Published February 06, 2007
(No longer in service at USAFA )
The TG-9A (ASK-21) is a medium performance sailplane with tandem seating. It was used at USAFA for spins, aerobatics, cross-country soaring, and all aerobatic demonstrations. Commonly known as "the white" or the"K-21", the TG-9A went by the callsign "Saber" in the air. The USAFA Association of Graduates (AOG) contributed money for the 94 FTS to purchase several of the TG-9s, thus the call-sign "Saber". Competition cross-country and aerobatics are flown at the regional and national level in the TG-9A.
The TG-9A features Schempp-Hirth style spoilers, a mid-wing configuration and T-tail. It is constructed of fiberglass honeycomb sandwich with a wood main wing spar. Equipment includes basic flight instrumentation, an L-NAV soaring flight computer, a Cambridge GPS, and an oxygen system with an intercom for high-altitude flights. The TG-9 was a medium performance aircraft compared to the new, sleek fiberglass gliders. But in the hands of an accomplished pilot, it has been flown for 6 hour flights, and has traveled over 250 miles away from the home airport using thermal lift to stay aloft. Every once and a while though, the weather wouldn't cooperate, and the glider would land away from the starting airport in a farmers field only to be trailered up for its trip home. The TG-9 can be dis-assembled and put on a trailer for transport to contests or during a landing away from the home airfield situation.
The TG-9A was manufactured by Alexander Schleicher & GmbH Co, Germany. It was capable of performing basic aerobatic maneuvers including: Chandelle, Lazy Eight, Loop, Cloverleaf, Immelmann, Split S, Cuban Eight, Reverse Cuban, Inverted Flight, Barrel Roll, Hammerhead, and Slow Roll. In addition, it was modified for spin training and was the Academy's primary spin trainer. The TG-9A was routinely demonstrated at various airshows, regional and national competitions, and all USAF Academy home football games. The TG-9A also augmented the cross-country program by providing dual instruction before cadets fly cross-country solo in the TG-3A. The TG-9 was replaced at USAFA in Fall 02 as the primary aerobatic and spin platform by the TG-10C. The TG-9 was last flown at USAFA on 1 May 03 by C1C Shawn Christensen.
Primary Function: Aerobatic, Cross-Country, and Spin Trainer
Length: 27 feet 5 in.
Height: 5 feet 0 in.
Wingspan: 55 feet 9 in. (17 meters)
Maximum Takeoff Weight: 1320 lbs
Speed: 130 kts
Glide Ratio: 34:1
Ceiling: FL 250
Max Positive G Limit: 5.3
Max Negative G Limit: 3.0
Range: Dependant on soaring conditions
Crew: Two (student pilot and instructor pilot)
Date Deployed: October 1984