UK: Inside the new ‘Cam Force One’ for ministers and Royals
The RAF has unveiled a new jet that will provide VIP transport for government ministers and the Royal Family.
The converted RAF Voyager, nicknamed “Cam Force One” after America’s presidential jet, will make its first voyage on Friday, when it ferries David Cameron and Cabinet ministers to the Nato summit in Warsaw.
But the aircraft’s inaugural flight may prove to be the Prime Minister’s last as it comes only a fortnight after he announced he would be standing down.
The aircraft, based on the Airbus A330, has been fitted with 58 business seats, but will still be able to carry out its main task of air-to-air refuelling missions.
The Ministry of Defence said the new seating would allow the aircraft, based at RAF Brize Norton in Oxfordshire, to transport large business delegations such as those Mr Cameron took to India and China.
The Government announced last November that one aircraft from the Voyager fleet was being refitted at a cost of £10 million to provide transport for ministers and members of the Royal Family.Watch Full Movie Online Streaming Online and Download
Ministers said the conversion would save the taxpayer £775,000 a year in the cost of private charters, while the aircraft would still be available for its primary air-to-air refuelling role when it is not being used for VIP travel.
Mr Cameron and senior ministers have until now used No 32 (The Royal) Squadron, for short haul flights and chartered commercial flights for long haul trips. Government sources have said the cost of long-haul charter flights can be excessive because they are often arranged at short notice.
In January 2015, the government spent more than £100,000 sending Mr Cameron to Saudi Arabia to pay his respects following the death of its king.
The converted RAF Voyager A330 is expected to cost £2,000 an hour, compared to the current average cost of £6,700 an hour.
Air Marshal Sean Reynolds, the RAF’s deputy commander capability, said:“The refitting of this RAF Voyager to transform it from a standard air-to-air refuelling and air transport fit to an aircraft suitable for the additional role of VIP transport was completed quickly and efficiently with our Air Tanker partners.
“The reconfigured Voyager flying on its maiden VIP flight on Friday will proudly represent the UK and the RAF across the globe for many years to come.”
Overall Length: 58.82m • 193ft
Wingspan: 60.3m • 198ft
Height: 17.3m • 57ft
Engines: Two Rolls Royce Trent 772B Turbofans
Thrust: 72,000lbs each
Maximum speed: 493 knots • Mach 0.86
Maximum range: 4,500nm • 5,200 miles • Fully Loaded
Maximum Altitude: 41,000ft • 7.8miles • 12.5 km
Passenger capacity: 291
Maximum freight payload: 43 tonnes • Carried below deck
Maximum fuel capacity: 111 tonnes
Fuel Transfer Rate: Up to 1,800 KGS per minute
Aeromedical: 40 Stretchers, including 3 patient critical care capability
Crew: Two Pilots • One AAR Mission Systems Operator • Eight Cabin Crew