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PICTURES: New Colombian air force trainer makes flight debut

Lancair International has performed the first flight of its new Synergy ab initio trainer for the Colombian air force, following the kit aircraft's assembly by state-owned aerospace company CIAC.

Lancair test pilot Pete Zaccagnino made the initial flight with the two-seat aircraft from Madrid, Colombia on 29 September. The trainer "performed well and met expectations", the company says.

 
© Lancair International

Two more Colombian-assembled examples will be handed over to the air force this year under a 25-aircraft order, with the rest to enter use during 2011.

With a fixed landing gear and powered by a 210hp (155kW) Textron Lycoming IO-390 engine, the Synergy will replace the service's remaining Cessna T-41D Mescaleros.

The new aircraft is based on Lancair's Legacy general aviation platform, but features a 20% larger wing with longer flaps, plus a redesigned vertical stabiliser and rudder.

 
© Lancair International

"These changes yield a high-performance aircraft that is a stable, easy-to-fly training platform with a low stall speed," the US company says.

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