KAI KT-1 Woongbi

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KT-1 Woongbi
Demonstration Flight of ROKAF New Light Trainer KT-1 'Woongbi'(cropped).jpg
KT-1 during a demonstration
Role Basic trainer and light attack aircraft
National origin Republic of Korea
Manufacturer Korea Aerospace Industries
Design group Daewoo
First flight November 1991
Introduction 2000
Status In production
Primary users Republic of Korea Air Force
Indonesian Air Force
Turkish Air Force
Peruvian Air Force
Produced 1999-present
Number built 175+[citation needed]
Unit cost
US$7 million[1]

The KAI KT-1 Woongbi (Hangul: KT-1 웅비) is a Korean single-engined turboprop, basic training aircraft. It was jointly developed by Korean Aerospace Industries (KAI) and the Agency for Defence Development (ADD). The KT-1 is the first completely indigenous Korean aircraft ever developed.

Development[edit]

Origins[edit]

The origins of the KT-1 can be found within the KTX programme, which had been launched during 1988 on behalf of the Republic of Korea Air Force (RKAF). The programme, which sought to develop an indigenously designed trainer aircraft, was a joint effort between aircraft manufacturer Korean Aerospace Industries (KAI) and government body Agency for Defence Development (ADD); the latter was responsible for overseeing the project, while the former performed the detailed design work as well as the majority of manufacturing activity.[2] Unusually, CATIA computer aided design (CAD) software was used to produce the design, being the first use of such techniques for an aircraft in its class.[citation needed]

A series of nine prototypes were constructed, the first being complete during June 1991. During November 1991, the maiden flight of the KT-1 took place, after which the flight testing programme formally commenced.[citation needed] During 1995, the aircraft was officially named 'Woongbi'. In 1998, it was announced that the final test flight had been performed. During the following year, an initial production contract was signed for eighty-five aircraft, with provisions for an additional twenty, between manufacturer Korea Aerospace Industries (KAI) and the RKAF.[citation needed]

Further development[edit]

During 2002, KAI revealed that they were working on the production of an upgraded and armed version of the KT-1 basic trainer.[3] This variant, designated KO-1, was intended to be used in the forward air control and counter-insurgency (COIN) roles. Development was conducted in cooperation with the Agency for Defence Development (ADD) and had been undertaken in response to an existing RKAF requirement for 20-40 aircraft.[3] According to a KAI representative, the KO-1 is ideally suited for drug interdiction operations and that the company was pitching the variant towards countries in Latin America.[4]

On 8 March 2006, a KAI spokesperson announced that the company intended to export more than 150 improved versions of the KT-1 to various countries across both Central America and Southeast Asia. Furthermore, an improved export version of the KT-1, which was called KT-1C, was also to be launched to support these ambitions.[citation needed] During 2005, KAI had begun marketing the KT-1 as one element of an integrated training package, having paired it with their newer jet-powered KAI T-50 Golden Eagle trainer.[5] The company also stated that it believes a partnership with American aerospace company Lockheed Martin shall encourage confidence in its training platforms.[6]

Design[edit]

The KT-1 can be equipped with either an analog or 'glass' cockpit configuration.[7] Some variants feature additional avionics and systems, such as a night vision goggles (NVG)-compatible cockpit, head-up display (HUD), multi-function displays (MFD), GPS/inertial navigation system, mission computer, onboard oxygen generation system, a vapour-cycle environmental control system and hands-on-throttle-and-stick (HOTAS)-compatible controls.[3] Avionics are provided by various foreign companies, including Elbit, Flight Vision and Thales.[7][8][9]

When equipped for the light attack missions, the aircraft can be furnished with various guns, bombs, rockets and missiles dependent upon customer requirements. Other equipment can include external fuel tanks, a centrally-mounted forward-looking infrared (FLIRA) sensor and a laser range finder.[3][7] In terms of visual appearance, the KT-1 is reminiscent of the Pilatus PC-9, a wide-used trainer aircraft at the time of its development.[citation needed]

Operational history[edit]

ROKAF 8th Fighter Wing KA-1

The Republic of Korea Air Force (RKAF) is the primary customer for the type. During 2000, the first KT-1 Woongbi was handed over to the RKAF; deliveries had originally been scheduled to commence two years earlier.[10] By the end of that year, eight aircraft had been delivered to the service; reportedly, a rate of production of two aircraft per month had been achieved by this point.[11] By November 2003, the assembly line was reportedly about to be put on hold following the completion of the RKAF's order; however, KAI aimed to restart production within two-three years based upon follow-on orders.[12][13] However, a follow-on RKAF order for 20 aircraft was received that same month.[14] The majority of the RKAF's fleet can be armed with both gun pods and rockets, which are intended to be used for weapons training.[15]

One of the first export customers for the KT-1 was Indonesia. During early 2001, Indonesia exchanged 8 CASA/IPTN CN-235 transport aircraft for 12 KT-1 trainers.[16][17] On 25 April 2003, the first KT-1 was delivered to Indonesia, a move which represented the first Korean aircraft export; commenting at the time, KAI stated that it was presently in negotiations for a 13-trainer follow-on order.[18] During early 2011, reported emerged that Indonesia was interested in further acquisitions, but South Korean officials denied that any further barter deals had been agreed.[16] During November 2018, three additional KT-1B aircraft were ordered for the Indonesian Air Force (IAF).[19]

In addition to its use as a basic trainer, the IAF have equipped their Jupiter Aerobatic Team with the KT-1. On 15 March 2015, a serious midair collision occurred during a practice session for Malaysia's Langkawi International Maritime and Aerospace Exhibition. Initial reports stated that all four pilots survived the collision.[20][21]

During June 2007, South Korea and Turkey successfully negotiated a KRW₩500,000,000,000 (approximately US$540,000,000) contract for 40 (+15) KT-1s; this exchange involved the modular armor technology of the K2 Black Panther main battle tank (MBT), which Turkey hopes to use upon its own future indigenous Atlay MBT.[22][23] The last of these aircraft, which were designated KT-1T and jointly manufactured by the two nations, was delivered during late 2012.[24] During April 2015, it was announced that Turkey would procure a further 15 KT-1Ts as a stop-gap measure until development of its indigenous TAI Hürkuş trainer aircraft could be completed.[25][26]

On 6 November 2012, KAI and the Peruvian Air Force signed a contract for 20 KT-1Ps, comprising ten KT and ten KA versions as well as some offset and technology transfer arrangements, for an approximate amount of US$208 million. KAI was to provide the first four aircraft by the end of 2014, while the remainder were to be locally assembled by SEMAN, the maintenance air wing of the Peruvian Air Force.[27][28] The type shall progressively replace the aging fleets of Aermacchi MB-339 and Embraer EMB 312 Tucano aircraft. During April 2015, the first locally manufactured KT-1P was delivered to the Peruvian Air Force.[29]

During November 2018, Spain proposed a barter deal to South Korea's Defense Acquisition Program Administration (DAPA) involving the KT-1 and other Korean aircraft, potentially involving up to 30 planes, which Spain wished to exchange for up to 6 Airbus A400M Atlas transport planes. If completed, this deal would be first export of the KT-1 to a European Union country.[30]

Variants[edit]

KTX-1 Yeo-Myung is the first prototype built by KAI.
KTX-1 Yeo-myung
Prototype primary trainer each with a different engine fitted, six built.[31] KTX-1 turboprop trainer in 1988, and the first prototype flew in 1991. The first two prototypes were powered by the 550-shp. Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A-25A turboprop.
KT-1
KT-1 is the basic trainer of the ROKAF. Compared to the KTX-1 prototype, the KT-1 is bigger, heavier, the tail surfaces are relocated and it has a more powerful P&W Canada PT6A-62.(950-shp)[32]
KA-1 at Osan Air Base, 2010.
KA-1
An armed advanced trainer with light-attack and forward air control capabilities. Several new features unique to the KA-1 are a head-up display and up-front control panel, MFD panels, and five hardpoints, two under each wing and one under the fuselage. The hardpoints may be equipped with rocket launchers, gun pods or AIM-9 Sidewinder missiles.
KT-1B
Export version for Indonesia. Main differences are in terms of avionics, some of which have been excluded or have had commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) alternatives used instead.[7]
KT-1C
Improved, armed export version equipped with a centreline forward looking infrared pod. The KT-1C may also be equipped with a 12.7 mm gun pod, chaffes, flares, training missiles, rockets or unguided bombs.
KT-1T
Export version for Turkey.
KT-1P
Export version for Peru.
KA-1P
Armed export version for Peru.

Operators[edit]

Peruvian Air Force KAI KT-1P Torito
Turkish Air Force KAI KT-1 Woongbi
 Indonesia
 South Korea
 Peru
 Senegal
 Turkey

Specifications (KT-1)[edit]

Data from Jane's All The World's Aircraft 2003–2004[37]

General characteristics

Performance

See also[edit]

Aircraft of comparable role, configuration and era

References[edit]

Citations[edit]

  1. ^ "El SEMAN de la Fuerza Aérea del Perú ensamblará 24 aviones turbo-prop KT-1" (in Spanish). Info Defesea, 7 March 2012. Retrieved: 22 April 2012.
  2. ^ Doyle, Andrew. "State body to lead South Korean helicopter effort." Archived 2019-06-17 at the Wayback Machine Flight International, 13 August 2002.
  3. ^ a b c d "KAI arms trainer for new role." Archived 2019-06-17 at the Wayback Machine Flight International, 5 March 2002.
  4. ^ Sobie, Brendan. "KAI offers upgraded versions of KT-1 in bid to extend production." Archived 2019-06-17 at the Wayback Machine Flight International, 25 April 2006.
  5. ^ "Italian challenge." Archived 2019-06-17 at the Wayback Machine Flight International, 28 June 2005.
  6. ^ "Golden moment." Archived 2019-06-17 at the Wayback Machine Flight International, 11 October 2005.
  7. ^ a b c d Doyle, Andrew. "Avionics deal arms KT-1 for export." Archived 2019-06-17 at the Wayback Machine Flight International, 28 January 2003.
  8. ^ Warwick, Graham. "KT-1 deal bolsters CMC's upgrade market position." Archived 2019-06-17 at the Wayback Machine Flight International, 4 February 2003.
  9. ^ "Asian Aerospace 2004 - KAI picks ISIS." Archived 2019-06-17 at the Wayback Machine Flight International, 2 March 2004.
  10. ^ Doyle, Andrew. "KAI Aims High." Archived 2015-12-08 at the Wayback Machine Flight International, 9 October 2001.
  11. ^ "KAI closes on Indonesian KT-1 trainer order." Archived 2019-06-17 at the Wayback Machine Flight International, 14 November 2000.
  12. ^ Sobie, Brendan and Nicholas Ionides. "United ambition." Archived 2019-06-17 at the Wayback Machine Flight International, 4 November 2003.
  13. ^ Sobie, Brendan. "KAI aims to drum up KO-1 orders to prolong KT-1 line." Archived 2019-06-17 at the Wayback Machine Flight International, 4 November 2003.
  14. ^ "Korean Air Show - Air force gives cautious approval to buy K0-1s." Archived 2019-06-17 at the Wayback Machine Flight International, 11 November 2003.
  15. ^ "KAI targets region for new trainer exports." Archived 2019-06-17 at the Wayback Machine Flight International, 26 February 2002.
  16. ^ a b "Seoul: No barter deal for T-50 jet trainer." Archived 2019-06-17 at the Wayback Machine spacewar.com, 21 April 2011.
  17. ^ "KT-1 trainer deal is a first for South Korea." Archived 2019-06-17 at the Wayback Machine Flight International, 6 March 2001.
  18. ^ Sobie, Brendan. "South Korea exports first military aircraft." Archived 2019-06-17 at the Wayback Machine Flight International, 6 May 2003.
  19. ^ Grevatt, Jon (9 November 2018). "Indo Defence 2018: KAI wins Indonesian air force deals". IHS Jane's 360. Jakarta. Archived from the original on 2018-11-10. Retrieved 10 November 2018.
  20. ^ Rogoway, Tyler. "Horrific Midair Collision During Air Show And Arms Expo In Malaysia". foxtrotalpha.com. Archived from the original on 2015-03-16. Retrieved 2015-03-16.
  21. ^ Horswell, Ian. "Planes collide and crash in practice for Langkawi International Maritime and Aerospace Exhibition, Malaysia." Archived 2019-06-17 at the Wayback Machine News Corp Australia Network, 16 March 2015.
  22. ^ "Daily News in English About Korea". Digital Chosunilbo. 5 May 2008. Archived from the original on 5 May 2008.
  23. ^ Sung-ki, Jung. "S. Korea Signs Trainer Deal With Turkey." Archived 2019-06-17 at the Wayback Machine Korea Times, 8 June 2007.
  24. ^ "Turkey set to complete Korea trainer plane program." Archived 2019-06-17 at the Wayback Machine Hurriyet Daily News, 17 September 2012.
  25. ^ Bekdil, Burak Ege. "Turkey Confirms Trainer Deal with South Korea." Defense News, 12 April 2015.
  26. ^ Bekdil, Burak. "Turkey looks to speed up trainer aircraft initiatives." Archived 2019-06-17 at the Wayback Machine Hurriyet Daily News, 7 April 2015.
  27. ^ a b "Korea to export KT-1 trainers to Peru". The Korea Herald. 7 November 2012. Archived from the original on 8 November 2012. Retrieved 8 November 2012.
  28. ^ "Peru receives first Korean-made pilot trainer planes." Archived 2019-06-17 at the Wayback Machine UPI.com, 12 November 2014.
  29. ^ Hoyle, Craig. "Peru accepts first locally-assembled KT-1P trainer." Archived 2019-06-17 at the Wayback Machine Flight International, 29 April 2015.
  30. ^ "Korea, Spain to negotiate aircraft swap contract." Archived 2018-12-27 at the Wayback Machine Korea Herald, 12 November 2018.
  31. ^ Taylor 1996, pp. 58-59.
  32. ^ "Directory: military aircraft." Archived 2014-07-26 at the Wayback Machine Flight Global, 25 May 2004. Retrieved: 24 July 2014.
  33. ^ "KAI starts peruvian production of KT-1 / KA-1". Archived from the original on 2016-09-24. Retrieved 2016-09-24.
  34. ^ Jennings, Gareth (21 July 2016). "Senegal to receive KT-1 trainers from South Korea". IHS Jane's 360. London. Retrieved 21 July 2016.
  35. ^ Martin, Guy (2017-04-11). "Senegal parades new military hardware - defenceWeb". www.defenceweb.co.za. Archived from the original on 2018-01-15. Retrieved 2017-06-13.
  36. ^ "Turkish air force to receive first KT-1 trainers." Archived 2013-03-26 at the Wayback Machine Flight Global, 27 October 2010. Retrieved: 28 May 2012.
  37. ^ Jackson 2003, pp. 316–317.
  38. ^ "KT-1 Basic Trainer / Light Attack Aircraft, South Korea". airforce-technology.com. Archived from the original on 2014-02-23. Retrieved 2014-08-05.[unreliable source?]

Bibliography[edit]

  • Jackson, Paul (2003). Jane's All The World's Aircraft 2003–2004. Coulsdon, UK: Jane's Information Group. ISBN 978-0-7106-2537-3.
  • Taylor, Michael J. H. (1996). Brassey's World Aircraft & Systems Directory. London, England: Brassey's. ISBN 978-1857531985.

External links[edit]