BAE Systems and Ignition! – a joint venture between Sonaca Group and Sabena Aerospace – are set to collaborate on the Eurofighter Typhoon programme.
Ignition! has signed a formal Cooperation Agreement with BAE Systems to explore opportunities to work together on a range of activities, should Belgium choose Eurofighter to replace its current F-16 fleet.
To address the Essential Security Interest of Belgium, a major part of the Eurofighter industrial proposal is an innovative plan to partner with Belgian industry to develop an advanced mission training capability for the Belgian Air Component. This includes development of Mission Training Centres equipped with the latest networked training flight simulators. It is proposed that these flight simulators would be fitted with state of the art technologies, much of which could be sourced from Belgium.
Under the Agreement signed, BAE Systems and Ignition! will explore the development of this opportunity. This could include examining the extension of the mission training centres to cover the full training pipeline - from ground schooling to Eurofighter simulator pilot training – training using other platforms and new export opportunities.
In addition to the Mission Training Centre initiative, the Cooperation Agreement also covers potential opportunities for Ignition! related to aircraft support for the Eurofighter Typhoon.
Anthony Gregory, Campaign Director for Belgium at BAE Systems, said: “This agreement forms part of one of the key planks of our long-term industrial proposal to Belgium and we are delighted to announce this partnership with Ignition! The mission training initiative would help position Belgium at the leading-edge of Research and Development, integration, production, support and management of advanced synthetic training, the importance and use of which is continually increasing.”
Stéphane Burton, of Ignition!, said: “Ignition! is delighted to sign this Cooperation Agreement with BAE Systems. This is an important step forward, which demonstrates that BAE Systems is considering Ignition! as a trustworthy partner for training and support. We hope to progress rapidly with Ignition! and BAE Systems in the frame of European cooperation around the Typhoon offering, which supports the replacement of the F- 16.”
BAE Systems is supporting the UK Government on behalf of the Governments of German Italy and Spain, in offering the Eurofighter Typhoon as an advanced, European swing-role, multi-role combat aircraft solution to replace Belgium’s existing fleet of 54 F-16 aircraft.