Czech aircraft manufacturer, AERO Vodochody AEROSPACE a.s. and Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) has announced their intention to offer the former’s L-159 ALCA light subsonic attack/trainer aircraft for the U.S. Air Force Light Attack Experiment (OA-X) Competition.
Giuseppe Giordo, Chief Executive of Aero Vodochody said that the L-159 is “the most cost-effective and lowest-risk option.”
USAF Light Attack Experiment (OA-X) Competition
On May 7, the U.S. Air Force kicked off the second phase of the Light Attack Experiment at Holloman Air Force Base, New Mexico.
Sierra Nevada/Embraer A-29 Super Tucano and the Textron Aviation AT-6B Wolverine turboprops were selected for the second phase which involve a three-month, live-fly experiment to gather additional information about aircraft capabilities, as well as partner nation interoperability, prior to a potential light attack purchase.
The experiment is part of a broader Air Force effort to explore cost-effective attack platform options under the Light Attack Experimentation Campaign led by the Air Force Strategic Development Planning and Experimentation Office at Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio.
The first phase of the Light Attack Experiment took place in August 2017 at Holloman AFB, with four models of light attack aircraft which also included L3/AirTractor AT-802L Longsword and Textron AirLand Scorpion.
AERO Vodochody, IAI Partnership
Last month, AERO Vodochody and IAI signed a partnership agreement relating to technical and marketing cooperation for the L-159 aircraft.
The companies said in a statement that “the cooperation draws on the tradition and experience of Aero Vodochody in the field of military light jet aircraft, the L-159 proven robust platform which has been successfully operated and tested in NATO joint operations, Red Air exercises and real combat missions, and IAI’s innovative and cutting-edge technologies.”
The partners have agreed to integrate new state-of-the-art avionics and other solutions, on the L-159 platform , and to jointly market the aircraft. This approach is focused on further strengthening the already proven L-159 and enhance its position in the light attack market. AERO and IAI have agreed also to collaborate on enhancing pilot training by integrating IAI’s virtual training solutions as part of the overall L-39NG training system.
Aero L-159 ALCA
Aero L-159 ALCA is a light multi-role combat aircraft designed for a variety of air-to-air, air-to-ground and reconnaissance missions.
The L-159 aircraft brings together Aero’s long and proven experience in development and production of military jet aircraft, in which field Aero is historically the largest producer in the world, together with the latest advances in avionics, engine and aircraft systems technology.
The aircraft is equipped with a state-of-the-art multi-mode IAI (Elta) radar for all-weather, day and night operations, can be equipped with IAI Real Time Tactical combat proven Data Link supporting a high capability of Situational Awareness presentation and can carry a wide range of NATO standards stores including air-to-air and air-to-ground missiles and laser guided bombs.
The two-seat L-159 is a derivate of the single-seat L-159, primarily designed for Advanced and Operational/Lead-In Fighter Training (LIFT).
The L-159 configuration can also be tailored to customer specific requirements and adapted to needs of basic training as well as combat missions including air-to-ground, patrol and reconnaissance missions – all supported by advanced planning and debriefing station.