SMi are proud to announce the 20th annual Military Airlift and Air-to-Air Refuelling conference and exhibition will be hosted in Lisbon from the 3rd – 4th December 2019, with an additional post-conference site visit on the 5th December.

Developing on the 2018 edition, this year’s conference remains the definitive calendar date for the international air mobility and airlift community – providing crucial updates across the heavy & tactical airlift, rotary wing and AAR sectors.

As the world has globalised, the need to deploy and sustain forces from the air remains a mission critical enabler. Similarly, the utility of maintaining airpower through effective AAR has repeatedly demonstrated in recent NATO-led operations, including Operation Inherent Resolve and Operation Shader across Syria.

Delivering this capability, as asset costs rise, and budgets shrink remains a key theme for this year’s meeting – as pooling and sharing efforts continue to drive pan-European cooperation. Similarly, integrating commercial solutions into the combined effort and where this can provide the lowest opportunity cost continues to be explored.

With over 120 attendees, 2 drinks receptions, 4 hours of networking and an exclusive site visit to Pratica di Mare Airbase last year – the Military Airlift and Air-Air Refuelling Conference essential platform for military and industry to share comprehensive discussions on the future of this capability.

  • Listen to briefings from key allied partners across the strategic and tactical airlift sectors and develop an understanding of programme developments and future requirements
  • Refined focus on the air-to-air refuelling market and how this critical enabler provides mission support
  • Industry presentations from key commercial partners across the domain including Embraer, Leonardo, Airbus and TLD
  • Learn about key topics within the Military Airlift and AAR community including rotary wing AAR and airlift, resource pooling efforts, humanitarian and disaster relief airlift and rapid response and delivery capability 

AFLCMC; AFLCMC/WKDI KC-135 FMS; A-ICE s.r.l.; Air Base Eindhoven; Airbus; Airbus Defence & Space - Military Aircraft; Airbus Defence and Space; AMSS Ltd; Boeing; Boeing Global Services and Support; Brazilian Air Force; Cobham Mission Equipment; EATC; Elix Aviation Capital Limited; Embassy Of Argentina; Embassy of Chile; Embassy of Ukraine in Italy ; Embraer; Embraer Defence & Security; Embraer Defense & Security; ETAC – European Tactical Airlift Centre; European Defence Agency; French Air Force; GB Consulting bvba; IAI Istituto Affari Internazionali; IrvinGQ; Italian Air Force; Italian Joint Operations Headquarters; JBTC; Jeppesen ; JETEX; Leonardo; Leonardo Aerostructures Division; Lockheed Martin Aeronautics; Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Company; Logistikzentrum Der Bundeswehr; MCCE; Ministry of Defense; Nato Defense College; NATO NSPA; Norwegian Defence Logistics Organisation; Ocean Software Pty Ltd; RAF High Wycombe; Royal Danish Air Force; SAC Heavy Airlift Wing C2 sqn; SHZ Aviation; SkyTech; SMi Group Ltd; Strategic Airlift Capability (SAC); Strategicomms / Flynews; Swedish Armed Forces; The Boeing Company; TLD America; TLD Group; U.S. Air Force Expeditionary Center; UAE GHQ; US Air Force; US Cargo Systems; USAFE; Viasat Inc; Viasat, Inc.; World Food Programme; World Fuel Service; World Fuel Services;


Brigadier General Oliver Fabre

Brigadier General Oliver Fabre

Air Mobility Commander , French Air Force
Colonel Melecio Hernandez Quinones

Colonel Melecio Hernandez Quinones

Ala 31 Commander, Spanish Air Force

Brigadier General Oliver Fabre

Air Mobility Commander , French Air Force
Brigadier General Oliver Fabre

Brigadier General Olivier FABRE is the French Air Force Air Mobility Brigade Commander since September 2018. This command includes transport aircraft, helicopters and handling units.
General FABRE is an air force helicopter pilot experienced in SAR, CSAR and navy ship based operations, with more than 3500 flight hours. He participated in the development of the Caracal helicopter.
Former “Pyrénées” Squadron commander in Cazaux, near Bordeaux, he was also base commander of Brétigny airbase, near Paris. He spent several years in Spain as Staff College Student, air attaché and Defense attaché.

Colonel Byron Newell

Commandant, AATTC, US Air National Guard
Colonel Byron Newell

Colonel Byron Newell is Commandant of the Advanced Airlift Tactics Training Center at Rosecrans Air National Guard Base in St. Joseph, Missouri; working in concert with total force partners from Air Force Reserve Command and Active Duty Air Force to increase the warfighting effectiveness and survivability of mobility air forces. Col Newell entered the United States Naval Academy in 1990, becoming a Naval Aviator in 1996 flying the C-2A Greyhound. In 2004, he transitioned to the 139th AW, Missouri Air National Guard as a C-130H pilot. Col Newell has previously commanded the 180th Airlift Squadron and the 139th Maintenance Group.

Colonel Eric Herbaut

Director, Movement Coordination Centre Europe (MCCE)
Colonel Eric Herbaut

Colonel James Sparrow

Commander, Heavy Airlift Wing
Colonel James Sparrow

Colonel James S. Sparrow of the United States Air Force is the Vice Commander of the Strategic Airlift Capability Heavy Airlift Wing, HDF Pápa Air Base, Hungary from 6 July 2017.
Colonel Sparrow received his commission from the United States Air Force Academy in 1993. He has served in a variety of positions at the Squadron, Group, and Wing levels including Evaluator Pilot and Instructor Pilot in multiple different aircraft.
Following attendance at the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, earning the Joint Planner Designation, he served on the staff of U.S. European Command in a variety of positions within the Directorate for Strategy, Policy, and Assessments including duty as the command lead for the stand-up of the Strategic Airlift Capability program from 2007-2009. Following his first tour in Europe, Col Sparrow served as a C-17 Operations Officer during one of the busiest operations tempos in Mobility Air Forces history including a combat deployment with his squadron. After this he commanded the 37th Flying Training Squadron at Columbus AFB, Mississippi producing over 230 pilots yearly for the U.S. Air Force and international partners in Specialized Undergraduate Pilot Training and the International Aviation Leadership Program flying the T-6 Texan II trainer.
After his Squadron Commander tour, he served as the Chief, Security Assistance Policy, International Training and Education for the Office of the Deputy Under Secretary of the Air Force, International Affairs (SAF/IA). In this capacity he was responsible for developing, coordinating and implementing policy to optimize the U.S. Air Force’s security cooperation programs with partner nations to include managing aviation and technical training courses, flying exercises and requirements for international partners.
Prior to his assignment to the HAW, Col Sparrow was the Vice Commander, 3rd Wing, Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska providing the commander, U.S. Pacific Command, trained and equipped tactical air dominance forces, command and control platforms, and strategic and tactical airlift resources for contingency operations to include interception of hostile forces within the Alaskan North American Aerospace Defense Command Region. The 3rd Wing operated C-17, F-22, E-3, and C-12 aircraft to support this mission set.
He is a Command Pilot with over 6,000 flying hours in T-37, T-38, C-5, T-1, C-17, T-6, C-12, and E-3 aircraft.


Colonel Jurgen Van der Biezen

Commander MMU, Royal Netherlands Air Force
Colonel Jurgen Van der Biezen

Colonel Jurgen van der Biezen started his Air Force career in 1981. After graduating from pilot training in 1985 he flew the NF-5 and F-16 and was assigned as squadron commander and Deputy Base Commander Airbase Volkel.

In 2011 he switched to the Air Transport domain. He was assigned twice to the European Air Transport Command as Head OPS and Functional Division. As of 10 July 2019 he is assigned to be the first Commander Multinational MRTT Unit .

Col van der Biezen accumulated some 2,200 hours in the F-16 with a grand total of 3900 flying hours. During summer 2019 he will convert to the A330 MRTT.

Colonel Melecio Hernandez Quinones

Ala 31 Commander, Spanish Air Force
Colonel Melecio Hernandez Quinones

Mr Jan Der Kinderen

MMF System Manager, Aviation Support Division, NATO Support and Procurement Agency (NSPA)
Mr Jan Der Kinderen

After being active duty in the Royal Netherlands Air Force for 34 years as a Logistics Officer and Project Manager, he made a career switch on 1 February 2019 to join NSPA as System Manager for the Multi-role Tanker Transport Fleet (MMF). As System Manager he is responsibility for the overall performance of the A-330 MRTT’s in the MMF, where his current focus lies with supporting the Multinational MRTT Unit and arranging the follow-on support, where the acquisition of the aircraft is handed over to OCCAR.

Mr Julian Stinton

Marketing and Sales , TLD Group
Mr Julian Stinton

Mr Laurent Donnet

Managing Director, Avidonn Consulting
Mr Laurent Donnet

Laurent Donnet is a colonel in the Belgian Air Force Reserve and as aviation expert working as a freelance consultant since November 2016.
He joined the Royal Military Academy in 1985 and graduated as a military pilot in 1990. He served as an F16 fighter pilot from 1991 till 2007 and totalizes 2100 Hrs on the aircraft. Throughout his flying career he occupied several positions, finishing as a squadron commander in 2005. He participated to Operation Allied Force in 1999 over Kosovo and was detachment commander of the first Belgian detachment in Kabul in 2005. 
After his operational assignments, he attended Staff College in Paris and worked at the Strategy Department of the Belgian Joint Headquarters in the Capabilities Development Branch as air expert.
He then joined the European Defence Agency (EDA) in April 2009 and stayed until October 2016. First, as Project Officer in Deployability where he dealt with strategic air and sea lift issues, then as Programme Manager for Airlift and AAR. He was in charge of several projects, out of which EDA’s European Air Transport Fleet partnership signed by twenty Member States in 2011. He also led the C27J and C295 projects and several AAR initiatives like one dealing with A400M AAR role equipment as well as one regarding AAR clearances and certification. In 2012 he initiated an AAR project that resulted into the now well-known Multinational MRTT Fleet.

Mr Matias Magnasco

Governmental Account Manager, Jetex
Mr Matias Magnasco

Mr Philippe Martou

Chief Preparedness - OSEP, World Food Programme
Mr Philippe Martou

Mr Simon Johns

Vice President Business Development & Sales , Embraer Defence & Security
Mr Simon Johns

Mrs Sadia Malick

Director, SMi Group Ltd
Mrs Sadia Malick

Sponsors and Exhibitors


SANA Metropolitan Hotel

Rua Soeiro Pereira Gomes, Parcela 2, Lisbon, Portugal


A number of our clients have been approached by third party organisations offering to book hotel rooms. We would advise that you do not book through them as they are not representing the SMi Group. SMi Group books all hotel rooms directly. If you are approached by a third party organisation then please contact us before making any bookings. If you have already booked a hotel room using a third party organisation, we would highly recommend contacting the hotel you were booked into to ensure a booking has been made for you. We would also advise you to please check the terms and conditions of the booking carefully.

Sponsors and Exhibitors


Sponsors and Exhibitors

Jetex Mission Planning

For government agencies and military entities, every mission is critical. Services and supplies need to be delivered on time, at cost, and as expected. Jetex provides worldwide ground support and fuel uplifts for routine flights, VIP operations, and relief flights to disaster and war-torn.

Our dedicated operations team, built by former military personnel, understands the requirements and nuances of even the most complex missions.

Jetex is a founding member of MEBAA, a strategic member of IATA, NBAA, EBACE, and is a frequent contributor and sponsor of the industry’s outreach programs.

Fly your mission and let Jetex handle the rest.


Sponsors and Exhibitors

Leveraging the design and integrated support of commercial and military aircraft, trainers and unmanned aerial vehicles, Leonardo has developed mission-specific aircraft. The C27J is the most flexible, robust and reliable tactical transport aircraft on the market. Designed to support a variety of missions such as intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance missions and tactical transport and built to operate from short unpaved runways in the harshest environments. Leonardo is a world player in Aerospace, Defence, Security and Space, developing advanced components to fully integrated systems and platforms.

TLD Group

Sponsors and Exhibitors

TLD Group is the global leader for Ground Support Equipment and its sustainment. We design, manufacture, field and support high quality specialised military GSE, as well as a wide commercial range compatible with military airlift and MRTT platforms. TLD’s operationally proven, air-transportable PFA-25 and PFA-50 K-Loaders, High and Low Pressure Air Conditioners, Liquid Chillers and Weapons Loaders support leading air forces on deployed and main base operations around the world.


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SANA Metropolitan Hotel

Rua Soeiro Pereira Gomes
Parcela 2

SANA Metropolitan Hotel
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CPD stands for Continuing Professional Development’. It is essentially a philosophy, which maintains that in order to be effective, learning should be organised and structured. The most common definition is:

‘A commitment to structured skills and knowledge enhancement for Personal or Professional competence’

CPD is a common requirement of individual membership with professional bodies and Institutes. Increasingly, employers also expect their staff to undertake regular CPD activities.

Undertaken over a period of time, CPD ensures that educational qualifications do not become obsolete, and allows for best practice and professional standards to be upheld.

CPD can be undertaken through a variety of learning activities including instructor led training courses, seminars and conferences, e:learning modules or structured reading.


There are approximately 470 institutes in the UK across all industry sectors, with a collective membership of circa 4 million professionals, and they all expect their members to undertake CPD.

For some institutes undertaking CPD is mandatory e.g. accountancy and law, and linked to a licence to practice, for others it’s obligatory. By ensuring that their members undertake CPD, the professional bodies seek to ensure that professional standards, legislative awareness and ethical practices are maintained.

CPD Schemes often run over the period of a year and the institutes generally provide online tools for their members to record and reflect on their CPD activities.


Professional bodies and Institutes CPD schemes are either structured as ‘Input’ or ‘Output’ based.

‘Input’ based schemes list a precise number of CPD hours that individuals must achieve within a given time period. These schemes can also use different ‘currencies’ such as points, merits, units or credits, where an individual must accumulate the number required. These currencies are usually based on time i.e. 1 CPD point = 1 hour of learning.

‘Output’ based schemes are learner centred. They require individuals to set learning goals that align to professional competencies, or personal development objectives. These schemes also list different ways to achieve the learning goals e.g. training courses, seminars or e:learning, which enables an individual to complete their CPD through their preferred mode of learning.

The majority of Input and Output based schemes actively encourage individuals to seek appropriate CPD activities independently.

As a formal provider of CPD certified activities, SMI Group can provide an indication of the learning benefit gained and the typical completion. However, it is ultimately the responsibility of the delegate to evaluate their learning, and record it correctly in line with their professional body’s or employers requirements.


Increasingly, international and emerging markets are ‘professionalising’ their workforces and looking to the UK to benchmark educational standards. The undertaking of CPD is now increasingly expected of any individual employed within today’s global marketplace.

CPD Certificates

We can provide a certificate for all our accredited events. To request a CPD certificate for a conference , workshop, master classes you have attended please email events@smi-online.co.uk

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