Falcon 7X aircraft has been delivered to RAAF as it completes part of a project to upgrade the Special Purpose Aircraft (SPA) fleet.
The Falcon 7X is an advanced business jet designed and manufactured by Dassault Aviation. It includes satellite communications to enable and support government business while airborne.
ADM Deputy Editor Nigel Pittaway revealed that the aircraft were nearing completion in April. The first aircraft, wearing the serial number A56-001, flew from the manufacturer’s facility in Bordeaux to Little Rock, Arkansas on March 30, to have its VIP interior fitted.
The government confirmed the story but remained quiet ahead of the federal election.
Air Vice-Marshal (AVM) Cath Roberts, Head of Air Force Capability, made an announcement at the arrival event about the partnerships between Industry and Defence.
“The Air Force has enjoyed decades of successful experience operating Dassault aircraft, from the Mirage III Fighter to the Falcon 20 and Falcon 900 Business Jets, Air Vice-Marshal Roberts said.
“This long and successful partnership between Air Force and Dassault has continued seamlessly as we introduce the last of the Falcon 7X aircraft today.
“Our SPA fleet sustainment partner, Northrop Grumman, has a long history of professional maintenance services that has achieved excellent SPA availability for Air Force. As a result, Northrop Grumman has been awarded a contract to continue to sustain our SPA fleet, including the two Boeing Business Jet aircraft.
“Strong stakeholder relationships are key to success of any project. We look forward to strengthening these relationships with Dassault and Northrop Grumman as we move from acquisition to sustaining the fleet,” AVM Cath Roberts said.
The aircraft is leased through Northrop Grumman and will be operated by Number 34 Squadron based at Defence Establishment Fairbairn in the ACT.