The Joint Strike Fighter, F-35 by Lockheed Martin.  (Photo: Liz Kaszynski / Flash 90)

The high cost of flying Lockheed Martin’s F-35 determines that at least 50 percent of the training on the stealth fighter be done in simulators, and Elbit Systems Ltd. has just won the tender to operate the F-35 new training center, to be built in the Nevatim airbase in the Negev desert, Globes reported Sunday. Construction of the new center will be completed in the coming year, in time for the arrival of the 33 F-35 Adir aircraft purchased by Israel.

Lockheed Martin said in a statement that over the past three decades, Elbit “has acquired a great deal of experience in trainers and simulators, and is a world leader in high-tech display. Its advanced systems are in operational use by leading armies around the world.”

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A group of Israeli pilots are undergoing special training for the F-35 at a US Air Force base in Arizona. According to the Israeli Defense Ministry, F-35 related cooperation between Lockheed Martin and Israeli defense companies has reached $993 million. Elbit produces advanced pilot helmets for F-35 pilots; Israel Aerospace Industries produce the aircraft’s wings.

The F-35 Helmet Mounted Display (HMD), a joint venture between Elbit Systems and Rockwell Collins, provides critical flight information to the pilot throughout the entire mission.

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Source: Israel in the News