F-35B Pilot Training: Warlords In Beaufort - CODE ONE

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Unread post28 May 2015, 02:04

F-35B Pilot Training: Warlords In Beaufort LONG ARTICLE BEST READ AT SOURCE - Lots not replicated here
23 May 2015 Jeff Rhodes

"...MCAS Beaufort is now responsible for all Marine Corps F-35B pilot training. Pilots from the United Kingdom and Italy who will be flying the short takeoff/vertical landing variant of the Lightning II will also be trained at Beaufort. The air station will eventually be home to two operational Marine Corps F-35 squadrons as well.

VMFAT-501, which traces its lineage back to World War II, is the first F-35B training squadron. The squadron had been training pilots at Eglin since 2010, sending graduates to join the first operational Marine F-35B squadron at MCAS Yuma, Arizona, as well as to VMX-22, the Marine Corps operational test squadron at Edwards AFB, California....

...This is the central school house for F-35B pilots.”

“This school house took six years of planning and we had lots of challenges. But we were able to overcome them with the help of a lot of smart people,” continued Villalobos. “Beaufort was ready for operations on schedule on 1 June 2014.”

The 100,000 square foot PTC was completed in November 2013 and was occupied in early 2014. The center features two simulators—with two more to come in the fall of 2015—classrooms, lecture hall, part-task simulators, and office space for contractor and military instructor pilots, or IPs, and staff.

The simulators are a full 360 degree sphere with full, high fidelity visual system. The student gets in the cockpit outside of the dome and then the cockpit mechanically moves inside the dome on a track, putting the pilot in the middle of the sphere.

“There is more synthetic training in the F-35 than with any other aircraft. There is no two-seat version. There is only one engine,” said Mike Sorsdahl, the lead simulator technician and scheduler at the PTC for Lockheed Martin Mission Systems and Training. “We give pilots the ability to be as familiar as they can with the jet before actually going to the aircraft.”

The simulator combines the sensory with the visual. Students hear noises in their helmet for instance. “They can actually feel the lift fan behind them,” noted Sorsdahl. “There’s a fifteen-inch subwoofer in the sim to produce the vibrations.”

In And Out
The Integrated Training Center at Eglin covered all pilot academic and flight training as well as maintainer instruction. “We’re just going to train pilots,” said Sorsdahl. “There won’t be any Marine maintenance training here.”

A student pilot checks in at the PTC and is given a laptop and a portable stick and throttle that replicate what’s in the actual aircraft. All the files the student needs, including all the aircraft systems, are on the laptop. The PTC curriculum also includes electronic module lectures, interactive courseware, and actually manipulating the pilot training aid hardware.

“The aircraft systems orientation is unclassified as are normal and emergency aircraft operations. The classified training is the mission system training,” said Oscar “Speedy” Alvarez, a retired F/A-18 pilot and one of the contractor instructor pilots. “We cover basic mission systems and some tactical mission basics. Most of the mission training is taught by military IPs, though.”

Officials expect there will be a couple dozen contractor and military IPs at the PTC when it’s fully operational. “We’re not likely to run a twenty-four hour schedule here,” observed Sorsdahl. “We really don’t think there will ever be a need for that.”

Academics and the simulator flights cover fifty training days and fifteen flights for pilots coming to the F-35B from F/A-18 or AV-8B. “The course for a brand new pilot just out of flight school will be longer,” added Alvarez.

The PTC staff held a dry run in April 2014. “We used IPs from 501,” said Villalobos. “They came up for a week at a time, two people per week. They sat in the classrooms. They sat in the sims. They went through the syllabus and the training infrastructure.”

The first official class of four student pilots began on 6 October 2014. “We’re projecting training fifteen pilots in FY’15 and twenty-six in FY’16,” noted Villalobos. “In 2016, we’ll start our first UK students. We’re also projecting to start Category 1 pilot training—pilots straight out of flight training—in FY’16.”

Capacity for the PTC is roughly ninety-plus pilots per year. “But we won’t get there until there’s a second training squadron at Beaufort, which will be sometime in the 2020s,” Villalobos said....

...And we had to build STOVL landing pads.”...

...The two landing pads, located just off the runway, are shaped like the deck of a Navy LHD-type amphibious assault ship. The pads allow pilots to make STOVL Field Carrier Landing Practices....

...The VMFAT-501 hangar covers 60,000 square feet and is actually sized to accommodate the larger wingspan F-35C aircraft. Up to seven of the smaller wingspan F-35Bs can be hangared in the facility at one time. The building includes office and conference space, a life support equipment room, and maintenance shops....

...In The Cockpit
Bachmann described the process of a student’s first flight, which is solo: “Familiarization Flight 0 is with the IP on the interphone cord. The student and the instructor walk around the aircraft. The student then gets in the aircraft The IP talks to the student through engine startup. The IP disconnects the interphone cord and gets in a ground vehicle. The student taxis on to the runway.

“The student then taxis off the runway with instructor still riding behind him. The student then taxis back to the sunshade then shuts down with the IP on the cord. The student then does the pilot write-ups for the aircraft with the IP watching. The student goes through putting up all his equipment. He goes through the maintenance paperwork and the operations paperwork. Then there is a full debrief with the IP.

“It’s a dry run of everything that the student will do the next day. Except this time, instead of just rolling down the runway and taxiing in, the student takes off.

A student needs seven flights for initial qualification and ten flight hours for Naval Air Training and Operating Procedures Standardization, or NATOPS, qualification. The first flight is basically takeoff and landing. The other flights cover basic formation flying, instrument flying, and combat formation flying. Aerial refueling qualification is currently done when the student pilot gets to his or her next assignment...."

PHOTO Gallery: http://www.codeonemagazine.com/gallery_ ... ery_id=206

PHOTO: "The two vertical landing pads, located just off the runway at Beaufort, are shaped like the deck of a Navy LHD-type amphibious assault ship. The pads allow VMFAT-501 pilots to make STOVL Field Carrier Landing Practices. Additionally, the Towson Bombing Range, located just across the state line in Georgia, has been upgraded in support of F-35B beddown at Beaufort. Photo by Liz Kaszynski" http://www.codeonemagazine.com/images/m ... 7_9830.jpg

PHOTO: "Aerial refueling qualification for the F-35B is currently done when the student pilot completes initial training and gets to his or her next assignment. Here, two VMFAT-501 instructors take on fuel from a Marine KC-130J Battleherk tanker off the South Carolina coast, while two more instructors wait their turn. The KC-130J and its crew are assigned to Marine Aerial Refueler Transport Squadron 252 (VMGR-252) at MCAS Cherry Point, North Carolina. Photo by Liz Kaszynski http://www.codeonemagazine.com/images/m ... 7_7833.jpg


Source: http://www.codeonemagazine.com/article.html?item_id=169


VL PAD Locations: http://www.proconstructinc.com/jobs/TEA ... 1_OF_4.pdf (10Mb)
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RAN FAA A4G Skyhawk 1970s: https://www.faaaa.asn.au/spazsinbad-a4g/ AND https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwqC_s6gcCVvG7NOge3qfAQ/
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Unread post08 Aug 2015, 08:38

Construction moving along on simulated LHD
04 Aug 2015 Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort, Lance Cpl. Jonah Lovy

BEAUFORT, S.C. - Construction is underway on a simulated Landing Helicopter Dock aboard Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort. When completed, the dock will be located on the MCAS Beaufort flight line.

An LHD is a classification for amphibious assault ships which are capable of landing helicopters or vertical take-off and landing-capable jets like the F-35B Lightning II. These vessels are built with a full flight deck similar in appearance to an aircraft carrier to operate utility and attack helicopters.

"Pilots can rehearse landing [on the dock] before trying it on the real thing," said Navy Lt. Cmdr. Seth Mangasarian, the public works officer for MCAS Beaufort. "Now pilots can get the training they require right here at the Air Station."

The simulated LHD will have all the working lights and equipment found aboard a ship. The base is solid concrete made exactly to the dimensions of the real one. The dock will also feature a control tower.

The F-35B is the short take-off and vertical landing variant of the F-35 series of aircraft. Once the LHD is complete, F-35B pilots will be able to hone their vertical landing skills.

The project is scheduled to be completed in less than a year."

Source: https://www.dvidshub.net/news/172241/co ... ulated-lhd
RAN FAA A4G Skyhawk 1970s: https://www.faaaa.asn.au/spazsinbad-a4g/ AND https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwqC_s6gcCVvG7NOge3qfAQ/
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Unread post23 Apr 2016, 18:21

MCAS Beaufort readies for expansion of F-35B training operations
22 Apr 2016 Kelvin Wong

"The transformation of Marine Corps Air Station (MCAS) Beaufort to support future US Marine Corps (USMC) and international F-35B Joint Strike Fighter training operations is well under way with the second dedicated aircraft hangar and a host of other upgrades in various stages of progress, IHS Jane's has learned during a media brief at the air station.

MCAS Beaufort is home to combat aircraft units under the command of Marine Aircraft Group 31, which include Marine Fighter Attack Squadrons (VMFA)-115, -122, -251, and -312 operating the F/A-18A and F/A-18C single-seat Hornet; Marine All Weather Fighter Attack Squadrons VMFA(AW)-224 and -533 operating the F/A-18D twin-seat Hornet; and Marine Fighter Attack Training Squadron (VMFAT)-501, which is presently the only unit operating the F-35B at the facility. VMFAT-501 is hosting a detachment from the UK's first operational F-35B unit - 617 'Dambusters' Squadron - with the country's third pre-operational aircraft (BK-3).

The air station also houses two support units: Marine Aviation Logistics Squadron (MAS)-31 and Marine Wing Support Squadron (MWSS)-273. These squadrons provide a range of sustainment and ancillary services to the combat and training units during expeditionary operations as well as in garrison.

According to the USMC, the second F-35B hangar - which was contracted for in August 2014 - will be completed by October 2016. The new hangar will be used by VMFA-115 when the unit transitions to the F-35B platform in 2017 and will also feature a new aircraft taxiway as well as an enhanced electrical power network to support the type's maintenance requirements.

IHS Jane's understands that MCAS Beaufort is expected to accommodate a total of four F-35B hangars by 2018, which will be evenly split between the east and west ramps...."

Source: http://www.janes.com/article/59703/mcas ... operations
RAN FAA A4G Skyhawk 1970s: https://www.faaaa.asn.au/spazsinbad-a4g/ AND https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwqC_s6gcCVvG7NOge3qfAQ/
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Unread post23 Apr 2016, 21:53

I've spent much of my career flying single seat jets, but I have never flown one that didn't have a 2 seat variant where an IP could ride along for the first couple flights. Granted sims are so high fidelity now that it is basically exactly like flying it, at least from a takeoff/get to working area/get home/land perspective. Still, it was always nice to have someone there to answer questions.
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Unread post23 Apr 2016, 22:28

It took many years for the A-4 series to get a trainer. I was trained in a TA4G to A4G solo after a couple of flights back in beginning of 1970 at NAS Nowra. The earlier Sea Venom did not have a dual trainer in the RAN so I did a right hand Observer seat (no flying controls) flight first for familiarisation & then off solo. However the Sea Venom in many respects was a larger version of the Sea Vampire Dual Trainer (with much different instrument layout & some controls different).
RAN FAA A4G Skyhawk 1970s: https://www.faaaa.asn.au/spazsinbad-a4g/ AND https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwqC_s6gcCVvG7NOge3qfAQ/
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Unread post24 Apr 2016, 01:31

F-22 is only a single seater. F-14 technically had no training variant, even though it had two seats
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Unread post24 Apr 2016, 01:56

'35_aoa' said: "... it was always nice to have someone there to answer questions."

Every flight in the FMS is monitored by an instructor, answering questions one would gather. Every early flight in the F-35 is chased by an F-35 instructor to answer questions. Similarly early A-4 pilots (sans trainers) were chased by another A-4 mit instructor. In early A4G flights we were chased by an instructor in either an A4G/TA4G.
RAN FAA A4G Skyhawk 1970s: https://www.faaaa.asn.au/spazsinbad-a4g/ AND https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwqC_s6gcCVvG7NOge3qfAQ/
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Unread post24 Apr 2016, 04:36

spazsinbad wrote:'35_aoa' said: "... it was always nice to have someone there to answer questions."

Every flight in the FMS is monitored by an instructor, answering questions one would gather. Every early flight in the F-35 is chased by an F-35 instructor to answer questions. Similarly early A-4 pilots (sans trainers) were chased by another A-4 mit instructor. In early A4G flights we were chased by an instructor in either an A4G/TA4G.


Yeah, sounds like a mirror image of how the F-22 FTU folks run their program. I'm sure it works just fine, but it would be weird IMHO.
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Unread post25 Apr 2017, 10:54

ATAC touches down in Fightertown, trains with Warlords
24 Apr 2017 Lance Cpl. Ashley Phillips, Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort

"MARINE CORPS AIR STATION BEAUFORT, South Carolina -- The Airborne Tactical Advantage Company visited Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort to train with Marine Fighter Attack Training Squadron 501, April 13, 2017. The ATAC is a contracted company that provides adversary air training. ATAC is scheduled to train with VMFAT-501 for the next two weeks.

“ATAC specializes in providing a professional, solid, adversary air presentation,” said James Reed, the director of East Coast operations with ATAC and a retired Marine Corps fighter pilot. “While we are here we have a very fast paced schedule with three training events per day.”

According to their website, ATAC is the largest outsourced civilian, tactical airborne training organization. They are also the only civilian organization approved to train at the Navy’s Top Gun school....

...VMFAT-501 sets up, plans and organizes all of the training and logistics to conduct the training they need. They have pilots at various levels of training and qualifications that will be working with ATAC. VMFAT-501 will dictate all of the training scenarios and ATAC will be providing the adversary presentation or ‘red air’....

...MCAS Beaufort utilizes ATAC for their cost effective, professional adversary air presentation to ensure their pilots are trained and experienced with fighting other types of aircraft. VMFAT-501 will train for the two weeks ATAC is here in different training scenarios, sharpening their pilot’s skills and proficiency in anti-aircraft warfare to meet the needs of the Marine Corps mission when they eventually go to an operational squadron.

“This is a part of VMFAT-501’s regular training,” said Reed. “They outsource their adversary air so their students are experienced with other flight platforms. When we come out here our mission is to provide that professional red air presentation. Because of our experience and knowledge we are able to come, train these pilots and give back to the fleet.”"

Source: http://www.marines.mil/News/News-Displa ... -warlords/
RAN FAA A4G Skyhawk 1970s: https://www.faaaa.asn.au/spazsinbad-a4g/ AND https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwqC_s6gcCVvG7NOge3qfAQ/
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Unread post11 Jul 2017, 22:46

RAN FAA A4G Skyhawk 1970s: https://www.faaaa.asn.au/spazsinbad-a4g/ AND https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwqC_s6gcCVvG7NOge3qfAQ/
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Unread post12 Jul 2017, 07:36

spazsinbad wrote:
MCAS Beaufort readies for expansion of F-35B training operations
22 Apr 2016 Kelvin Wong

... said Reed ... "The transformation of Marine Corps Air Station (MCAS) Beaufort to support future US Marine Corps (USMC) and international F-35B Joint Strike Fighter training operations is well under way .... The new hangar will be used by VMFA-115 when the unit transitions to the F-35B platform in 2017 ..."

Source: http://www.janes.com/article/59703/mcas ... operations


I think we may be seeing the first changes to converting tired old F/A 18s ahead of the AV8Bs here. This conversion was set for FY 2024 to C models. Now it's bumped up to this year? and going to Bs ... apparently.(consider the source)

BP
[Note - Source : (civilian contractor, former Marine pilot) James Reed, the director of East Coast operations with ATAC (Airborne Tactical Advantage Company, a contracted company that provides adversary air training)]
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Unread post27 May 2018, 21:35

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Unread post15 Jul 2018, 20:22

RAN FAA A4G Skyhawk 1970s: https://www.faaaa.asn.au/spazsinbad-a4g/ AND https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwqC_s6gcCVvG7NOge3qfAQ/
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Unread post29 Aug 2018, 11:35

According Combat Aircraft Monthly or others VFA-147 is in transition from F/A-18E to F-35C have some birds maybe and for when stand up on type please ?

Any dates for other units exist a USN Aviation plan as UMSC provide ?
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Unread post29 Aug 2018, 12:00

RAN FAA A4G Skyhawk 1970s: https://www.faaaa.asn.au/spazsinbad-a4g/ AND https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwqC_s6gcCVvG7NOge3qfAQ/

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