Air Force officials asked industry for estimates on updating the T-1A Jayhawk fleet with a new cockpit and avionics suite. The service seeks to keep these airplanes viable for their projected service life out to 2035 via a “modern avionics suite replacement to maintain current capabilities and ensure flight operations at all times, in all civil and military airspace,” states the service’s Jan. 9 request for information. The Jayhawk’s current avionics are obsolete “in no less than three known systems,” according to the notice, which gives industry until mid February to supply ideas and pricing. The Air Force uses T-1s to train pilots and combat systems officers. The RFI is a preliminary step toward potentially refitting the Jayhawk fleet of 178 airplanes and 16 simulators based at Columbus AFB, Miss.; JB San Antonio, Tex.; Laughlin AFB, Tex.; Vance AFB, Okla.; and NAS Pensacola, Fla., states the notice.
The Air Force isn’t giving up on its long-frustrated efforts to retire older aircraft, as the department’s leader continues to talk with lawmakers about plans to free up funds for its modernization efforts, Undersecretary of the Air Force Gina Ortiz Jones said Nov. 30.