The opening of ‘a new era in the training of fighter pilots’. That’s what the Israeli Air Force (IAF) had to say about the Alenia Aermacchi M-346 Master (named Lavi in Israel) as the fifth aircraft arrived at its new home base on Thursday 6 November.
The M-346 is operated in Israel by 102 ‘the Flying Tigers’ squadron at Hatzerim airbase. The first two aircraft arrived there last July. Since then, the IAF opened a new Flight Training Center, which follows up on the M-346 concept. “It’s not just a plane, it is part of a new system”, according the IAF officials. Israel has 30 Lavi aircraft on order, with the last one to arrive in 2016.
Things are looking up for Alenia Aermacchi and the M-346, as last week more Italian Air Force instructor pilots fully qualified on the new type and its associated training systems. Meanwhile, Alenia Aermacchi also landed an order for two C-27J Spartans from Slovakia last week.
© 2014 Airheadsfly.com editor Elmer van Hest