Hawker Beechcraft Corporation’s (HBC) Beechcraft AT-6 Light Attack and Armed Reconnaissance (LAAR) aircraft last week concluded an Operational Assessment (OA) at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base in Tucson, Ariz. United States Air Force (USAF) and Air National Guard (ANG) pilots participated in the OA, which was conducted Sept. 28-Oct. 15 at Davis-Monthan’s Snowbird facility.
“The assessment not only allows us to showcase the capabilities of the aircraft, but it also helps us gather feedback from the pilots,” said Jim Maslowski, HBC president, U.S. and International Government Business. “With the capabilities of this aircraft, it comes as no surprise that the initial responses from the pilots were overwhelmingly positive.”
USAF and ANG assessor pilots participated in classroom and cockpit ground training, and in preparatory and evaluation flights. In the coming weeks, pilots will submit written evaluations of the aircraft’s performance.
This week, the AT-6 is on display at the Air National Guard/Air Force Reserve Command Weapons and Tactics Conference (WEPTAC), which concludes Oct. 22 in Tucson. WEPTAC is instrumental in determining the tactics, training, capabilities and hardware required to accomplish air reserve component missions. Following the conference, weapons testing will be conducted on the aircraft Oct. 25-29 at the Barry M. Goldwater Range near Gila Bend, Ariz. The AT-6 will drop 25 pound BDU-33 and 500-pound BDU-50 training rounds during the testing.
The AT-6 draws its heritage from the Beechcraft T-6 A/B Texan trainer aircraft. Designed to provide close air support and meet the demands of the irregular warfare environment, the AT-6 is outfitted with a more powerful engine, a variety of self-protection mechanisms, multiple secure communications functions and advanced surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities.
Hawker Beechcraft Corporation is a world-leading manufacturer of business, special mission and trainer aircraft – designing, marketing and supporting aviation products and services for businesses, governments and individuals worldwide. The company’s headquarters and major facilities are located in Wichita, Kan., with operations in Salina, Kan.; Little Rock, Ark.; Chester, England, U.K.; and Chihuahua, Mexico. The company leads the industry with a global network of more than 100 factory-owned and authorized service centers. For more information, visit www.hawkerbeechcraft.com.