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Thread: VR Training "Rotary Wing Next"

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    510th vFS Pilot Swift's Avatar
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    I can see how one of those can enhance the training experience especially if you mount it in a centrifuge or something. But, and this is from someone pretty much 0 real world flight experience, I'm sure part of the training is dealing with the stress of constant threat to life.

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    Barbie


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    The DOD seems to believe that simulator training is vital in success. Just a quick drive around one base that comes to mind and every other building probably has the word "simulator" in it.


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    510th vFS Pilot Swift's Avatar
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    That reminds me of the Bridge simulator in Dartmouth. Haha, it's static but everyone keeps swaying with the horizon when they stand in it. Makes everyone look drunk. A bit off topic, but funny.

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    Retired pilot Eddie's Avatar
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    Yeah sims are used extensively both in the RAF, and out here in the desert. They are invaluable tools without question. The big thing to remember is that at this stage your not training the pilots how to fly, they’ve already gone through a few years of flying training across several aircraft types. This is about teaching them to work the systems in their front line weapon system before they actually strap it on, and afterward to maintain proficiency.

    There are quite a few aspects of modern combat aircraft that are quite difficult to regularly practice with in the real jet, of course emergency procedures being one of them, and some combat capabilities as well. Synthetic training is in addition to, not instead of.

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    Baxter (17Dec19), Emmy (12Dec19)

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    In the US, itís possible at the airlines to add an entire new type rating in a sim. A 737 pilot can add say, a 757 or 767 rating provided they meet all the other airline and FAA requirements. They would then move up as a FO in the new type.

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    510th vFS Pilot Swift's Avatar
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    Excellent point Eddie. I completely forgot that at this point in their training, pilots would have already had a whole load of flying time. The efficacy of simulators then becomes apparent and my original statement, concerning the lack of flying time for pilots, seems redundant.

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    510th vFS Pilot Onyx's Avatar
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    The German Airforce has found a good solution to this problem. When pilots are loosing their license due to the lack of flying hours, nobody will ask wether or not simulator training is helpful.

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    510th vFS Pilot BigJon's Avatar
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    Going a little of topic from low-cost VR sims but interesting discussion. A lot I agree with there @Eddie, especially on stage of training.

    Quote Originally Posted by Eddie View Post
    Synthetic training is in addition to, not instead of.
    But have to disagree with this as a summary of it's usage.

    Synthetic training, through current & direct experience (my experience, others here have tonnes too) in certain flying training environments, is now not just being used in addition to (as previously was the case, even recently). It is being interweaved with live flying in order to achieve training objectives and outputs. Where appropriate, this can absolutely involve replacing sorties that were previously flown live. This is done where: appropriate type and quality of simulators and simulation environment are available, and it makes sense (going back to that instructional system design point). This is for both civilian (as alluded to above) and FJ military flying.

    I don't necessarily expect you to take my word for it, so here's a few sources:

    See Pandora's Buzzard 2017 trial report (publicly available):
    The impact of this work has been to increase the synthetic proportion of the Typhoon Conversion Unit’s Syllabus from 40% to 75% .. save a total of 137 flying hours and 1700 maintenance man hours per pilot trained

    In more granular detail to cut through some of the management talk:
    *In the conversion-to-type phase, prior to the trial, students would fly 7 live sorties and 2 simulator sorties (both instrument flying sorties), then be allowed to go solo. During the trial, students flew all of it in the sim, and then did a ghosted solo. This is absolutely replacing live flying. And note, this is not combat capabilities, this is ability to fly and operate the aircraft.

    *In the combat phase, prior to the trial, students would fly 2 sims (1: turn circle theory, wpns handling; 2: 2v1 air combat training) and do the rest live, including: 1v1 offensive perch, 1v1 offensive high aspect, 1v1 defensive, 2v1 ACM etc. During the trial, this changed to 7 sims and 3 live (instructor ghosting).

    *In the counter air phase, prior to the trial, students would fly 12 sims (e.g., 1v1 ID stern geom, 2v1 QRA, 1v1 skate banzai, 2v1 skate, 2vX multi-gp) and 9 live. During the trial all of it was done in the sim except 1.

    So you can see, that in a range of tasks, that these very good, high-fidelity, high-cost sims were successfully used instead of live flying. A significant proportion of these changes were incorporated into the normal (non-trial) syllabus.

    Even at elementary (PPL equ flight training for ab-initios, colleagues at Embry-Riddle have said that simulation is being used more and more as the quality continually improves. For publicly available documents see Macchiarella et al. (2006). They've tested (with FAA approval) syllabi where live flying was replaced by a v. high-quality Level-6 FTD, - with only 28 hours being conducted in the air. That's not what was used subsequently in their 'non-trial' curriculum, but, no doubt about it, live flying was absolutely replaced as a result.

    In before the 'my nation does this' discussion - there are national differences in attitudes towards, and usage of, simulation. It's a massive topic.
    Last edited by BigJon; 14Jul20 at 13:39. Reason: plurals

  12. #20
    Retired pilot Eddie's Avatar
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    Yeah that’s a fair point, the RAF have significantly increased the use of synthetic training on the OCU as part of moving to single seat OCU instead of the twin sticks. That’s all happed since I left though so I’m not all that aware of the details. RAFO are still following the twin stick supported by synthetic model.

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