SingaporeThe pivotal program for training ADF aviators is the multi-phase AIR 5428 program, Phase 1 delivered a Pilot Training System for Air Force, Navy and Army Pilots. Following graduation, RAAF personnel continue down the path of fixed wing aircraft, while the Army and RAN move to helicopters. The next part of the AIR 5428 program is Phase 3 which will broaden the Air Force training system to include Officer Aviation training elements such as Mission Aircrew and Air Traffic Control training.

Team 21, the consortium delivering Phase 1 (known as the Pilot Training System), comprises of Lockheed Martin Australia (as the contract prime), Jet Aviation and Pilatus (as the Original Equipment Manufacturer of the PC-21 aircraft). Student training in the PTS commenced in January 2019 following contract award in December 2015. The system comprises of 49 PC-21s and seven flight training devices (simulators).

Phase 3 will be based at East Sale with facilities to be provided by the Commonwealth and a project commencement start date of 2025. As well as the training capabilities listed above, others include the training of fast jet Weapon System Operators, Electronic Warfare Analysts and Air Battle Managers.

Peter Ashworth, Program Director Global Training Systems for Lockheed Martin Australia explained that AIR 5428 Phase 2 will provide through-life capability assurance to the PTS, primarily by implementing changes that will increase the system’s candidate intake capacity, whilst also ensuring that the training suitability aligns with individual Service needs. The project is currently conducting risk reduction and capability definition activities to ensure a seamless transition of capability within the PTS.

This is an excerpt from APDR. To read the full story, click here.


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Kym Bergmann is the editor for Asia Pacific Defence Reporter (APDR) and Defence Review Asia (DRA). He has more than 25 years of experience in journalism and the defence industry. After graduating with honours from the Australian National University, he joined Capital 7 television, holding several positions including foreign news editor and chief political correspondent. During that time he also wrote for Business Review Weekly, undertaking analysis of various defence matters.After two years on the staff of a federal minister, he moved to the defence industry and held senior positions in several companies, including Blohm+Voss, Thales, Celsius and Saab. In 1997 he was one of two Australians selected for the Thomson CSF 'Preparation for Senior Management' MBA course. He has also worked as a consultant for a number of companies including Raytheon, Tenix and others. He has served on the boards of Thomson Sintra Pacific and Saab Pacific.


  1. Latest gossip is that Army is going back to the future in 1993 form. Separating from Air Force again, not back to Tamworth, but to Toowoomba. So many millions wasted again.


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