Boeing [NYSE: BA] today announced that it will use a Helimod helicopter simulator leased from Ryan Aerospace to help train Australian Army pilots to fly Bell 206B-1 Kiowa helicopters. Delivery is expected before the end of this year.
"Under our Army Aviation Training and Training Support (AATTS) contract, Boeing has traditionally taught students to fly Kiowas using classroom-based instruction and real flight hours," said Mark Brownsey, senior manager of AATTS for Boeing Defence Australia. "Over the next year, we'll assess the effectiveness of transferring some of this curriculum to the synthetic environment, which has the potential to reduce costly flight hours and improve safety and training outcomes for the Australian Army."
Helimod provides significant advances in flight and helicopter simulation by offering affordable, accurate simulation for a wide range of training applications. The simulator is reconfigurable for all types of helicopters through the attachment of different modules.
"This is an exciting project for Ryan Aerospace," said Chris Ryan, managing director of Ryan Aerospace. "Modern advances in computer technology and simulation software are allowing end users to achieve much more in a simulator than ever before. This represents huge cost savings when compared with flying real helicopters."
The Australian Army primarily uses the Kiowa as a lead-in trainer to the Boeing CH-47D Chinook, Tiger Armed Reconaissance Helicopter and Multi-Role Helicopter 90. Boeing AATTS graduates arrive at Australian Army operational units ready for conversion training on these platforms.
"The benefit of introducing students to helicopter simulator technology at an earlier stage of their rotary wing training is that we improve their overall readiness for learning to fly more advanced helicopters and, in turn, provide the Australian Army with pilots who are more technically proficient, safer and mission-ready," Brownsey said.
Boeing will continue to deliver the AATTS until the Australian Defence Force's Air 9000 Phase 7 - Helicopter Aircrew Training System (HATS) project is introduced. Boeing is a strong contender for HATS, which will modernize and combine rotary wing training for the Australian Army and Navy.
Under the AATTS contract initially awarded in 2007 and renewed in 2010 with an increased scope, Boeing provides:
- Helicopter pilot, aircrew and technician training using the Australian Army's fleet of 19 Bell 206-B1 Kiowa helicopters, six S-70A-9 Black Hawk training helicopters, a Black Hawk full-motion simulator, and two civil Bell 412 helicopters
- Operational fleet and depot level maintenance and support services at the Oakey Army Aviation Training Centre
- Operational level maintenance on 10 Kiowa aircraft for the 173rd Aviation Squadron in Holsworthy, New South Wales
- CH-47D Chinook pilot and technician training at the 5th Aviation Regiment in Townsville, Queensland.
Boeing Defence Australia, a wholly owned subsidiary of The Boeing Company and a business unit of Boeing Defense, Space & Security, is a leading Australian aerospace enterprise. With a world-class team of more than 1,500 employees at 15 locations throughout Australia and four international sites, Boeing Defence Australia supports some of the largest and most complex defense projects in Australia.
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