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My compliments to SP Guide Publications for informative and credible reportage on contemporary aerospace issues over the past six decades.

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GA-ASI Adds New Capabilities to its Predator Mission Trainer

San Diego March 21, 2024 Photo(s): By GA-ASI
GA-ASI & CAE Defense & Security add new capabilities to the Predator Mission Trainer. The new PMT Plus software enables int'l flight crews to train on the latest Operational Flight Program software & Automatic Takeoff & Landing Capability.

In a move that will be welcomed by many of its international customers, General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc. (GA-ASI) has installed enhanced operating software into its Predator Mission Trainer (PMT) simulator that resides at GA-ASI's Flight Test & Training Center (FTTC) in Grand Forks, North Dakota. The new PMT Plus software was developed jointly by GA-ASI and CAE-USA allowing international flight crews to train on the latest version of Operational Flight Program (OFP) software and as well as the latest capabilities including Automatic Takeoff and Landing Capability (ATLC).

"With this upgrade, our international customers can now train on the latest version of OFP for their fleets of MQ-9A Remotely Piloted Aircraft," said GA-ASI President David R. Alexander. "For our MQ-9A customers, the PMT Plus will be an exciting enhancement for them, enabling cutting-edge mission training. In addition, the new software will enable us to efficiently upgrade to future OFPs to meet our customers' operational needs."

In addition to its OFP and ATLC capabilities, PMT Plus improves the visual graphics for conducting operationally realistic Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance (ISR) mission training, including the addition of maritime entities. The improved user interface at the Instructor Off-board Station (IOS) allows instructors to add elements into scenarios more rapidly, either during a lesson or immediately before a lesson, which saves time and enables a more student-centric learning experience.

"Collaboration is critical to delivering efficient mission training at the point of need," said CAE Defense & Security Group President Dan Gelston. "Our longstanding relationship with GA-ASI enables agile development and rapid integration so customers not only gain enhanced training capabilities but also benefit from efficiencies like a smaller hardware suite, which adds additional value."

The enhanced software also reduces the PMT's footprint, enabling a reduction in electrical and Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning (HVAC) demand, while producing a quieter learning environment for students and instructors.

The PMT was purchased from CAE and has been a core component of GA-ASI's customer training at the FTTC since 2020. The FTTC has been the centerpiece of GA-ASI's customer training capability since its founding. In 2023, GA-ASI announced the opening of a new hangar at the FTTC specifically to support international crew training.