Budgets Pressures on Future Trainer

Le Bourget, France —Although the Air Force’s requirements might leave room for a “clean-sheet design” to be its future T-X trainer aircraft, budget pressure most likely will oblige the service to opt for an off-the-shelf design, USAF acquisition executive David Van Buren said Tuesday. Speaking here at the Paris Air Show, Van Buren said he can’t say service officials would rule out a brand-new airplane, but “I feel there will be increasing budget pressures” compelling the service to modernize “in the best way,” and that is likely to be an existing aircraft. Without elaborating, though, Van Buren suggested that the Air Force may delay T-X. “The budget is going to impact the timing of the program,” he said.