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First T-38 Replacement Arrives At Edwards

T-7A Red Hawk Reports for Duty for the Very First Time

The long-awaited replacement for themilitary’s T-38 Talon twin-engine jet trainer has finally arrived at Edwards Air Force Base, with the initial T-7A tendered to the Integrated Test Force.

The newfangled aircraft has faced some setbacks in the development process, from ejection seat issues to next-gen electronics interfaces. Now that the force has it in-hand and in-flight, the testing and certification process begins in earnest. The particular plane is APT-2, the first production plane off the line. The team is expected to move quickly through the process, helped along by Boeing’s assistance in remote simulation and networking. Teams from the Integrated Test Force and Boeing have been using Distributed Test Operations to stay on the same page between St. Louis and Edwards. Now that they have the aircraft, the T-7A will be put through up to 3 flights per day. First up? Using APT-2 for envelope expansion testing before moving into mission systems. 

“This arrival marks an exciting transition into the next phase of developmental flight” noted Major Jonathan Aronoff, T-7A test pilot. “The T-7A gives immense capability updates that will allow the Air Force to train the next generation of combat aviators. Success of first delivery is truly a testament to the joint USAF-industry team we have in place.”



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