US Air Force officials have released requirements for the T-X trainer aircraft family of systems that will replace the T-38 Talon under the ‘Bending the Cost Curve’ initiative.
The release follows Secretary of the Air Force Deborah Lee James’ emphasis on increased dialogue with industry to build affordability into the acquisition process, according to USAF Website.
“The industry dialogue will help guide Air Force evaluation of threshold and objective requirements, producing better informed cost-capability decisions,” James said.
“The T-X requirements are being released approximately 10 months earlier than under the normal acquisition process and is part of an ongoing effort for more deliberate and open engagement with industry,” said Brig. Gen. Dawn Dunlop, the director of plans, programs and requirements at Air Education and Training Command.
The initial draft requirements were released in 2012, allowing industry to make more informed, early design decisions, Dunlop said. Ultimately, the collaboration will shape a more capable and affordable pilot training system for the Air Force.
The T-38 is no longer a practical trainer to prepare Air Force pilots for newer, more advanced aircraft, Dunlop said. Currently, 12 of 18 advanced pilot training tasks can’t be completed with the T-38, relying on fighter and bomber formal training units to complete the training at a much greater cost.
“Cockpit and sensor management are fundamentally different today in 4th- and 5th-generation aircraft than it was when the T-38 was built in 1961,” Dunlop said.
“While the T-38 has been upgraded to a glass cockpit, the inability to upgrade the T-38’s performance and simulated sensor capability presents a growing challenge each year to effectively teach the critical skills essential to today’s military pilots.”Brig.
Gen. Dawn Dunlop said.
A second issue for the T-38, according to Dunlop, is aircraft sustainment. The T-38s assigned to AETC have not met the command’s requirement for 75-percent availability since 2011, which means many are not mission capable and unavailable for training.
The T-X requirements identify three key performance characteristics for the advanced pilot training mission: sustained G, simulator visual acuity and performance, and aircraft sustainment. While there are just over 100 requirements in all, these were the most critical to ensure the T-X Family of Systems closes training gaps and creates strategic agility for the future. A highlight in the requirements is embedded training with synthetic sensors and data link. Significant progress has been made the past decade in synthetic training that very closely approximates the real system. Currently, nine partner air forces already have advanced pilot training systems that take advantage of these increased capabilities. The Air Force plans to award a contract for 350 T-Xs to replace the 431 AETC T-38s in the fall of 2017, with initial operational capability by the end of 2023. The service will accept proposals for currently fielded and clean-sheet designs to meet the Air Force’s undergraduate pilot and introduction to fighter fundamentals training needs. One requirement not part of the release is for the T-X to serve in a “red air” or adversary role, during live-fly exercises. The fiscal year 2016 budget includes approximately $40 million across the Future Year Defense Plan in Stores-Aircraft Interface funds as a wedge to provide future planning or development options related to T-X.
“The money for the Stores-Aircraft Interface project should be considered separately from the Advanced Replacement T-X program,” said Gen. Robin Rand, the commander of AETC. “A T-X variant is just one option for red air if we decide there’s a requirement for it.” The requirements released March 20 were shaped by cross-talks between major command leaders, program office discussions and partner buy-in, Rand said.
“The T-X offers the right capabilities to train our Air Force pilots well into the future,” Rand continued.
Raytheons Integrated Defense Systems recently has won a $212.6 million contract to provide upgrades to the Patriot missile system purchased by US allies
An Indian Navy plan to purchase the Japanese ShinMaywa US2i amphibious aircraft may not happen during the proposed visit of Indian Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar to Japan in two weeks time. "No decision has been taken by the Government for the procurement of US 2i amphibian aircraft from Japan," Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar told the lower house of the Indian parliament yesterday
China has demanded that the US explain its "large-scale and organized cyber spying and phone tapping activities" to the international community. The USA should explain as soon as possible, rather than making irresponsible accusations, Chinas Ministry of Defense told global Times on Thursday
Korea Aerospace Industries (KAI) is said to have made $150,000 payment to Michael Cohen, US President Donald Trumps personal lawyer in November 2017. The payments were made to Essential Consultants LLC, a company established by Cohen in Delaware, according to a memo released by Michael Avenatti on Twitter Thursday
Defense contractors Lockheed Martin, Boeing, Northrop Grumman, Raytheon and Sierra Nevada have been put into competition against each other to build the US Air Forces $16.3 billion T-X trainer
Boeing and its partner Saab yesterday completed the first flight of their all-new T-X single-engine fighter trainer airplane, which is designed specifically for the U.S
Boeing and its partner Saab AB have unveiled their two production T-X aircraft for the US Air Force trainer competition. The aircraft revealed Tuesday is an all-new aircraft designed specifically for the U
Curtiss-Wright Corp announced today that it has been contracted to assess the capability of cost effective commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) hardware and software to perform airborne radar signal processing for the US Air Force organized Next Generation Radar evaluation program. This assessment is being performed at Curtiss-Wright by running and optimizing SAR (Synthetic Aperture Radar) and GMTI (Ground Moving Target Indicator) benchmarks on Curtiss-Wright COTS hardware solutions
The US Air Force has test-launched an unarmed Minuteman 3 missile that carried reentry vehicle on Friday. The missile blasted off at 3:53 a
USAF Awards Boeing $999 Million A-10 Thunderbolt II Re-Winging Contract
Houthi Air Defences Destroy US-Built Saudi MQ-9 Drone: Report
Raytheon To Support Standard Missiles Of US, Korea, Taiwan & 4 Others
Sikorsky To Buy Spare Parts To Perform Repair Works Of US Navy’s...
Elbit Systems Pitches For Lockheed Martin F-21 Jet Project in India
India's First Beyond Visual Range Air-to-Air Missile Ready
Russian AF to Receive Upgrade Su-30SM Jet with Engine from Su-35 Fighter...
Turkish Air Force Seeks Su-35 after F-35 Deal Collapse
Upgrade of Russias Sukhoi Su-30SM fighters to equip them with armaments, radar, sensors and engines from the more powerful Su-35...
US companies sanctioned by China for supplying weapons to Taiwan may be denied rare earth elements (REEs), which have critical...
While the US F-35 stealth aircraft has become one the fastest selling fighter jets in the world aircraft market, thanks...
Russian state-run Almaz-Antey has released additional data on its latest export-version of Buk-M3 Viking air defense missile system (ADMS)
The MiG-29, one of Russias most exported military jet has been upgraded in India that expands its capabilities from an...
Russian fifth generation fighter aircraft (FGFA) Su-57 will for the first time perform flights during the ARMY 2018 event near...