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At Heli-Expo 2019, Leonardo announced a substantial reinforcement of its helicopter training capabilities and services in the U.S. with the establishment of a new training academy within its production facility in Philadelphia. The new purpose-built campus is expected to be completed in 2020.
With a US$65 million multi-year investment, the new training academy will meet the increasing demand for comprehensive training services for pilots, cabin crew and maintenance technicians as the North and Latin American helicopter fleet grows. In 2018 over 10,000 students have been trained by Leonardo worldwide.
The training academy will also introduce a full set of dedicated services for the global customers of the AW609 tiltrotor, as mass production starts ahead of FAA civil certification, and the first U.S. AW169 light intermediate helicopter Full Flight Simulator, both developed in collaboration with CAE and based on the CAE 3000 Series FFS. The training center will also host Rotorsim USA, a Leonardo-CAE joint venture which has delivered nearly 250,000 training hours for Leonardo helicopters products.
The 60,000-square-foot U.S. training academy will fully mirror Italy’s Sesto Calende training syllabus approach from ground to flight training, providing a one-stop-shop for digitalized course, flight, simulation, mission specific and maintenance training. This will include all new classrooms, customer lounges, AW119/AW139/AW609 maintenance training bays, AW109/AW139/AW609 virtual-enhanced training devices and AW169/AW139/AW609 Level D full flight simulators. The new devices will enable real-time analysis of student progress and development. This will ensure knowledge and competency of each student is continually monitored to deliver the best learning outcomes for maximized mission effectiveness and safety.
Leonardo continues to be driven by a clear commitment to improve safety, crew effectiveness and customer proximity combined with the latest technology, in line with the Industrial Plan. The new facility also represents an added testament of the company’s focus on the U.S. as a key home market. Thousands of students will benefit from this new Training Academy across Leonardo’s rotorcraft product portfolio. The first home for tiltrotor commercial aviators, Leonardo is proving a game-changer in helicopter customer support and training.