Nextant Aerospace ready for T-1A avionics modernisation program with STC approval received

Terry Spruce

Cleveland, OHIO, Wednesday, 22 May 2019 – Nextant Aerospace, a global leader in aircraft and component remanufacturing and builders of the 400XTi, G90XT, and 604XT, announced it has received a Supplemental Type Certificate for the United States Air Force (USAF) T-1A avionics modernisation program. The FAA granted the STC which certifies the Collins Aerospace Pro Line 21 Avionics suite as an upgrade for the USAF T-1A Jayhawk fleet.

The unprecedented pace of progress and approvals on the program is noteworthy. Typically, an upgrade of this magnitude can take in excess of 18 months. Receiving the STC took a mere nine months from T-1A Prototype Induction to completing Certification Test Flight to FAA Certification.

Nextant was able to achieve this because of its expertise with the airframe and its excellent rapport with the FAA. Recognised as the industry leader in Beechjet 400A remanufacturing, Nextant applied all its experience and expertise to the USAF’s equivalent military commercial derivative T-1A and worked closely with the FAA’s Chicago Aircraft Certification Office (ACO) which granted the STC.

“The FAA Certification of the PL21 Avionics Suite on the USAF’s T-1A in nine months is a colossal achievement,” said Colonel Robert Leonard (retired USAF), Nextant Aerospace Director of Government Business. “This positions the team of companies – Field Aerospace, Nextant, and Collins Aerospace – to quickly progress on to Low Rate Production (LRP) between now and the end of the summer and begin Full Rate Production by the fall of 2019,” added Col. Leonard.

Nextant Aerospace shares the responsibility for modernising the entire USAF T-1A trainer aircraft fleet, operational flight trainers and part task trainers and is a primary subcontractor to Field Aerospace. The program eliminates avionics obsolescence issues and incorporates integrated ADS-B Out functionality that complies with the FAA national airspace use requirements.

“With the STC in hand, we are looking forward to providing the USAF aircrew with this updated technology at a pace that works for all. Depending on the rate at which the USAF provides the remaining aircraft to Field Aerospace, the teams will calibrate deliveries for Full Rate Production as early as October,” noted Mark O’Donnell, Nextant Aerospace Vice President.

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