CAE USA has been awarded a subcontract from Lockheed Martin to support the design, development and manufacture of three C-130J full-mission simulators for the United States Air Force Special Operations Command (AFSOC).
Two of the simulators will be specifically for the MC-130J variant which is a multi-mission transport and special operations tanker operated by AFSOC. The other simulator will be reconfigurable between the MC-130J and EC-130J, a variant used for information operations by AFSOC.
“The longstanding relationship between Lockheed Martin and CAE on the design and development of training systems for the C-130J Super Hercules and its variants has proven to be a great partnership for more than two decades now,” said Ray Duquette, President and General Manager, CAE USA.
“The high-fidelity simulation capabilities of these MC-130J and EC-130J full-mission simulators will enable Air Force Special Operations Command to continue increasing the use of synthetic training across the overall training curriculum, which contributes to the safe and cost-effective readiness of the aircrews,” he added.
The MC/EC-130J full-mission simulators will be full-motion and accurately simulate the aircraft and its various missions. The full-mission simulators recreate the sounds, motion, virtual environment and all other aircraft systems required to provide a high-fidelity, realistic flight training environment. These three MC/EC-130J simulators will be delivered to various air bases in 2023.
Lockheed Martin and CAE have designed and developed a range of C-130J training systems for all branches of the United States Air Force, including Air Mobility Command, Air Combat Command, Air National Guard and AFSOC.
Earlier, CAE also announced it signed a contract amendment last February with Cognac Formation Aero, a joint venture of Babcock France and Dassault Aviation, to provide an additional Pilatus PC-21 full-mission ground-based simulator to support pilot training for the French Air Force (Armée de l’Air). The pilot training for the French Air Force is delivered under a Program managed by DGA, the French procurement agency, and known as FOMEDEC (Formation Modernisée des Equipages de Chasse or Jet Pilots Modernised Training Program).
The Program is designed to train future French Air Force fighter pilots. CAE was previously subcontracted to develop a comprehensive PC-21 ground-based training system that was delivered in 2019 and included two PC-21 full-mission simulators and a suite of PC-21 part-task trainers.
“The addition of a third PC-21 full-mission simulator will significantly increase the synthetic training capabilities of the French Air Force at the Cognac-Châteaubernard Air Base,” said Marc-Olivier Sabourin, Vice President and General Manager, Defence & Security International, CAE.
“The PC-21 ground-based training system plays a critical role in the overall training program and an additional PC-21 full-mission simulator will provide more flexibility while contributing to more effective live-flying training on the PC-21 aircraft fleet,” Sabourin added.
Similar to the first two PC-21 full-mission ground-based simulators, the new PC-21 simulator will feature a Pilatus-provided PC-21 cockpit integrated with a range of CAE simulation and synthetic environment technologies, including the CAE Medallion-6000 image generator, Open Geospatial Consortium Common Database (OGC CDB) architecture, and computer-generated forces software.
The new PC-21 full-mission simulator will be delivered in 2022 to the Cognac-Châteaubernard Air Base in southwest France. CAE currently provides on-site maintenance and support services on the PC-21 ground-based training system and will continue to provide these services on the new simulator.
The Program, managed by Babcock France in partnership with Dassault Aviation, delivers a comprehensive pilot training solution for the French Air Force featuring the provision and support of 17 PC-21 training aircraft, PC-21 ground-based training system, and modernized training facilities.