Afghan Air Force Trains for Close Air Support with Fixed and Rotary Wing Aircraft

first published on June 17, 2019 by

The Afghan Air Force (AAF) conducts close air support training in A-29 Super Tucano and MD-530F aircraft. US advise and assist personnel help hone the pilot’s skill during these events as the Afghan military attempts to bolsters its combat capabilities.



The Embraer A-29 Super Tucano is a turboprop light attack aircraft that can employ a wide variety of armaments and features a long loiter time over a target area. Highly maneuverable, the relatively inexpensive plane was first fielded by the AAF beginning in early 2016 and has since seen combat throughout the war-torn nation. Boasting a number of weapons systems such as a 20mm cannon, M134 Miniguns, 70mm rockets, air-to-air missiles, and air-to-ground weapons such as precision-guided bombs or Maverick missiles, the rugged aircraft is the perfect tool for the counter-insurgency fight in Afghanistan.

The MD-530F Cayuse Warrior is another highly versatile aircraft that has been in service with the AAF since 2011. The teardrop-shaped fuselage is a more familiar aircraft as it is based on the OH-6 Cayuse light observation helicopter used by US forces. It packs a wide assortment of weapons such guns and rockets that can be easily configured to fit mission requirements.

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