Turkish Aerospace Industries (TAI) has received a development contract for a project to create an indigenous jet training and combat aircraft.

According to the agreement between the company and Turkey's Undersecretariat for Defence Industries, Savunma Sanayii Müsteşarlığı (SSM), the two-year project will focus on showing the needs and capacity of the nation's industry.

The SSM decided late last year that a Turkish jet trainer should be designed to replace the Turkish air force's Northrop T-38s during the 2020s.

TAI is currently modernising the in-service fleet with advanced avionics and a glass cockpit.

Under the new project, TAI will also perform conceptual design work on a new combat aircraft to replace the air force's modernised Northrop F-5s and McDonnell Douglas F-4Es.

TAI's work will concentrate on determining the operational requirements for new equipment, plus the concept definition of aircraft and subsystems.

It will also assess national capacity building and research facility needs, and investigate international co-operation models.

At the end of the two-year effort, the results of the technical and administrative studies will be evaluated by the SSM's executive committee, which will make a decision on the next phase of the project.

Source: Flight International