Press Release

Slovak Technical Museum and Czech aircraft manufacturer Aero signed a memorandum of understanding and cooperation

Odolena Voda, February 28, 2024 – The Slovak Technical Museum (STM), a branch of the Aviation Museum in Košice, and AERO Vodochody AEROSPACE (Aero) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding and Cooperation in the field of documentation, promotion and technical development of aviation. The mutual cooperation focuses on the importance of aviation, aviation technology and activities, recognizing their social significance in history, present and future.

The Memorandum includes, for example, cooperation in promoting activities in the field of documentation of the history of Czechoslovak aviation and contemporary Czech and Slovak aviation, mutual promotion of activities at public events, or the provision of technical assistance, support and advice. An important point of the Memorandum is the expansion of the Slovak Technical Museum’s aviation and aeronautical collection. Cooperation is also aimed at the implementation of thematic social and educational events or the promotion of the activities of the parties involved through publications, information, and promotional materials.

Ing. Viktor Sotona, MBA, President and Chairman of the Board of Aero, says: “Preserving, making accessible, and presenting the extremely rich history of the Czechoslovak aviation industry to the general and professional public is an important mission. We are therefore very pleased to have joined forces with the Slovak Aviation Museum and together we can set the right direction for the future.”

Although the Košice museum has made its mark on people’s memories primarily with its unique “aircraft gallery” – gifts from presidents and governments from Europe, Asia and the USA – the biggest challenge for the institution is to complete a comprehensive museum collection documenting the “golden era” of Czechoslovak aviation.

The fact that more than 100,000 aircraft were acquired for the Czech Republic in 2015 was reported by Mgr. Zuzana Šullová, Director General of the Slovak Technical Museum: “As museum professionals, we particularly appreciate all the support, advice and, above all, the responsibility of Aero also in matters of preserving the “legacy for future generations” and cooperation in the preservation and presentation of the technical cultural heritage in the field of aviation history.”

The city of Košice – the headquarters of STM and the STM-Museum of Aviation is closely linked to Aero’s products. Since the early 1960s, Košice and nearby Prešov have become training centers for Czechoslovak military aviation personnel. Hundreds of pilots and technical personnel were trained on Aero aircraft at airports in Prešov and especially in Košice until the beginning of the 21st century. They became centers that worked very closely together in the development of the L-29, L-39 of all versions, and the L-59. Military trials of the aircraft were carried out and in cooperation with the Aero’s development and design department, these aircraft were successfully introduced into service.

Military trials of the aircraft were carried out and in cooperation with the development and design department of Aero Vodochody, the above types of aircraft were successfully introduced into service. The culmination of this activity was the world-famous aerobatic group Biele Albatrosy, which for a decade (1992-2002) presented the aeronautical skills of Czech and Slovak military pilots on L-39 aircraft at the most important aviation days in Europe.

Ing. Miroslav Hájek, Director of the STM-Museum of Aviation: “One of the tools is this memorandum, the fulfilment of which by Aero and STM should ultimately contribute to building pride in technical maturity in the Czech and Slovak Republics. Our common goal is to promote the historical and current technical level of the aerospace industry in our territories.”

The signing of the Memorandum of Understanding continues the cooperation of both parties from 2022 in the organization of a very successful international conference on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of the birth of the chief designer of the Aero L-39 Albatros aircraft Ing. Jan Vlček, which took place at the STM-Museum of Aviation in Košice.

Ing. Jan Chvojka, Marketing and PR Director of Aero: “We are very proud of the design and visionary legacy of Jan Vlček, because the Albatros is a timeless aircraft that has contributed to the training of pilots of air forces of dozens of countries and is also the basis of the current L-39NG platform for training fighter pilots.”

The Aviation Museum in Košice presents restored, complete and fully functional unique aircraft such as the L-29 Dolphin, the first L-39 Albatros of the verification series v. 0001 or the L-39V – a version of the aircraft, of which only 8 were produced as part of the L-39 series and which was also part of the world-famous White Albatros aerobatic group. The Slovak Technical Museum has systematically documented the development of aviation and aviation technology since its foundation in 1947. A particularly positive breakthrough in the presentation of the results of this activity was the establishment of a separate branch of the STM-Museum of Aviation in Košice, which will open its 22nd visitor season in mid-April this year.

The Slovak Technical Museum is a state contributory organization established by the Ministry of Culture of the Slovak Republic and its main mission is the comprehensive documentation of the history and development of science and technology, production, transport, and industry in the Slovak Republic – building, preservation and presentation of the collection. The collection of aviation and aeronautical technology managed by the Slovak Technical Museum currently contains almost 1,500 collection items documenting the history of aviation, the development of aircraft, aircraft engines and instruments from the beginnings of flying to the recent past. It is presented on an area of almost 20 000 m2 in the unique Aviation Museum in Košice.

AERO Vodochody AEROSPACE a.s. focuses on the development, production, maintenance, and modernization of civil and military aircraft and is the largest aircraft manufacturer in the Czech Republic and one of the oldest aircraft manufacturers in the world. In the field of custom aircraft, Aero is a permanent partner of a number of military air forces and has a strong position in the market of military training and light combat aircraft. With 11,000 aircraft produced in its 100 years of existence, hundreds of L-39 Albatros aircraft still in service with dozens of military operators, and a number of demonstration teams and, in particular, the new L-39NG, Aero has established itself as a leader in the global trainer jet market. In the civil aviation sector, Aero works with major aircraft manufacturers on a wide range of projects and is a partner in several risk-sharing programs, where it is responsible not only for the manufacture and assembly of aircraft units but also for their development.

Contact persons:

Mgr. Zuzana Šullová, General Manager of the Slovak Technical Museum; +421 918 965 715

Ing. Miroslav Hájek, Director of the STM-Museum of Aviation in Košice; +421 905 573 374

Ing. Radka Černá, PR & Communications Manager, Aero; +420 608 974 258