The Air Force awarded Lockheed Martin [LMT] a $253 million contract to begin work on F-15SA pilot and maintenance training systems for the Royal Saudi Air Force, according to a company statement.

Pilots will complete air-to-air combat, air-to-surface missions, air combat maneuvers and tactical intercepts with 360-degree full mission trainers, Lockheed Martin said. The systems will feature a single dome over the dual-seat cockpit to enable crew coordination training, a first for F-15 training. Lockheed Martin will also deliver egress, avionics and desktop trainers for procedure training by pilots.

“The complement of F-15SA training systems starts with desktop trainers and progressively increases in capability to full mission weapons systems trainers,” Jim Weitzel, vice president of training solutions for Lockheed Martin’s mission systems and training business, said Wednesday in a statement. “This creates a cost-effective program since the appropriate level of technology is applied to meet the training objectives.”

The technologies in the contract will provide a comprehensive ground-based training environment for Saudi Arabia’s F-15SA modernization program. For maintainers, Lockheed Martin will provide virtual systems to enable training without the actual aircraft. The systems include basic maintenance, landing gear and arresting hook, armament, flight controls and jet fuel starter trainers.

Lockheed Martin will deliver the training systems by 2020. The Air Force in 2012 awarded Boeing [BA] $5.8 billion in contracts to provide 136 kits to convert F-15s into the F-15SA variant specifically made for Saudi Arabia (Defense Daily, Nov. 7).

Boeing develops the F-15.