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Lufthansa's flight training arm grows simulator fleet

Lufthansa Aviation Training (LAT) is in the process of installing seven new full-flight simulators (FFS) at various locations and will expand the company's facilities in Munich and Vienna over the next year.

The Munich-headquartered pilot and flight attendant training subsidiary of Lufthansa Group says the effort is worth €89 million ($100 million) and represents the largest pilot training investment in LAT's history; its number of FFS will grow to 60 under the programme.

In Frankfurt, LAT plans to install two Boeing 777-9 simulators and a combined Airbus Helicopters H135/145 simulator. Lufthansa is scheduled to receive its first 777-9 in 2020.

A second Airbus A350 FFS is to be installed at LAT's Munich facility. The site, near Munich airport – which comprises two A320 FFS, one for A330/A340s and one for A350s – will be expanded to accommodate up to eight devices.

In addition to the new A350 simulator, an existing Embraer 190 FFS will be transferred from LAT's Frankfurt campus to Munich. The remaining two slots will be available for future growth, LAT says.

At its Berlin facility, LAT began operating a new A320 FFS in March and will install another one by June. However, the two A320 simulators are scheduled to be transferred to Vienna in 2020, once an extension of the company's facility there has been completed.

A 737 Max simulator – the first in LAT's network – will be installed at the Berlin campus in 2020. The site, near Schonefeld airport, has been home to a 737NG simulator for several years.

Leisure carrier Sun Express – jointly owned by Lufthansa and Turkish Airlines – operates a fleet of 737-800s and has Max jets on order.

In Vienna, LAT is expanding its facility to accommodate seven simulators, from four today. Two slots will be used for the new A320 devices – which have initially been located in Berlin – while the third is for future growth, LAT says.

"We are setting a decisive course for meeting the high customer demand in the future," says LAT chief executive and managing director Ola Hansson.

The company says utilisation of its simulators is around 90%, which it describes as a "peak value" in the industry.

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