Barco is providing nine SIM 7 based simulator systems to the US Air Force to train operators in aerial refueling techniques for the KC-135 Aircrew Training System (ATS) using the Air Mobility Command's Boom Operator Weapons Systems Trainers (BOWST).
Visualization pioneer Barco announced today that it will be contributing visualization and simulation systems for one of the United States military's most important tanker programs, providing nine display systems through a contract extending until 2014. Barco is partnering with CymSTAR, the project's prime contractor and a leading military engineering solutions company, to provide the units.
The BOWST will be used to train operators to direct a telescoping metal boom from a tanker aircraft into a receiving airplane to refuel it in mid-air, in order to extend the receiver's range. The trainer consists of a spherical screen, five projectors, image generators, computer-generated aircraft and terrain models, a highly-detailed boom operator station, an instructor's station, and custom software. The trainer reproduces visual, aural and tactile effects to accurately model both the tanker and receiver airplanes in a total synthetic refueling environment.
Barco's SIM 7QP provides an ultra-high QXGA (1536x2048) resolution to display computer-generated imagery representing the various flight conditions, surrounding environment, and the critical operation of the boom nozzle into the target receptacle. Powered by the brightest QXGA LCoS technology available, the SIM 7QP delivers precise images, with the highest pixel-fill factor available in today's market, featuring Barco's unique smear reduction technology that ensures a smooth, consistent picture without flicker or break-up. Other Barco-engineered technologies include: multi-channel edge blending, which creates one continuous image without distracting overlap zones; DynaColor and linked constant light output (CLO), which ensures the same light and color levels across the entire display; and unique warping (geometry correction), which enables accurate projection from different angles and across spherical or curved surfaces. Widely known as the best in the industry, Barco's proprietary SIMCAD design tools enable the use of sophisticated CAD techniques that distinguish the simulator solution as best in class.
Barco participated as a subcontractor in the project at the invitation of CymSTAR, an engineering solutions provider specializing in simulation and training technology integration. “Barco's support, from the proposal process to the early integration phase, has been superb – above and beyond any experience we've had with a technology partner. Their ability to quickly adapt and respond to changing requirements throughout the process was essential to helping us win. Barco has become a trusted ally that's fully aligned with our risk-averse philosophy, making them a perfect fit for our business,” said Beau Witt, Executive Vice President of CymSTAR.
“This project cements Barco's significant and growing role in the US Air Force's key tanker programs. It's been proven time and again, that when the military needs high-fidelity, reliable technology, they look to Barco. We're proud to join with CymSTAR in supporting this important program, where we can lend our expertise and versatility in meeting the highly stringent specs associated with mission-critical training applications,” commented Dave Janke, VP Sales & Marketing, Simulation for Barco.
Barco has delivered in excess of 1,000 SIM 7 series projectors since they were first introduced in 2007, and is operating at peak production levels to deliver orders in accordance with standard timeframes. The company will produce nearly 50 units for the BOWST project.