The Aermacchi MB-339 is a military jet trainer developed and produced by the Italian firm Alenia Aermacchi. It entered service with the Italian Air Force in 1979, being exclusively used as a trainer in Italy. However, it was also employed as a light attack aircraft by the air forces of Argentina, Peru, Erithrea, Ghana, and Nigeria. The MB-339 first saw combat action in May 1982, during the Falklands War, carrying out ground attack missions against Royal Navy amphibious troops. Taking off from Port Stanley airport, it also attacked and partially destroyed HMS Argonaut. In 1980, the Argentinean Naval Aviation had acquired 10 as 6 of them would be deployed on the Falklands. In 1998, the Erithrean Air Force’s MB-339s would conduct bombing missions against targets in Ethiopia.
The Aermacchi MB-339 is a two-seat aircraft powered by one Rolls-Royce Viper Mk-632 turbojet engine. Fitted with straight low wings, it is a very maneuverable aircraft, with the pilot and navigator/trainee sitting in tandem and having an almost all-around field of vision. It features retractable, tricycle landing gear and two air intakes located in the wings, right beside the fuselage. It is armed with one 30mm gun and can carry up to 4 Mk-82 unguided bombs.
Type: trainer / attack aircraft
Wingspan: 10.86 m
Length: 10.97 m
Height: 3.60 m
Wing area: 19.3 m3
Maximum speed: 900 km/h
Range: 1,760 km