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Baza 90 Transport Aerian "Comandor Aviator Gheorghe Banciulescu"

90th Air Transport Base "Comandor Aviator Gheorghe Banciulescu" statement is to “Carry out air transportation of personnel, equipment and materials and support the other Components of the National Defense System, within both the national airspace and crisis or conflict areas, while accomplishing missions under UN, OSCE or NATO mandate”.

The airlift has a rich history in Romania, the year 1920 representing the beginning of the first airlift unit in Romania, following the Decree no. 2705 and creating the Air Force Department within the Ministry of Communication. Before the World War II, the first specific airlift structures were established within the military aviation which played an important part during the WW II.

The airport is 50 years old, the archive documents certifying that the year 1949 represented for the airlift the year of the first unit being settled, i.e. the 49th Airlift Division. In 1971, a special squadron was created, which in 1972 was transformed into the 50th Airlift Fleet.

The two units have been subjected to several structural changes over time, such as:

  • 1949-1965 – the 49th AIRLIFT DIVISION, having in its inventory only airplanes - LI-2, IL-14, IL-18
  • 1965-1972: the 49th AIRLIFT DIVISION, having in its inventory IL-18, An-2, An-24 and An-26 airplanes.
  • 1972-1986 The 50th AIRLIFT FLEET, having in its inventory IL-18, IL-62, B-707, BAC-1-11, An-24, An-26 airplanes and IAR-316, IAR-330, MI-8, MI-17, SA-365 helicopters. The 99th AIRLIFT DIVISION, having BN-2, An-2, An-24, An-26, An-30 airplanes and IAR-316, MI-8 helicopters in its inventory
  • 1986-1988: the 50th AIRLIFT FLEET, having the following endowment: airplanes - IL-18, B-707, BAC 1-11, An-24, An-26, An-30 and helicopters: IAR-316, IAR-330, MI-8, MI-17, SA-365.
  • 1988-1990 The 50th AIRLIFT FLEET, having in its inventory IL-18, B-707, BAC-1-11 airplanes and IAR-330, MI-8, MI-17, SA-365 helicopters. The 99th AIRLIFT GROUP, having the following endowment: airplanes - An-24, An-26, An-30, and helicopters - IAR-316, MI-8.
  • 1990-1995 The 90th AIRLIFT BASE, having the following endowment: airplanes - An-24, An-26, An-30 and helicopters -IAR-330, MI-8, Mi-17, SA-365. The 76th AIRPORT TEHNICAL GROUP.

    Starting with 1995, the structure of this unit has been changed, the 90th AIRLIFT BASE being created, subsequent to the unification of the two units; in 1996, its name was changed into the 90th AIRLIFT BASE “Comandor Aviator Gheorghe Banciulescu”. Besides the above-mentioned aircraft , starting with October 25th, the airlift air force made a significant step towards the accomplishment of the interoperability with NATO structures, purchasing 2 (and subsequently other 2) C-130 Hercules aircraft, which doubled the airlift capability and tactical range.

    In 1996, the first real time exercise, “COOPERATIVE KEY ‘96”, (considering also the establishment of the C-130 Hercules airlift group) took place. Organized by COMAIRSOUTH (Command, Allied Air Forces, Southern Europe), it also represented the first training session in a partner-country. The Exercise included, for the first time, a cycle of three exercises, at the three components level (Land - “COOPERATIVE DETERMINATION ‘96”; Naval - “COOPERATIVE PARTNER ‘96”), within one year. In October 1997, the Air Force and for the 90th Airlift Base accomplished a historical mission, that is the first military overseas flight, flown by Romanian C-130 aircrews on the route Otopeni – Marietta (Atlanta – USA) – Otopeni.

    In October 2004, the 61st Helicopter Regiment was transferred within 90th Airlift Base, adding IAR 330 PUMA SOCAT to its inventory. The 90th Airlift Base has also a MEDEVAC capability.

    Missions and exercises

  • PfP Exercise “Blue Road”
  • Israeli-Romanian Air Forces' common training
  • COOPERATIVE SAREX 2004, in Hungary
  • RESCUER MEDCUER – July 2004, in Lithuania
  • 5 OPEN SKY missions
  • NATO AIR MEET 2004 - Turkey
  • In 2004, a number of 216 external missions were peformed with C-130, totalling 1428 flight hours. The main missions were: Enduring Freedom 2004 (Afghanistan), Iraq 2004, Humanitarian missions.
  • ALTHEA 2005 – Bosnia-Hertzegovina – Alpha Detachment. This is the first multinational mission, outside the country borders, executed under EU leadership. The logistics of the Romanian Division is in accordance with the NATO standards, proving thus the interoperability of the Air Forces with Alliance's similar structures.

    Inventory of the 90th Airlift Base

  • An-24
  • An-26
  • An-30
  • C-130 Hercules
  • IAR 330 PUMA SOCAT
  • IAR 330L



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