Project Telum - Time for a fresh think on Aviation?

Project TELUM will provide the end to end solution for RAF Air Cadet and University Student flying experience, as well as simultaneously delivering flying grading and streaming in order to support the attraction to, and flying training selection activities of, all three services. The capability is to include virtual/synthetic training as well as live flying. The objective is to inspire a practical interest in aviation, attract undergraduates to military service through provision of military flying training and to de-risk flying training through early introduction and screening as a precursor to the provisions of UKMFTS.

Is it time to separate AEF from UAS? Do we really need to use the same assets? Could this not be an opportunity to end the frustration that’s come about by cadets scraping the meagre residual capacity on the Tutor?

Should we ditch powered flight completely and concentrate on gliding ?

Could 2FTS be given entry level training aircraft like the C42 to provide AEF, or could we outsource all AEF to civilian schools ?

Cadets get ~50% of Tutor capacity.

The UAS and AEF is a tricky one. They have wildly different aims, which in any sane world would be met with two different ac types, but that’s not financially viable.

Now that the UAS is gearing up more to direct recruitment rather than “informing the next captains of industry” but simultaneously not offering flying that leads directly to RAF training, there’s less need to entice students with that side of the coin. Speaking with one UAS officer recently, the most popular branch among his studes is RPAS, so synthetic training would be the way to go.

Is the end of the tutor in sight then?

No. Just a short pause


:flushed: :confounded: :sob: :sob: :sob:

The only type of flying we get on our unit is AEF - and we get a decent amount of spaces each year… There is a danger to changing the only type of flying we get would result in 0 flying.

1 Like

Cadets get ~50% of Tutor capacity

Really? The RAF has 90 Tutor aircraft, are we really saying that the equivalent of 45 of these are flying full time for RAFAC sorties, if so that is surprising as whenever I have escorted cadets there always seems to be one aircraft operational - Given there are 12 (13 if you count Aldergrove that has never really ‘got of the ground’); there should be around 3 flying even allowing for unserviceablity.

By hours on the contract, from the whole fleet, yes.

I believe it used to be around 55:45 in the UAS’ favour, but after the gliding and flying pause this got reversed for a little while, but has now settled to something approaching equal.

Got to bear in mind the different kinds of sorties each undertakes. On the UAS, a Tutor might get 30-45 minutes up, followed by an on the ground debrief from the QFI before the next flight… They might only take 3 possibly 4 (in the summer of the weather is good) students up each day.

The AEF Tutor is flying 25 minutes with a 5 minute turnaround 8x in a day.

1 Like

Likewise. AEF is 40 minutes away, nearest VGS is nearer three hours and we never get any gliding slots.

Unless any dispensation is given to other agencies to carry out AEF / gliding, then a slot will be as rare as rocking horse poo (especially for gliding - “pre-pause,” there were 160 airframes, the current plan is for 52!).

AEF too far away? Go back to the good old days & have it fly to you (suitable airfield needed of course) - never happen though, with Serco / Babcock whoever doing all the handling.

This is the bit that worries me - will we be offered sim flights in lieu of actually AEF flights? Will AEF flights be scaled back to ACPS numbers?

I very much hope not! It’s bad enough looking at proposals for badge chasing using sqn flt sims. PTS as a stand-alone facility is not worth much.

The only “good” synthetic flt sim would be one with full motion & associated wrap around visuals. Not going to happen.

We need to maximise real flying NOT pretend flying.


Exactly right. I think it’s a bit rich to refer to a screen and a stick as “synthetic training”, it’s just a flight sim. There is also a broad spectrum of experience and ability to deliver high quality training, so unless this synthetic-ish training can be well standardised and instructors held to a high standard then it risks devaluing the whole system. I have no problem with the current synthetic training that is done but it absolutely must be followed up with real aviation. Personally I think that the tutor fleet doesn’t really offer the sort of future-proofing we desperately need to keep aviation in the org afloat, and the solution lies more with gliding and flying scholarship opportunities out with the organisation.

1 Like

As long as someone in 2FTS doesn’t come up with an MPL style plan… cause thats gone so well as of late in the Commercial World. (And I automatically thought of this when the idea of more Sim Flights was mentioned)

1 Like