AIDC AT-3A Tzu Chung

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AIDC AT-3A Tzu Chung




The Taiwanese Air Force utilizes the AT-3, an advanced trainer/attack aircraft manufactured by the Taiwanese Aviation Industry Development Center. This aircraft, which was a collaborative effort between the Aviation Industry Development Center and the Northrop Corporation of the United States, has a total production count of 65 units. The designation “AT” in AT-3 stands for Advanced Training, while the number “3” signifies that it is the third military aircraft developed and manufactured by the Aviation Industry Development Center.

In 1975, the T-33A trainer aircraft had been in service for an extended period, with the airframe showing signs of aging and requiring refurbishment. The Taiwanese Air Force sought the assistance of the Aviation Industry Development Center to initiate research and development for a new jet trainer aircraft. By February 1976, the Aviation Industry Development Center collaborated with the American Northrop Corporation to commence the preliminary design of a new jet trainer aircraft, which was designated as XAT-3. This initiative was part of the “Hongxiang II” project. Despite facing a setback in 1977 when the U.S. State Department vetoed the cooperation plan to maintain positive relations with mainland China, the Aviation Industry Development Center remained committed to the project. They proceeded with detailed design work independently and utilized the cooperative production of F-5E “Tiger” fighter jets to enlist the expertise of senior designers from Northrop Corporation.

On July 17, 1980, the first machine with the number 0801 and serial number 69-6001 was assembled and sent from the factory under the name “Ziqiang”. By August 13, 1980, the No. 1 prototype XAT-3 was moved from the Factory to Ching Chuan Kang Air Base for testing. The XAT-3 prototype successfully completed its maiden flight on September 16, 1980. Subsequently, on February 15, 1981, No. 0802, Prototype No. 2 with serial number 70-6002, was produced and dispatched from the factory. The No. 2 prototype took its first successful flight on October 30, 1981. In November 1981, Taiwan’s “Ministry of Defense” officially sanctioned the production of 60 aircraft to replace the T-33A trainer aircraft utilized by the Taiwan Air Force at that time.

Technical Data


Crew - 2

Length - 12.9 m

Height - 4.36 m

Wingspan - 10.46 m

Empty Weight - 3,855 kg

Max Takeoff Weight - 7,940 kg

Powerplant - 2 x TFE731-2-2C Turbofan Engines (15.6 kN each)

Max Speed - 904 km/h

Range w/ Auxiliary Fuel Tanks - 3,129 km

Range w/ out Auxiliary Fuel Tanks - 2,280 km

Service Ceiling - 14,420 m


2 x Browning AN/M3 12.7mm Machine Guns (Central Gun Pod)

2 x 20mm Gun Pods (?)

3 x Mk. 83 1,000 lb Bombs (?)

1 x Mk. 84 2,000 lb Bomb

3 x M117 750 lb Bombs.

5 x Mk.82 Retarded 500 lb Bombs

5 x Mk. 81 Retarded 250 lb Bombs

3 x BLU-1 Napalm Bombs

3 x M116 Napalm Bombs

3 x CBU-24/49/52/58/71 Cluster Bombs

5 x CBU-100 Rockeye Cluster Bombs

2 x AIM-9P4 AAMs

2 x Tien Chien I AAMs

8 x Zuni 127mm Rockets

76 x Hydra 70mm Rockets

2 x SUU-25 CM Pods









Image might be AT-3B



AIDC AT-3 Tzu Chang - Specifications - Technical Data / Description (雛鷹利刃-at-3武器掛載簡介

AT-3 Advanced Jet Trainer (

(Book) Encyclopedia of Chinese Aircraft (Vol. 4) (Pg396-Pg398)



alpha jet looking ahh +1

1 Like

Light attack/armed trainers for the win! +1

+1 yes to yet another rather neat-looking twin-seat trainer! I could see this coming in the same update as something like the L-39 Albatross