F-15E Strike' Eagle

Boeing has received a three-year contract from the US Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) to develop simulation technologies for two US military aircraft.

Under the terms of the $6.3m contract, the company will produce modelling and simulation technology for the F-15E Eagle and F/A-18E Super Hornet fighter aircraft that are operated by both the US Air Force (USAF) and the US Navy.

Boeing integrated live, virtual and constructive training business development leader John Schwering said the integrated training environment is capable of enhancing warfighter readiness and effectiveness of the aviation flight training.

"Training can be significantly enhanced by increasing the overall threat density with the use of more sophisticated constructive adversary aircraft and ground-based electronic warfare threats," Schwering added.

The contract’s pilot project is scheduled to conclude with a final demonstration at the Nellis Air Force Base, located in Nevada, US, in late 2013.

Using the technology, a real combat aircraft can be networked with ground-based simulation computers that provide computer-generated threats, enabling a cost-effective and secure training environment.

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Currently, pilots learn flying operations using ground-based flight simulators, and require adversary teams to practice against when training in an actual aircraft.

Boeing initially started the technology development under a self-funded programme in 2007, anticipating both the navy and air force future training requirements.

The company conducted a demonstration onboard a USAF F-15E fighter to validate its key components in November 2009, while an initial test flight with a Super Hornet was completed recently.

Image: a joint direct attack munition (JDAM) being released by an F-15E Strike Eagle aircraft.