By Abraham V. Kuruvilla
India’s Directorate General Civil Aviation (DGCA) has certified the civil and conventional variant of the Dhruv simulator cockpit to Level D. Sources confirm to Tarmak007 that this is the highest qualification for flight simulators. The simulator is housed at the Helicopter Academy to Train by Simulation of Flying (HATSOFF) facility in Bangalore – a CAE Canada-HAL JV.
The simulator cockpit has been integrated with the CAE-built full-mission simulator currently in operation at HATSOFF. The simulator features CAE's revolutionary roll-on/roll-off cockpit design, which enables cockpits representing various helicopter types to be used in the simulator. “This is the world’s first-ever full-mission simulator for the HAL-built Dhruv helicopter. Now, we are can offer training to IAF and other operators of Dhruv. In many ways, our training will be advanced and cost-effective,” sources said. An official announcement is expected later today.
The news of DGCA certification comes at a time when India’s Border Security Force (BSF) has lashed out at Dhruv’s capabilities. Reports of BSF’s unhappiness have already appeared in a section of the Indian media.
Note: Abraham is a Post-Graduate Strategic Analysis student with the Department of Defence, University of Madras. He is currently on a 2-month internship programme in Defence Reporting (details soon) with Tarmak007 in Bangalore. He will be hosting ‘limited reports’ on the blog, until regular blogging on Tarmak007 resumes in July 2011.