On 26 May, Inzpire’s helicopter Mission Training Device installed at the European Defence Agency’s (EDA) Helicopter Training Centre at Sintra Airbase in Portugal was officially inaugurated during a joint visit by Portuguese Defence Minister João Gomes Cravinho, EDA Chief Executive Jiří Šedivý, EU Military Committee (EUMC) Chairman General Claudio Graziano, as well as representatives from EU Member States.
The targeted fidelity simulator, which has been developed and built by Inzpire’s Mission Training Devices division and maintained and operated by experts from Inzpire’s Helicopter Services Division, will enable two full helicopter crews to train together in a fully immersive, networked, simulated training environment under the EDA’s Helicopter Training Programme (HTP).
The simulator’s high-fidelity graphics are delivered via the Bohemia Interactive Solutions VBS4 and VBS Blue IG software.
Inzpire’s Qualified Helicopter Tactics Instructors will use the simulator to deliver the EDA’s Helicopter Tactics and Helicopter Tactics Instructor courses, the latter of which is a complex 7-week course consisting of 4 weeks ground school in Sintra followed by three weeks live flying in Hungary. In addition, Inzpire will continue to deliver EDA classroom-based Electronic Warfare and support the Composite Air Operations training from the Portuguese airbase, ensuring that all European pilots training at the centre receive a well-rounded, operationally-focussed curriculum.
During the inauguration event the 70-strong delegation were able to witness the simulator in full flow, with a group of German and Portuguese students completing a training mission. Defence Minister, João Gomes Cravinho, and many other representatives flew the simulator themselves, before touring the whole facility and learning more about Inzpire’s classroom-based learning provisions.
The simulator was successfully utilised for its first full training course in mid-May during the EDA’s 67th Helicopter Tactics Course held in Sintra. Two crews from Portugal and two from Germany participated in the course, where the tactical challenges students are likely to face during rotary operations were introduced.
European helicopter crews using the Inzpire Mission Training Device to participate in a training mission at the Helicopter Training Centre at Sintra Airbase in Portugal
Chris Raynes, head of Inzpire’s platform training services operational business unit, said: “The inauguration of the facility marked a significant milestone following the move to Sintra Air Base. It was extremely pleasing to witness the Inzpire helicopter simulators and technical and instructional training teams in operation, demonstrating a step change in capability for the EDA Helicopter Training Programme. Inzpire looks forward to continue working with the EDA and member states to deliver world class helicopter training.”
Steven Pook, head of Inzpire’s mission training device division said: “Inzpire’s Mission Training Device Division is extremely proud to be supporting our Inzpire Helicopter Services colleagues as they deliver the very best synthetic helicopter tactics training to European helicopter crews as part of the EDA HTP. We look forward to continuing to support the Inzpire designed and built simulator system in conjunction with our partners in the EDA as it enables the delivery of high-end training in the years to come”.
The Inzpire helicopter Mission Training Device is a targeted fidelity simulator training system designed to provide customer-specific yet cost-effective capability for standalone, networked and distributed training across the full spectrum of helicopter operations. The simulator can be configured to deliver either military or civilian role training and is capable of being configured to provide a range of helicopter platform replication options including light, medium and heavy, support and attack helicopters as well as paramilitary and emergency services’ platforms.
The simulator has been designed and developed by personnel with years of operational experience and training expertise across the breadth of military helicopter types and operations.
The European Defence Agency (EDA) supports its 26 Member States in improving their defence capabilities through European cooperation. Acting as an enabler and facilitator for Ministries of Defence willing to engage in collaborative, capability projects, the Agency has become the ‘hub’ for European defence cooperation with expertise and networks allowing it to cover the whole spectrum.
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