Special Mission Aircraft
Special Mission aircraft are now being used in a number of unique ways by governments and for private use. Some of the different types of missions these aircraft are used for include security operations, atmospheric research, the transportation of important government officials as well as private VIPs, advanced medevac air transportation, and other logistics and readiness uses.
Government Security Special Missions Aircraft
Governments around the world consider it necessary to maintain a level of surveillance that helps to protect their nation’s interests and security. Because intelligence can change instantly and in real-time, this aircraft is required to play a significant role in providing real-time updates. This means that it needs to be equipped so that its technology allows it to operate as speedily as possible and that it can communicate data securely. Security breaches are a constant threat, and this means that security measures must be regularly revised.
Modern airports today have a number of operators that are located remotely, and they keep their hangers shut. Some aircraft can have so many antennas and listening devices that they can appear to be something out of a sci-fi movie. Across the world, governments and corporations utilize special mission aircraft to monitor security issues. These aircraft can be maintained and operated from military bases, desert areas, grass strips, and other remote areas.
Medevac Air Transportation
Another way in which special mission aircraft are used is for rescue in disaster relief requirements. The Red Cross has used these types of aircraft in different parts of the world when needed. Some of these aircraft have been outfitted with advanced equipment and a dedicated medical bay that allow the medical staff to stabilize and sustain critically ill patients while being transported.
These aircraft have advanced life support capabilities and some even allow for 360-degree patient access while in flight. Whether it is a natural disaster or some other catastrophic emergency, this type of aircraft could be critical in saving lives. There are places and situations where proper medical equipment is just not available and having aircraft that can transport critically ill patients to proper facilities while being able to stabilize them and maintain them long enough to get to those facilities can be the difference between life and death.
These aircraft are not only used for government special missions but also by corporations, especially when it comes to the transportation of VIPs. There are often situations where having specialized aircraft that can provide for private highly classified meetings or for the transportation of important personnel can provide convenient and even lower cost accommodations. Corporate executives have commented that these resources allow for the expedient transportation of personnel when time is of the essence.
For many corporations, security along with operating costs are a priority. Having specialized mission aircraft allow corporations and governments to have aircraft that can meet both of these priorities. There are a number of situations where security can be more substantial, and the overall cost is lower when compared to other alternatives.
How International Traffic in Arms Regulations Affect Special Missions Aircraft
Because the US government has the need to control security issues and other standards it has put in place something knowing as ITAR. There are many government and corporate special mission aircraft which do not have any type of military armor but still may have equipment for gathering data that may not meet these regulations. This may mean that the American-based and foreign-based corporate special mission aircraft may need to meet those regulations. Fortunately, the US government has made special mission items somewhat easier to be exported by expanding the Commerce Control List that regulates commercial exports rather than military or munitions.