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Tug, Test, Training and Evaluation Aircraft

Tug, Test, Training and Evaluation Aircraft

A test pilot is an aviator who flies new and modified aircraft in specific maneuvers, allowing the results to be measured and the design to be evaluated. Test pilots may work for military organizations or private, (mostly aerospace) companies. Testing military aircraft, in particular, is regarded as the most challenging and risky flying conducted in peacetime.

In the 1950s, test pilots were being killed at the rate of about one a week, but the risks have shrunk to a fraction of that, thanks to the maturation of aircraft technology, better ground-testing and simulation of aircraft performance, and, lately, the use of unmanned aerial vehicles to test experimental aircraft features. Still, piloting experimental aircraft remains more dangerous than most other types of flying.

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German Henschel Hs 123A Dive-Bomber - Flugzeugfuhrerschule, Training Unit, 1941 German Henschel Hs 123A Dive-Bomber - Flugzeugfuhrerschule, Training Unit, 1941 (1:72 Scale)

The Henschel Hs 123 was a single-seat biplane dive bomber and close-support attack aircraft flown by the German Luftwaffe during the Spanish Civil War and the early to midpoint of World War II. Although an obsolete design, it continued to see front-line service until 1944, and was only withdrawn due to a lack of serviceable airframes and spare parts.

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German Messerschmitt Me 163B-0 Komet Rocket-Powered Fighter - Major Wolfgang Spate, Erprobungskommando 16, Bad Zwischenahn, May 1944 German Messerschmitt Me 163B-0 Komet Rocket-Powered Fighter - Major Wolfgang Spate, Erprobungskommando 16, Bad Zwischenahn, May 1944 (1:72 Scale)

The Me 163 Komet, designed by Alexander Martin Lippisch, was the only operational rocket-powered fighter aircraft during the Second World War. Although revolutionary and capable of performance unrivalled at the time, it proved ineffective as a fighter and resulted in the destruction of very few Allied aircraft.

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USN North American SNJ-5 Texan Trainer - Guantanamo Naval Air Station, Cuba, 1956 USN North American SNJ-5 Texan Trainer - Guantanamo Naval Air Station, Cuba, 1956 (1:72 Scale)

The T-6 was a single-engine advanced trainer aircraft designed by North American Aviation, used to train fighter pilots of the United States Army Air Forces, United States Navy, Royal Air Force and other air forces of the British Commonwealth during World War II.

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North American CCF Harvard Mk. 4 Trainer - Flugdienstaffel Technische, Schule 1, Kaufbeuren, Bavaria, Germany, 1960 North American CCF Harvard Mk. 4 Trainer - Flugdienstaffel Technische, Schule 1, Kaufbeuren, Bavaria, Germany, 1960 (1:72 Scale)

The T-6 was a single-engine advanced trainer aircraft designed by North American Aviation, used to train fighter pilots of the United States Army Air Forces, United States Navy, Royal Air Force and other air forces of the British Commonwealth during World War II.

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USAAC North American AT-6A Texan Trainer - X-524, US Army Air Corps Training Base, Luke Field, Arizona, 1942 USAAC North American AT-6A Texan Trainer - X-524, US Army Air Corps Training Base, Luke Field, Arizona, 1942 (1:72 Scale)

The T-6 was a single-engine advanced trainer aircraft designed by North American Aviation, used to train fighter pilots of the United States Army Air Forces, United States Navy, Royal Air Force and other air forces of the British Commonwealth during World War II.

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PLAAF Chengdu J-20 "Mighty Dragon" Stealth Fighter - Test Flight, Huangtian Airport, Shenzhen, China, 2011 Chinese PLAAF Chengdu J-20 "Mighty Dragon" Stealth Fighter - Test Flight, Huangtian Airport, Shenzhen, China, 2011 (1:144 Scale)

The Chengdu J-20 (Jian-20; literally "Annihilator-Twenty") is a fifth generation stealth, twin-engine fighter aircraft prototype developed by Chengdu Aircraft Industry Group for the Chinese People's Liberation Army Air Force.

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RCAF Westland Lysander Mk. II Reconnaissance Aircraft - Target Tug (On display at the Canadian Warplane Heritage Museum) RCAF Westland Lysander Mk. II Reconnaissance Aircraft - Target Tug (On display at the Canadian Warplane Heritage Museum) (1:72 Scale)

The Lysander is a two-seat reconnaissance and artillery spotting monoplane defined by Specification A 39/34 in response to Operational Requirement OR. 18. Three squadrons of Mk. Is and three of Mk. Us equipped during 1938/39 moved to France with BEF in 1939; about 50 Westland Lysanders were shot down and 30 destroyed on the ground in May 1940.

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RAF Gloster Meteor F.2 Jet Fighter - De Havilland Halford Goblin Jet Engine Test Aircraft RAF Gloster Meteor F.2 Jet Fighter - De Havilland Halford Goblin Jet Engine Test Aircraft (1:72 Scale)

The Gloster Meteor was the first British jet fighter and the Allies' first operational jet. Designed by George Carter, it first flew in 1943 and commenced operations on 27 July 1944 with 616 Squadron of the Royal Air Force (RAF).

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RCAF Westland Lysander Mk. II Reconnaissance Aircraft - #416, First Canadian-Built Lysander, Malton Airport NSC Factory, 1939 RCAF Westland Lysander Mk. II Reconnaissance Aircraft - #416, First Canadian-Built Lysander, Malton Airport NSC Factory, 1939 (1:72 Scale)

The Lysander is a two-seat reconnaissance and artillery spotting monoplane defined by Specification A 39/34 in response to Operational Requirement OR. 18. Three squadrons of Mk. Is and three of Mk. Us equipped during 1938/39 moved to France with BEF in 1939; about 50 Westland Lysanders were shot down and 30 destroyed on the ground in May 1940.

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RAF De Havilland DH.82A Tiger Moth Training Aircraft - Brooklands Aviation RAF De Havilland DH.82A Tiger Moth Training Aircraft - Brooklands Aviation (1:72 Scale)

The de Havilland DH 82 Tiger Moth is a 1930s biplane designed by Geoffrey de Havilland and was operated by the Royal Air Force and others as a primary trainer.

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RAF De Havilland DH.82A Tiger Moth Training Aircraft - Brooklands Aviation - G-ACDA, The de Havilland School of Flying RAF De Havilland DH.82A Tiger Moth Training Aircraft - "G-ACDA," The de Havilland School of Flying (1:72 Scale)

The de Havilland DH 82 Tiger Moth is a 1930s biplane designed by Geoffrey de Havilland and was operated by the Royal Air Force and others as a primary trainer.

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Israeli Air Force North American T-6G Harvard Trainer - Heyl Ha Avir Israeli Air Force North American T-6G Harvard Trainer - Heyl Ha'Avir (1:72 Scale)

The T-6 was a single-engine advanced trainer aircraft designed by North American Aviation, used to train fighter pilots of the United States Army Air Forces, United States Navy, Royal Air Force and other air forces of the British Commonwealth during World War II.

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RAF BAe Hawk T1 N.4 Trainer - Flight Training, RAF Valley RAF BAe Hawk T1 N.4 Trainer - Flight Training, RAF Valley (1:72 Scale)

The BAE Systems Hawk is a British single engine, advanced jet trainer aircraft. It first flew in 1974 as the Hawker Siddeley Hawk. The Hawk is used by the Royal Air Force, and other air forces, as either a trainer or a low-cost combat aircraft.

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RAF Hawker Hunter T7 Training Aircraft - No. 237 OCU, RAF Honnington, England, July 1987 RAF Hawker Hunter T7 Training Aircraft - No. 237 OCU, RAF Honnington, England, July 1987 (1:72 Scale)

The Hawker Hunter was a UK jet fighter aircraft of the 1950s and 1960s. The Hunter served for many years with the Royal Air Force and was widely exported, serving with 19 air forces. A total of 1,972 Hunters were produced by Hawker Siddeley and under licence.

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German Messerschmitt Me-262B Fighter - 1./Kampfgeschwader (J) 53, Germany, 1944 German Messerschmitt Me-262B Fighter - 1./Kampfgeschwader (J) 53, Germany, 1944 (1:72 Scale)

The jet-powered Me 262 Sturmvogel ("Stormbird") has long since gained its place in the annals of international aeronautical history. With its sleek aerodynamic design and high performance jet engines, the Me 262 radically changed the way in which air combat was waged.

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JASDF Mitsubishi T-2 Trainer - Blue Impulse, 21st Squadron, 4th Air Wing, Hamamatsu, Shizuoka, Japan JASDF Mitsubishi T-2 Trainer - "Blue Impulse", 21st Squadron, 4th Air Wing, Hamamatsu, Shizuoka, Japan (1:72 Scale)

The Mitsubishi F-1 is Japan's first, post WWII, domestically developed jet fighter, and was the first fighter to enter production in Japan since the end of World War II. Mitsubishi Heavy Industries and Fuji Heavy Industries jointly developed the F-1.

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USAF Northrop T-38 Talon Jet Trainer - 49th Fighter Wing, Holloman AFB, New Mexico, 2011 USAF Northrop T-38 Talon Jet Trainer - 49th Fighter Wing, Holloman AFB, New Mexico, 2011 (1:72 Scale)

The Northrop T-38 Talon is a two-seat, twin-engine supersonic jet trainer. It was the world's first supersonic trainer and is also the most produced. The T-38 remains in service as of 2013 in air forces throughout the world. The United States Air Force (USAF) is the largest operator of the T-38. In addition to training USAF pilots, the T-38 is used by NASA.

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USAF Northrop T-38 Talon Jet Trainer - 49th Fighter Wing, Holloman AFB, New Mexico, 2005 USAF Northrop T-38 Talon Jet Trainer - 49th Fighter Wing, Holloman AFB, New Mexico, 2005 (1:72 Scale)

The Northrop T-38 Talon is a two-seat, twin-engine supersonic jet trainer. It was the world's first supersonic trainer and is also the most produced. The T-38 remains in service as of 2013 in air forces throughout the world. The United States Air Force (USAF) is the largest operator of the T-38. In addition to training USAF pilots, the T-38 is used by NASA.

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JASDF Kawasaki T-4 Trainer - 21st Hikotai, Blue Impulse, Matsushima AB, Japan, 2010 JASDF Kawasaki T-4 Trainer - 21st Hikotai, Blue Impulse, Matsushima AB, Japan, 2010 (1:72 Scale)

The Kawasaki T-4 is a subsonic intermediate jet trainer aircraft used by the Japan Air Self-Defense Force. It is currently used by the JASDF's Blue Impulse aerobatic team. The first XT-4 prototype flew on July 29, 1985. The first production aircraft was delivered in 1988.

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RCAF Boeing Stearman N2S-2 Kaydet Bi-Plane Trainer RCAF Boeing Stearman N2S-2 Kaydet Bi-Plane Trainer (1:48 Scale)

The Stearman (Boeing) Model 75 is a biplane used as a military trainer aircraft, of which at least 9,783 were built in the United States during the 1930s and 1940s. Stearman Aircraft became a subsidiary of Boeing in 1934.

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USAF Lockheed TF-104G Starfighter Interceptor - 418th Tactical Fighter Training Squadron, 58th Tactical Training Wing, Luke Air Force Base, 1976 USAF Lockheed TF-104G Starfighter Interceptor - 418th Tactical Fighter Training Squadron, 58th Tactical Training Wing, Luke Air Force Base, 1976 (1:72 Scale)

Introduced to the world as "the missile with a man in it," the striking Lockheed F-104 Starfighter promised to be the ultimate interceptor. Small, light in weight and with stunning straight-line performance, the F-104 was never agile enough to become what its designers wanted.

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USAF Northrop F-5E Tiger II Fighter - 58th Tactical  Fighter Training Wing, Luke AFB, AZ, 1970's USAF Northrop F-5E Tiger II Fighter - 58th Tactical Fighter Training Wing, Luke AFB, AZ, 1970's (1:72 Scale)

The Northrop F-5A/B Freedom Fighter and F-5E/F Tiger II are part of a family of widely used light supersonic fighter aircraft, designed and built by Northrop in the United States, beginning in the 1960s.

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USAF Northrop F-5E Tiger II Fighter - 58th Tactical Fighter Training Wing, Luke AFB, AZ, 1970s USAF Northrop F-5E Tiger II Fighter - 58th Tactical Fighter Training Wing, Luke AFB, AZ, 1970s (1:72 Scale)

The Northrop F-5A/B Freedom Fighter and F-5E/F Tiger II are part of a family of widely used light supersonic fighter aircraft, designed and built by Northrop in the United States, beginning in the 1960s.

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Russian Sukhoi Su-35S "Super Flanker" Multirole Fighter - Gromov Flight Research Institute, Zhukovsky Air Base, Russia [Advanced Technology Demonstrator Scheme] Russian Sukhoi Su-35S "Super Flanker" Multirole Fighter - Gromov Flight Research Institute, Zhukovsky Air Base, Russia [Advanced Technology Demonstrator Scheme] (1:72 Scale)

The Sukhoi Su-35 (NATO reporting name: Flanker-E) Also known as Super Flanker, is a designation for two separate, heavily upgraded derivatives of the Su-27 'Flanker'.

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Chinese PLAAF Sukhoi Su-35S "Super Flanker" Multirole Fighter - 6th Aviation Brigade, Suji Air Force Base, China Chinese PLAAF Sukhoi Su-35S "Super Flanker" Multirole Fighter - 6th Aviation Brigade, Suji Air Force Base, China (1:72 Scale)

The Sukhoi Su-35 (NATO reporting name: Flanker-E) Also known as Super Flanker, is a designation for two separate, heavily upgraded derivatives of the Su-27 'Flanker'.

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Russian Sukhoi PAK FA T-50 Stealth Fighter - Gromov Flight Research Institute, Zhukovsky Air Base, Russia [Advanced Technology Demonstrator Scheme] Russian Sukhoi PAK FA T-50 Stealth Fighter - Gromov Flight Research Institute, Zhukovsky Air Base, Russia [Advanced Technology Demonstrator Scheme] (1:72 Scale)

The Sukhoi PAK FA (Russian: Perspektivny Aviatsionny Kompleks Frontovoy Aviatsii, literally "Prospective Airborne Complex of Frontline Aviation") is a twin-engine jet fighter being developed by Sukhoi for the Russian Air Force. The Sukhoi T-50 is the prototype for PAK FA. The PAK FA is one of only a handful of stealth jet programs worldwide.

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Russian Aerospace Forces Sukhoi Su-57 ("White Shark") Stealth Fighter - "Blue 56", Taras Artzebarsky, 929th Chkalov State Flight Test Center, Russia, April 27th, 2016 [Test Scheme] Russian Aerospace Forces Sukhoi Su-57 ("White Shark") Stealth Fighter - "Blue 56", Taras Artzebarsky, 929th Chkalov State Flight Test Center, Russia, April 27th, 2016 [Test Scheme] (1:72 Scale)

The Sukhoi PAK FA (Russian: Perspektivny Aviatsionny Kompleks Frontovoy Aviatsii, literally "Prospective Airborne Complex of Frontline Aviation") is a twin-engine jet fighter being developed by Sukhoi for the Russian Air Force. The Sukhoi T-50 is the prototype for PAK FA. The PAK FA is one of only a handful of stealth jet programs worldwide.

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RCAF Avro CF-105 Arrow Interceptor - 25203, Prototype Aircraft, 1958 RCAF Avro CF-105 Arrow Interceptor - "25203," Prototype Aircraft, 1958 (1:72 Scale)

The Avro Canada CF-105 Arrow was a delta-winged interceptor aircraft, designed and built by Avro Aircraft Limited (Canada) in Malton, Ontario, Canada, as the culmination of a design study that began in 1953.

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RCAF Avro CF-105 Arrow Interceptor - RL 201, First Production Aircraft, 1959 RCAF Avro CF-105 Arrow Interceptor - "RL 201," First Production Aircraft, 1959 (1:72 Scale)

The Avro Canada CF-105 Arrow was a delta-winged interceptor aircraft, designed and built by Avro Aircraft Limited (Canada) in Malton, Ontario, Canada, as the culmination of a design study that began in 1953.

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USAF Lockheed-Martin F-35A Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter - 461st Flight Test Squadron, 412th Test Wing, Spring 2013 [Low-Vis Scheme] USAF Lockheed-Martin F-35A Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter - 461st Flight Test Squadron, 412th Test Wing, Spring 2013 [Low-Vis Scheme] (1:72 Scale)

The Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II is a fifth-generation, single-seat, single-engine, stealth-capable military strike fighter, a multirole aircraft that can perform close air support, tactical bombing, and air superiority fighter missions.

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