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Full Motion Flight Simulator Acquisition Project of the Philippine Air Force

The Philippine Air Force has requested for new full motion flight simulators to allow the a more realistic in-country training and refresher for its pilots.

This request was approved with the Full Motion Flight Simulator Acquisition Project of the Philippine Air Force included as a priority project under the Horizon 1 phase of the Revised AFP Modernization Project.

This resource page discusses the project and provide updates until it can be considered completed.

A S-70i simulator, this one using CAE 3000 series simulator from CAE's MPTC facility in Brunei. Photo credits to Flight Global.


Project Summary:

Full Motion Flight Simulator Acquisition Project:

Note: Edited as of 04 February 2023.

* End User: Philippine Air Force (Air Education and Training Command)

* Quantity: 2 units plus ILS package

* Modernization Phase: Horizon 1 Phase Priority Projects of RAFPMP

* Project ABC: Php246,000,000.00

* Acquisition Mode: Negotiated Procurement

* Source of Funding: General Appropriations Act (GAA), funding year TBD.

* SARO Release: TBC

* Winning Proponent: Simultec S.R.L. (Romania)

* Product for Delivery: Full Motion Flight Simulators to support Sikorsky S-70i Black Hawk and Bell 412EP helicopters.

* Contract Price:
 US$4,817,000.00 (Php243,345,206.00)

* Residual Price: Php2,654,794.00

* First post by MaxDefense: 06 February 2015

* MaxDefense Searching Hashtag:

* Status: This project was among the first Horizon 1 phase projects in 2013, but several failed bid attempts pushed it to 2021. Project originally awarded to Environmental Tectonics Corp but failed to deliver and project declared failure and contract cancelled as of mid-2018. Negotiated Procurement proceeded in 2021, with Romania's Simultec S.R.L. declared winner. NOA signed on 16 March 2021. No public confirmation of contract signing as of February 2023.

A Bell 412 simulator system, this specific model from FlightSafety. Photo credits to Aviation Pros.



The Philippine Air Force is modernizing its fleet, and this includes modernizing its support equipment and training process and procedures.

Among those seen as lacking in the organization are modern flight simulators, with the PAF relying more on actual flight training with support with simple desktop computer-based commercial flight simulators similar to those used on video games, or sourcing training from private companies in the Philippines or abroad.

While actual flight training remains the best way to learn, technology has caught up and can provide realistic training without the need to actually fly an aircraft. This allows the reduction of risk from accidents that may result to loss of life and expensive air asset, reduction of fuel and operating costs, and reducing additional flight hours tolling on the aircraft and its components.

With the project approved during the Horizon 1 phase of the Revised AFP Modernization Program covering years 2013-2017, the Philippine Air Force's newest air assets back then include the AgustaWestland AW-109E Power armed helicopter, Bell 412EP utility helicopter, and the refurbished C-130T Hercules from the US.

AgustaWestland AW-109E Power and Bell 412EP helicopters of the PAF. Photo credits to original sources.

It was formulated back then that the flight simulators that the PAF would acquire would be able to simulate these new assets, thus the specifications were indicated to include the flight training capability for these 3 aircraft models.

A budget of Php252,400,000.00 was approved to fund the project, and it was decided by the Department of National Defense (DND) that the procurement would be made through Public Bidding. 

The project was among the first one to be posted for procurement back in 2013, although bid failures pushed the project's bidding process to 2014 with a reduced budget of Php246,430,000.00. Several more bid attempts pushed the project further to 2015, until a tenderer was able to meet the requirements.

The project was awarded to American company Environmental Tectonics Corp., with a Notice of Award released on 18 March 2016. with a bid amount of Php246,000,000.00. It was expected that the Flight Simulators will be delivered to the Philippine Air Force by May 2018.

For some reasons not disclosed publicly, Environmental Tectonics Corp. failed to deliver a single flight simulator to the PAF, and the DND decided to cancel its contract with the company and declare the project as a failure by mid-2018.

By this time, Horizon 1 phase's timeframe has already passed although several Horizon 1 projects are still being procured. For some reasons, the DND did not immediately open a re-tender for the project, and it was only until September 2020 that a re-tender was raised.

This time, the requirement is for the Full Motion Flight Simulators to support only the AgustaWestland AW-109E Power and Bell 412EP helicopters. But this effort also failed, and no immediate re-tender was raised.

A new Invitation was released by the DND only by October 2021, this time declaring that since the project underwent Public Bidding and failed several times, the DND has decided to procure this project under Direct Negotiation with selected companies. It was identified later on that the companies involved are Environmental Tectonics Corp. and Romania's Simultec S.R.L. are the only companies that were found eligible by the DND.

In this revised procurement, the specifications were changed again to support the Bell 412EP and the Sikorsky S-70i Black Hawk helicopter, which are the standard new combat utility helicopters of the PAF.

S-70i Black Hawks of the Philippine Air Force during flight deliveries in Poland. Photo credits to PZL Mielec.

Currently, the PAF is receiving its flight simulator training at CAE Brunei Multi-Purpose Training Centre (MPTC) in Brunei Darussalam, as part of a defense cooperation between the Philippines and Brunei.

The CAE MPTC flight simulator facility in Brunei. Photo credits to Asian Military Review.

The removal of the AgustaWestland AW-109E Power appears to support information received by MaxDefense Philippines that the PAF is planning to divest its AW-109E Power fleet and transfer them to the Philippine Navy which operate AW-109E helicopters as well.

The direct negotiation resulted to the offer of price from both companies, with Romania's Simultec S.R.L. declared the lowest bidder aginast Environmental Tectonics Corp.

A Notice of Award was released of favor of Simultec S.R.L as of 16 March 2022 with an amount of US$4,817,000.00 or Php243,345,206.00. As of February 2023 it appears that no contract has been signed yet based although this is based on publicly-available information and not from direct sources from the DND or PAF.

Simultec S.R.L. appears to be an established company providing simulators to the Romanian Armed Forces as well as other foreign militaries, with expertise including supply of fixed and rotary-wing full motion flight simulators, as well as land training simulators and providing in-house simulation services.

U P D A T E S:

14 February 2021:

PhilGEPS reported that the Full Motion Flight Simulator Acquisition Project of the Philippine Air Force was "Failed" as of its last update last 22 December 2020.

So far, the DND and PAF has not released any new Invitation for Bidding. This is so far the first failed bidding since the project was re-started in 2020, although depending on interpretation of RA10349 and RA9184, there is possibility that the DND and PAF may resort to negotiated procurement due to the number of failed biddings for this project.


04 February 2023:

A Notice of Award was given to Romania's Simultec S.R.L. with an amount of US$4,817,000.00 or Php243,345,206.00, although as of this update, it appears that no contract has been signed yet between the company and the Department of National Defense (DND).

PDR and MDP would be closely monitoring this project for further updates.


First edit and release: 04 February 2023
Copyright MaxDefense Philippines / Philippine Defense Resource

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