Boeing has secured a contract from the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) to provide P-8 maintenance training devices, marking the first such order outside the US.
Under the terms of the agreement, Boeing will provide the service with a maintenance training suite that will provide interactive, high-fidelity simulations based on actual mission systems software to the P-8A Poseidon maritime surveillance aircraft fleet of the RAAF.
Additionally, the contract will cover the hardware-based trainers that are full-scale replicas of aircraft components.
Boeing P-8 maintenance programme manager Tom Wagner said: "This provides the RAAF with the ability to train its maintainers on more than 1,400 maintenance procedures using the Boeing provided suite of devices.
"RAAF maintainers will be able to practice at great length before they are required to perform maintenance on the actual P-8A aircraft."
Australia is acquiring eight P-8A Poseidon aircraft at an estimated cost of $4bn to replace the RAAF’s ageing fleet of AP-3C Orions.
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The RAAF virtual trainers will be used to train pilots and mission crews to operate the aircraft, its sensors, communications and weapons systems starting in early 2018.
The P-8A is a derivative of Boeing’s next-generation 737-800 platform. It is a long-range anti-submarine warfare, anti-surface warfare, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance aircraft designed to ensure maximum interoperability in the future battle space.
The RAAF ordered a Boeing P-8 aircrew training system earlier this year to train pilots and mission crews to operate the aircraft, its sensors, communications and weapons systems.
Image: Boeing’s Virtual Maintenance Trainer is part of the maintenance training suite that Boeing will provide to the Royal Australian Air Force. Photo: Boeing.