Leonardo delivers two M-346 to ITAF
Leonardo has delivered the first two M-346 trainer aircraft, part of the International Flight Training School (IFTS) project, at the Italian Air Force’s (ITAF) 61st Wing base in Galatina, Lecce, the company announced on 15 February.
The two aircraft joined the other 18 M-346s at the base.
The IFTS, established under the Leonardo-Italian Air Force agreement signed in July 2018, aims to strengthen the 61st Wing to achieve better operational capability.
In 2020 a new integrated training system will arrive in Galatina. The system is based on the M-345 High Efficiency Trainer aircraft, designated as T-345 by the air force.
The T-345 will progressively replace the T-339A and T-339C, used for Phase II and Phase III of the training, respectively.
The IFTS will have Phase IV – Lead In to Fighter Training, which will enable it to provide pilot training to the foreign air forces while expecting a possible further expansion with another base in Italy. Operational training, carried out by the ITAF with the T-346A, prepares pilots to transition to the latest-generation combat aircraft including the Eurofighter and the F-35.
The Galatina Air Force Base also equipped with live, virtual and constructive simulation technology including the advanced M-346 simulator.
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