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Singapore has full fleet of Alenia Aermacchi trainer planes
by Richard Tomkins
Cazaux, France (UPI) Sep 5, 2014


The simulator used to train Australia's Tiger helicopter crew has been upgraded
Sydney (UPI) Sep 5, 2014 - A significant upgrade has been performed on the Australian Defense Force's Tiger helicopter training simulator by Thales Australia.

The upgrade was performed to the visual display system off the full-flight simulator, resulting in the highest level of out-of-the-window realism, the company said.

"Thales is committed to ensuring that Army Aviation crews receive the highest standards of training, and we will continue to keep these simulators at the forefront of technological performance," said Thales Australia Chief Executive Officer Chris Jenkins.

The upgrade included the addition of the latest generation BARCO F35 projectors. The simulator's image generators were also replaced with a PC-based image generator that uses XENON computer hardware.

Personnel being trained with the simulator now have a 240-degree vertical by 85-degree horizontal field of view.

Singapore has inaugurated its fleet of Alenia Aermacchi M-346 trainer jets used by its Air Force training squadron at a base in France.

The aircraft replaces the A-4SE Super Skyhawk previously used by Singapore's 150 Squadron at Cazaux Air Base.

"It (the new aircraft) allows our trainee pilots to be able to be exposed to air combat environments within the cockpit -- they can be simulated, as in handling electronic warfare systems, multi-mode radar and beyond-visual-range missiles, early in their training," Singaporean Defense Minister Dr. Ng Eng Hen said at a ceremony at the French Air Force base. "And I think this will enhance the quality and realism of our flying training, and allow us to produce fighter aircrew that are well-equipped to operate current and future fighter platforms."

The M-346 is a transonic trainer/light attack jet based on the Yak-130, and was developed as a result of a joint venture between Yakovlev and Alenia Aermacchi. It has a maximum seed of 590 knots and a range of 1,070 miles.

Singapore received its first M-346 in 2012 and now operates a fleet of 12 trainers. It began training its pilots in France in 1998.

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