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AFPC officials accepting applications for Test Pilot School

RANDOLPH AIR FORCE BASE, Texas (AFNS) -- Officers interested in applying for the next annual Air Force Test Pilot School Selection Board should submit their applications to the Air Force Personnel Center here by Aug. 14.

The selection board will convene Sept. 28 through Oct. 2 at AFPC for classes beginning in July 2010 and July 2011. 

"The U.S Air Force Test Pilot School is the world's preeminent fixed-wing test pilot school," said Howard Peterson, an AFPC special flying programs personnel technician. "Graduates of TPS are in high demand in an era of increasing technology advancements on the battlefield. Graduates also have a profound influence on the designs of future combat capabilities and ensure mission suitability for use in the field."

Test Pilot School officials train pilots, combat systems officers, and military and civilian engineers to develop, test and evaluate the newest aircraft and weapons systems. The selects will fill positions in the fighter, multi-engine, helicopter and/or unmanned aircraft vehicle categories. Rotary wing pilots and engineers will conduct testing on the latest rotary wing systems to include CV-22 Osprey and special operations assets.

Test Pilot School officials recently expanded the program to include a new unmanned aircraft system curriculum as part of the combat systems officer classification.

"In addition, the U.S. Air Force test pilot school conducts exchange programs with the U.S. Navy, United Kingdom, and French test pilot schools to train fixed and rotary wing pilots and flight test engineers," Mr. Peterson said. 

New graduates of the Test Pilot School are awarded a master of science degree in flight test engineering by Air University, accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. Eligible Air Force officers and civilians may also volunteer for a joint Air Force Institute of Technology and the Test Pilot School program leading to an additional master of science degree in aeronautical, electrical, and computer engineering.

Applicants from all aircraft types and backgrounds must have strong academic and technical experience and a desire to help develop the next generation of Air Force weapons systems. Applications received after the cut-off date will not be considered by the selection board.

For additional details on the Test Pilot School application process and requirements, visit the Test Pilot School Web site, at www.edwards.af.mil/library/factsheets/factsheet.asp?id=6467 or call the Total Force Service Center at 800-525-0102. You can also visit AFPC's "Ask" Web site and search for "test pilot."

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