Territorial Defence Forces

Polish Special Forces To Be Involved In Mi-17 Simulator Trainings?

Polish 33rd Airlift Airbase in Powidz announced a tender, the aim of which is to find a contractor who would carry out a simulator-based training course for the crews of the Mi-17 helicopters. Most probably, the training is going to be realized for the 7th Special Operations Squadron, stationed at the aforementioned airbase.

The order is related to training sessions for 18 crews. The training is to be carried out with the use of Mi-17 simulators, within the following scope:

  • day and night sorties,
  • sorties conducted with the use of night vision goggles,
  • sorties in mountainous and urbanized areas,
  • flights over the sea, with landings on floating objects and drilling platforms,
  • VFR and IFR flights (1xNDB, 2xNDB, VOR, ILS, PAR, TACAN),
  • practical CRM training (Combat Mission Ready),
  • training related to emergency and dangerous situations,
  • training related to take-offs and landing in dusty environment
  • training within the scope of the process, in which the gunner guides the pilot to fly towards the target, or towards a landing spot with limited dimensions.

The training is to be carried out in five-day long stages, with 10 hour of simulator training for the whole crew, 6 hours of theoretical classes for the pilots and second pilots, and 5 hours of theoretical classes for the gunners. Deadline for submitting the offers expires on Dec. 18th 2015. When it comes to selection of the offers, weighted assessment is going to be carried out with 80% of the weight being assigned to the prices and 20% of the weight being assigned to the experience – the latter component of rating is going to be based on the number of similar trainings that the contractor has carried out throughout the last three years.

No centre with proper simulators that would make it possible to carry out the training exists in Poland, hence the Polish pilots are forced to use the infrastructure in the Czech Republic or Lithuania.  This is especially significant for the crews of the 7th Special Operations Squadron, the task of which is to transport and provide air support for all of the special forces units.

The Powidz-based element has been created four years ago, and it has a role which is similar to the one fulfilled by the famous 160th SOAR unit of the US Army. Currently, the Polish unit has insufficient number of helicopters at its disposal, since more rotary-winged aircraft are required to realize the needed training. For the reasons above, a large part of the training for the 7th Special Operations Squadron is being realized “virtually”. No other units using the Mi-17 helicopters are stationed in Powidz.