Five USAF aircraft coming to AAD


The US Air Force (USAF) will have a presence at this year’s Africa Aerospace and Defence (AAD) exhibition at AFB Waterkloof in just over a month.

The South African military aviation fraternity is sure to have a keen interest in what will be on static display, with aircraft needed by the SA Air Force coming to the Centurion base from September 19 to 23. defenceWeb has been reliably informed all US air assets coming to South Africa for the exhibition will be not be taking part in any flying, either during the trade days or the weekend airshow.

Five US aircraft from the massive C-17 Globemaster III through to the LC-130 Snowbird, a C-130J Super Hercules, a KC-135R Stratotanker and a P-8 Poseidon will represent the world’s largest air force at Africa’s premier defence exhibition.

The Globemaster and Snowbird are operated by the New York Air National Guard with the Super Herc, Stratotanker and Poseidon coming from US Air Forces Europe (Germany and England) and US Naval Forces Europe, Naval Forces Africa.

South African military aviators and their senior commanders will look longingly at the airlift offered by the Globemaster and C-130J while the Poseidon is an internationally renowned maritime patrol aircraft. This role is currently performed in South Africa by ageing C-47TPs.

Last reports from the exhibition organisers were that 96% of all indoor space is taken along with 99% of outdoor space. All 42 chalets on the flight line have also been snapped up by exhibitors wanting both a good view of aircraft as well as private space to properly brief prospective clients.

The latest available figure of aircraft for the AAD static park is 24, with South Africa providing 19 of these. It was not clear at the time of publication whether the US contingent is included.

International exhibitors include companies from Australia, Belarus, Belgium, Brazil, Bulgaria, China, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Finland, France, Germany, Ghana, India, Italy, Jordan, Lithuania, Nigeria, Pakistan, Poland, South Africa, Russia, Singapore, Slovakia, South Korea, Sudan, Switzerland, Turkey, the United Kingdom and United States. Fifteen have national pavilions. Apparently the Ukraine will also be taking part in AAD 2018.