Flight Training and Simulation
Optimizing your training needs
Pilot training utilizes advanced training media to present to the student pilot a wide range of scenarios that can occur during operations. Flight simulators have been engaged in pilot training for nearly four decades, and the technology within these devices continues to improve rapidly. The challenges that still remain are primarily in matching the right solution to the training needs.
Flight simulators may be used in lieu of in-flight training, provided they meet specific international regulations. These standards are established by international working groups and then adopted by the local National Aviation Authorities (like the FAA in the USA or EASA in Europe). The bridge between training and technology requires a thorough understanding of both these fields.
IDT is a specialist in training and simulation. We participate in and contribute knowledge on training, human behaviour and technology capabilities to the international working groups. We specify training requirements and scope out the appropriate training media for training centres. We also qualify simulator sub-systems and entire simulators for aircraft up to FAR-25 heavy transport-category. We also develop new technologies such as motion cueing systems, motion drive algorithms, visual display databases and acceptance test manuals. Our customers include training centres, simulator manufacturers and airline/training centre operators.
Another area of flight simulation is engineering and research. A virtual environment can help the aircraft development process by reducing in-flight testing. The simulator can serve as a platform for evaluating human-machine interactions and design variations in the aircraft or avionics systems. Determining the proper match between the human and the virtual environment is essential in order that the results are truly representative of the real situation. IDT has developed technologies to understand and quantify this behaviour. We support engineering and research centres in developing the appropriate testing tools and integrating their simulators in the most effective way so that their goals are achieved.
Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- and Raumfahrt (DLR), Germany
DLR has developed a flight research simulator which allows the simulation of an Airbus A320 and a Eurocopter EC135 from one platform with exchangeable payloads. The simulator is used as a research platform to investigate and develop flight safety systems, flight control systems and flight dynamics. IDT has offered support during the requirements, design and testing phase of the simulator. For more information on DLR and their activities, please visit their website.
FSTD Standards and Motion Cueing Criterion
IDT has a leading role in the Flight Simulation International Working Group at the Royal Aeronautical Society in London, UK. Through this working group, IDT is involved in the revision of Flight Simulator Qualification Manual ICAO 9625. IDT is responsible for key technical contributions to the qualification standards of flight simulation training devices of all levels through the ICAO International Working Group. It was decided in the working group to explore the development and evaluation of an objective process to evaluate motion cueing systems in flight simulators. This process stipulates measurement of the entire motion cueing system (motion drive algorithms, motion platform dynamics and transport delays).
Within the International Working Group, it was proposed that the standards shall include a cueing criterion, provided there was enough substance behind the validity of such a criterion, and an objective testing method could be developed and agreed upon by the industry. IDT has developed a motion cueing criterion whereby the gain and phase of the total motion cueing system are measured and evaluated for comparative assessments. Due to physical limitations, phases of 0 and gains of 1 can never be achieved throughout the frequency range of operation. In the control range of frequencies, however, it should be possible to achieve reasonable levels.
IDT has applied and tested the motion cueing criterion with success to a flight simulator training device at FlightSafety International (FSI). FSI is a worldwide aviation training company providing training to pilots on fixed-wing, rotor-craft and tilt-rotor aircraft. IDT remains involved in the specification of requirements, analysis and testing of FSI’s training equipment according to the new ICAO 9625 Qualification Manual.
NASA Ames Research Center, USA
For the Vertical Motion Simulator of NASA Ames Research Center in Mountain View, California, IDT has developed a assymmetric motion system which replaces the ball joint which was originally used to simulate motions around the horizontal axes.
With the assymmetric motion system, the simulator will have 6 degrees of freedom, supported by an existing gantry type motion system to increase motion simulation capability in the longitudinal direction and in the vertical direction.
The advantage of this new layout is that small motions can be simulated by the assymetric motion system while the larger strokes are simulated by the gantry system.
For more information, please have a look at the website of NASA Ames Research Center
IDT has provided the criteria and performed the qualification of two level D Boeing 777-200 Freighter Full Flight Simulators.
Boeing Commercial Airplanes, USA
IDT has done the analysis and specification of requirements for the upgrade of a Multi-Purpose Cab of Boeing’s training simulators and associated training facility.
Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA)
IDT has performed the specification of a research simulation facility and the detailing of motion system performance requirements of a flight research simulator facility.
CAE Electronics, Canada
CAE is one of the world’s largest providers of aviation training equipment. IDT has performed the specification of key technical requirements and optimization of training facility usage.