Familiar with the Weaponry Systems
“There’s no reason that they shouldn’t participate in true operational activity”
Simulation Instructors at the Center
Simulation instructors train the new pilots along with the executives of the force. Now, as a result of their strong grasp of weaponry systems, they will receive another role: assisting F-16 squadrons with planning attack targets
Lilach Gonen and Tal Michael
Young flight simulation instructors have must responsibility on their shoulders. They instruct hundreds of fighters, from inexperienced air crew members to the most executive pilots of the force. They make sure that the pilots and navigators know how to fly through extreme weather conditions, deal with technical difficulties and conduct emergency landings.
Now, several of the flight simulation instructors will receive another role: arriving at F-16 squadrons and assisting with planning missions and practices.
The instructors at the Hatzor simulation center, which has air crew members practicing there from all combat squadrons, are used to challenging crews and piling on difficult missions under severe conditions–in the simulated world they are somewhat of a God. “In planning the missions, the instructors deal with sophisticated weaponry daily”, explained Captain Omer, the instructional officer at the center. “Therefore, they know full well how to locate the target and input that into the computers, and there’s no reason that they can’t do that in real operational activity”.
In the past years, the IAF has upgraded the use of autonomous weaponry, which focuses on targets according to aerial photos or satellite indication–“smart bombs”, which allow accurate target hits. Until now, the squadron’s weaponry officer, an air crew member, was responsible for inputting the target information into the systems and preparing the bombing mission. But, as a result of the strong grasp simulation instructors have of the system, it has been decided that the combat squadrons of Hatzor airbase will receive backup from them. “They are capable of contributing a lot in planning operational targets”, said Captain Omer.