08 Juli 2017
RAAF starts flying the latest digital standard of the Hawk advanced jet trainer (photo : AustralianAviation)
Initial operational capability (IOC) for the Lead-In Fighter Capability Assurance Program (AIR 5438 Phase 1A) for the RAAF’s Hawk 127 has been recognised at a ceremony at RAAF Base Williamtown.
Each upgraded Hawk 127 lead-in fighter provides new training capabilities including simulated radar, electronic warfare, digital mapping, ground proximity warning system and traffic collision avoidance.
The upgrade program also includes the replacement of two legacy synthetic training devices with three full-mission simulators provided by CAE.
The first students at 79 Squadron at RAAF Base Pearce have now commenced training on the upgraded jet.
“The upgraded BAE Systems Hawk aircraft provides the RAAF with a leading-edge capability, and coupled with the CAE full-mission simulators delivers a highly impressive Lead-In Fighter Training System that will ensure Hawk retains its effectiveness into the next decade and beyond,” BAE Systems Australia chief executive Glynn Phillips said in a statement.
“The upgrade brings the RAAF Hawk up to the same platform capability as the most modern Hawk aircraft around the globe, allowing for future shared development and potentially shared cost across multiple users.”
Engineering teams from BAE Systems in Australia and the UK, together with CAE and Cubic, have worked with the Commonwealth to deliver the capability.
A joint team of BAE Systems and RAAF technicians has so far completed upgrading 12 of the 33 aircraft in the fleet, with the upgrade work expected to be completed by early 2019.