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T-X Advanced Trainer Replacement - 2016 Requirements

After completing a review of remaining tasks, on 18 March 2016 the Air Force Program Executive Officer for Mobility determined that the Advanced Pilot Training (T-X) Program's Request for Proposal (RFP) would be delayed by three months. The program office anticipated an RFP release in late December 2016 to ensure the release of a well-defined RFP.

The Program's aim to refine RFP language stemmed from its participation as a pilot program for the US Air Force's Bending the Cost Curve (BTCC) initiative. The BTCC initiative seeks to increase competition and find solutions that work for both the US Air Force and industry. Program activities to refine RFP language, including extensive dialogue with industry, have taken longer than initially anticipated to complete.

In order to align the production schedule with the Air Force strategic planning, the program's Full Operational Capability has been adjusted from Fiscal Year (FY) 2032 to FY34. It is important to note: the initial Operational Capability date remained FY 24.

The draft request for proposals (RFP) was released by the USAF on 26 July 2016. The USG was not requesting industry responses to this posting and will not respond to additional comments. The USG does not intend to award a contract based on the contents of this notice.

Unless otherwise specified, the aircraft including systems/subsystems/components shall be fail-safe such that no single point failure or combination of failures, with a failure rate greater than 1x10-6 per flight hour can cause a critical or catastrophic mishap.

The aircraft shall have levels of safety, redundancy, performance, and normal and emergency procedures commensurate with the skill levels of students. The aircraft (including all Technical Order landing and store loadout configurations) shall be tolerant of common student errors. Common student errors shall include, as a minimum, low-airspeed departures, exceeding maximum operating speed by 20 knots, and delayed and/or misapplied controls.

The aircraft shall be resistant to departure from controlled flight, post-stall gyrations and spins while conducting all APT syllabus maneuvers and mission profiles. Departure from controlled flight will only occur with a large and reasonably sustained misapplication of pitch, roll, or yaw controls, or a combination thereof. The proper recovery technique(s) shall be readily apparent to the aircrew, be simple and easy to apply under the motions encountered, and provide prompt recovery from all post-stall gyrations, incipient spins, and developed spins. The recovery techniques for post-stall gyrations, incipient spins, and developed spins shall be the same or at least compatible.

The aircraft shall enable the aircrew to prevent and recover from a stall by simple use of the pitch, roll, and yaw controls without excessive control forces, excessive loss of altitude or build-up of speed. There shall be no aircraft buffet that detracts from mission effectiveness except for stall warning.

The high G maneuver shall be flown with a Standard Configuration, at 80% fuel weight (relative to maximum fuel capacity) and Standard Day conditions. The maneuver shall begin in level flight (flight path angle no lower than zero and no higher than two degrees nose high), wings level (5 degrees of bank), at 15,000 feet PA, and at or below 0.9Mach. From this point, the aircrew will immediately initiate bank and back pressure to achieve the highest maintainable G-loading. The G-loading shall be maintained for a minimum of 140 continuous degrees. The aircrew may begin reducing the load factor and rolling out after a minimum of 140 degrees in order to roll out at approximately 180 degrees of turn. The flight path angle shall be no lower than 15 degrees nose low and the aircraft shall descend to no lower than 13,000 feet PA during any portion of the entire 180-degree maneuver. There is no power setting specified for this maneuver. The aircraft shall lose no more than 10% of the initial airspeed during the 180-degree maneuver.

The aircraft shall perform high G maneuvering with an instantaneous G-onset rate of at least 6 G per second using the following additional performance ground rules: Fuel weight at 50% (relative to maximum fuel capacity), pressure altitude (PA) equal to 15,000 feet, Airspeed no greater than 0.9 Mach and Standard Day. The aircraft shall immediately start a return to +1.0 G flight by relaxing the stick force/deflection.

From a steady +1.5 G trimmed level turn, using an abrupt maximum pitch control step input the aircraft shall traverse from +1.5 G and pass through +7.5 G (or the angle-of-attack for CLmax) in 1.7 seconds without over-G or departure. The aircraft shall immediately start a return to +1.0 G flight by relaxing the stick force/deflection. This shall be achieved using the following additional performance ground rules: Fuel weight at 50% (relative to maximum fuel capacity), PA equal to 15,000 feet, symmetric and planned asymmetric loadings, Standard Day, Corner Speed 50 KEAS.

The aircraft shall fly in negative gravity for at least 10 seconds with unlimited occurrences and without adverse effects to the aircraft and subsystems for all engine thrust levels. The aircraft shall fly in zero gravity for at least 10 seconds with unlimited occurrences and without adverse effects to the aircraft and subsystems for all engine thrust levels. (Note: Zero gravity is defined as -0.5 to +0.5 G.)

The aircraft shall perform instantaneous turn rate of at least 18 per second using the following additional performance ground rules: Fuel weight at 50% (relative to maximum fuel capacity), PA equal to 15,000 feet, Airspeed no greater than 0.9 Mach and Standard Day. The aircraft shall perform sustained turn rate of at least 12.5 per second using the following additional performance ground rules: level flight, fuel weight at 50% (relative to maximum fuel capacity), PA equal to 15,000 feet, airspeed no greater than 0.9 Mach and Standard Day.

The aircraft shall have sufficient fuel capacity to complete the unrefueled training sortie.

The aircraft (including all Technical Order takeoff and store loadout configurations) shall have a total takeoff distance no greater than 6400 feet using an 8000-foot, hard-surface runway and the following worst case weather conditions for performance calculations: 10 knot tailwind, wet runway with Runway Condition Reading (RCR) of 12, zero runway slope, normal takeoff flap setting, maximum takeoff gross weight, and Density Altitude (DA) equal to 7464 feet (DA represents 97 F, dew point of 38 F, 4093 feet PA). The aircraft (including all Technical Order landing and store loadout configurations) shall have a landing ground roll distance no greater than 7,000 feet that provides for flight operations on an 8000-foot, hard-surface runway using the following worst case weather conditions for performance calculations: 10 knot tailwind, wet runway with RCR of 12, zero runway slope, all possible flap settings, 80% fuel weight (relative to maximum fuel capacity), DA equal to 7464 feet (DA represents 97 F, dew point of 38 F, 4093 feet PA), and without the use of drag chute(s).

The aircraft (including all Technical Order store loadout configurations, and one-engine inoperative situations for two-engine aircraft) shall provide a climb gradient of at least 200 feet per nautical mile (NM) using the following additional performance ground rules: 8000-foot runway, Instrument Flight Rules (IFR), no wind, DA equal to 7464 feet (DA represents 97 F, dew point of 38 F, 4093 feet PA).

The design service life of the aircraft fleet shall be sufficient for 22 years of operation, assuming a maximum utilization rate of 30.3 hours per month. The airframe design service life of each individual aircraft shall be 8,000 flight hours for the specified mission profiles and usage rates. The takeoff gross weight for each profile shall be at maximum fuel load for the standard configuration. Downloading of fuel for a particular mission to reduce the takeoff gross weight is not permitted.

The aircraft design limit load factor during symmetric maneuvers shall be -3.0 G to +8.0 G in the aircraft body axis for all speeds up to VL. These load factors apply to the basic flight design gross weight and all lesser flight weights. At weights higher than the basic flight design gross weight, the design limit load factors shall be those that maintain a constant product of the limit load factors and the basic flight design gross weight. The aircraft design limit load factor during asymmetric maneuvers shall be 67% of the positive symmetric load factor to -1 G for speeds up to VL and all flight weights up to and including the basic flight design gross weight. At weights higher than the basic flight design gross weight, the design limit load factors shall be those that maintain a constant product of the limit load factors and the basic flight design gross weight.

The transparency system shall withstand the impact of a 4-pound bird with the corresponding aircraft speed listed below, in a manner consistent with normal flight without penetration, injury to either aircrew member, and without optical degradation of the transparency system below levels required for safe aircraft control and landing. There shall be no bird penetration into the cockpit through the associated support frame(s). If the aircraft has no separate windshield, the entire transparency system shall meet the windshield bird strike requirements. Windshield 450 KTAS or the aircraft maximum operational true airspeed that can be achieved at altitudes up to 7000 feet PA whichever is less, without penetration.

The aircraft shall provide a sufficient exterior field-of-view to permit each aircrew position to safely maneuver and control the aircraft in all phases of flight within its operating limits and to perform all flight tasks, including but not limited to the following: visibility over the nose of the aircraft at the worst case AOA approach, checking-six for air-to-air engagements, formation re-join maneuvers, aerial refueling (if implemented), and all APT syllabus maneuvers and the mission profiles, while providing, from the same eye position, an unobstructed interior view of flight instruments and other critical components and displays.

As a minimum, all key components and interfaces for hardware and Operational Flight Program(s)/Software Item(s) (OFP/SI) shall employ open system, service-oriented architecture that utilizes a modular design in which functionality is partitioned into discrete, cohesive and self-contained units with documented, publicly available, non-proprietary, commercial, or industry interfaces and standards to the maximum extent feasible for readily accommodating competitive future system upgrades and modifications. The architecture shall be layered and modular or decoupled and flexible/scalable (e.g., Open Mission Systems (OMS), Future Airborne Capability Environment (FACE)) and maximizes the use of standards-based Commercial-Off-The-Shelf (COTS)/Non-Developmental Item (NDI) hardware, operating systems, and middleware that utilize either non-proprietary or non-vendor-unique module or component interfaces.

The release of the RFP followed receipt of an Acquisition Decision Memorandum, or ADM, signed by the Undersecretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics on Dec. 5, 2016. This proposal solicitation is a full and open competition with an anticipated contract award in calendar year 2017, in support of Initial Operational Capability by the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2024, or earlier. The $16.3 billion RFP includes all aspects of the system, including Engineering and Manufacturing Development (EMD), Low-Rate Initial Production (LRIP), Full-Rate Production (FRP), and sustainment transition support. The RFP will lay the groundwork for delivery of the first five test aircraft. There are also contract options for LRIP lots #1-2, and FRP of lots #3-11 for a total of 350 aircraft. In addition, provisions are included for ground support systems, such as training systems, mission planning and processing systems, support equipment and spares.




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