The T-7A Red Hawk made stops at Air Force bases in Oklahoma, New Mexico and Arizona to refuel and offer base employees a firsthand look at the new advanced trainer before the final leg to Edwards. Boeing delivered the first Red Hawk to the Air Force on September 15.
“This is a pivotal moment for the T-7 program,” said Evelyn Moore, vice president and program manager, T-7 programs. “Bringing the T-7A Red Hawk to the heart of the US Air Force’s test community at Edwards for dynamic flight testing will prove the jet’s performance as an agile and safe trainer for future pilots.”
Once US Air Force test pilots are familiar with the aircraft, they will expand the flight envelope starting with flutter testing. Two other Red Hawks will follow to test various flight attributes and systems as part of a rigorous series of tests.
“Like most test programs, we’ll have discovery and we’ll overcome it quickly,” said Colonel Kirt Cassell, division chief, US Air Force, T-7A Red Hawk program. “This is the right team to go after any challenges we find.”
In 2018, the Air Force awarded Boeing a $9.2 billion contract for 351 T-7A advanced trainers, 46 simulators and support. The T-7A will replace the Air Force’s aging T-38 aircraft.
The T-7A was developed using digital modeling and design techniques and went from concept to first flight in 36 months. The aircraft incorporates open architecture software, digital fly-by-wire controls and cockpit technology that provide improved levels of safety and training for future fighter pilots.