Air International 1985-01
??? - Equatorial Wings: Equador Hones its Top Cover
A Jaguar of the Aguilas, the FAE's Escuadron de Combate 2111, which, home-based at BAM Taura, has now operated this Anglo-French warplane with particular success for eight years.
The Jaguars of Escuadron de Combate 2111 have established a particularly good service record and distinguished themselves in the FAE's 1984 annual bombing competition. During the 1981 border fighting a flight of Jaguars was maintained at five-minute readiness loaded with air-to-ground ordnance.
Four Mirage F1JE multi-role fighters of the Escuadron de Combate 2110, the FAE’s senior combat unit which traces its history back to the early 'forties and the establishment of the first Ecuadorean fighter squadron on aged Seversky P-35s.
The Mirage F1JEs of Escuadron de Combate 2110 were hurriedly declared operational at the beginning of 1981 when border fighting erupted between Ecuadorean and Peruvian troops, flying combat air patrols from forward bases in the vicinity of the combat zone.
The FAE took delivery of a single L-100-30 Hercules a year ago as a replacement for a C-130H lost near Quito in April 1982. The stretched Hercules shares the heavy logistic support role with the single remaining C-130H in the Grupo de Transportes. The L-100-30 is used for civil as well as military airlift tasks.
The FAE became the second Latin American air arm to add jet bombers to its inventory when it procured six Canberra B Mk 6s in the mid-'fifties, the three surviving examples being withdrawn in 1981 and placed in storage. The Canberra illustrated (BE-405) was originally delivered as 804 (later BE-804).
A Cessna A-37B photographed prior to delivery to Escuadron de Combate 2112. The A-37Bs, which, at one time, were to be replaced with Xavantes, fulfil both light strike and tactical training tasks.
The FAE took delivery of two HS.748 Series 285 freighters in November 1975 and April 1976, and these primarily fulfil direct logistic support tasks with the Grupo de Transportes Aereos Militares, but both have civil registrations as well as military serials for occasional assignment to TAME, that illustrated being HC-BAZ. The sand and light earth brown camouflage of these HS.748s is noteworthy.
The Beech Turbine Mentor 34C-1 is utilised by the Escuela de Aviation Militar for basic training, an initial batch of 14 ordered late 1976 having been supplemented by a follow-on order for a further nine aircraft of this type, the turbine Mentor is capable of fulfilling the close air support task in an emergency.
The FAE received its first two DHC-5D Buffalo transports in April 1976, and a third in 1980, these being intended specifically for operation by TAME and, like the HS.748s, having both military serials and civil registrations, the Buffalo illustrated being FAE 064 and HC-BFH.
The Escuadron de Combate 2113 was the recipient of 16 Strikemaster Mks 89 and 89A between 1972 and 1976. Although only six of these now remain on strength, a flight of Strikemasters continues on permanent assignment to the Escuela de Aviacion Militar at the BAM Simon Bolivar, Guavaquil.
The Cessna T-41D Mescalero has seen 15 years of service with the Escuela de Aviation Militar.
The Meteor FR Mk 9 equipped the Escuadron de Caza (which eventually became Escuadron 2111) for more than 22 years, finally phasing out in 1977.