Posted by John McHale
BANGALORE, India, 10 July 2010. The Helicopter Academy to Train by Simulation of Flying (HATSOFF) -- a joint venture owned equally by Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) and CAE -- announced that its Bell 412 full-mission simulator has been certified to Level D, the highest qualification for flight simulators, by India's Directorate General Civil Aviation (DGCA) and the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA). The CAE-built full-mission helicopter simulator at HATSOFF features CAE's roll-on/roll-off cockpit design, which enables cockpits representing various helicopter types to be used in the simulator. The first training program HATSOFF is offering is for operators of the Bell 412 helicopter. Additional cockpits for the Indian army/air force variant of the HAL-built Dhruv, the civil variant of the Dhruv, and the Eurocopter Dauphin will be added to the HATSOFF training center over the next year. The HATSOFF training center, located near HAL's headquarters in Bangalore, also features multimedia classrooms, computer-based training, brief/debrief facilities, and a training management information system. The full-mission simulator features a common motion system, vibration platform, and visual display system, along with the four separate cockpit modules that can be used in the full-mission simulator. When a cockpit is not used in the full-mission simulator, it will be used as a fixed-based flight training device (FTD). "HAL and CAE are very proud of achieving Level D certification, which is the highest performance rating given for flight training equipment, from both the DGCA and EASA," says Chandra Dat Upadhyay, chief executive officer of HATSOFF. "The HATSOFF training center is the first helicopter training center in India certified to Level D, and we are excited to begin offering simulation-based training that will prove to be one of the best approaches for improving safety, operational efficiency, and mission readiness."