16 Juni 2010
Grob 120 basic trainer aircraft (photo : Airliners)
At SimTecT 2010, Thales revealed details of its offering for the ADF's Interim Basic Flying Training (IBFT) contract, for which a source selection is due within weeks.
The company has proposed a Flight Screening and Basic Flying Training system based at RAAF East Sale, in line with the RAAF's wishes, and built around the Grob 120A piston engine trainer.
"The selection and initial training for 21st century fighter pilots requires the high performance and advanced systems delivered by a 21st century training aircraft," the company says.
Thales believes the Grob 120A is the only aircraft capable of meeting the RAAF’s requirements for both flight performance and crashworthiness levels. (photo : Defense Industry Daily)
The company believes the Grob 120A is the only aircraft capable of meeting the RAAF's current and foreseeable future requirements for both flight performance and crashworthiness levels compliant with FAR 25 amendment 59.
The current CT-4A trainer and the SF260 originally proposed by Thales do not meet these crashworthiness requirements, according to company sources.
The G120A is a modern, high-performance, aerobatic training aircraft in service with the French, Canadian, German and Israeli defence forces.
"With a 30 per cent performance improvement over the CT-4B, the G120A provides early identification of fast jet candidates, increasing training system efficiency," Thales says.
The aircraft also has a digital cockpit.
The RAAF's preference to have flight screening and basic flying training conducted on a defence base has been widely cited, and the Victorian government has offered considerable support to IBFT contenders planning to situate their operations at East or West Sale, near Port Phillip Bay.
"For Flight Screening candidates, exposure to the military environment is essential to determine if they are compatible with this way of life," Thales says.
"For trainees progressing to Basic Flying Training, life on a base surrounded by defence personnel provides a daily reminder of what they are striving to become.
"Candidates will interact not only with their instructors and peers, but the broader military population."