F-35 team honored with top modeling and simulation award

ORLANDO, Fla. — The National Training and Simulation Association selected the F-35 Lightning II Training System for the 2014 Modeling & Simulation Award, here.

The award recognizes the U.S. Air Force’s 33rd Fighter Wing, the F-35 Joint Program Office and Lockheed Martin for delivering an effective, immersive training experience for F-35 pilots and maintainers. The F-35 team is one of six winners, across industry and defense, honored for advancing modeling and simulation technologies.

The 33 FW on Eglin Air Force Base, Florida, was re-designated under the Air Education and Training Command on Oct. 1, 2009, to establish the F-35 Lightning II training mission. The pilot and maintainer qualifications are accomplished through simulations to ensure efficient mission readiness.

“F-35 pilots and maintainers prepare with a revolutionary training system,” said U.S. Air Force Col. Todd Canterbury, 33 FW commander. “We train like we fight to provide the foundation that the United States and our international partners require to take the F-35 into its initial operational capability.”

In an effort across 12 nations, the F-35 Lightning II program continues to serve as the centerpiece of the 21st century global security strategy. 

As the first of its kind in the Department of Defense, the wing is responsible for F-35 Lightning II pilot and maintainer training for the DOD and, in the future, at least eight coalition partners. Recently, Luke Air Force Base, Arizona, also established an F-35A Lightning II training mission.

“The comprehensive training technology suite delivers the experiences that enable F-35 teams to maximize the aircraft’s sensor information and stealth,” said Mary Ann Horter, F-35 Sustainment Support vice president at Lockheed Martin’s Mission Systems and Training business. “Flexibility is fundamental to the design, providing the ability to accommodate the three aircraft variants and all F-35 services.”

To date, more than 140 pilots and 1,500 maintainers from the U.S. Air Force, Marine Corps, Navy, the United Kingdom and the Netherlands have graduated from the 33 FW’s F-35 Integrated Training Center.

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