Warplanes: Swiss Precision

Archives

February 6, 2017: One of the more imaginative and effective new flight trainer aircraft comes from a nation that has not fought a war for over two centuries. The aircraft in question is the PC-21 and at the end of 2016 the Swiss manufacturer sold 21 more of these trainers. Most of the latest batch were ordered by neighbor France. What makes this sale even more impressive was that the PC-21 was competing with two jet powered trainers (M345 and L39). The Pilatus PC-21 is a very popular and effective trainer aircraft for pilots who are about to move up to jet fighters and that usually means a jet powered trainer. The PC-21 is unique because it was created to provide a less expensive (to buy and operate) trainer for this Thus the PC-21 has a cockpit similar to a jet fighter and can perform many of the same maneuvers, but somewhat slower and for a lot less cost per flight hour. The propeller driven PC-21 has a pressurized cockpit with a bubble canopy and a modern "glass" cockpit. The aircraft can pull 8 Gs while maneuvering. The instructors sits behind, and slightly higher, the trainee in the two seat cockpit. The PC-21 cruises at 660 kilometers an hour and has a max speed of 720 kilometers an hour. Max altitude is 12,000 meters (38,000 feet). For training, or use as a light bomber, the PC-21 has five hard-points, enabling the aircraft to carry a ton of bombs and missiles. Introduced in 2008, more than 150 PC-21s have been delivered or are on order and sales keep increasing as more air forces hear about how successfully and inexpensively the PC-21 does the job. Many major nations still prefer to use locally made trainers but these nations are losing a growing number of trainer export sales to tiny Switzerland.

 


X

ad Help Keep Us Online!
 

Help Keep Us Afloat! Go to other sites on the World Wide Web and they look like the a mad marketer has gained control of them. Lots of ads and little content! Ad revenues are down for everyone! We don’t want to follow the crowd. But here is the deal we cannot keep our site relative ad free without your support. Each month we need your subscriptions or contributions plus what meager ad revenue we do receive to stay in business. You can support us in the following ways:

  1. Make sure you spread the word about us. Two ways to do that are to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.
  2. Subscribe to our daily newsletter. We’ll send the news to your email box, and you don’t have to come to the site unless you want to read columns or see photos.
  3. You can contribute to the health of StrategyPage. A contribution is not a donation that you can deduct at tax time, but a form of crowdfunding. We store none of your information when you contribute..
Subscribe   Contribute   Close