Over the past several months, UAE Air Force RQ-1E remotely piloted aircraft (RPA) aircrews have completed several courses being delivered by CAE Maritime Middle East (MME), including an RPA Sensor Operator Fundamentals Course and RPA Aircrew Fundamentals Course.
In addition, the first class of cadets at the Khalifa Bin Zayad Air College will soon complete the RPA Fundamentals Course jointly developed and delivered by CAE MME and the Khalifa Bin Zayad Air College. CAE MME is CAE's Abu-Dhabi, UAE-based joint venture company.
The courses are all part of the comprehensive training solution for RPA systems being developed by CAE under a contract signed last year to provide academic, simulator, and live flying training for the UAE Air Force's fleet of RQ-1E Predator aircraft.
"We are pleased to contribute to the training and proficiency of UAE Air Force and Air Defence personnel on the way to becoming remotely piloted aircraft pilots and sensor operators," said Ian Bell, CAE's Vice President and General Manager, Middle East/Asia-Pacific. "RPA systems have become a critical asset for modern combat operations, and they require highly skilled aircrews. CAE is honoured the UAE Air Force selected us to develop and deliver a comprehensive training program for their remotely piloted aircraft."
The initial courses are teaching UAE Air Force personnel about unmanned aerial systems concepts and theory, including flight characteristics and sensor theory. This includes learning about different types of unmanned systems and general aviation concepts as well as operational concepts for deploying remotely piloted aircraft to support operations.
CAE MME is currently establishing a training centre for the UAE Air Force where all RPA type conversion and mission training will be conducted. CAE has designed and developed the courseware and comprehensive curriculum for academic training and will soon begin delivering courses specific to the UAE Air Force's RQ-1E Predator medium-altitude long-endurance (MALE) RPA. To support the ground-based training system, CAE has already delivered desktop trainers and will be delivering a full suite of additional synthetic training equipment, including Unmanned Aerial System (UAS) mission trainers and high-fidelity, type-specific mission trainers.
In addition to delivering the classroom and simulator training, CAE MME instructors will provide the live flying instruction for UAE Air Force RQ-1E Predator RPA aircrews. Recently, a cadre of CAE MME instructors completed General Atomics' intensive RPA live-flying training program in Yuma, Arizona and were qualified specifically on the RQ-1E Predator.