Boeing and partner Saab have completed the first flight of their second production-ready T-X aircraft designed specifically for the US Air Force $16.3 billion advanced pilot training requirement.
The Boeing T-X aircraft has one engine, twin tails, stadium seating, and an advanced cockpit with embedded training. The all-new, purpose-built design offers flexibility to evolve as technology, missions, and training needs change, Boeing said in a statement Monday.
Boeing and Saab revealed their design in September 2016 and flew the first aircraft last December.
Among the bidders for the T-X program, Northrop Grumman and BAE Systems have decided not to submit a proposal for the US Air Force T-X Trainer program after carefully examining requirements and acquisition strategy as stated in the final request for proposals issued on Dec. 30, 2016.
Raytheon and Leonardo-Finmeccanica had jointly announced that they would not be participating in the US Air Force T-X trainer acquisition program in January this year. In February, Raytheon backed out and Leonardo decided to pursue the competition alone with its T-100 integrated Training Systems.
Northrop Grumman-BAE Systems team has backed out of the trainer program in Febraruy this year. BAE systems-Northrop Grumman and L-3 systems were offering a new aircraft to the US.
Apart from Boeing-Saab, Lockheed Martin-KAI team is offering T-50A. T-X will replace the US Air Force’s aging T-38 aircraft. Initial operating capability is planned for 2024.