Air Force delivers E-4B simulator

  • Published
  • By Brian Brackens
  • Air Force Life Cycle Management Center Public Affairs

E-4B pilots and flight engineers assigned to the 595th Command and Control Group at Offutt Air Force Base have a new state-of-the-art training device. 

The Air Force Life Cycle Management Center’s Simulator Division delivered the first ever high fidelity, full motion simulator designed to replicate E-4B flying operations and aerial refueling capability April 1. 

Prior to development of the new simulator, E-4B aircrew training relied on a non-E-4B representative Boeing 747 training device -- located in Florida -- or on the limited training sorties available due to the high mission operational need. With a small aircraft fleet, this simulator provides a strategic training advantage, enabling recurring and upgrade training while retaining aircraft availability for operations. 

“This simulator is the first of its kind and it’s one of a kind,” said Maj. David Meyn, E-4B program section chief. “It will provide training capability not available previously and eliminate the need to take E-4Bs out of operations, which will increase aircraft availability and reduce hours on the aircraft.” 

The E-4B fleet plays a key role in U.S. Department of Defense strategy. 

Commonly known as the “Doomsday” plane, the aircraft serves as the National Airborne Operations Center, and is a key component of the national military command system. In the event of a national emergency to include the destruction of group command and control centers, the aircraft will provide a command, control and communications center to direct U.S. forces and coordinate actions by civil authorities. 

The new simulator will improve aircrew training and ensure they are ready for the mission. 

“With the E-4B simulator, aircrew now have a tremendous capability that enables them to gain proficiency in flight procedures as well as practice dangerous emergency situations that cannot be performed in the aircraft,” Meyn said. “For example, shutting down multiple engines or practicing recovery from stall conditions would not be attempted on the aircraft but can be performed safely in the simulator.” 

The Simulator Division worked closely with the AFLCMC Presidential and Executive Airlift Directorate – responsible for the recapitalization and sustainment of the E-4B fleet – to ensure the new simulator meets Air Force Global Strike Command's training requirements. The directorate provided new start coordination, approval and required funding for the development effort, as well as E-4B technical expertise. 

“This is a great example of all parties, the using command, the acquiring command, and the small business contractor, Cymstar, working together to get a much needed capability delivered on-time and on-cost,” said Stefan Craw, Air Combat Branch chief at the Simulators Division.