Philippine Air Force (PAF) Blackhawk S70i Pilots took their recurrency simulator training at CAE Brunei Multi-Purpose Training Centre (MPTC), Bandar Seri Begawan, with the support of RBAirF Qualified Helicopter Instructors (QHI). This training marks the first time RBAirF provides house expertise to train Pilots from outside of Royal Brunei Armed Forces (RBAF) on the simulator at CAE Brunei MPTC. In addition, this marks a direct result of the inaugural Air Working Group (AWG) between RBAirF and PAF. The objectives of the AWG are to discuss Visits, Courses, Training and Exercises to strengthen the ties between the two Air Forces.
The training covers the simulator’s technical knowledge and knowledge on in-flight emergencies such as engine failures, control malfunctions, and operations in bad weather, which will become an excellent platform to enhance the bilateral relationship between the two countries. This opportunity is a perfect example of utilising training as a platform to strengthen the bilateral relationship between the two countries. Furthermore, this support from RBAirF to other Friendly Forces in the region will highlight Brunei Darussalam’s status as an internationally recognised training partner for the Blackhawk S70i.
A total of Eleven PAF Pilots are attending the five-day recurrency course over six weeks in groups of two. The course consists of Computer-based Training (CBT) and synthetic skills in the CAE 3000 series Flight Simulator. Present at the Opening Ceremony for the course were Colonel (U) Hismawadi bin Hj Mohamad Said, the Commander of the Operations Group from RBAirF, Colonel Angelo Gerard P. Ariles from the Philippine Defense and Armed Forces Attaché, Pete Raymond V. Delfin the Chargé d’Affaires (CDA) of the Philippine Embassy and Haji Rozman bin Haji Junaidi, General Manager of CAE Brunei MPTC.
Earlier this year, an agreement was signed between the PAF and the Royal Brunei Air Force (RBAirF). It is part of a bilateral memorandum of understanding (MoU) on Defense Cooperation signed in 2001. The Flight Simulator Training will be completed in six batches and run until 27 December. Last month, the first batch of PAF pilots arrived at Brunei from Manila to undergo the training. The MPTC is a joint venture between CAE and Brunei’s Ministry of Finance, with CAE holding a 60% stake. Located in Rimba, the MPTC houses fully certified synthetic training systems, a full flight and mission simulator representing the Sikorsky S-70i and S-92 medium transport helicopters.
The MPTC are based on the CAE 3000 Series system and used to train local and international pilots – as well as a Pilatus PC-7 Mk 2 flight training device (FTD) that is being used for pilot screening, initial and advanced flight instruction, as well as qualified flight instructor (QFI) flight training. The 3000 Series is designed around CAE’s latest Medallion 6000 image generators, which can deliver high-resolution physics-based sky modelling, particle-based weather simulation, and special effects including tracer/missile trails and explosions. Medallion 6000 generators are also capable of simulating sensor equipment.
As part of the Armed Forces of the Philippines’ Modernization Program, the PAF has an order of 16 S-70i helicopters from Polish company PZL Mielec worth USD241 million (about PHP11.5 billion). The first six were delivered in November 2020 while the second batch of five was delivered this June. Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana announced on 7 December that the government had allocated 62 billion pesos for a further 32 S-70i helicopters and six offshore patrol vessels, although a deal has yet to be finalised. These helicopters will boost the Armed Forces of the Philippines’ capability to conduct various operations, including humanitarian assistance and disaster response missions.