To Cope with Flying Restrictions, German Pilots Turn to Simulators
Because of flying zone restrictions in densely populated Germany, the German military trains many of its pilots in other countries, such as at the Canadian Forces Air Command base at Goose Bay and the USAF Holloman Air Force base in New Mexico. The German Army, Navy and Air Force also rely heavily on simulators to train their pilots.
Canada’s CAE is one of the companies that supply aircraft simulators to the German armed forces. It also provides maintenance and training support for its simulators, as well as simulators made by other companies. The company has ongoing maintenance and training support contracts with Germany. It announced Feb 4/10 that it received contracts valued at C$58 million ($54 million) for German aircraft simulator support.
CAE will provide support for the following aircraft simulators:
- Tornado attack aircraft full-mission simulators at Lechfeld, Beuchel, and Jagel, Germany; and Holloman AFB (US);
- Sea King helicopter simulator at Kiel, Germany;
- Eurofighter full-mission simulators at Laage, Germany; and
- C-160 Transall transport aircraft simulator at Wunstorf, Germany.
Chris Stellwag, CAE’s director of military and civil marketing communications, explains the relationship his company has with the German military:
“CAE has been providing maintenance and support services on-site at various German military bases for more than a decade, and these contracts are typically renewed annually. By maintenance and support services I mean the CAE staff does preventative maintenance on the flight simulators, fixes the simulators if required, manages logistics services such as spare parts inventory, and various other support services.”
Stellwag explained that CAE is the original manufacturer of the Tornado full-mission simulators. The Eurofighter simulators were produced by a consortium of companies that make up Eurofighter Simulation Systems: CAE’s German subsidiary; Rheinmetall Defence Electronics (Germany), Thales Training & Simulation Ltd. (UK, Selex Galileo (Italy), and Indra SA (Spain).
In addition to the support contracts, CAE received a contract to upgrade the Tornado full-mission simulator. CAE will integrate its CAE STRIVE-Radar simulation software into the Tornado simulators to enable the German Air Force to perform additional training tasks, including air-to-air radar, ground mapping radar, and terrain following radar functionalities.