The Kenya Air Force (KAF) is operating Grob G120TP turboprop trainers to boost its training capability following its earlier acquisition of a G120A-K piston engine trainer aircraft which arrived in November and December2of 2013.
KAF received the latest batch of three G120TP aircraft from the Grob factory in Germany and arrived in the country on Aug 19, after leaving the factory at Mindelheim in Germany with the delivery flight routing via Crete, Egypt, Djibouti and Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, before arriving in Kenya.
Although no order from the KAF has been officially announced, two G120TPs were confirmed in service with the Flying Training School’s Training Squadron at Laikipia Air Base, Nanyuki, by May this year.
According to Grob, the KAF is now operating nine new G120TPs in addition to its earlier acquisition.
The G120TPs is expected to replace the G120A-K piston engine models which KAF operates since November and December of 2013, replacing its ageing fleet of ten Scottish Aviation Bulldogs.
One however was involved in a crash on March 28, 2018, with both crew escaping with minor injuries. The five surviving aircraft all continue in use with the Training Squadron at Laikipia Air Base.
The Grob G 120TP is a two-seat, single-engine military trainer aircraft manufactured by Grob Aircraft. It offers a cost-effective military training solution for the air forces. The G 120TP is intended for basic and advanced pilot training missions, as well as aerobatic manoeuvres such as spins, loops, rolls, stall turns and outside turns.
The trainer aircraft made its first flight in the first quarter of 2010 with the Indonesian Air Force becoming its launch customer. Other major customers include Argentine Air Force, Mexican Air Force, Myanmar Air Force and Royal Jordanian Air Force.
It is powered by a Rolls-Royce 250-B17F turboprop engine driving a five-bladed, constant-speed MT propeller.
By Victor Shalton Odhiambo