Dassault-Breguet/Dornier Alpha Jet

France and Germany teamed up when they were looking for a new advanced jet trainer and close air support aircraft respectively. The winning design was that of Dassault and Breguet in France and Dornier in Germany, called the Alpha Jet.

The Alpha Jet has high wings with horizontal stabilisers in regular position, both with anhedral. The student and instructor sit behind each other in the cockpit, the instructor higher than the student. The canopy opens in two parts, for each crew member separately. The semi-circular air intakes are below the instructor's seat. After that the air channels run below the wings; there is space between them. The exhausts with externally visible tail pipes are just in front of the vertical stabiliser, which has hardly a dorsal fin. 

The student and instructor pilot each have a separate part of the canopy that can open upward (photo Szalay Gábor István/WikiMedia).

The air flow channels for the engines are below the wings. There is some space between them.

The externally visible tail pipes of the Larzac engines are just in front of the tail.

Different versions

The main external recognition point between the Alpha Jet versions is the nose, blunt or pointed. More details will follow later.

Confusion possible with

Kawasaki T-4

kawasaki t 4

The Kawasaki T-4 is obviously a look-a-like of the Alpha Jet. The air intakes of the T-4 are rectangular, and the air flow channel is attached to the wings. Also the vertical fin is higher and has a dorsal fin. Finally the canopy opens as a single piece.

PZL I-22 Iryda

pzl m 96

Like on the Alpha Jet, on the Iryda there is space between the wings and engine flow channels. The air takes of the I-22 are more rectangular than semi circular and also closer to the wing leading edge. The engines have no visible tail pipes.

Aermacchi M346 Master


The M346 is a mid-wing aircraft, while the Alpha Jet has definately high mounted wings. Also the air intakes have a different shape and the M346 has leading edge extensions of the wings along the fuselage.

FMA IA-63 Pampa

ia 63

The design of the Pampa is clearly influenced by that of the Alpha Jet, probably because Dassault helped FMA in the development. The Pampa is smaller though and has only one engine.