Saturday, April 13, 2024

First T-7A arrives at Edwards AFB to begin U.S. Air Force flight testing

The T-7A Red Hawk, the next-generation advanced trainer for the U.S. Air Force, reached a significant milestone as the first production representative jet, APT-2, completed a 1,400-mile cross-country flight to Edwards Air Force Base in California.

Piloted by a joint U.S. Air Force and Boeing aircrew, the aircraft made strategic stops at Air Force bases in Oklahoma, New Mexico, and Arizona for refueling and to showcase the cutting-edge trainer to base employees.

Evelyn Moore, Vice President and Program Manager for T-7 programs, emphasized the importance of this moment, stating, “This is a pivotal moment for the T-7 program. Bringing the T-7A Red Hawk to the heart of the U.S. Air Force’s test community at Edwards for dynamic flight testing will prove the jet’s performance as an agile and safe trainer for future pilots.”

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Boeing delivered the first Red Hawk to the Air Force on September 15, marking the commencement of the next phase of flight testing at Edwards Air Force Base. Air Force test pilots will gradually expand the flight envelope, beginning with flutter testing, once they become familiar with the aircraft.

Col. Kirt Cassell, Division Chief, U.S. Air Force, T-7A Red Hawk program, expressed confidence in the team’s ability to overcome any challenges that may arise during testing. He stated, “Like most test programs, we’ll have discovery and we’ll overcome it quickly. This is the right team to go after any challenges we find.”

In 2018, the Air Force awarded Boeing a $9.2 billion contract for 351 T-7A advanced trainers, 46 simulators, and support, aiming to replace the aging T-38 aircraft.

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Executive Editor

About author:

Emily Ryan Miller
Emily Ryan Miller
Emily Ryan Miller is an experienced journalist with excellent analytical skills and a deep understanding of military affairs. With her professional diligence and passion for the defense theme, Emily continues to inform the world about important aspects of the military sphere and deeply understands the significance of researching and tracking military events for the public and national security.

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