Draken International said Tuesday it successfully deployed aircraft in support of the Air Force’s Air Education and Training Command (AETC).

Between June 25 and July 1, Draken deployed six A-4 Skyhawk’s from Nellis AFB, Nev., along with 28 pilots and maintainers, and flew 36 sorties. These were in support of F-35 upgrade training for AETC and coalition instructor pilots as well as Air Force F-16 requalification training at Luke AFB, Ariz.

A-4A. Photo: Navy.
A-4A. Photo: Navy.

The purpose of the mission was to provide “Red Air” support for AETC fourth- and fifth-generation fighter jets as well as Norway’s F-35 instructor pilots. Draken’s A-4 Skyhawk’s are equipped with fourth-generation capabilities, including APG-66 radar, to provide credible threat replication and adversary support.

Draken CEO Jared Isaacman said in a statement the “Red Air” deployment was noteworthy not only because it was the first exercise in support of AETC but because Draken was able to execute multiple simultaneous sorties out of upwards of six different operating locations through the same period.

The Air Force on June 15 awarded Draken a $28 million contract modification to a previously awarded contract for adversary air support services, including fuel and flight hours increase. Work is expected to be complete by Sept. 30, 2017.

The A-4 is a lightweight, high-speed bomber developed by Douglas between 1954 and 1979.