AIRBUS HELICOPTERS has upgraded the AS365 Dauphin full-flight simulator at its Singapore-based training centre to provide highly realistic training in both day and night search and rescue (SAR) operations. This offers pilots the unique capability to safely practice these demanding life-saving missions.
The upgrade, announced today, January 21, was made by Airbus Helicopters Southeast Asia at its Seletar Aerospace Park facility. This has involved incorporating a CMA9000 flight management system into the AS365 motion-based flight simulator and updating its APM 2010 four-axis autopilot with a SAR mode. It is the interface between these two avionics units that enhances the SAR operations training.
This will enable flight crews to experience the operational environment during SAR missions while using all capabilities of the CMA9000 system and APM 2010 autopilot – including flying with precision navigation guidance, performing search patterns and hovering, as well as scenarios for deploying rescue dinghies, flares and smoke markers.
The CMA9000 is a highly capable flight management system used on helicopters operated by many emergency services providers, law enforcement organizations and government agencies. The APM 2010 is a digital dual-duplex autopilot that reduces pilot workload for increased mission effectiveness and enhanced situational awareness – while providing unique automatic hover stability with very high precision.
“Airbus Helicopters’ firm commitment to flight safety is underscored by our upgrade of the flight simulator, which becomes the only system of its type in the world with this SAR mission training capability,” said Derek Sharples, the Managing Director of Airbus Helicopters Southeast Asia. “Operators who fly Dauphin family rotorcraft, in particular the AS365N3/N3+ civil version and the Panther AS565MBe military variant, will benefit greatly from this training to handle SAR, which is one of the most challenging missions.”
Sharples added that pilots qualified on other aircraft that are equipped with the same systems also could utilize the simulator as a training device for system knowledge and familiarity. Search and rescue training with the newly enhanced full flight simulator at Airbus Helicopters Southeast Asia will begin in March, with the Royal Thai Police as the inaugural customer. This law enforcement agency currently operates one AS365N3+ Dauphin configured for SAR missions with the CMA9000 flight management system, as well as an electrical hoist, rappelling installation, cargo sling and search lights. A second similarly-equipped AS365 N3+ will be delivered to the Royal Thai Police later this year. Alan Warnes