6 Wing Air Force Cadets recently increased their gliding experience as they participated in a continuation training day conducted at Gawler Aerodrome (YGAW) in South Australia, using the AAFC’s own ASK 21 Mi self-launching two-seat glider.
CAPTION: Leading Cadet Tharane Thamodarar, 604 Squadron, Hampstead Barracks, prepares for takeoff. Leading Cadet Thamodarar is the recipient of an Air Force Flying Scholarship, allowing her to develop her gliding skills and reach solo pilot status. Her gliding activities also contribute to her Bronze Award within the Duke of Edinburgh International Award Scheme.
This was another in a series of opportunities provided by 600 Aviation Training Squadron for gliding-scholarship holders and other trainee cadets and staff to undertake glider-flying training.
600 Squadron is one of the AAFC’s newest squadrons, based at RAAF Base Edinburgh in Adelaide’s far northern suburbs.
600 Squadron comprises a headquarters and six specialist flights, including Gliding Flight.
Other activities supported by the squadron include Aero-Engines and Aircraft Modelling, and they also operate various flight simulators.
The Australian Air Force Cadets offers gliding activities using the facilities of Air Force-approved service providers such as the Adelaide Soaring Club located at Gawler, north of Adelaide and at the doorstep of South Australia’s famous Barossa Valley.
Gliders are controlled and flown just like conventional powered aircraft.
A cadet can begin gliding training after they have completed 12 months’ home training, and have been recommended by their squadron commanding officer – usually about the time they are turning 14 years of age.
Cadets must also have parental consent to undertake gliding activities, which are all conducted under the supervision of qualified instructors.
Air Force Flying Scholarships are also available to air force cadets to support their training.
After completing the pre-solo training syllabus, it is possible for a cadet to fly solo at the age of 15 years – well before they are allowed to drive a car.