Beechcraft Corporation announced on August 20, that it had completed the inaugural flight of its first production Beechcraft AT-6 light attack aircraft at its headquarters in Wichita, Kansas. With more than 1,600 hours already logged in AT-6 test aircraft, Beechcraft is offering the AT-6 to U.S. partner nations in need of light attack air support for the most demanding scenarios.
“This achievement highlights the tremendous effort of the entire Beechcraft team involved in the design, development and production of the AT-6,” said Bill Boisture, Beechcraft CEO. “We have seen a growing interest in the AT-6 from the defence establishment around the world and we are eager to provide proven reliability and a cost effective solution to meet the light attack mission needs of our customers.”
“This milestone event is thanks to the great teamwork of Beechcraft and our key supplier partners on this program,” said Russ Bartlett, president, Beechcraft Defense Company. “The AT-6 capabilities are robust. This light attack aircraft is outfitted with state-of-the-art equipment and avionics that will provide partnering nations with a proven air platform and weapons systems that are already in use by air forces around the world.”
The AT-6 is a multi-role, multi-mission aircraft system designed to meet the spectrum of needs for the light attack mission. Leveraging a range of highly-specialized, but off-the-shelf capabilities, the AT-6 is outfitted with state-of-the-art equipment such as Pratt and Whitney PT6A-68D engine, CMC Esterline’s mission modified Cockpit 4000, Lockheed Martin’s A-10C-based mission system and L-3 WESCAM’s MX-15Di sensor suite.
The aircraft has successfully demonstrated high-end net-centric and light attack capabilities and full compatibility with U.S. and NATO Joint Terminal Attack Controller systems during the ANG Operational Assessment and Joint Expeditionary Force Experiment in 2010. The AT-6 leads the light attack market with purpose-built capability, affordability, sustainability and interoperability for the most demanding of scenarios.