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ITEC 2017: RNLAF outlines simulation plans

16th May 2017 - 12:18 by Trevor Nash in Rotterdam

ITEC 2017: RNLAF outlines simulation plans

According to Col Harold Boekholt, the Royal Netherlands Air Force’s (RNLAF) Head of Policy and Plans, ‘simulation will grow in the future and be driven by new requirements’.

Speaking at the GATE 2 RNLAF Air Mobility Training Centre (AMTC) at Gilze Rijen air base, Boekholt explained that by 2024, the RNLAF will be conducting 50% of its training in the virtual world.

‘Simulation as such is really old school and we are looking at the broader modelling and simulation synthetic environment to improve joint training, connectivity and commonality,’ said Boekholt. ‘We haven’t done that too well yet.’

Highlighting financial challenges and a plethora of different RNLAF synthetic databases, Boekholt sees partnering with industry as a method of alleviating these problems. 

‘It doesn’t really matter who owns the simulators,’ he said.

In 2012, the RNLAF signed a partnering agreement with CAE and this was extended in November 2016. CAE has been involved the Netherlands for many years starting the P-3C FMS at Valkenburg. 

The company is also supplying the NH90 FMS that is due to be ready for training next year.

The RNLAF seeks to use M&S to support decision making, mission rehearsal, conceptualisation, procurement and of course, training. 

Current projects include the installation of an NH90 full mission simulator (FMS) at De Kooy naval air station, the procurement of a CH-47 FMS, the upgrade of the current AH-64D Longbow Crew Trainer or its replacement with an FMS and finally, the procurement of a training system to support the RNLAF’s nascent RPA fleet.

Talking about the AMTC, Boekholt explained that ‘what you see here is not the end state [of our aspirations] but the beginning. Open architecture is the answer’.

The AMTC houses two Level D full flight simulators, one for the KDC-10 and another for the C-130H. Both devices have been built by CAE and feature the company’s Medallion 6000 image generator. Originally delivered to Hoofdorp, both devices were relocated to the GATE 2 facility in 2016.  

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