HAL, CAE ink JV for copter simulator training centre
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HAL, CAE ink JV for copter simulator training centre

Thursday, 27 September 2007, 07:00 Hrs
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Bangalore: Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) and CAE, Canada, Wednesday signed an agreement to establish a joint venture company that will open a helicopter simulator-training centre here.

The JV, Helicopter Academy to Train by Simulation of Flying (HATSOFF), will be owned equally by HAL and CAE. The training centre is expected to begin operations in late 2008 by providing both civil and military helicopter pilot and maintenance training services.

As part of the joint venture, CAE will design and manufacture one full-mission simulator featuring CAE's revolutionary roll-on/roll-off cockpit design that enables cockpits representing various helicopter types to be used in the simulator, a HAL release said.

The two companies are planning to provide HATSOFF with cockpits for the three variants of the HAL-built advanced light helicopter (ALH) Dhruv, as well as cockpits for the Bell 412 and Eurocopter Dauphin helicopters.

"Other military and civil helicopter platforms will be added as the market develops," a HAL release said.

"Our objective is to serve the fast-growing civil and military aerospace industry in India and become a globally competitive aerospace company," HAL chairman Ashok K. Baweja said.

"HAL went through a very extensive technical and commercial evaluation of potential partners and CAE is clearly the right choice for our joint venture given their leadership in helicopter simulation and training.

"We will continue to partner with leading companies like CAE to further HAL's position as India's premier aerospace organisation," Baweja added.

HATSOFF plans to offer both flight and maintenance training, and provide customers initial, conversion, recurrent, and mission training. The training centre will feature multimedia classrooms, computer-based training, and a training management information system.

"We are delighted to develop this potential business partnership with HAL," Marc Parent, CAE group president for simulation products and military training and services, said.

"There is a critical need for high-quality simulation-based training programmes in this region. This training centre will be the first of its kind in India devoted specifically to serving civil and military helicopter customers in the region," he added.

HAL, a billion dollar company, has emerged as a major player in the global aviation arena, and is today among the elite Navratna companies.

Ranked 34th in the list of the world's top 100 defence companies (Defense News, 2007), HAL has 18 production divisions and nine R&D centres.

HAL's expertise encompasses design, development, production, repair, overhaul and upgrade of aircraft, helicopters, aero-engines, accessories, avionics and systems.
Source: IANS
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