Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Second Hand Training Aircraft for HAF

DefenceNet reports that the Hellenic Air Force is acquiring 7 second hand T-2C/E Buckeye training aircraft from the United States. The aircraft will arrive in Greece by Easter. The aircraft will all be flight worthy although most of the 7 aircraft will be used as a source of spare parts for the existing T-2 aircraft operating from the 120 Air Training Wing in Kalamata.

Today the Wing operates 35 T-2E and 5 T-2Cs in 362 and 363 Squadrons. These aircraft are also tasked with Close Air Support (CAS).

The aircraft will arrive from Jacksonville in Florida. The last T-2 aircraft were retired from the US Navy in 2008.

The acquisition of these 7 aircraft is an interim solution in order to retain operational effectiveness of advanced training in Kalamata. The plans to replace the ageing T-2 with a new Lead In Fighter Training aircraft is currently in the top three of priorities for the Air Force. Original plans were for 40 new aircraft with a budget of €900 million but the requirement was subsequently dropped to 37.

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