A mission trainer for the Predator unmanned aerial system (UAS) has been installed by General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc. (GA-ASI) at the company’s Flight Test and Training Center (FTTC), located at the Grand Sky UAS Business Park near Grand Forks, North Dakota. The mission trainer was built by aviation training firm CAE, and will be used to advance the quality and capability of synthetic pilot and sensor training for operators of GA-ASI’s family of unmanned aircraft.
This Predator Mission Trainer is similar to a previous system jointly developed by CAE and GA-ASI for the Italian Air Force, which can deliver “zero-flight time” training based on the high-fidelity simulation of both the aircraft and its sensor systems. The new trainer simulates GA-ASI’s Block 30 ground control station for the MQ-9 UAS, and will be used to deliver initial qualification and aircraft sensor systems training as well as mission-specific training.
A second Predator Mission Trainer is due to be delivered by CAE in the near future to GA-ASI’s Gray Butte Flight Operations Facility near Palmdale, California.
Todd Probert, Group President of Defense & Security at CAE, commented: “Our Predator Mission Trainer delivers an unprecedented level of fidelity and capability in the use of simulation-based training for remotely piloted aircraft pilots and sensor operators. The addition of a Predator Mission Trainer at GA-ASI’s training center in North Dakota extends our training collaboration and will enable GA-ASI to add more synthetic training to the syllabus used to train customer aircrews as well as their own instructors.”
David R. Alexander, President of GA-ASI, said: “Highly skilled and well-trained aircrews are absolutely critical to the successful operation and deployment of our proven Predator remotely piloted aircraft systems,” said “This Predator Mission Trainer at our training center in North Dakota will enhance the multi-domain training we can offer in a synthetic environment and give us added flexibility to deliver advanced training without restrictions due to weather or airspace.”