FARNBOROUGH, U.K. (July 9, 2012) – Hawker Beechcraft Defense Company (HBDC) today announced it has entered low-rate initial production of its Beechcraft AT-6 light attack aircraft at the company’s facilities in Wichita, Kan. The company initiated low-rate production in response to significant indications of interest around the world for the AT-6, the most capable, affordable and sustainable light attack and armed reconnaissance platform.
[caption id="attachment_2868" align="alignright" width="300"] Beechcraft AT-6[/caption]
“Hawker Beechcraft has been meeting the needs of the U.S. Department of Defense and military nations around the world with trainer and special mission aircraft for more than 50 years,” said Derek Hess, HBDC vice president, Light Attack Programs. “We are now ready to begin manufacturing the AT-6 to fulfill the light attack and air support aircraft needs of our allies.”
The AT-6 is a multi-role, multi-mission aircraft system designed to meet the spectrum of needs for the light attack mission. Leveraging a range of highly-specialized but off-the-shelf capabilities, the AT-6 is outfitted with state-of-the-art equipment such as a Pratt and Whitney PTA‑68D engine, CMC Esterline’s mission modified Cockpit 4000, Lockheed Martin’s A-10C-based mission system and L-3 WESCAM’s MX-15Di sensor suite.
The aircraft has successfully demonstrated high-end net-centric and light attack capabilities and full compatibility with U.S. and NATO Joint Terminal Attack Controller systems during the Joint Expeditionary Force Experiment 2010, the Air National Guard Operational Assessment, and capabilities demonstrations of precision guided weapons conducted between 2010 and 2012. The AT-6 leads the light attack market with purpose-built capability, affordability, sustainability and interoperability for the most demanding of scenarios.
The AT-6 is currently under review as part of the U.S. Air Force Afghanistan Light Air Support competition. In June, HBDC delivered its detailed response for the competition to Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio.
Hawker Beechcraft is a world-leading manufacturer of business, special mission, light attack and trainer aircraft – designing, marketing and supporting aviation products and services for businesses, governments and individuals worldwide. The company’s headquarters and major facilities are located in Wichita, Kan., with operations in Little Rock, Ark.; Chester, England, U.K.; and Chihuahua, Mexico. The company leads the industry with a global network of more than 100 factory-owned and authorized service centers. For more information, visit www.hawkerbeechcraft.com.