Norwegian Armed Forces to use SAS A320neos for Air Evacs

Interior of SAS A320neo set up air air evacuation ops.
Photo Credit: SAS

On March 4, the Norwegian Armed Forces took a significant step towards enhancing their strategic air evacuation capacity by signing a new agreement with SAS (Scandinavian Airlines).

In a world where crises can strike unexpectedly, ensuring the swift and efficient evacuation of civilians and military personnel is paramount.

This agreement promises to usher in a new era of air evacuation using state-of-the-art Airbus A320neo aircraft.

Transition to Next-Generation Aircraft

The current agreement marks a transition from older aircraft to the latest Airbus A320neo models.

Scheduled for implementation in 2025, this transition marks the Norwegian Armed Forces’ commitment to adopting new technology for their evacuation missions.

The agreement between the Norwegian Armed Forces and SAS comprises two vital components:

  • A cooperation agreement aimed at designing an A320neo-based solution.
  • An operational assignment agreement.

Designing a Customized Solution

The cooperation agreement focuses on tailoring the A320neo to meet the specific requirements of strategic air evacuation missions.

This includes equipping the aircraft with medical facilities to transform it into a flying hospital when the need arises.

Operational Assignments

The operational assignment agreement delineates the roles and responsibilities of both parties during evacuation missions.

It ensures smooth coordination between the Norwegian Armed Forces and SAS personnel to execute evacuation operations effectively.

SAS Prior Performance

SAS has a rich history of participating in evacuation missions worldwide, including notable operations during the tsunami in Thailand and evacuations from Afghanistan and Ukrainian conflict zones.

With over 25 years of experience, SAS brings unparalleled expertise to every mission it undertakes.

Photo Credit: SAS

Strengthening Strategic Evacuation Capacity

The adoption of Airbus A320neo aircraft means a significant reduction in CO2 emissions, with approximately 18% lower emissions compared to its predecessors.

Additionally, these aircraft boast a 30% reduction in noise levels, providing a more comfortable environment for evacuees and crew alike.

The agreement significantly enhances the Norwegian Armed Forces’ capacity for evacuating sick or wounded individuals. This potentially includes intensive care patients, both domestically and internationally.

It establishes provisions for the use of two medical evacuation aircraft in addition to the Armed Forces’ existing resources.

The collaboration between private enterprise and the Armed Forces also exemplifies a synergistic approach to national defense.

By pooling resources and expertise, both entities contribute to the creation of a robust strategic air evacuation capability essential for safeguarding national security interests.

Key Role of Norwegian Armed Forces Joint Medical Services

Professional Expertise

The Norwegian Armed Forces Joint Medical Services play a pivotal role in the operation of medical evacuation missions.

Their professional expertise contributes to the development of solutions for the new aircraft, ensuring optimal functionality during evacuation operations.

Planning and Execution

The Armed Forces carry the primary responsibility for planning, preparedness, and execution of medical air evacuations.

The Joint Medical Services spearhead the Norwegian Armed Forces’ efforts to safeguard the health and well-being of personnel in times of crisis.

SAS, Scandinavia’s leading airline, operates from main hubs in Copenhagen, Oslo and Stockholm, and flies to destinations in Europe, USA and Asia.

In addition to flight operations, SAS offers ground handling services, technical maintenance and air cargo services.


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By Len Varley - Assistant Editor 4 Min Read
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