||The T-50 Golden Eagle is a supersonic, advanced jet trainer and lead-in fighter trainer being jointly developed and produced by Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Company and Korea Aerospace Industries (KAI) for the Republic of Korea Air Force. The T-50 will be used to train pilots to fly current and next-generation fighters; it will also be marketed for export.
Lockheed Martin is the principal subcontractor and responsible for the wings, flight controls and avionics, plus technical assistance in the development process.
The T-50 is designed to emulate modern fighters in terms of performance and equipment. The aircraft is supersonic, capable of performing high-g turns, and employs a fully integrated avionics suite. The T-50 prepares student pilots by teaching them the characteristics of supersonic flight, transonic maneuverability, and the operation of state-of-the-art avionics.
The supersonic T-50 will have the maneuverability, endurance and advanced systems to prepare future pilots to fly next-generation fighters like the F-22 and the Joint Strike Fighter. These same characteristics give the T-50 an excellent light-combat potential.
The Full Scale Development (FSD) program began in 1997. The first of four FSD aircraft flew on August 20, 2002. First production aircraft is expected to be completed in 2005