[FONT=Arial]The first flight of the wingletted Airborne Early Warning (AEW) configured aircraft took place in Spain on 21 December. Data from the flight test program will help evaluate the potential benefit and feasibility to incorporate winglets into the C295 design.
[/FONT][FONT=Arial]Extending the mission endurance of this aircraft is considered a critical requirement for Airbus Military, in order to meet the Indonesian Air Force requirement
for Airborne Early Warning aircraft. Indonesia is already shopping for such aircraft, and, according to Air Force Chief of Staff ACM Imam Sufaat, larger platforms would be required for the country’s AEW mission, particularly in terms of endurance. It is expected that the improvements gained by those winglets would be sufficient to get the C295 into the game. The Indonesian market is considered a strategic market for the aircraft. In early 2012 Indonesia placed an order for nine C295 aircraft, the first delivered by the end of last year. Airbus Military is also helping its local partner PT Dirgantara Indonesia (PT DI) to modernize its manufacturing facilities to enable local assembly of these planes.