Boeing [BA] said on Dec. 1 that the company has begun building the ground based training system (GBTS) for the next generation training aircraft for the U.S. Air Force, which is to receive the first simulators in 2023.

In September, U.S. Air Force Secretary Barbara Barrett named the Boeing and Saab Red Hawk training aircraft as the first system to carry the “e” prefix designating digitally engineered systems (Defense Daily, Sept. 14). The plane will now be known as the eT-7A, though the service has said that an “e” designation may go away once a program moves into production.

On Dec. 1, Boeing said that its St. Louis plant is assembling the first two GBTS and an operational flight trainer.

“These simulators, which are the foundation for pilot training and key to the Air Force’s readiness, can digitally connect to actual T-7A aircraft and enable live virtual constructive and embedded training scenarios,” Boeing said.

Chuck Dabundo, vice president of Boeing T-7 programs, said in a statement that GBTS is “a game changer,” as the system will be fully integrated with pilots’ in-flight experiences.

The training simulators include high-fidelity crew stations with dynamic motion seats and the Boeing Constant Resolution Visual System’s 8K native projectors, offering 16 times the clarity of traditional high-definition video (1080p), Boeing said.

GBTS is to have an open systems architecture of hardware and digital software to permit the system to adapt to Air Force needs.

Sherri Koehnemann, Boeing Global Services’ T-7A training and sustainment director, said that GBTS has “‘one push’ software updates.”

“What a pilot sees in the classroom, on his or her desktop training devices, and in the operational and weapon systems trainers will be what they see in the jet,” she said in the Boeing statement. “Future pilots can expect more holistic, immersive training.”