Component pilot takes modified AWACS up in the air for first time
On April 29, Lt.Col. Max Desmetz was the first pilot from the E-3A Component to conduct a test flight with the modified E-3A AWACS, also known as N-1. The flight took 5.45 hours and was flown from Boeing Field in Seattle in the United States. Lt.Col. Desmetz: "I was very excited to fly the N-1 after being in the modification program since 2012. The flight was very successful and it was a great experience for me together with the Boeing crew. I'm definitely looking forward to the next flight, which probably will take place upcoming week."
The modification enhances a glass cockpit and other advanced avionics. The entire modification program is set to be done in 2018. At that time 14 E-3A's are modified to meet current and future standards in communication, navigation, surveillance and air traffic management.