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 KAI FA-50 Golden Eagle (y derivados)

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MensajeTema: KAI FA-50 Golden Eagle (y derivados)   Miér 5 Oct 2016 - 16:20

Porque ya es hora que tenga su propio lugarcito en el foro:

Air Force and Lockheed to initiate airworthiness tests for FA-50
22 August, 2016
| BY: Leigh Giangreco
| Washington DC

Following an airworthiness assessment of Textron AirLand’s dual light attack fighter and trainer, Scorpion, the US Air Force is moving toward a second cooperative research and development agreement (CRADA) with Lockheed Martin.

The USAF is far along in discussions with Lockheed to enter a CRADA for the FA-50, air force spokesman Ed Gulick told FlightGlobal. The FA-50, a joint venture with Lockheed and Korean Aerospace, is the advanced, light combat version of the T-50 Golden Eagle. The fighter is equipped with Link 16 tactical data link and can carry both Boeing’s Joint Direct Attack Munition and Textron’s CBU-97 Sensor Fuzed Weapon.

After a March industry day with ten aerospace companies at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Lockheed and Textron emerged with the most mature designs for the first CRADAs, Camron Gorguinpour, the air force’s director of transformational innovation told FlightGlobal. Textron’s CRADA has already been executed and the USAF expects to begin Lockheed’s CRADA within the coming months, he said.

The USAF’s new CRADAs allow the service to assess an aircraft’s airworthiness without a programme of record and could open up sales to customers besides the US military and foreign military sales customers. Industry interest in the CRADAs has often been driven by domestic companies looking to market abroad, though nothing about participating in the agreement precludes a company from trying to sell the aircraft to the USAF, he adds.

“With the information we provide, they can go back and modify the designs to account for certain risks that we might identify,” Gorguinpour says. “But also, these aircraft might be sold directly to foreign allies. So having the air force review the aircraft for air worthiness that lays out the risk is something that potential foreign customers might value because they like to see that the air force has actually looked at these things.”

But while Textron’s CRADA positions the Scorpion for foreign markets, the FA-50 has already scored numerous foreign buyers. The Republic of South Korea has at least one operational squadron of FA-50s and the Philippines has ordered a total of 12 aircraft, the first of which were delivered last fall. In 2013, Iraq also ordered 24 T-50IQs, a variant of the FA-50. Meanwhile, Lockheed still has potential South American customers in their sights for an FA-50 buy.

Instead, Lockheed’s CRADA could mean an inexpensive advertisement for its USAF T-X trainer bid, according to Richard Aboulafia, vice-president of analysis for the Teal Group.

“With the Scorpion, it’s more complicated because there’s no civil approval,” he says. “But with the FA-50, there are several operators in various incarnations. It might be good publicity at a low price, if nothing else, for T-X.”

Lockheed’s bid for the T-X trainer, the T-50A, shares the same airframe and single General Electric F404 engine as the FA-50. The fighter variant is distinguished by its Elta Systems EL/M-2032 pulse doppler radar, which helps enable the aircraft’s air-to-air and air-to-ground missions.

“I think an assessment of its combat effectiveness probably hinges on more than the US assessment,” Aboulafia says. “But on the other hand, I guess this couldn’t hurt.”

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MensajeTema: Re: KAI FA-50 Golden Eagle (y derivados)   Jue 15 Dic 2016 - 16:21

Lockheed showcases T-X readiness in South Carolina
08 December, 2016
| SOURCE: Flightglobal.com
| BY: Stephen Trimble

Lockheed Martin offered a vivid glimpse on 8 December of the company’s preparations to win US Air Force’s hotly-contested contract to supply 350 trainers to the US Air Force.

A newly-converted factory in Greenville, South Carolina, was opened for to the press for the first time to give journalists a tour of the company’s proposed final assembly line, suite of ground-based training system demonstrators and even a brief flying display of the first of two Lockheed/KAI F/A-50s to arrive in the USA for risk reduction activity.

“We are ready now to start building T-50As in support of the [advanced pilot training] programme,” says Don Erickson, Lockheed’s site director in Greenville.

The four-way competition between Lockheed’s T-50A, Boeing/Saab’s T-X, Northrop Grumman’s Model 400 and Raytheon/Leonardo’s T-100 remains up to a year away from a conclusion. Lockheed expects the USAF to release a final request for proposals by the end of the year, starting a 90-day clock for the bidders to submit their proposals. The USAF evaluation could take months, but Lockheed expects to hear the service’s decision by the end of 2017.

In the meantime, the bidders are pursuing different strategies for promoting their bids. Raytheon will host the company’s first public event on 12 December on the site of a greenfield factory in Meridian, Mississippi. Boeing hosted a highly publicized unveiling of the first T-X prototype in a September ceremony in St. Louis, but since then has gone quiet. Northrop allowed its prototype Model 400 to be photographed by passers-by at the company’s flight test base in Mojave, California, but has almost no other public statements about details of their bid.

By contrast, Lockheed is underscoring what it considers the lowest-risk approach in the competition by being flagrantly open about details of the company’s approach to winning the T-X competition. The company had considered a proposing Skunk Works-designed aircraft, but chose instead to offer an updated and improved version of the F/A-50, a light attack variant of the T-50 trainer that entered service 14 years ago. Lockheed considers the Greenville site itself as a low-risk decision, as the 11 hangars the company owns already hum with an experienced workforce that has modified thousands of US military aircraft since 1984.

While rivals hold back basic details of decided features, Lockheed officials openly acknowledge the components of their bid that remain undecided. Lockheed plans to modify the F/A-50 by removing the internal gun, adding a large area display, installing a dorsal aerial refueling tank and tweaking the cockpit ergonomics, including moving the rudder pedals back a few inches to accommodate the USAF’s broader range of requirements for pilots’ sizes.

Other decisions have yet to be made, including the supplier for the ejection seat. The Martin-Baker Mk16, which is installed in the Lockheed F-35 as the US16, is featured in South Korea’s T-50 trainer and F/A-50 fighter. But Lockheed is considering the United Technologies Aerospace Systems ACES 5 ejection seat, which is the latest version of the ACES franchise established in the Lockheed F-16, Boeing F-15 and Northrop Grumman B-2. Another item up for grabs is the supplier for the T-50A’s unique active sidestick controllers, which allow the instructor pilot in the back seat to physically see how the student pilot in the front seat is making control inputs.

Lockheed also showed off a full suite of ground-based training systems, with seven major components prepared to enter service almost immediately. A slight exception is the domed operational flight trainer. The demonstrator on site today is shown with 20-27 visual resolution. That beats 20-40 acuity of the F-35’s domed trainer, but falls short of the USAF’s 20-25 requirement. But Lockheed says they have the technology to meet the USAF’s requirements, along with the capability to upgrade as projection technology advances.

Lockheed’s test pilots, meanwhile, are getting acquainted with the aircraft itself, a pre-requisite in a competition that assigns the winning bidder with the task of training the USAF’s initial cadre of instructors. Though developed from the wing and fly-by-wire control architecture of the F-16, Lockheed’s pilots have perceived several improvements in the T-50. Compared to the F-16’s highly sensitive sidestick, the T-50’s controller is more forgiving to suit student pilots, says T-50A chief test pilto Mike “Red” Ward. The T-50 also was developed with different landing gear than the F-16, averting the latter’s reputation for bouncing too many landings, Ward adds.

The point of all this activity is to underscore that Lockheed is ready to meet the USAF’s timelines. In fact, Lockheed says the company is prepared to achieve initial operational capability in Fiscal 2023, or one year faster than the government’s latest schedule.

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