U.S. Air Force modernizes pilot, maintenance training with industry team, Rockwell Collins avionics

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa. Engineers at Rockwell Collins in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, are working with Field Aerospace, Nextant Aerospace, Flight Safety International, and other industry partners to help upgrade avionics systems on 178 U.S. Air Force T-1A Jayhawk trainer aircraft, and develop systems for training pilots and maintenance technicians.

U.S. Air Force modernizes pilot, maintenance training with industry team, Rockwell Collins avionics
U.S. Air Force modernizes pilot, maintenance training with industry team, Rockwell Collins avionics

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa. Engineers at Rockwell Collins in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, are working with Field Aerospace, Nextant Aerospace, Flight Safety International, and other industry partners to help upgrade avionics systems on 178 U.S. Air Force T-1A Jayhawk trainer aircraft, and develop systems for training pilots and maintenance technicians.

Field Aerospace engineers in Oklahoma City will upgrade the entire Air Force T-1A Jayhawk trainer fleet with Rockwell Collins’ Pro Line 21 avionics suite, which satisfies the Air Force’s current Avionics Modernization Program (AMP) requirements and need for growth as missions evolve. In addition to installing a new flight deck on T-1A aircraft, the industry team will develop 16 operational flight trainers and 14 part task trainers that match the new avionics configuration. The first prototypes will be delivered within the next year.

U.S. Air Force modernizes pilot, maintenance training with industry team, Rockwell Collins avionicsU.S. Air Force modernizes pilot, maintenance training with industry team, Rockwell Collins avionics
The Pro Line 21 avionics upgrade for the T-1A Jayhawk trainer provides advanced features on three large LCD displays.

Pro Line 21, used in business aviation and military platforms, brings “all the capabilities pilots want for operating in next-generation airspace, along with growth capabilities for advanced features such as integrated electronic charts and data link communications,” according to Craig Olson, vice president and general manager, business and regional systems for Rockwell Collins.

“We have a great track record of providing avionics systems which modernize large fleets of military and special mission aircraft,” says Dave Schreck, vice president and general manager, airborne solutions for Rockwell Collins’ Government Systems business. “We look forward to working with Field Aerospace, Nextant and Flight Safety to enable training for the next generation of U.S. Air Force pilots.”

Rockwell Collins’ Pro Line 21 has been fielded on more than 5,000 aircraft, providing operators with greater situational awareness. This “glass cockpit” system is designed for continuous improvement as operating requirements evolve, which was an important factor for this contract award, officials say.

T1a Jawhawk UsafThe underside view of a T-1A Jayhawk on a training mission over San Antonio recently (U.S. Air Force photo/Lt. Col. Russell Hopkinson)

The T-1A Jayhawk is a commercial derivative of the Beechjet/Hawker 400A, used to train future pilots of the Air Force’s airlift and tanker aircraft, including the KC-135, KC-10, KC-46, and C-130.

Field Aerospace is a U.S. SBA-qualified small business operating in the U.S. (Field Aerospace) and Canada (Field Aviation). For more than 70 years, Field has been making ordinary aircraft extraordinary for commercial and military customers all over the world, officials say, by designing, integrating, manufacturing, installing, flight testing, and certifying interior and exterior modifications and avionics upgrade programs. Field offers aviation-related contractor logistics support and program management office support to the U.S. military; intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance (ISR) modifications for special mission and maritime applications; aerospace parts manufacturing and subassembly services; and is a North American award-winning avionics equipment dealer and authorized service center.

Rockwell Collins (NYSE:COL) provides aviation and high-integrity solutions for commercial and military customers around the world, helping pilots safely and reliably navigate to the far corners of the earth; keep warfighters aware and informed in battle; deliver millions of messages for airlines and airports; and help passengers stay connected and comfortable throughout their journey, officials say, with flight deck avionics, cabin electronics, cabin interiors, information management, mission communications, and simulation and training.

T 1 Jayhawk UsafAn air-to-air view of a T-1 Jayhawk during a training mission. (U.S. Air Force photo by Terry Wasson)

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