The three consortia bidding to win the UK Military Flying Training System (MFTS) contest have held concluding discussions with the Defence Procurement Agency to clarify any issues arising from their delivery in early August of final submissions for the requirement.

Selection of a training system partner to deliver the 25-year MFTS programme is anticipated around mid-November, with a contract award for the private finance deal, worth around £10 billion ($18.9 billion), expected before the end of the year, say industry sources.

The bidding teams remain tight-lipped about the content of their final proposals, but two have confirmed their choice for the project's pivotal training management information system. Ascent is offering a Lockheed Martin proprietary system and Vector a Northrop Grumman design. Thales-led Sterling has yet to disclose its choice, but says this is already "tried and tested with the UK armed forces".

Industry sources suggest the time required to train UK aircrew could be halved to as little as two years under the new training infrastructure.

Source: Flight International