Caverton Helicopters selects Thales to supply Reality H full-flight simulator for AW139 pilot training at its facility in Lagos, Nigeria

  • The Thales Reality H full-flight simulator (FFS) will contribute to improving the overall safety of helicopter flights in the Nigerian and regional aviation sector.
  • It will be installed within the brand new Caverton Flight Training Academy, built at Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos, Nigeria.  This Training Centre will be next door to the future Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul facility, currently under development by Caverton.
  • This will be the first helicopter FFS EASA Level D to be installed in Africa.

Caverton, a key aviation and marine logistics player for the Nigerian oil and gas industry sector, aims to deliver AW139 Simulator training to pilots. This move is a key step forward in Caverton’s strategic move into flight simulation training services. They have chosen to rely on Thales’s AW139-configured Reality H Full-Flight Simulator to accomplish this ambition. 

The simulator will be installed at Caverton’s new training centre, designed to meet the increased demand for helicopter pilot training and, in particular, to eliminate the challenges experienced by many pilots aiming to obtain initial and recurrent training. The training centre’s ultimate aim is to improve the overall safety of helicopter flights in the Nigerian and regional aviation sector. The centre is being set up on the same site as Caverton’s brand new purpose-built Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul (MRO) facility at Murtala Muhammed International Airport in Ikeja, Lagos State, Nigeria.

The Thales Reality H Full Flight Simulator is the world’s most advanced commercial helicopter simulator, and will be used to provide realistic scenario-based flight and mission training to AW139 helicopter operators in the region as well as Caverton’s own pilots and crews. The simulator will support a large range of training needs, including Type Rating, Recurrent Training and Proficiency Checks for both Visual Flight Rules (VFR) and Instrument Flight Rules (IFR), including offshore missions and VIP operations to unprepared landing sites. It will be qualified to meet EASA Level D standard, the highest level of qualification for a simulator.

The simulator being delivered to Caverton will enable pilots that fly AW139 twin-engine helicopters –one of the most popular helicopter platforms in Nigeria and the region– to be fully immersed in a realistic virtual environment representing Nigerian operational areas, and learn to handle a multitude of system failures and overcome very complex malfunctions should they arise in the real world. Pilots can thus train safely in high-risk mission scenarios in a range of weather conditions.

 “We are delighted to add Thales to our growing list of partners and we are confident in providing the best helicopter training with this Full Flight Level D Simulator. Safety is our priority at Caverton and we are committed to improving flight safety across our industry and the region through simulator-based training. The new training center being the first of its kind in Africa and will advance safety for the dedicated men and women who fly every day.” Aderemi Makanjuola, Chairman, Caverton Offshore Support Group.
“Thales is very excited to be part of this initiative with Caverton in Nigeria. We believe that Caverton is the best partner to develop helicopter flight training services, and we are confident that pilots will be keen to train with Caverton on the Thales AW139 Reality H simulator. This will strengthen Caverton’s position as a leading provider of aviation logistics and training services in the region, enabling them to expand their service offer, while improving the security of helicopter flights in the region. This contract is also a key milestone for Thales as this will be the first helicopter level D Full-Flight Simulator to be installed in Africa.” Benoît Plantier, VP Thales, Training & Simulation.