U.S. Air Force’s future trainer jet makes 100th flight in test program

A future trainer jet of the U.S. Air Force being flight tested at Boeing’s St Louis plant has completed its 100th flight, a milestone in a $9 billion program to replace the ageing T-38 trainer fleet.

“Our joint Boeing and Saab team recently completed the 100th new Boeing T-X flight,” the Boeing said on Twitter, pointing to a “We [company] look forward to many more with the U.S. Air Force as we continue proving the safety and quality of this American-built trainer.”

The U.S. Air Force selected the Boeing T-X aircraft over its counterparts in September 2018, awarding a $9.1bn contract to Boeing for the delivery of 351 T-X aircraft, 46 simulators and associated ground equipment in October 2018.

Boeing in coordination with Saab offered the all-new system purpose-built for the U.S. Air Force training mission – with aircraft, ground based training and support designed together from the start.

Boeing awarded a $117.6m contract to Saab to carry out the engineering, manufacturing and development (EMD) of the trainer aircraft in October 2018.

Boeing T-X advanced pilot training system includes trainer aircraft, ground based training and support – designed together from the ground up. The system also provides interactive classroom lessons, computer-based training modules, adaptive training that adjusts to students’ needs, and a complete suite of instructor tools – for optimum results on the ground and in the ‘classroom in the sky.’

The system’s smart design features high wings, easy access panels and easy reach, fewer and more common fasteners, and easy access to critical items like the engine and seats. It’s also designed around common U.S. Air Force ground equipment and uses established suppliers to reduce supply chain complexity.

The Boeing T-X aircraft has one engine, twin tails, stadium seating and an advanced cockpit with embedded training.

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