Frag Out! Magazine

Frag Out! Magazine #29

Frag Out! Magazine

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Page 75 of 215

Arriving at Sheppard early in the morn- ing one can see a big apron with impres- sive numbers of aircraft under sun shel- ters. 3 runways – 1 for T-38, 1 for T-6 and 1 reserve as well as more than 260 operations daily are great numbers. There is nothing to be surprised of – 14 countries train their pilots here, so op- eration temp is high, but at the same time professional. Apart from 80th FTW Sheppard AFB consist also of 82nd Training Wing, which is the biggest training facility for USAF's technicians and engineers of military aircraft. Both fighters, trans- port aircraft or tankers maintenance crews are being trained here having almost every machine currently fly- ing in USAF available for their training. ENJJPT uniqueness Euro NATO Joint Jet Pilot Training is the only one in the world international training program managed by 14 coun- tries – Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Ger- many, Greece, Italy, Netherlands, Nor- way, Portugal, Romania, Spain, Turkey, United Kingdom and United States. The decisions about the way of training and its path are made by all members twice a year during a Committee Meetings, where current and future targets are being discussed. What is worth to note is that ENJJPT students have more fly- ing hours in total than standard USAF pilot's training or European countries. "It may seem that the main point here is flying, but the true value is building and strengthening international relation- ships. Italian Instructor Pilot can teach Norwegian pilot or German instructor can train US students – these are just the examples showcasing multination- al cooperation already during training, which gives a lot to our students" tells Col Hey, 80 th FTW Operation Group Commander. "Second point is pilot's training – we strive to get perfect pi- lots of not only fighter aircraft, but also others and we want to see them proud- ly serve in their countries". Each country has their own represen- tative called SNR – Senior National Representative, who represent their countries' interest as well as overlook their pilots training. Usually these are Instructor Pilots, who apart from rep- resentative function, participate also in student's training. Their role is espe- cially important as they help to under- stand specific Air Forces needs as well as training requirements differences. As an example, let's look at Italian Air Force, which does not conduct low-level flight training in Italy, that's why they rely on Sheppard AFB in this area and strive to get this part of training date for every pilot. Greek SNR, nicknamed "Panzer" con- firms what Col Hey said "I hope that new countries will soon join ENJJPT as this is the best place to build alliances and get international contact, which will be useful for pilots both during their na- tional and international flights". Panzer is currently T-6 instructor at Sheppard, while previously he was flying on F-16 in Fighter Weapon School in Andravida AFB in Greece. Between both students and instruc- tors, the atmosphere is very smooth and friendly. Students are divided into 20-30 people classes, called Flight with specific year and number in order to train together as well as building stron- ger relationships. On average, every month a new group starts their classes beginning with ground school (theoret- ical lectures) and then flying on T-6 and T-38. Training programmes ENJJPT have 4 main training pro- grammes: • UPT – Undergraduate Pilot Training • PIT – Pilot Instructor Training • IFF – Introduction to Fighter Funda- mentals • IFF UIP – IFF Upgrade Instructor Pilot Approximately 190-200 students grad- uate each year at Sheppard and in the nearest future this number should be increased to about 250. UPT program consists of 3 main phases – the first phase is ground training where students are being taught basics, aircraft handling, parachute jumps or get ejection seat training. It's worth adding that most of them have never ever flown an aircraft, so this is an important part of overall training. Naturally it also includes sim- ulator flights and lasts 5 weeks in total.

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