New Chinook simulator training facility ready for action
A new, purpose built facility replicating real-life operations for Chinook helicopter crews with the very latest technology has been officially opened.
The Chinook Mk 6 synthetic training facility was built following a £53 million contract with Lockheed Martin UK, Rotary and Mission Systems. It is housed at RAF Odiham in Hampshire – home of the Chinook Force, a key component of the Joint Helicopter Command.
The state-of-the-art technology includes two Flight Deck Device simulators, a Rear Crew Device and a suite of Computer Based Training equipment. It will train crews on how to work together in specific flying, emergency and mission capabilities of the Chinook Mk6 aircraft, such as relocating troops and equipment around the battlefield or evacuating citizens from dangerous conditions in national and overseas environments.
This highly realistic and immersive environment allows aircrew to undertake high risk training operations such as a battlefield re-supply or a medical evacuation in an urban area from the safety of a simulator.
The augmented reality technology will help Chinook crews rehearse missions as a whole-crew synthetic environment for the first time in the 40-year history of the UK Chinook Force. It will also help Chinook pilots refine their aircraft handling skills in a range of emergency scenarios including rotor blade damage, turbulence caused by adjacent aircraft, complex electrical emergencies and fuel management hazards.
The Chinook Mk6 Synthetic Training System will deliver around 4,000 simulator hours each year for a period of ten years ensuring crews are at a permanent state of readiness to deploy.
Director Air Support at Defence Equipment and Support Adrian Baguley said: “DE&S is proud to be providing this new state-of-the-art chinook training facility for the Chinook Force that draws on cutting edge technology, including Augmented Reality, to give the whole of our Chinook crews a new immersive synthetic training capability. This new world-class facility will enable the crews to prepare for missions across the globe.”
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