The first MQ-9B SkyGuardian® Mission Trainer has been delivered to the Flight Test and Training Center (FTTC), a facility in Grand Forks, ND owned and operated by General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc. (GA-ASI). The new Mission Trainer is designed and delivered by CAE to provide realistic synthetic mission training for both pilot and sensor operator aircrews on the GA-ASI SkyGuardian Remotely Piloted Aircraft (RPA). The SkyGuardian Mission Trainer will be used to train the initial UK Royal Air Force (RAF) Protector crews at Grand Forks. The RAF, in partnership with GA-ASI, will conduct training at the FTTC to learn how to operate the next generation Protector RPA system. Protector is the RAF’s version of MQ-9B.
“This Mission Trainer allows operators to maintain mission systems proficiency in a realistic and secure environment,” says Lenny Genna, vice president of Mission Systems for CAE Defense & Security. “Leveraging simulation means crews continue effective training while MQ-9B aircraft assets remain mission-ready for deployment.”
“We’re thrilled to get this new mission trainer in place at the FTTC to support our customers’ training needs,” said Dean Gorder, director of GA-ASI’s FTTC. “In addition to our customers, we’ll also use the simulator to train operators for GA-ASI and affiliate companies.”
The introduction of the SkyGuardian Mission Trainer, developed by GA-ASI’s long-time training and simulation partner CAE, increases the FTTC’s capacity by adding another organic simulator to its catalog of offerings, while reducing training costs for both internal and external customers. It features CAE’s high-fidelity sensor simulation, fully interactive tactical environment and Open Geospatial Consortium Common Database architecture for interoperable and networked training capabilities. These state-of-the-art features enable GA-ASI to update its curricula and training via advanced simulation while reducing potential airspace and weather impacts.
CAE is at the leading edge of digital immersion, providing solutions to make the world a safer place. Backed by a record of 75 years of industry firsts, we continue to reimagine the customer experience and revolutionize training and operational support solutions in civil aviation, defense and security, and healthcare. CAE’s Defense & Security business unit leads digital innovation for training and mission support solutions across multi-domain operations – air, land, maritime, space and cyber.
General Atomics-Aeronautical Systems, Inc. (GA-ASI), an affiliate of General Atomics, is a leading designer and manufacturer of proven, reliable RPA systems, radars, and electro-optic and related mission systems, including the Predator® RPA series and the Lynx® Multi-mode Radar. With more than seven million flight hours, GA-ASI provides long-endurance, mission-capable aircraft with integrated sensor and data link systems required to deliver persistent situational awareness. The company also produces a variety of sensor control/image analysis software, offers pilot training and support services, and develops meta-material antennas.