Posted by John McHale
DENVER, 28 Aug. 2010. Two U.S. Air Force installations and one Air National Guard site received six additional Predator Mission Aircrew Training Systems (PMATS) and associated support equipment from by L-3 Link Simulation & Training (L-3 Link) in Arlington, Texas. Four PMATS units were delivered to Holloman Air Force Base, N.M., in addition to one unit each to Cannon Air Force Base, N.M., and the Syracuse Air National Guard at Hancock Field, N.Y. The systems support high-fidelity modeling of the Predator MQ-1 and Reaper MQ-9 unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). "The Predator Mission Aircrew Training System is the highest fidelity unmanned aircraft simulation system supporting any U.S. military service," says Bob Birmingham, president of L-3 Link. "A dynamic environment provides a large degree of variability, enabling PMATS aircrews to conduct networked training across a full range of mission scenarios."PMATS replicates the mission environment that aircrews experience during real-world operations. Each PMATS unit integrates ground control station hardware with L-3 Link's simulation software and geo-specific visual system databases to provide a fully immersive training system. The synthetic environment simulates time of day, winds, adverse weather, and thermal effects that can impact operations. All Predator MQ-1 and Reaper MQ-9 aircraft platforms, sensors and weapons are modeled. PMATS units are integrated with L-3 Link's Physics Based Environment Generator HD, which supports simulation of complex urban environments, intelligent human behaviors and interactions between entities in the virtual world. Each PMATS unit is also integrated with an instructor operator station (IOS). The IOS enables operators to set exercise conditions, insert malfunctions, communicate with the aircrew, and modify and control all aspects of the simulation. The IOS also provides a role play capability for the mission coordinator, ground crew and ground control approach operator. In supporting mission brief and debrief capabilities, the IOS enables crews to observe the simulated exercise they have flown and determine what areas need to be corrected to enhance performance. L-3 Link has fielded a combined total of 23 PMATS units to the U.S. Air Force and Air National Guard. Eighteen systems have been delivered to the U.S. Air Force and five are installed at Air National Guard bases. In addition, two systems are housed in L-3 Link's Binghamton, N.Y., facility to support system development.