Bolivia Assembles its First Advanced Trainer Aircraft
By Dialogo June 07, 2013
With the inauguration of the Airspace Industry and Technology Center (CITA), in Santa Cruz, Bolivia, on June 1, authorities also introduced two military advanced trainer aircraft, the first two to be completely assembled in Bolivia in the last 20 years.
The construction of the two Foxtrot-type aircraft was completed prior to the presentation, but there is a third model currently being assembled. The first model was called “Gavilán” (FAB-540), and has a capacity of up to four people, while the second one, called “Sayubú,” has a capacity of up to two people.
The FAB-540 conducted its first flight presentation during the ceremony, after being assembled at the CITA facilities in a record time of seven days.
The new Bolivian Technology Center aims to develop and manufacture novel prototypes of national aircraft, and its operation has been possible with a $240,000 investment, according to the Web page aviaciónboliviana.net.
The Foxtrot are also used for liaison, medevac and acrobatics, and have a turbo-charged Lycoming IO-540 engine, reaching speeds up to 426 kilometers per hour, with a maximum operational altitude of 4800 meters.