MCDONNELL DOUGLAS (MDC) has teamed with Rockwell Australia to offer the T-45A Goshawk for the Royal Australian Air Force's (RAAF) Lead-In Fighter (LIF) trainer programme. The T-45 is one of three aircraft still in the running to replace the RAAF's Aermacchi MB.326H trainers; the others are the Aermacchi MB.339FD and the British Aerospace Hawk 100.

MDC will be the prime contractor for the bid, with Rockwell Australia as principal subcontractor responsible for logistical support. Final assembly of the aircraft would be performed at the former AeroSpace Technologies of Australia (ASTA) plant at Avalon, Victoria, where the RAAF's 75 MDC F-18s were assembled. Rockwell acquired ASTA in June.

The RAAF requires 35-45 aircraft. A final request for tenders is expected in September. The Aero Vodochody L-59F, Aermacchi/ Alenia/Embraer AMX-T and Dassault Alpha Jet ATS have already been eliminated from the contest. Aermacchi has teamed with Hawker de Havilland.

Source: Flight International