Lockheed Martin will be working with several European companies to provide combat plane training at the newly inaugurated European F-16 Training Center in Romania.
Romania and the Netherlands established the center to train local pilots on the F-16, according to OJ Sanchez, vice president and general manager of the Integrated Fighter Group at Lockheed Martin.
The official said the facility will enhance the pilots’ mission readiness and ensure their effectiveness and safety while flying and operating F-16 fighter jets. The training center currently accommodates Romanians but could open its doors to other countries, he added.
Lockheed Martin’s partners in the training program include Daedalus Aviation Group, Draken International, GFD and ILIAS Solutions.
Under an agreement with Romania and the Netherlands, the team members will organize, schedule, operate and maintain the F-16s that the Royal Netherlands Air Force will provide for the training center.
Particularly, GFD and Draken will deploy instructor pilots with frontline experience flying the F-16 in the U.S. Air Force and counterpart services across Europe. Daedalus will oversee the platform’s continuous airworthiness management organization. It will also provide highly skilled aircraft technicians to perform maintenance, repair and logistics services for the F-16s. For its part, ILIAS Solutions will deliver integrated defense software to support logistics and sustainment functions, training management and flight scheduling.
Lockheed Martin said the RNLAF will maintain ownership and sovereign rights over the F-16 fleet that will be used for the training program.