To demonstrate the reliability of the T-7A Red Hawk, Boeing tested the limits of its new advanced training jet by successfully conducting an in-flight shutdown and restart of its engine.
In September 2018, the United States Air Force chose the single-engine trainer conjointly developed by Boeing and Saab to replace the T-38C Talon.
Before the aircraft, named the T-7A Red Hawk by the USAF, enters service, Boeing continues testing the various scenarios that pilots may encounter. Out of them, an engine failure on a single-engine aircraft is probably the most dreaded.
To prove that its new aircraft could successfully recover, a team of Boeing test crew conducted their test at 20,000 feet (6,000 meters) above Illinois. After shutting down the engine, the aircraft glided for 48 seconds. The GE F404 engine was successfully restarted, and the T-7A then landed back at Boeing facility in St. Louis Lambert International Airport (STL).
“Engine air start testing requires a large amount of preparation, planning and teamwork,” said T-7A Chief Pilot Steve Schmidt. “It’s a test of all the subsystems built for backup in the event a pilot would have to shut the engine down in an emergency and power it back up again.”
The T-7A Red Hawk should enter service by 2023 for the advanced training of future fighter pilots from 2023. 350 aircraft were ordered, evaluated at $9.2 billion.