Thursday, November 12, 2020

HISTORICAL INTEREST: Three F-28's that flew with the Armada Argentina (Argentine Navy)

As already noted in previous posts, the Fokker F-28 enjoyed a long career in service with several branches of the Argentine government, including the Fuerza Aerea Argentina - as a military transport, VIP+Presidential aircraft and with Lineas Aereas del Estado, the air force airline that connects remote points of the Patagonia wilderness region in the south of the country.     

The Armada Argentina (Argentine Navy) also operated the F-28, being the last Argentine military service to receive the aircraft when it took delivery of three F-28-3000's in 1979.  The F-28-3000 had a 5-foot (1.5m) longer wingspan than the standard -1000 model at 82ft 3in / 25.07m with only 18 of the model being built out of a total of 241 F-28's. 

Fokker delivered all three F-28-3000's to the Armada Argentina between April and August 1979 in sequential order by their construction numbers; 5-T-20 (c/n 11145), 5-T-10 (c/n 11147) and 5-T-21 (c/n 11150), joining the 2nd Naval Mobile Logistical Air Support Squadron based at Buenos Aires Ezeiza (EZE).   

5-T-20 was an F-28-3000C model with a large main deck cargo door on the left side of the fuselage while the other two airframes were "M" models presumably configured for military personnel transport.  5-T-20 was also leased out to a civilian outfit named Charter Fly carrying the registration LV-RRA from January 1992 to September 1994. 

The three aircraft were reportedly all spotted at Buenos Aires Ezeiza (EZE) in 2014 with 5-T-10 painted all-white (apparently abandoned), 5-T-20 in the standard light blue Argentine Navy colors in an inactive state and 5-T-21 still operational in a darkish green low-visibility camouflage scheme.  

5-T-21's last flight was on 11Mar16 when it flew from EZE to Comandante Espora Airport in Bahia Blanca, the main base of Argentine Naval Aviation, for display at the National Naval Aviation Museum there.  

Armada Argentina F-28-3000M, 5-T-10 (c/n 11147), in the factory delivery color scheme at Buenos Aires Aeroparque (AEP) at an unknown date.  (Phil Perry Collection) 

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