Dassault has revealed its plans for an Alpha Jet upgrade. This is intended to provide an interim trainer aircraft pending the availability of whatever aircraft eventually wins the Eurotraining programme.

The Alpha Jet production line is long closed, but the Alpha Jet airframe is rugged and robust, and the aircraft's performance remains competitive, so an upgrade of existing aircraft could represent a useful solution to the Armée de l'Air's long-term requirement.

Dassault is still in the preliminary phase of defining the proposed Alpha Jet Mk1, but expect it to be similar to the upgrade recently incorporated on Belgian air force Alpha Jets. The company will certainly install a modern glass cockpit, to make the aircraft more compatible with frontline Rafales and Mirage 2000-9s. The aircraft will also receive a major structural overhaul.

No dates have been announced by either the customer or the manufacturer, and detailed discussions are yet to be completed. A model of the Alpha Jet Mk 1 is, however, displayed on Dassault's stand.

Source: Flight Daily News