The Lavi – IDF’s Newest Training Aircraft

Earlier this month, the Israel Air Force grew significantly stronger with the arrival of its newest training aircraft: the “Lavi”. On the forefront of aerial technology, the Lavi allows pilots to acquire operational flight skills much faster resulting in a more efficient training process. Major A., the deputy commander of the Lavi Squadron, explains the enormous benefits of this new aircraft.

The first three models of this new trainer aircraft are officially in the hands of the Israel Air Force. The Lavi is designed to train pilots from the IAF Flight Academy, facilitating their transition from basic training models to advanced fighter aircraft like the F-15 and F-16I.

Major A., deputy commander of the Lavi Squadron explains, “This aircraft is revolutionary for the Flight Academy. Its flight characteristics are very similar to those of the F-16I and F-15. We can show students the possible maneuvers on their future fighter aircraft and thus shorten the training and adaptation processes significantly.”

Before becoming the deputy commander of the Lavi training Squadron, Major A. flew the F-16I for over 10 years. “A pilot must be flexible, always ready to face the unexpected,” he explains. “My role as a flight coach is simple: pass down all of my knowledge and experience to the students, so that they will be ready for any situation. The Lavi allows me to do that in the best possible way, preparing my students for a range of scenarios like air combat, bombing and escort.”

“The Lavi will not only improve the training process, it will also cut the in-air training time in half, allowing pilots to join squadrons much faster,” concludes Major A. “The Israeli Air Force now possesses one of the most advanced training aircraft in the world.”

A Flight Simulator Tailored to the Future

Alongside the Lavi, the IAF has also acquired a new flight simulator. The highly advanced features of the Lavi aircraft led to the creation of this one-of-a-kind simulator.

Sgt. Liora, 20, is an instructor on the Lavi simulator. In order to be a flight simulator instructor she chose to serve in the IDF for three years instead of the mandatory two years. “Our work requires thorough training,” explains Sgt. Liora. “Our job is to teach the pilots and their instructors every single detail about the Lavi. After going through extensive courses about the Lavi’s features, the pilots need to pass their test on the simulator before flying the aircraft.”

The simulator of the Lavi uses the latest technologies in software and hardware to replicate exactly how the plane behaves in flight, while simultaneously playing background sounds such as reactors and wind.

“The training and tests on the flight simulator are a crucial part of the pilot’s theoretical training. If we make a mistake and don’t teach the correct operational procedures, the consequences could be extremely serious,” adds Sgt. Liora. “There are six Lavi simulator instructors at the center. We all spent a year studying the simulator and it’s various features. We all feel proud when we instruct the pilots, teaching them how to fly, and being a crucial part in their mission to defend the State of Israel.”

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