Last upgraded light combat aircraft delivered to Czech Air Force
Aero Vodochody has completed prescribed periodic work after 16 years of operation (PP16) on all 16 single-seat L-159 Advanced Light Combat Aircraft (ALCA) aircraft and handed the last one back to the Czech Air Force, the company announced on 19 January.
The contract covering the overhauls was signed between the partners in 2019.
The work has been ongoing at Aero Vodochody for the past two years and the last jet was handed over to the 21st Tactical Air Force Base at Caslav.
President and CEO of Aero Viktor Sotona said in a statement that the L-159 fleet was redelivered at regular intervals from September 2020 until the end of 2022 when the company completed the overhaul of the last aircraft.
The actual aerial handover of the last L-159 aircraft, however, was conducted in January 2023.
‘The great advantage of L-159s is their cost-effective operation, especially compared to supersonic aircraft, in a large number of different variants for combat tasks,’ he added.
The PP16 package included inspection and testing of all parts, including instruments, technical improvements to some parts and functions of the aircraft.
The L-159s were modified to use night vision goggles, which included adaptation of the cockpit and installation of interior and exterior lighting kits.
A new electronic display can replace other backup instruments and provide pilots with critical position, speed or descent data in the event of a primary system failure.
Besides the Czech Air Force, the Iraqi Air Force also operates the L-159 light attack aircraft.
Draken Europe also recently begun delivering the UK’s Interim Red Air Aggressor Training Service (IRAATS) for RAF pilots using the L-159E Honey Badger variant.
The L-159E flew for the first time to provide live threat replication against one of the RAF’s Eurofighter Typhoons on 20 December.
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