Mexico Takes Delivery of Its First Airbus Military CN235 MPA Ordered Under the Mérida Initiative

The Mexican Navy has taken delivery of the first of four CN235 Maritime Patrol Aircraft (MPA) ordered from Airbus Military through a contract with EADS North America under the Mérida Initiative, a joint program between the Government of the United States of America and the Government of Mexico.

CN235 MPA Source: Airbus Military
Source: Airbus Military
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The remaining three aircraft will be delivered in the first half of 2012.

This CN235 in MPA configuration incorporates the latest technology developed for surveillance over the sea. The combination of the Forward Looking Infra-Red (FLIR) system and a Search Radar allows this aircraft to locate and track ships to conduct thorough patrols of a coastline. The Automatic Identification System (AIS) and the Fully Integrated Tactical System (FITS) help make this aircraft the ideal tool to carry out military surveillance missions for the Mexican Navy. The FITS was entirely developed by Airbus Military and ensures that the extensive data gathered by the aircraft’s on-board sensors can be easily used by the crew to execute their mission.

“It is an honor that the Mexican Navy is taking delivery of this Airbus Military CN235 MPA for its fleet. We are looking forward to the upcoming entry into service of this highly versatile aircraft that is ideal to help enforce law on the Mexican coastline”, says Airbus Military Head of Programmes, Rafael Tentor.

Including this latest delivery, the Mexican Navy already operates three CN235, which are to be added to the two CN235 operated by the Mexican federal police. The Mexican Air Force and Navy also operate nine C295 and six C212 aircraft.

To date, Airbus Military has sold 211 CN235 to 32 different operators in 20 countries all over the world.

Able to carry up to six tons of payload and with a maximum cruise speed of 240 kt (450 km/h), the CN235 is able to take off from, and land on, short, semi-prepared runways with soft surfaces thanks to its Short Take Off and Landing (STOL) characteristics and the strong landing gear with tandem low-pressure tyre. Its excellent handling qualities, high manoeuvrability and fast engine (two General Electric GE CT7-9C3, 1870 shp) response allow safe critical operations at a very low altitude. Outstanding reliability and supportability result in high aircraft availability and the lowest life cycle cost (LCC) in its class.

Airbus Military is the only military and civic/humanitarian transport aircraft manufacturer to develop, produce, sell and provide support and services for a comprehensive family of airlifters with a payload range of three to 45 tonnes. An Airbus subsidiary, Airbus Military is responsible for the A400M programme, the A330 Multi Role Tanker Transport (MRTT) and further military derivatives based on Airbus civil aircraft. These, together with the smaller ‚Light & Medium‘ C295, CN235 and C212, make Airbus Military the global leader in the market for military transport, tanker and surveillance aircraft capable of performing the most varied types of missions.

Altogether, Airbus Military has sold more than 1,000 aircraft to some 130 military, civil and governmental customers. More than 800 of these aircraft have been delivered. Airbus is an EADS company.