Airbus inaugurates new campus to train the pilots of tomorrow

03rd Mar 2022

Airbus Flight Academy Europe (AFAE), a 100% subsidiary of Airbus, has inaugurated a new campus, in Angoulême, South-West France. During the ceremony, Airbus confirmed that Volotea, the Barcelona-based airline, is the first to recruit its Airbus pilot cadets.

The inauguration of the new facility provides AFAE, which is the first flight school to deliver the Airbus Pilot Cadet Training Programme in Europe, with an increased capacity to train up-to 200 pilot cadets at any one time. The site, which spans 4.7 hectares,includes a new building of approx. 3200m² which will be dedicated to the training of aspiring pilots with 14 classrooms and briefing rooms, a simulator hall, an auditorium and a restaurant.

By enlarging its ab-initio training base, Airbus reaffirms its longstanding commitment to support its airline customers in anticipating and preparing for the future. In helping to train the pilots of tomorrow, a demand now estimated to be around 550,000 over the next 20 years*, Airbus is ensuring the commercial aircraft industry is ready for air traffic recovery in the 2023-2025 timeframe and the years beyond.

The move to a new campus is also the opportunity for AFAE to commit to and align with Airbus’ global approach to sustainability. A first step was the achievement of ISO 14001 certification for the site in 2021. AFAE now turns its efforts to focusing on a reduction of CO₂ emissions of its training aircraft fleet -an order for the more fuel efficient, quieter Elixir light aircraft is ongoing to complement the current Cirrus fleet, as well as ensuring a decarbonised environmental footprint in terms of its physical sites and supply chain.

Going forward AFAE stands ready to adapt its operations in line with Airbus’ long term zero-emission ambition, all the while ensuring that it maintains the comprehensive and innovative approach to training that Airbus has been renowned for over the past 50 years, via the regular introduction of the latest technologies and learning concepts, including environmental education from Day1.

The move by Volotea to recruit eleven of Airbus’ newly graduated pilot cadets is an endorsement of the quality of Airbus’ Ab-Initio Training Programme, which opened its doors in 2019. The programme equips cadets with the skills and mind-set required to become an “operationally-ready pilot” focusing on the all-important development of key pilot technical and behavioural competencies. Currently in the final stages of their pilot training, the Airbus cadets will be joining Volotea and flying as commercial airline pilots from April-May this year.

“This is a very important day for Volotea, as we are taking cadets directly from the Airbus Flight Academy Europe for the first time. We’re all very excited by it as we know the programme quality is of a very high standard, adapting perfectly to Volotea´s training philosophy, said Carlos Muñoz, CEO Volotea. Our company keeps on growing year after year our Airbus fleet, and we’re going to be needing many more pilots. We certainly hope this is the beginning of a very successful long-term partnership with the Airbus Flight Academy benefiting many young pilots.”

The Airbus Pilot Cadet Training Programme is open to high school graduates over 18 years old worldwide. Candidates will undergo online and on-site screening tests before being eligible for training which will include 750+ hours of ground school, plus 200 hours of practical (flight and simulator) training.

For more information, kindly contact Airbus Flight Academy Europe.

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