A NEW multi-million facility for the RAF’s Chinook helicopter pilots and crew is to be developed in Hampshire.

The Ministry of Defence is investing £51 million into a new training system at the north Hampshire airbase to prepare air force personnel for deployment on operations.

Lockheed Martin will design and build the training facility at RAF Odiham, the home of the Chinook fleet, preparing pilots and crew for deployment on operations.

Using virtual reality technology and the latest simulators the facility will enable crews to experience a wide range of training scenarios ranging from sorties in urban locations to maritime operations.

The facility will also include classrooms where aircrews will be trained in the specific flying, emergency and mission capabilities of the Mk6 Chinook aircraft.

The 12-year contract to deliver synthetic training for the Chinook Mk6 crews will involve designing, building and managing the facility and introducing the training system.

About 12-16 employees from Lockheed Martin UK based in Havant will also deliver a medium to long term support package to include maintenance and instruction at the RAF Odiham training facility.