The T-44A aircraft is a twin-engine, pressurized, Beechcraft King Air B90 manufactured by Raytheon Aircraft Company (formerly Beech Aircraft), Wichita, Kansas. The aircraft is powered by two model PT6A-34B turbo-prop engines manufactured by Pratt & Whitney Aircraft of Canada. The primary mission of the T-44A is to provide advanced maritime flight training for the Chief of Naval Air Training in Corpus Christi, TX.
A single Beechcraft King Air B90 with a "VIP" interior was operated as a VC-6A by the 89th Military Airlift Wing at Andrews AFB, Maryland, to transport dignitaries and high-level government personnel. This aircraft was placed in service in early 1966, and retired in 1985.
Students selecting the Specialized Undergraduate Pilot Training [SUPT] turboprop track attend T-44 training conducted by the U.S. Navy at Corpus Christi, Texas, and then go on to flying duties in turboprop aircraft. Training includes the Navy common maritime turboprop course followed by an Air Force top-off course. The top-off course consists of single aircraft and formation tactical low level airdrop procedures. Training takes approximately 26 weeks and includes 152 hours ground training, 30 hours in the flight simulator and 111 flying hours in the T-44. The T-44 is equipped with deicing and anti-icing systems augmented by instrumentation and navigation equipment which allows flight under instrument and icing conditions.The interior includes a seating arrangement for an instructor pilot (right seat), a student pilot (left seat), and a second student.Two additional passenger seats are included.A distinguishing feature of the aircraft is the avionics fault insertion capabilities afforded the instructor pilot from the right-seat armrest and the second student/observer audio control panel that allows the second student to monitor all radio communications.The T-44A is powered by two 550 shaft horsepower PT6A-34B turboprop engines manufactured by Pratt & Whitney of Canada.
The T-44A aircraft was procured as a commercial-derivative [King Air] aircraft certified under an FAA Type Certificate. Throughout its life, the aircraft has been operated and commercially supported by the Navy using FAA processes, procedures and certifications. It continues to be maintained commercially at all levels of maintenance, and relies on COTS/NDI components and equipment to support airworthiness. Aircraft modification efforts are "turnkey" projects (procurement and installation) implemented as part of competitively awarded maintenance contracts. Where extensive integration efforts are required, the non-recurring engineering phase, including test and certification, is typically performed by Raytheon Aircraft Company under a sole-source engineering contract with the Navy.
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