Australia has received six simulators for its Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet aircraft, including two tactical operation flight trainers (TOFT), two low-cost trainers and two integrated visual environment maintenance trainers (IVEMT).

"These are the first Super Hornet training devices for a Foreign Military Sale customer and are part of the acquisition and establishment of 24 F/A-18F Block II aircraft, initial spares, support equipment, trainers and training," said Mark McGraw, training systems and services vice-president for Boeing.

The two TOFTs are built on Boeing's and L-3 Link's F/A-18 simulator common hardware and software baseline, and are integrated with the SimuSphere 360° visual display produced by L-3, Boeing said. The company added that the TOFT provides a "completely immersive environment and a full spectrum of advanced tactical training".

  © Australian DoD

The low-cost trainers offer navigation, weapons, radar and electronic countermeasures applications, while the IVEMTs provide a 3D model environment for ground crews.

"The IVEMT is a new development and the first fully integrated Super Hornet maintenance device," said McGraw. "It allows maintenance personnel to virtually train across all major Super Hornet systems and subsystems."

The Royal Australian Air Force ordered Super Hornets in 2007 as an interim measure owing to delays in the Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II programme.

The nation's first squadron of 12 Super Hornets is operational, and Australia has received 15 aircraft from an order for 24. It expects to receive the balance this year. The final 12 will be wired for possible upgrade to the EA-18G Growler configuration, providing electronic warfare capability.

Source: Flight International