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  • Writer's pictureLudo Mennes

2019 Fighter Weapons Instructor Training

Updated: Feb 23, 2020

The Fighter Weapons Instructor Training (FWIT) course was held at Leeuwarden airbase from May until mid November 2019. The FWIT is organized by the EPAF (European Participating Air Forces) Fighter Weapons school. The participating EPAF countries are Belgium, Denmark, The Netherlands, Norway and Portugal, all operating the F-16 platform.

Due to operational commitments Denmark and Norway did not provide students for the 2019 edition. A total of 11 pilots followed the course, which is held every two years.

This 6 months long course consists of three phases: air-to-air, air-to-surface and the Mission Employment phase. Unlike previous years the last phase was held in Holland and not in Norway.

For the last two week of the Mission Employment phase a large number of aircraft operated from Leeuwarden, including a number of F-16s from Volkel airbase and the local 322 Squadron at Leeuwarden. For third generation red air, three BAe Hawks from 100 Squadron from RAF Leeming were temporarily based at Leeuwarden. German Eurofighters and Tornados operated from their own bases.

Many scenarios were flown with a specific focus for the students on commanding missions with multiple aircraft and showing the necessary leadership. The students have been selected by their squadron commanders for their outstanding qualities and will return after this course as masters in the F-16 science.

On 14 November all students received their much desired blue patch during an official ceremony, officially making them weapons instructors.

Northern Skies Aviation would like to thank both the supervisors of FWIT and TWIC and the PAO for their efforts!

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