Military trainer aircraft
AERALIS, an aircraft designer and manufacturer based in the UK, is developing a new class of next-generation military aircraft for pilot training.
The AERALIS family of trainer aircraft will be based on a common architecture and will be optimised to support various missions.
The aircraft will be available in three different variants, including AERALIS A – Advanced Trainer, AERALIS B – Basic Trainer and AERALIS X – Bespoke / Aerobatic Team Jet.
The training aircraft will be compatible with advanced systems which are found in sixth-generation fighter jets.
The company completed the phase one development, which includes feasibility studies of the aircraft, and announced its plan to develop a technology demonstrator of AERALIS’s common core fuselage concept.
AERALIS exhibited its next generation jet trainer system at the Farnborough International Airshow 2018. The company displayed its aircraft concepts at the International Paris Air Show held at the Le Bourget Parc des Expositions in June 2019.
The aircraft demonstrator was presented at the DSEI defence trade exhibition held at ExCel London in September 2019.
In April 2019, AERALIS announced the development of a new leasing model for the aircraft, which will mainly reduce costs for its potential customers.
The training aircraft will feature a common core fuselage concept, which can be modified by using different wings and engines based on the training level.
The concept will allow rapid upgrades and modifications to meet urgent operational requirements (UORs). It will also support the integration of future technologies for continuous improvement of the aircraft fleet throughout its service life.
AERALIS B – Basic Trainer will have a length of 12m, a width of 9.5m, and a height of 3.5m. The empty and maximum take-off weights of the aircraft will be 2,500kg and 3,500kg respectively.
The aircraft will have the capacity to accommodate two crew members. It will provide design flexibility based on customer requirements and also reduce operating costs.
AERALIS A – Advanced Trainer is the flagship model and will meet advanced flight training requirements of the 4th and 5th generation aircraft pilots. It will be embedded with a range of features including synthetic radar, medium range missile simulation, synthetic radar warning receiver (RWR) and enhanced electronic warfare training simulation.
AERALIS B will be used for training pilots to operate 3rd or 4th generation combat aircraft. AERALIS X is the future of innovative aircraft design which is configurable as it allows for variations in wing types, engine numbers and avionic suites.
All the variants will be equipped with common features including glass cockpit, full autopilot and inertial navigation system/global positioning system (INS/GPS).
The aircraft will feature an advanced cockpit that can be configurable to offer complex mission management training and fully tailorable flight training system to pilots.
The cockpit will be integrated with in-cockpit monitoring tools to track eye movements and measure stress levels of pilots. It will build an anonymised database to improve the efficiency and cost effectiveness of future pilot training programmes.
The trainer aircraft will be powered by a Honeywell/ITEC F-124 engine or a Honeywell/ITEC F-124 low-bypass turbofan engine.
The power-plant will allow the aircraft to fly at a maximum speed of 650km/h. It will have a maximum range of 2,500km.
The service ceiling of the aircraft will be 13,500m, while its rate of climb will be 3,048m/min.
AERALIS signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Thales for the development of training and simulation system for the aircraft, in July 2019. The companies are expected to demonstrate the system during Farnborough 2022.
In August 2019, Atkins entered a partnership with AERALIS for the development of new family of training jet aircraft by using a patent-pending modular design. The companies will design the basic trainer and the advanced trainer as part of the collaboration.
The MoU will complement the UK’s Tempest future fighter programme and both the companies will also develop the architecture for future common information system.
In September 2019, AERALIS inked an MoU with KBR for providing international training services for the aircraft.
Other companies involved the aircraft development include Frazer-Nash, Cranfield Aerospace Solutions, Stirling Dynamics, Aerospace Wales and Martin Baker.