Aerial Warfare

General Atomics Aeronautical Systems Inc Adds New Capabilities to Its Predator Mission Trainer

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General Atomics Aeronautical Systems Inc Adds New Capabilities to Its Predator Mission Trainer

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General Atomics Aeronautical Systems Inc Adds New Capabilities to Its Predator Mission Trainer
General Atomics Aeronautical Systems Inc Adds New Capabilities to Its Predator Mission Trainer

In a move that will be welcomed by many of its international customers, General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc. (GA-ASI) has installed enhanced operating software into its Predator Mission Trainer (PMT) simulator that resides at GA-ASI’s Flight Test & Training Center (FTTC) in Grand Forks, North Dakota. The new PMT Plus software was developed jointly by GA-ASI and CAE-USA allowing international flight crews to train on the latest version of Operational Flight Program (OFP) software and as well as the latest capabilities including Automatic Takeoff and Landing Capability (ATLC). The enhanced software also reduces the PMT’s footprint, enabling a reduction in electrical and Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning (HVAC) demand, while producing a quieter learning environment for students and instructors.

“Collaboration is critical to delivering efficient mission training at the point of need,” said CAE Defense & Security Group President Dan Gelston. “Our longstanding relationship with GA-ASI enables agile development and rapid integration so customers not only gain enhanced training capabilities but also benefit from efficiencies like a smaller hardware suite, which adds additional value.”

“With this upgrade, our international customers can now train on the latest version of OFP for their fleets of MQ-9A Remotely Piloted Aircraft,” said GA-ASI President David R. Alexander. “For our MQ-9A customers, the PMT Plus will be an exciting enhancement for them, enabling cutting-edge mission training. In addition, the new software will enable us to efficiently upgrade to future OFPs to meet our customers’ operational needs.”

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GA-ASI MQ-9A Reaper (Predator B) Remotely Piloted Aircraft (RPA). (Photo by General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc)

In addition to its OFP and ATLC capabilities, PMT Plus improves the visual graphics for conducting operationally realistic Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance (ISR) mission training, including the addition of maritime entities. The improved user interface at the Instructor Off-board Station (IOS) allows instructors to add elements into scenarios more rapidly, either during a lesson or immediately before a lesson, which saves time and enables a more student-centric learning experience. The PMT was purchased from CAE and has been a core component of GA-ASI’s customer training at the FTTC since 2020. The FTTC has been the centerpiece of GA-ASI’s customer training capability since its founding. In 2023, GA-ASI announced the opening of a new hangar at the FTTC specifically to support international crew training.

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 eight 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.

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