TRU Flight Training Iceland, a subsidiary of Icelandair, has signed a contract on the purchase of a new Boeing 737MAX simulator from TRU Simulation + Training in Canada. Icelandair is the first airline to acquire a simulator of this kind, although the Boeing aerospace company is currently in the process of starting up the first four flight simulators for the Boeing 737MAX.
The simulator is scheduled to be taken into use in the summer of 2018, following the first take-offs of the Boeing 737 MAX on Icelandair scheduled flights early next year. A new building, adjacent to the company’s training centre in Hafnarfjordur, will be constructed for the simulator. Simulators are used both for new trainees and for regular pilot training.
Two years ago, the company set up a Boeing 757-200 flight simulator with the result that the largest part of Icelandair’s pilot training is now conducted in Iceland. The operation of the simulator has proven very successful, with its average utilisation time at about 18 hours per day. Icelandair is the largest user, but foreign airlines, such as FedEx, also buy training for their pilots in the simulator.
“The decision to acquire the 737MAX simulator is based in particular on the great popularity of this new aircraft type, which is the fastest selling aircraft in Boeing’s history. About 3600 Boeing 737MAX aircraft have been sold, in addition to the nine thousand 737 aircraft already in operation in the world, so it is clear that there will be extensive demand for pilot training in the flight simulator when the aircraft enter the market. The plan is for all training of pilots who will fly the sixteen 737MAX aircraft ordered by Icelandair to be conducted in Iceland and begin shortly after the first aircraft arrive, starting in the summer of 2018. The simulator will also be leased out for the training of pilots of several of the numerous foreign air carriers that will operate large fleets of MAX aircraft in the coming decades,” says Gudmundur Örn Gunnarsson, managing director of TRU Flight Training Iceland.
TRU Flight Training Iceland is a subsidiary of Icelandair and responsible for the operation of the flight simulator and other training facilities. Flight simulators are precise replicas of the cockpits of the aircraft type they are designed to simulate; they simulate flight characteristics and a variety of malfunctions and unexpected circumstances, as well as flights in variable weather conditions, in order to test pilots’ training.
Icelandair will use these two aircraft types, the Boeing 757 and Boeing 737 MAX, in its Route Network and having the pilot training here in one place is extremely cost-effective,” says Gudmundur. Construction work on the new building is scheduled to begin next spring.