CAE USA today announced that the United States Air Force (USAF) has started KC-135 boom operator training at McConnell Air Force Base (AFB) in Kansas on a new Boom Operator Weapon Systems Trainer (BOWST) for the KC-135 aerial refuelling aircraft.

CAE USA, prime contractor on the KC-135 Aircrew Training System (ATS) program, will deliver the classroom and simulator instruction as part of the overall KC-135 ATS program, as well as provide contractor logistics support and maintenance.

The new KC-135 BOWST, which was developed and delivered by small-business CymSTAR, was officially inaugurated today during a ribbon cutting ceremony attended by Colonel Ricky N. Rupp, Commander, 22nd Air Refueling Wing, McConnell AFB and Ron Bennick, Vice President, Training Services, CAE USA.

"The KC-135 boom operator weapon systems trainer we are receiving today will play a vital role in helping train our aircrews to meet our global air refueling mission,” said Colonel Rupp.  “The BOWST represents our continued commitment to using precious resources in order to enhance training while simultaneously cutting costs."

The KC-135 BOWST is the first of nine KC-135 BOWSTs being developed for the United States Air Force.  The training device now installed at McConnell AFB is the first to attain the Air Refueling Airplane Simulator Qualification (ARASQ) certification.  As the KC-135 BOWSTs are delivered to additional KC-135 training locations, CAE USA will incorporate the training devices into the overall boom operator training program as part of the KC-135 ATS.

“The U.S. Air Force is continually investing in simulation-based training solutions to maintain readiness and lower costs, and the addition of the KC-135 boom operator trainers is yet another example,” said Bennick.  “CAE is pleased to be the prime contractor delivering comprehensive aircrew training services to the KC-135 community.”

CAE is a global leader in modeling, simulation and training for civil aviation and defence. The company employs more than 7,500 people at more than 100 sites and training locations in more than 20 countries.  Through CAE’s global network 34 civil aviation, military and helicopter training centres, the company trains more than 80,000 crewmembers yearly. CAE’s business is diversified, ranging from the sale of simulation products to providing comprehensive services such as training and aviation services, professional services and in-service support. The company aims to apply its simulation expertise and operational experience to help customers enhance safety, improve efficiency, maintain readiness and solve challenging problems. CAE is now leveraging its simulation capabilities in new markets such as healthcare and mining.


High resolution downloadable photos of the ceremony will be available on

CAE contacts: 
Nathalie Bourque, Vice President, Public Affairs and Global Communications, (514) 734-5788, [email protected]

Trade media: Chris Stellwag, Director, Marketing Communications – Military, (813) 887-1242, [email protected]

Investor relations: Andrew Arnovitz, Vice President, Investor Relations and Strategy, (514) 734-5760, [email protected]