UAE Seeks F-16 Pilot Training in USA
Back in August 2006, “US DSCA Issues a Flurry of International Arms Sale Notifications” noted that the Netherlands and Singapore were moving to set up F-16 pilot training programs in the USA, which offers a lot more space to fly in and combat-seasoned pilots as trainers. Now the UAE, whose Block 60 “Desert Falcons” are the world’s most advanced F-16s, has requested a similar service.
This course will go from fighter fundamentals training to a “capstone” course that takes experienced pilots and significantly improves their tactical proficiency. Introduction to Fighter Fundamentals in Texas is a pre-cursor to F-16 Block 60-transition training, which UAE pilots will receive in Tucson, AZ. The US DSCA announced the request on June 18/07 as:
“United States pilot proficiency training programs and munitions, services and support for F-16 aircraft which includes: 105,000 20mm cartridges, aircraft modifications kits, maintenance, participation in joint training Continental United States (CONUS) pilot proficiency training program, Introduction to Fighter Fundamentals training, F-5B transition and continuation training, fighter follow-on preparation training, participation in joint training exercises, fuel and fueling services, supply support, flight training, spare/repair parts, support equipment, program support, publications, documentation, personnel training, training equipment, contractor technical and logistics personnel services and other related program requirements necessary to sustain a long-term CONUS(CONtinental US) training program.”
Training would take place at Alliance International Airport in Fort Worth, Texas, with the Alliance Aviation Center of Excellence at Fort Worth, TX and Lockheed Martin Simulation, Training and Support also at Fort Worth, TX as the main contractors. If all options are exercised, the agreement could be worth up to $201 million.