The aviation industry and military services nowadays are using a flight simulator for training pilots. A direct attempt on powered flight can prove to be perilous for you, if you are untrained. There are various schemes in a flight simulator, which will enable fresh pilots to get used to the controls of the plane, even if not actually airborne.
What is a Flight Simulator?
A flight simulator is a system that tries to reproduce, or simulate, the experience of flying an aircraft and disaster simulation as intimately and pragmatically as possible. You will find different types of flight simulators available in different ranges from video games up to full-size cockpit replicas mounted on electromechanical (or hydraulic) actuators and operated through state of the art computer technology.
Categories of a Modern Flight Simulator
These days, a flight simulator is employed for training a pilot. The categories of flight simulators vary between apparently uncomplicated “system trainers” to six degrees of freedom motion simulators.
This six degrees of freedom represents the ability of the simulator to restore axial moment and rotary motion on each of the three axes, which provides the pilot the facilities of roll, yaw, feel, pitch, heave, acceleration, and deceleration. All the categories can essentially offer similar training competence with assorted trifle variations.
Recognized Flight Simulators
Each category of simulators has been recognized by regulatory governmental bodies such as the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). The performances of these devices are also certified by these regulatory bodies.
For getting a simulator certified, it has to demonstrate its performance, which should match that of an airplane that is being simulated. The detail of the requirements for testing is provided in test guides referred to as a Qualification Test Guide (QTG) or Approval Test Guide (ATG). Simulators can be categorized as Level 1-7 flight training devices (FTD) or Level A-D full-flight simulators.
Procedure of Training
You would find it interesting that a modern flight simulator unlike their older counterparts are not used as much for training pilots on how to fly aircraft but to familiarize flight crews with typical and emergency operating procedures.
Through simulators, you can get acquainted with situations that are tough to be reproduced in actual flight. Such situations may include loss of pressurization, loss of flight control surfaces and complete engine failures. You would find that the modern aircrafts possess complicated computer-based devices. To operate the devices proficiently, you’ll have to gain high level of technical as well as piloting skills.
Initially the System trainers coach the novice pilots on the procedures of operating different aircraft systems accurately in a flight simulator. Generally they were not employed for “flight training” or “emergency procedure” training. Once the trainee pilot gets acquainted with system operations, he transits to Cockpit Procedures Trainers (CPTs). These are fixed base devices, which seem to be perfect replicas of the aircraft.
The Varied Features
The commendable feature of CPT is that it duplicates the atmospheric environment in which the aircraft will fly – temperature, simulating wind, and turbulence. It also simulates the ambience by reproducing sounds produced by the aircraft such as gear, engine, landing and other such sounds. A number of CPTs are equipped with visual systems. However, they lack the systems which simulate aircraft motions.
A full motion simulator also known as a full-flight simulator can imitate all aspects of the aircraft and its environment as well as the basic motions of an aircraft.
Many simulators are supplied with amenities used by instructors, which are known as Instructor Operating Stations (IOS). In an IOS, an instructor can promptly generate any ordinary and anomalous circumstances in the simulated aircraft. In latest simulators the instructor is capable of controlling the simulator from the cockpit, which allows him to program basic scenarios with the help of cockpit interface.
The new generation of sophisticated commercial and military flight simulator will probably vanquish the illusion of flight, to a genuine experience of airborne flight.