Indian aerospace and defence giant Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd (HAL) has received certification for its simulator for the Dhruv helicopter from the country's Directorate General of Civil Aviation. HAL says the simulator has received level D certification, the highest possible.
Located in Bangalore, the simulator is operated by the Helicopter Academy to Train by Simulation of Flying (HATSOFF), a joint venture between HAL and American simulator developer CAE.
"We are very proud of achieving level D certification for the world's first simulator representing the indigenously developed HAL Dhruv helicopter," said Chandra Datt Upadhyay, CEO of HATSOFF. "We look forward to welcoming the Indian Air Force and other civil operators of the Dhruv in offering simulation-based training that will undoubtedly prove to be a safe and cost-effective method for training Dhruv helicopter aircrews."
The civil/conventional Dhruv simulator cockpit can be rolled in and out of a full mission simulator. This allows cockpits of different helicopter types to share the simulator. Currently, the simulator offers the cockpit of the Bell 412.
In 2012 HATSOFF plans to add cockpits for the Indian Army/Air Force variant of the Dhruv and the Eurocopter Dauphin.