MCAS Iwakuni receives new flight simulator
MARINE CORPS AIR STATION IWAKUNI, Japan -- Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni, Japan, received a KC-130J flight simulator Aug. 2, 2016.
The simulator is the last piece of equipment Marine Aerial Refueler Transport Squadron 152 had in Okinawa completing their move to MCAS Iwakuni and is the first simulator to be placed in MCAS Iwakuni’s Operational Training Complex.
“The arrival of this simulator is significant because it completes the move for VMGR-152 and marks the first simulator installation into the OTC,” said U.S. Marine Corps Maj. Christopher Kocab, OTC program manager. “The simulator will help facilitate our training and allow our pilots to conduct tactical training without having to utilize aircraft.”
Kocab said the advantage of using the simulator is that it allows the pilots to get the training they need without the required flight hours.
The KC-130J is the first of many simulators to be arriving at MCAS Iwakuni. Upon its completion, MCAS Iwakuni’s OTC will be the largest in the Marine Corps.
The complex is a joint facility that also includes training classrooms, a night lab and debriefing rooms for use from both Navy and Marine Corps personnel.
“This simulator delivery is part of a larger project of standing up the Operation Training Complex,” said Tyler VandenBerg, an in service engineer on MCAS Iwakuni. “When completed, it will be the largest flight simulator training complex in the Marine Corps and nearly the largest in Asia, providing training to our Navy and Marine Corps aviators.”
Some of the next simulators scheduled to arrive include simulators for the F/A-18 Hornet, amongst others as well.
“This complex is the first of its kind in the Marine Corps because it houses several types of simulators in one place,” said Kocab. “The OTC program has worked really hard on this complex and it’s a big accomplishment for us. The facility will provide great training for our aircrew.”
The simulator was transported through a privately owned Russian cargo company on an AN-124 Ruslan aircraft, which is comparable to the size of a C-5 Galaxy.
One of the members of the AN-124 crew said that he hopes the base is able to get the most out of the simulator for their training.
“We don’t do many jobs like this,” said Sergei Nenashev, radio operator of the AN-124. “It’s a great opportunity for our crew to carry some cargo for MCAS Iwakuni. I think this is important because you get the opportunity to train your pilots on your base. I’m sure it takes much more time to conduct this type of training in actual aircrafts, so I hope this piece of equipment helps.”
With this new equipment, the pilots of MCAS Iwakuni will be better trained and prepared when the need arises to respond to any situation.