TRU landed a 10-year agreement with Boeing to design and manufacture the world’s first full flight simulator training suite for the new twin-aisle 777X. Boeing Image
TRU Simulation + Training (TRU), a Canadian-American hybrid subsidiary of Textron Inc., used the World Aviation Training Conference and Tradeshow in Orlando, Fla., as a backdrop for three major full flight simulator (FFS) announcements April 19.
One with global implications is a 10-year agreement with Boeing to design and manufacture the world’s first FFS training suite for the new twin-aisle 777X, for which the Seattle-based company has at least 320 firm orders and commitments.
The initial contract, with first delivery in 2019 or 2020, includes development, production and maintenance training for the FFS and a classroom flat-panel trainer (FPT) as well as an engineering development simulator.
TRU chief executive officer Ian Walsh confirmed during a teleconference that the engineering simulator would be available before the flight-deck simulators.
“This is an aircraft that is being designed as we speak,” he pointed out to Skies. “So Boeing will be providing, incrementally, pieces of the data package and the hardware that we will be incorporating.”
George Karam, vice president and general manager for air transport simulation at TRU, said delivery of the first suite was still being “defined.”
Simulators usually are required just before an aircraft’s entry into service. TRU Photo
While he said it is going to depend on development of the aircraft, simulators usually are required just before an aircraft’s entry into service, which he said suggests 2019 or 2020.
Final quantity depends on the number of 777X deliveries.
Walsh said the agreement eventually will involve “multiple” installations which will go into Boeing Flight Services training campuses on six continents.
The new contract comes about two years after Boeing selected TRU for development and supply of a 737 MAX full flight training suite.
Walsh said that 10-year contract is on schedule and the first four suites will be installed at Boeing’s centres in the United Kingdom, Singapore, Shanghai and Miami, beginning in the first quarter of 2017.
“Again, Boeing has options for multiple more units,” he said, adding that he expected demand to be “quite high.”
Sherry Carbary, vice president of Boeing Flight Services, said in a statement that TRU’s “responsiveness and willingness . . . to define and meet increasingly sophisticated flight training requirements has impressed us.”
On a more localized note, TRU also has completed installation of an Airbus A320 FFS at the new Ansett Aviation Asia (AAA) training centre in Taipei, Taiwan, after receiving Level D Level 7 qualifications.
“We are excited to have opened our first training centre outside of Australia,” said AAA chairman Richard Anderson in a statement. “TRU’s ability to deliver . . . within a short timeframe was a crucial element in our ability to offer world-class training.”
TRU also has installed an Airbus A320 FFS at the new Ansett Aviation Asia (AAA) training centre in Taipei, Taiwan. TRU Photo
Karam added the installation is “particularly significant” not only because it’s a first for Taiwan but also because it will support a number of Taiwanese and regional carriers which have been expanding rapidly.
Across the Pacific, TRU has signed an agreement with Avianca for an FFS and FPT for the Colombian flag carrier’s new Airbus A320neo.
Scheduled for delivery in the third quarter of 2016, it will be installed in Avianca’s new state-of-the-art training center in Bogota.
TRU has signed an agreement with Avianca for an FFS and FPT for the Colombian flag carrier’s new Airbus A320neo. Airbus Image
Karam noted TRU had previously supplied ATR and A320 FFS installations to Avianca. Highly customizable, the new FFS evidently also will support legacy A320 training.
Textron TRU Simulation + Training originated from a multi-company merger, which included Mechtronix Inc., founded in 1987 by five graduate students at Concordia University in Montreal.
Mechtronix received “worldwide” orders for its proprietary Level D FFS and flight training devices and the flourishing business attracted Textron Inc., leading to a buyout in November 2013.