Over half of the RAF’s Hawk T2 training aircraft are unavailable it has been revealed.

In response to a recent Parliamentary Written Question on the topic, the Earl of Minto stated:

Defence Equipment & Support is closely engaged with industry to increase the number of serviceable engines through the delivery of the required new component parts and engine upgrade work to address the current limitations.

As at 11 March 2024, 16 Hawk T2 aircraft were currently unavailable for fast jet pilot training.

There have been minimal delays to Fast Jet pilot training as a result of the Hawk T2 engine issue. Despite the seriousness of the engineering issue, the implementation of mitigation measures such as the international outsourcing of Fast Jet training have reduced the impact to a minimal level. Those trainees on course at the time of the engine issue being discovered were delayed by up to 2-months maximum; no other trainees in the Fast Jet pipeline were adversely impacted or delayed. There has been no impact to the number of ab-initio Fast Jet pilots delivered to the Front Line as a result of the Hawk T2 engine issue and the forecast Fast Jet training requirement for the Front Line will continue to be met.”

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George has a degree in Cyber Security from Glasgow Caledonian University and has a keen interest in naval and cyber security matters and has appeared on national radio and television to discuss current events. George is on Twitter at @geoallison
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Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
17 days ago

Maybe the foreign outsourcing of part of the training has actually improved the trainee flow?

Definitely political pressure with Ukrainian pilots to make stuff happen.

John Clark
John Clark
17 days ago

I’m afraid I would pull the plug on the Hawk and replace them with a fleet of one of the excellent Italian trainers.

We seem to be just chucking good money after bad with the T2 and it just isn’t coming right.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
17 days ago
Reply to  John Clark

I think the issue might be the level of integration to synthetic training that the T2 has?

Peter S
Peter S
17 days ago

No, it’s an issue with turbine blades on the first stage compressor. It means time between critical failure is shortened, greatly reducing expected flying hours until a partial engine rebuild is carried out.
USN Goshawks were also grounded for two weeks in 2022 when similar problems were found in their different version of the engine. So the problem seems to be more serious in the 951 version.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
17 days ago
Reply to  Peter S

I was suggesting the reasons for replacement of the T2 bring harder/more expensive was the bespoke synthetic training environment.

Deep32
Deep32
17 days ago
Reply to  John Clark

Agree with you John, Hawk has had its day, been a huge export success etc, but BAE have taken their eye off the ball with future development.
Personally would like to see us replace the Hawks with either a KAI T-50 from SK or the newer Boeing-Saab T7 Redhawk. Both would fit the bill nicely, as too would the AA M346 Master from Italy if you want to keep the purchase in Europe.
The Aeralis product is still realistically on the drawing board and I cant see us buying more then around 30ish airframes when all is said and done.

John Clark
John Clark
17 days ago
Reply to  Deep32

The Master would be my choice, users seem to rave about the platform and it’s now a mature design with the wrinkles worked out …

I would love to see Aeralis brought under GCAP as the future trainer, light attack and UCAV end of the spectrum.

Re the T2 engine, surely RR have responsibility for sorting the issue and paying the costs…..

Chris
Chris
17 days ago
Reply to  John Clark

KAI T-50 runs circles around the M-346.

The F/A-50 variant would make a great low cost air multi role air policing/point defense variant, taking the load off the Typhoons covering QRA. Buy knock down kits from KAI and assemble them at Warton.

It can also support all the UK’s existing weapons.

AlexS
AlexS
16 days ago
Reply to  Chris

M-346 is a training aircraft, it was made with redundancy with 2 engines. Can be added some combat capability including radar but not the main propose.
T-50 instead is a bigger aircraft 12t vs 9t and more combat capable against other aircraft, but against drones, helis will not be much different and one engine in combat have a bit more risk.

Chris
Chris
16 days ago
Reply to  AlexS

Just like the F-35 has one engine? The polish are replacing the M-346 with the T-50. The M-346 is becoming an albatross, weird engines, mediocre performance. The T-50 is selling great for a reason.

AlexS
AlexS
15 days ago
Reply to  Chris

Yes because F-35 has one less engine it is more vulnerable.

You are making a confusion.
Polish are not replacing M-346.
M-346 are their training aircraft.

FA-50 not T-50 are for combat, from wiki:

FA-50 deliveries are to start in 2023.[135] Blaszczak said KAI’s ability to deliver the aircraft quickly was the decisive factor in it being chosen. As a result of the 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine, the Polish Air Force desired urgently to replace their remaining MiG-29 fighter and Su-22 attack aircraft and the U.S. was unable to supply additional F-16s in such a short timeframe.

John Hartley
John Hartley
15 days ago
Reply to  Chris

The Poles are not replacing the M346. they are using it for training, as it is cheaper to operate. They are buying FA-50 as a light combat aircraft, as a more capable & expensive asset to deter Russia.

Chris Gooding
Chris Gooding
16 days ago
Reply to  Deep32

I would agree with replacing the T2 Hawks sooner rather than later. I have said in many posts over the years 28 was never enough .. Yes the T1a aircraft were 40 years old but did a lot better job.. but sadly not suited to this generation of flying.. I would like to see us have the South Korean T-50. Modern and a better trainer than the T2 Hawk. We have let our aircraft number dwindle to basic bare minimum.. People questioned me saying 48 T-50 would be very costly.. but spread that over the next 30+ years no.. 24… Read more »

AlexS
AlexS
16 days ago
Reply to  Chris Gooding

There is no money for any of that.

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
16 days ago
Reply to  Chris Gooding

Give the T2 to red arrows. Use a suitable aircraft for training.
It does seem silly having a display team with an aircraft that can’t be made anymore.

Armchair Admiral
Armchair Admiral
17 days ago

There are hundreds of Hawks in service with no engine issues, the Adour engine seems to have been a reliable power plant. Not sure why they are having these problems now.
The statement of increased parts almost smacks of insufficient spares in the first place.

Get a move on with Aeralis.
AA

AlexS
AlexS
17 days ago

USN T-45 Goshawk is being affected.

That said a bird on the wall told me the issue is not only the Adour part, but was not willing to tell me what is it.

Sooty
Sooty
16 days ago

Same questions: The Adour’s been around for donkey’s years, why problems now? Is it spares availability? Is it a case of not ordering spares? Was the 951 an uprating too far? Have there always been problems with USN Adours?

Agree with moving on with Aeralis, it could be a winner for UK plc.

Paul T
Paul T
16 days ago
Reply to  Sooty

From memory it has something to do with Safran inheriting the support/spares logistics of the Adour Engine.

Farouk
Farouk
17 days ago

Talking of flying, I see the Defence Sec had a little swan in a Australian F18 the other day, which follows his time flying around in a CH47 , his time in the nuke sub when it tested a Trident , I get the impression he’s getting as many jollies in before getting kicked out of office, and what’s the Bobby Moore with him wearing a PCS thermal jacket for the cameras , my only regret is he didn’t visit Odessa

Jacko
Jacko
17 days ago
Reply to  Farouk

Nah he’s getting first hand experience of the balls up politicians make off defence😂

Exroyal.
Exroyal.
16 days ago
Reply to  Farouk

He was never going to Odessa. Problems with parts as is the case with many redundant bits of kit. I think it was a lack of balls.

FOSTERSMAN
FOSTERSMAN
17 days ago

We need to go all in on the Aeralis jets now. On a side note if they did the UK industry plan isn’t too shabby at the moment, just need to up the export potentials;
*Tempest and the Aeralis jet for RAF.
*Type 26 and Type 31 for RN.
*Ajax and Boxer for the army.

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
16 days ago
Reply to  FOSTERSMAN

If and it’s a big IF aeralis is even possible. Making a transformer aircraft is going to be a huge challenge. If it was easy someone would already of done it.
Then if it’s going to cost as much or more than a normal training aircraft to develop why not just get BAE to build one that we know will actually work.
Or save a few billion and just buy a current trainer.

John Hartley
John Hartley
15 days ago
Reply to  Monkey spanker

Airbus Spain wants to build a new jet trainer, but no money available. Perhaps if it was a UK/Spain joint project, you would get enough orders to make it viable?

Mark Franks
Mark Franks
17 days ago

I mentioned this a while back on your forum and got castigated for by some of the forum members whon always seem to know better.
It’s one of the reasons I don’t post much here.

Marked
Marked
17 days ago
Reply to  Mark Franks

Always the way, a few can’t stand to accept reality and bury their heads in the sand on the blind faith our admittedly outstanding personnel can overcome any problems they face. Reality is harsh.

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
16 days ago
Reply to  Mark Franks

Mentioned what?
It’s life that folks will disagree with you. If I’m confident what I’ve written is correct then who cares if someone else is wrong.

Mark Franks
Mark Franks
16 days ago
Reply to  Monkey spanker

So something that is proof positive is happening is a platform for people to say its not?
I’m all for debate we never stop learning, here’s the but! I do not do being shutdown and told I’m talking rubbish.

Cripes
Cripes
17 days ago

Well, sounds like remedial action is finally being planned, but not yet underway, to replace the dodgy turbine blades. I wonder why his lordship does not give a date when the work will commence and when all 28 are expected to be returned to service? It all sounds a bit vague and futuristic. I wonder too what he means by ‘engine upgrade work to address the current limitations’ – what limitations, are there some further problems with the Adour engines that we don’t know about? The T2s started coming into service in 2006 I think, so should have a good… Read more »

Andrew D
Andrew D
16 days ago
Reply to  Cripes

Agree with you on these Aeralis not sure if they will ever get of the drawing board. Hawk has been a great aircraft and good export ,but think it has had it’s day .Maybe time to take a look round what’s on offer over seas 🤔 🇬🇧

Geoff Roach
Geoff Roach
16 days ago

Another success story. I wonder if ny thought should have given to spare parts and so on before they had to ground half the fleet. 🙄

DeeBee
DeeBee
16 days ago

Let’s face it, the entire UK armed forces are in a pretty terrible state, decades of underfunding, neglect, servicemen at risk of prison on the whim of the flimyist of allegations, more interested in woke gender neutral Clapton than geard up for a major conflict ( coming soon) God help us!!

Andrew D
Andrew D
16 days ago
Reply to  DeeBee

This government and previous have ripe the lions 🦁 heart out of our forces 😞

DeeBee
DeeBee
16 days ago
Reply to  Andrew D

Yes without doubt, everything this country has/ does is thanks to the sacrifice of our armed forces.

J c
J c
16 days ago

It almost seems there is an element within our military and governing establishment that are trying to reduce our military capabilities to an insignificant level. Forty main battle tanks, 2 aircraft carriers that keep breaking down and have no missiles for long range defence and attack, lack of fleet support ships, only 3 wedgetails on order, less than 50 F 35B’s, less than 100 available typhoons, reductions of combat fighting personnel to record lows and recruitment drives that exclude white people for certain military roles, woke driven educational courses. I could go on and on but I hope I’m getting… Read more »

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
16 days ago
Reply to  J c

40 MBTs? What is the story there? We have 213 CR2s on the acive list and are getting 148 CR3s as replacements.

I do not see evidence that senior military officers want constant reductions in manpower and equipment. Its the politicians and the Treasury to blame.

JC
JC
16 days ago
Reply to  Graham Moore

A number of articles have been written about our Tank strength. According to one, the number of CR2’s has been reduced to 157 dur to cannibalizations for spares. A number of CR2’s are .slated for upgrade to CR3 however history has shown that the projected numbers published are rarely achieved in reality. Some Former RAF pilots have gone on record as saying that some Typhoon squadrons have had ,at times, as few as 6 serviceable aircraft available. Likewise with our MBT’s the published available numbers are greater than in reality.

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
16 days ago
Reply to  JC

Hi JC, MoD bought 386 CR2s, delivered from 1998. If it was true that all but 157 had been cannibalised, that would amount to 229 tanks having been cannibalised! The 157 figure comes from a report from MoD to Parliament from about a year ago, March 2023 I believe. It was the number of tanks that were available for use. When I served in REME the target was that 70% of key equipment must be available (rising to 90% after a concerted 24hrs of work by crews and REME with spares being available). The figure of 157 tanks out of… Read more »

S.crossland
S.crossland
16 days ago

One of the short commings of the MOD. They buy parts from abroad and have no control over supply. OK cost might make worth while, but you need a large parts reserve. Imagine in 1939 if we had relied on parts from abroad for the humpy or Spitfire. I read Typhoons were sitting in the hanger awaiting parts from Germany and the hawk fan blades are a French delayed part. You can only have small in Inventory of parts if entirely sourced here

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
15 days ago
Reply to  S.crossland

MoD will generally source parts from the manufacturer of the item they form a part of. If thats a foreign manufacturer, then the parts will be foreign.

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
15 days ago

Perhaps a silly idea but can the jets not use the older version of adour that the hawk T1s use until the newer version is fixed? There’s probably a load of them from retired hawks etc. 28 T2 hawks was always too small a number. A follow on order was needed. If everything went perfect and worked to an ideal schedule there perhaps enough training assets. But unfortunately things rarely work like that so extra is needed.

John Hartley
John Hartley
14 days ago
Reply to  Monkey spanker

Within the last couple of days, Canada retired their 17 Bae Hawk series 115. They are 20 years old. Way newer than RAF Hawk T1. If anyone was awake in Whitehall, the UK could buy them cheap to replace RAF Hawk T1. Even if we only got a decade out of them.

Mickey
Mickey
13 days ago
Reply to  John Hartley

Yes ,without a replacement lined up. RCAF pilot trainees have to go to the US now.

AlexS
AlexS
11 days ago
Reply to  Mickey

Italy too, from The Aviationist. “The RCAF is excited to be here, we have been planning to join the program for some years”, told us Brig. Gen. Todd N. Balfe, Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) Fighter Capability Special Advisor. “We now have an Instructor Pilot who’s been assigned to the IFTS, he’s already begun flying and he’s the first of many Canadians who will be trained here over many, many years. (…) So as we spend time here with our IPs and student pilots, we will take all the lessons back to Canada where we’ll build our own system. And… Read more »

John Fedup
John Fedup
11 days ago
Reply to  John Hartley

Apparently Canadian Hawks are in bad shape, heavily used because that’s just the nature of training operations but more importantly there were to few of them.

Dave
Dave
15 days ago

The mod is not fit for purpose, like the rest of the shambles in Westminster where neither government opposition nor civil service are capable of doing anything for this country but spend their lives embezzling wealth and bribes for themselves. Sack the lot of them and get some sergeants who knows what they are doing to sort it out