The Royal New Zealand Air Force (RNZAF) has opened a new pilot training facility at the air force base in Ohakea, New Zealand.
Located at 14 Squadron (14 SQN), the new training centre includes 11 T-6C Texan aircraft, pilot training simulators, instructors, and support staff.
Currently, the first group of trainee pilots is undergoing training with the T-6C trainer aircraft.
The RNZAF intends to train up to 15 pilots per year at the new facility.
RNZAF chief air vice-marshal (AVM) Tony Davies said: "The new pilot training facility shows a strong investment in the Air Force, and the T-6C is a proven capability that aligns with the Defence Force’s goals for the future.
"The investment of the specialist military aircraft and simulators allows trainee pilots to get improved and continuous training for future aircraft they will fly.
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"Installed flight training simulators allow the students to efficiently practise various scenarios in a safe and controlled environment prior to live flying.
"The efficiency with which this new capability has been introduced into service is commendable.
"I know the team has worked tirelessly to make it happen.
"It’s a very exciting point in Air Force history."
Earlier this week, the New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) opened a new battle training facility (BTF) in Ardmore, Auckland, New Zealand.
The purpose-built facility will replace the outdated training facilities for Special Air Service (SAS) personnel in Papakura.
Valued at $46m, the project involved the construction of a facility to accommodate all-weather and scenario training, live firing, and helicopter use.
Image: The Royal New Zealand Air Force T-6C Texan II aircraft in action at Warbirds over Wanaka. Photo: courtesy of Royal New Zealand Air Force.