Despite a two-year delay due to design issues, with a new schedule targeting production in 2025 and initial operational capability in 2027, Boeing stressed the positive aspects of the T-7A programme at this year’s Paris Airshow.
Boeing’s T-7A Red Hawk supersonic advanced jet trainer has been designed using advanced technologies. It recently received Military Flight Release certification, allowing its first flight with military pilots.
Donn Yates, Boeing’s T-7A business development director, told media at Le Bourget that with 500 test flights on Boeing’s two production-representative jets (PRJs) completed, officials are cautiously optimistic as the United States Air Force prepares to take possession of the jets for their own flight testing. We think when we get to the Engineering and Manufacturing Development (EMD) phase of the programme, hopefully,” Yates said, “we’re going to be good because a lot of great people are working on it together, both on the Air Force side and Boeing.”
While acknowledging problems with the emergency escape system, he said that recent test results have shown improvement and that Boeing is confident that the ACES-5 will be the best ejection seat available?
Yates admitted that every new aircraft programme has problems and delays and the those of the T-7A are no different, but they will be solved. He reiterated the success for the T-7A’s design features. The engine that can be changed in 90 minutes, the ejection seat in 30 minutes, and a turnaround time between training missions of 15 minutes.
He also highlighted the fact that Boeing has inked with augmented reality firm Red 6 to develop an advanced training technology for fighter pilot trainees. Aspiring fighter pilots in the Boeing T-7A advanced jet trainer could eventually face off against computer-generated enemy aircraft generated through Red 6’s Advanced Tactical Augmented Reality System (ATARS) which, Yates claimed, will be a game changer.
by David Oliver