French aerospace and defense major Dassault Aviation has supplied two Falcon business jet to the French defense forces during the government’s COVID-19 response.
The jets flew in support of the French operation Resilience for the first time on April 5, according to the company.
The first mission saw the two aircraft bring a team of 26 doctors and other medical personnel from Brest, Brittany back to Paris. The team had accompanied COVID-19 patients to Brest on a special medical train.
The two Dassault aircraft, a Falcon 8X and a Falcon 900, are equipped for 15 and 13 passengers, respectively. They are operated by Dassault Falcon Service (DFS), a subsidiary of Dassault Aviation specializing in maintenance and flight operations, based at Le Bourget airport. DFS also supplies the flight crews.
“Depending on the requirements defined by government authorities, one or both of the Falcon aircraft can be made available to the Resilience unit of the French Air Force’s Air Defense and Air Operations Command (CDAOA),” the company said.
Capable of landing at small airports in all weather conditions and without the need for ground infrastructure, the aircraft enable medical teams and equipment to be dispatched across France and throughout the world.
Operation Resilience is the French government’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition to the air force, the country has mobilized its naval assets in support of the operation. Naval operations so far included the evacuation of virus-affected French nationals from the island of Corsica via helicopter carrier Tonnerre, and the deployment of additional ships in the class to the Caribbean.