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Boeing is to expand the C-17 aircrew training capability for the NATO Strategic Airlift Capability multinational fleet at Pápa Air Base in Hungary, the company announced on 23 July. A USAF Foreign Military Sales contract will see a C-17 Weapons System Trainer (WST) installed at Pápa.

The NATO Airlift Management Programme provides Strategic Airlift Capability nations with full life cycle management for aircraft and facilities, embodying of collective ownership and Smart Defence,” commented Gregory Clark, Programme Manager, NATO Airlift Management Programme. “The aircrew training partnership with Boeing will ensure ongoing readiness of C-17 aircrews to our member nations.”

Through partnership with Boeing, NATO and the Strategic Airlift Capability can rely on nearly 30 years’ experience providing quality training systems and support for the global C-17 fleet. This is the first C-17 training device for Pápa Air Base and will allow for agile aircrew and engine maintenance training, reducing the time and costs associated with travel, while ensuring aircrew readiness.

This regional training location will enable the Strategic Airlift Capability to add velocity to aircrew training and proficiency, maintain training readiness, and provide the flexibility to deliver European airlift for decades to come,” explained Mark Hayes, Pápa Base Manager for Boeing Global Services.

Boeing’s C-17 WST includes an air vehicle station and loadmaster station, both with instructor operator stations; a core integrated processor task trainer; and computer-based training and courseware. Two years of initial spares to support the training device are also included. This C-17 training device includes innovative technology with upgrades to the visual system and glass mirror display system expanding the total field of view. Boeing is also incorporating technology enhancements to address obsolescence and concurrency with latest aircraft block configuration.

NATO C-17 training at Pápa Air Base using the Boeing WST is expected to begin in 2022. (Photo: Boeing)

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