Rheinmetall and Thales have completed the modernisation of the flight simulators of the Tiger combat helicopter for the French and German armed forces.

The Organisation Conjointe de Coopération en Matière d’Armement (OCCAR) awarded a contract to ARGE TATM in December 2014 to perform the modernisation work.

ARGE TATM is a cooperation between Rheinmetall and Thales.

The upgrade of the simulators allows the armed forces of the two European nations to train their crews in an advanced virtual environment.

As part of the programme, Rheinmetall Electronics and its partners upgraded the simulators to match the latest configurations of the Tiger platform, Germany’s Kampfhubschrauber Tiger UHT Step 2 Krypto and the French Tiger Hélicoptère d’Appui et Destruction (HAD) Block 2 aircraft.

The contract also included the installation of two simulators to bridge a gap in training capabilities for the French 1st Helicopter Regiment.

A total of 20 simulators, including eight full-mission simulators and 12 cockpit procedure simulators, are currently in operation.

OCCAR Germany and France project manager Bertrand Cornet said: “The updated system supplied by Thales and Rheinmetall offers full immersive conditions. It combines a genuine Tiger cockpit, accurate aircraft behaviour and a tactical environment reflecting current operational missions.

“The completely transformed system architecture points the way to future trends in aircraft development.”

Under the contract, ARGE TATM modernised the software for the basic management system and the mission equipment systems. The contract also covered new cockpit hardware.

The company also upgraded the existing simulator technology and incorporated the German Operational Support System into the simulator.

In a statement, Rheinmetall said: “The upgrade process culminated in a binational joint exercise at the École Franco-Allemande (EFA, binational school for aircrew training) in Le Luc, involving six simulated helicopters in twelve networked simulators.”

The company added that the programme also includes ongoing support for the upgraded Tiger helicopter simulators.