UAE Funds South Korea's MC-X Project, Cargo Transport Aircraft In The Gap Between A400 And C-130

UAE Funds South Korea's MC-X Project, Cargo Transport Aircraft In The Gap Between A400 And C-130

If the Airbus A400 Atlas design is here to fill the gap between the C-17 Globemaster and the C-130 Hercules, then what about the gap between the A400 Atlas and the C-130 Hercules? Of the several aircraft names available on the market, it seems that South Korea has big ambitions to fill this gap, namely through the Multi-mission Cargo eXperimental (MC-X) project. The latest news is that the United Arab Emirates (UAE) has joined the MC-X project.

From the page (18/1/2023), South Korea and the United Arab Emirates signed two memorandums of understanding to improve bilateral defense relations, namely during the visit of the President of South Korea to the UAE. South Korea's Defense Acquisition Program Administration (DAPA) and UAE's Tawazun Council signed the agreement on January 15 in the presence of President Yoon Suk Yeol and Emir Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan.

One of the points of the above agreement is the UAE joining the MC-X project which was released by South Korea last year, in this case the UAE will support the financing of the MC-X project worth US $ 3.2 billion.

Undertaken by Korea Aerospace Industries (KAI), the MC-X project is prepared to replace the South Korean Air Force's aging C-130 Hercules fleet. Besides, of course there are projections that the MC-X will be offered to the export market.

The MC-X has a similar configuration to the Brazilian Embraer KC-390. According to the published characteristics, the MC-X is about 40.3 meters long, 13.5 meters high and 41.1 meters wingspan.

The MC-X has an estimated maximum take-off weight of 92,000 kg and a payload capacity of up to 30,000 kg. The multirole transport aircraft will be powered by two 30,000-lb turbofan engines, which are expected to provide a top speed of 926 km per hour and a cruising range of up to 7,000 km.

KAI estimates the development time for the MC-X to be between 7 and 8 years, with series production likely to start between 2031 and 2032. With the UAE joining the project and its large financing capacity, it is likely that the development and launch schedule for the MC-X can be determined in more detail, and the aircraft came to market more quickly.

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