The Legendary T-38 Talon Faces The Inevitable

The Legendary T-38 Talon Faces The Inevitable | World War Wings Videos

Tyndall Air Force Base

Clutching Your Talons.

The Northrop T-38 Talon has been called the safest plane in the US Air Force. It has been in service for nearly 60 years and well over 60,000 pilots have trained in their while learning to fly. But as the Talon gets up there in years its future isn’t certain among the air force.

When it ariel combat the field has evolved a lot since the T-38 first soared the skies. The Talon may have been suitable for jets of the past but now there are new contenders aiming to replace it. For training purposes, it lacks certain features necessary to be competitive in modern fighter education.

“[T]he T-38A has its limitations. It does not have aerial refueling capability, it lacks a radar and does not have the power, G-load capability or high angle of attack capability needed in a modern advanced trainer or an aggressor.”

– Dave Majumdar (The National Interest)

The Boeing-Saab B-X and the Lockheed-Martin T-50A are in the running to be the Air Force’s go-to trainer jets. With increasing maintenance costs and lack of viable features, it may spell the end for the T-38 Talon as the T-X Advanced Pilot Training (APT) program moves forward.

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