The Nigerian Air Force (NAF) today, in a brief ceremony at its Headquarters in Abuja, unveiled an Alpha Jet aircraft anti-skid test bench, which it had locally produced, in collaboration with the University of Maiduguri (UNIMAID). The anti-skid braking system of the Alpha Jet aircraft is a critical system, which helps in slowing down the speed of the aircraft and maintaining its balance even on wet runways. The newly produced test bench helps to simulate the performance of the principal components of the anti-skid system thereby guiding maintenance. The NAF and UNIMAID also signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) towards consolidating on the research and development efforts between the two organizations.
Speaking at the event, the Chief of the Air Staff (CAS), Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar, disclosed that with the signing of the MoU, UNIMAID has joined other Nigerian universities, polytechnics and research agencies, with which the NAF has existing MoUs. Air Marshal Abubakar remarked that the story of insurgency in the North East would not be complete without mentioning the contributions of UNIMAID, and indeed the other NAF partnering institutions, whose collaborative efforts with the NAF in the area of Research and Development have proved critical.
The Vice Chancellor of UNIMAID, Professor Ibrahim Njodi, used the opportunity to commend the CAS for his passion, vision and zeal to develop a self-reliant Air Force. He also expressed his deep appreciation to the NAF, noting that UNIMAID would have been overrun by insurgents if not for the timely intervention and protection of the NAF. He added that the reason behind the MoU was to ensure that the collaboration between the NAF and the University was sustained.
The NAF Chief of Standards and Evaluation, Air Vice Marshal Kingsley Lar, used the occasion to present the recently issued NAF patent certificate for Unmanned Ground Vehicle (UGV) to the CAS. He remarked that the NAF was fortunate to have a man at the helm of affairs with a keen interest in “promoting partnerships geared towards innovations for self-reliance”. Coming barely 2 months after the NAF won the National Technology and Innovation Award at the Technology and Innovation Expo 2017, the unveiling of the test bench is yet another milestone in the series of innovations under the current NAF leadership. It would also be recalled that the patency for the UGV is the second one from NOTAP since the inception of the current NAF administration.