30 January 2023
by Gareth Jennings
The latest concept art of the Aeralis modular jet, released to mark the signing of an MOU with AirTanker. (Aeralis)
Aeralis and AirTanker have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to explore future flying training and air combat support opportunities.
Announced on 30 January, the MOU will see the two UK-based companies identify and assess upcoming contracts in military flying training, defence operational training, and combat air support roles for the modular jet aircraft being developed by Aeralis.
“The MOU covers a range of services that AirTanker can offer, such as collaboration with overseas partners and establishing local service provision. The MOU will involve the sharing of information and regular progress updates, as well as joint workshops to explore future collaboration opportunities. The agreement aims to use the Aeralis programme to achieve significantly lower financing, acquisition, and operating costs for aircraft compared to incumbents, paving the way for enabling a wide range of ‘on-demand' operational air support services as part of the future of air force fleets,” the announcement said.
Aeralis first launched its modular aircraft in late 2018 when it was pitched as a basic and advanced jet trainer that share airframe, cockpit, and engine systems. The Aeralis retains a common core fuselage, with the outer wings being interchanged between a straight or swept edge depending on the requirement. Also, the engine bay can be configured for single or twin powerplant(s). A further concept aircraft, the Aeralis-X, was subsequently revealed for other possible roles such as aggressor, aerobatics, aerial refuelling, and ground attack, with an uncrewed version most recently touted. A first flight is being targeted for late 2024, with 2028 being the target for taking the aircraft to market.
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Aeralis and AirTanker have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to explore future flying train...