In further steps to keep the Medium Support Helicopter Aircrew Training Facility (MSHATF) at RAF Benson up to date, Serco was awarded an eight-year extension to its CAE contract.

“We are very proud to have been chosen to remain CAE’s trusted partner at RAF Benson in managing and operating this world-class facility,” said Paul McCarter, managing director of Serco’s Defence business. “Training the RAF and Royal Navy’s brave helicopter pilots is a huge responsibility and honor, and we are determined to continue delivering the highest standard of service.”

The UK base is home to a simulator training facility for Royal Air Force, Royal Navy and NATO aircrews.

Serco has been working with CAE at the base since the facility opened in 1997, with the latest contract extension continuing that relationship through October 2025. The contract has a total estimated value of £26 million over the eight-year period, with options to extend it to 2037.

Specifically, the contract calls for instructor training with CAE simulators for the Chinook, Merlin and Puma helicopters, and for the Tactical Control Centre. The TCC can be used to connect simulators to create complex operational scenarios involving multiple helicopters.

Serco instructors also provide full ground school training for each helicopter at all levels, covering everything from basic aircraft systems to advanced avionics and self-protection systems.