Sunday, 12 April 2015

Royal Australian Navy Formally Begins MH-60R Seahawk Training

MH-60R tactical operational flight trainer for the Royal Australian Navy (Source: CAE)

CAE recently announced that the Royal Australian Navy (RAN) has accepted into service the first of two MH-60R Seahawk Tactical Operational Flight Trainers (TOFT) along with an MH-60R Avionics Maintenance/Weapons Load Trainer (AM/WLT). The MH-60R simulators are located at HMAS Albatross, which is near Nowra in New South Wales and home of the Royal Australian Navy's Fleet Air Arm.

CAE also announced the MH-60R TOFT was formally certified to Level D by the Australian Defence Force Airworthiness Authority based on an evaluation conducted by an independent simulator evaluation authority. This marks the first time an MH-60R helicopter simulator has been formally certified to Level D, which is the highest qualification for flight simulators.

"The MH-60R Seahawk will play a critical role as the Royal Australian Navy's new naval combat helicopter, and our MH-60R training systems will be used extensively to help prepare our aircrews to safely and effectively accomplish a range of missions," said Commodore Colin Lawrence, Director General of Navy Aviation Systems in the Australian Defence Materiel Organisation. "We are extremely pleased with the level of quality and fidelity CAE has delivered in our broad suite of MH-60R training devices, and look forward to CAE's continued on-site support services on the MH-60R program."

The Commonwealth of Australia is acquiring a fleet of 24 MH-60R Seahawk helicopters via the US Government's foreign military sale (FMS) program. This was the first-ever procurement of the US Navy's most advanced anti-submarine and anti-surface warfare helicopter outside the United States. In late 2012 and early 2013, CAE was awarded FMS contracts from the US Navy to design and manufacture two MH-60R TOFTs and an MH-60R AM/WLT for the Royal Australian Navy.

"The Australian Defence Forces are at the leading edge globally in the use of synthetic training to accomplish more of their overall training requirements, and the MH-60R Seahawk training systems we have delivered will contribute to the overall safety, efficiency and readiness of MH-60R aircrews," said Ray Duquette, President and General Manager, CAE USA. "The Royal Australian Navy will be operating some of the most advanced helicopter flight simulators anywhere in the world, and CAE is proud to have delivered them on-time and is committed to providing long-term service and support."

The MH-60R TOFTs include both a full-motion operational flight trainer (OFT) that is used to train pilots as well as the weapons tactics trainer (WTT) used for training airborne tactics officers together with rear-crew sensor operators in the MH-60R Seahawk helicopter. The MH-60R simulators for the Royal Australian Navy include the CAE True electric motion system, motion seats, 220-degree by 60-degree Barco visual display, and the latest-generation CAE Medallion-6000 image generator. The MH-60R OFT and WTT can be operated as standalone training devices, or networked to become an MH-60R tactical operational flight trainer that provides a total aircrew mission training system.

The MH-60R simulators for the RAN also feature the Common Database (CDB) architecture so that the RAN can leverage Australian-specific databases already developed by CAE Australia for other programs in Australia.

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