The first students from Embraer to graduate under a Leaders in Flight Test Training (LiFTT) Alliance programme received their diplomas at Farnborough on Tuesday. The five, one pilot and four engineers, completed their training with the Empire Test Pilots' School (ETPS) at Boscombe Down.

The LiFTT alliance is now keen to attract more customers for its courses, for which it foresees a growing demand. "Industry used to rely on getting its test pilots and flight test engineers from the services," says Rob Little, DERA's director of Aircraft Test and Evaluation. "But formal training for industry is here, and it will grow in the face of possible new regulations, and as the supply of ex-military test pilots dwindles."

LiFTT groups the training capabilities of Britain's ETPS, the French military test pilot school EPNER, Cranfield University, Delft University of Technology and the Institute Aeronautique et Spatial.

The alliance was originally formed to provide an abortive EC-funded programme for training flight test engineers for the European aircraft industry. This 'Leonardo da Vinci' programme was tightly structured and prescriptive, and when industry did not commit the partners decided to offer a more customer-focused and responsive range of test pilot and flight test engineer training courses.

Source: Flight Daily News