New Mission Planning and Debriefing System for UKMFTS
A £ multi-million joint investment by Ascent Flight Training and Lockheed Martin will support the UK Military Flying System (UKMFTS), replacing the current Mission Planning Systems (MPS) used on Fixed Wing (FW) platforms including Prefect and Phenom, and Rotary Wing (RW) platforms covering the Juno and Jupiter helicopters.
This initiative is in response to user feedback about the existing MPS, and a need to sustain a more effective, more supportable and user/operator-friendly capability through life. Enhancements included in the package will further maximise efficiencies, and provide more capability and abilities to enhance planning and operating awareness.
A contract to deliver the new MPS was awarded to Inzpire, who will deliver their GECO Mission Planning and Debrief system.
Tim James, Ascent Managing Director said “Partnering with Inzpire means we able to provide the optimum mission support system for our UK MFTS customer’s needs. It has been trialled and adopted in challenging operations by the Royal Air Force on both fixed wing and rotary platforms, making it the ideal system to accelerate both ground based and flying training in preparation for conversion to operational requirements”
Jonny Smith, Head of Products Operational Business Unit at Inzpire, said “We are delighted to continue our partnership with Ascent and Lockheed Martin and to provide the GECO system to additional UK MFTS platforms, and Inzpire is very proud to play a role in training of the next generation of UK military aviators.”
GECO is already up and running on the Texan aircraft used in Basic Flying Training. It aligns with the GECO MPS applications already in use on some of the UK Royal Air Force’s front line aircraft types, and will offer training advantages for the students going forward, as they will already be familiar with the GECO system.
GECO’s mission and performance planning capabilities enable crews to quickly, accurately and safely undertake critical calculations; and automated features check the safety and accuracy of the plan and alert the user to potential issues.
Rotary Wing Training will also exploit tablet technology based on Inzpire’s GECO system utilising already-proven and cleared in-service technology.
The implementation of the GECO system will be phased over the next eighteen months to minimise impact when transitioning from the old systems to the new systems. The existing Texan GECO system at RAF Valley will be upgraded first, followed by Prefect and Phenom at RAF Cranwell and RAF Barkston Heath, and completed by Rotary Wing upgrades.