Grissom locks in a T-38 for air show

  • Published
  • By Tech. Sgt. Jami K. Lancette
  • 434th ARW Public Affairs

When the gates open or the Grissom Air and Space Expo Sept 7-8, one aircraft on the ramp will be familiar to senior aviators.

The T-38 Talon joined the Air Force inventory in 1961, the T-38 is a twin-engine, high-altitude, supersonic jet trainer used in a variety of roles because of its design, economy of operations, ease of maintenance, high performance and exceptional safety record.

The advanced jet pilot trainer needs as little as 2,300 feet of runway to take off and can climb from sea level to nearly 30,000 feet in one minute.

Currently, the U.S. Air Force has 546 Talons in its inventory. Pilots from most North Atlantic Treaty Organization countries train in the T-38 at Sheppard Air Force Base, Texas, through the Euro-NATO Joint Jet Pilot Training Program.

The national Aeronautics and Space Administration uses the T-38 as trainers for astronauts and as observers.

With a multitude of activities and events, the air show has its sights set on education, fun and inspiration.

“Airshows allow citizens to see how their tax dollars are being spent, while static displays allow people to get close to aircraft, both past and present,” said Douglas Hays, chief of public affairs.

“We also hope to inspire future generations of Airmen to help execute the Air Force mission,” Hays said.

The military aircraft, personnel and performances at these shows help demonstrate the Air Force Reserve’s readiness and role in global and national security.

The 2019 Grissom Air and Space Expo will feature demonstrations by the Thunderbirds and the U.S. Army parachute team the Golden Knights, along with other military and civilian acts.

Gates open at 8:30 a.m. Sept. 7-8, with flying scheduled to begin at approximately 11:00 a.m. both days weather permitting.

For more information about the airshow, visit and stay connected with the 434th ARW on Facebook and Twitter for continued updates.