09 Juni 2014
SIAI-Marchetti S-211 PAF jet trainer (photo : Timawa)
Reactivation of additional S-211s to train F/A-50 pilots
MANILA,(PNA) -- The decision to reactivate three more SIAI-Marchetti S-211 jet trainers is aimed at increasing the number of aerial assets needed to screen and train prospective F/A-50 pilots.
This was revealed by Air Defense Wing official Col. Miguel Ernesto Okol in a message to the PNA.
The additional S-211s will provide incoming pilots of the South Korean-built jet plane with the flight time and training needed for fast aircraft operations.
"So far, we have three (S-211) operational and we are requesting (funds) for CY (calender year) 2015 to operationalize one," Okol stressed.
He added that reactivation for two more S-211s are afoot.
"We have two more after this but (this is) subject to funding," Okol disclosed.
The F/A-50 "Fighting Eagle" is expected to be in service by the third quarter of 2015.
Earlier, Okol said that four PAF pilots will be deployed to South Korea before the end of the year to undergo familiarization training in the Korean Aerospace Industries (KAI) F/A-50 "Golden Eagle".
He added that these officers are relatively junior and only have the rank of captain and major.
Aside from this, these PAF officials relatively have high jet time compared to other pilots.
Okol said that these officials have accrued their jet time flying SIAI-Marchetti S-211 jet trainers which doubles as attack aircraft of the PAF.
"These men will be rated as test pilots and operational pilots of the F/A-50s while those who only have 200 to 300 hours of jet hours will be first made to undergo F/A-50 simulator training before being trained and certified by our test pilots for F/A-50 operations," the PAF official said in Filipino.
Deployment of these PAF pilots to South Korea for training and familiarization briefing on the F/A-50 will be determined later, Okol said.