Defence Minister Tibor Benkő on Friday inaugurated a helicopter crew tactical trainer (HCTT) in Szolnok, central Hungary.
The one billion forint (EUR 3.1m) investment was concluded with French cooperation, Benkő said, and is indispensable for the training of Hungarian soldiers.
The minister expressed hope that the simulator will also contribute to training pilots from other countries.
He said the Hungarian army was undergoing “exemplary” development in a European comparison and some 100-120 pilots will get trained on rotary-wing aircraft in Szolnok. HCTT is capable of simulating all types of helicopters the Hungarian army uses and can be extended to simulate other types that might be introduced later.
Benkő expressed thanks to the French firm Thales for its contribution.
French ambassador Pascale Andreani said she was proud that a French firm could contribute to Hungary’s excellency in the area of aviation.
Hungary has established many bilateral links with France in the area of defence and arms, based on mutual military training and the exchange of officers, she added.
A document distributed at the event showed that the funding was available under the arrangements of the Multinational Helicopter Initiative (MHI), which supports the helicopter projects of the European Defence Agency (EDA). The simulator was installed between October 4 and November 21, 2018 and the system has been tested and its operators received training since then. A similar simulator in Linton-on-Ouse, England, has been used to train 80 pilots so far.
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