The Beechcraft Texan T1 has replaced the Tucano in the basic fast jet training role. Students will progress onto the aircraft from the Prefect and move forwards to the Hawk T2.
Continuing the precedent set by the Tucano for employing a tandem-seat turboprop basic trainer, the Texan II replaces the analogue cockpit of the earlier machine with a digital glass cockpit featuring modern avionics. The aircraft's mission system is capable of generating simulated air-to-air targets and scoring against the release of simulated air-to-ground ordnance.
The Texan II name recalls the North American T-6 Texan of World War II, a type used extensively by the RAF and Royal Canadian Air Force as the Harvard. When the T-6A-1 was developed as the CT-156 for the NATO Flying Training in Canada programme, it was appropriately named Harvard II. Subsequent variants include the T-6B for the US Navy and T-6C export version.
Photo Credit: Peter R March