In January the Averett aeronautics department added a Redbird FMX Advanced Aviation Training Device to its pilot-training capabilities. The simulator's technological features, such as wrap-around visuals, a fully enclosed cockpit, reconfigurable construction and a motion platform, create a level of realism that is invaluable in training the pilots of tomorrow. Averett's Redbird will also give local pilots another option for staying current on their certifications.
The high-tech simulator has already given Averett students the opportunity to fly thanks to the inclement weather the area has had lately. Not that it is always sunny inside the Redbird FMX, which can be programmed to simulate various weather situations and their effects.
Simulators are used widely in aviation training at all levels because of their low risk and because they can be programmed to duplicate valuable learning situations that may be hard to experience in real-life - for example, pilots training in Danville can feel how a plane reacts when taking off from a high altitude airport.
"This is one of the ways that the technology has evolved from the airlines down to general aviation," said Travis Williams, chief flight instructor at Averett.
In addition to allowing the next generation of pilots to train, Averett's new simulator is also available for local pilots. Pilots with their instrument rating can reserve time in the simulator to maintain their certifications.
"This is a more affordable way for pilots to complete their IPC [Instrument Proficiency Check] with the latest technology," said Hank Dempsey, head of the aeronautics department. "Our simulator features a Garmin G-1000 glass cockpit, just as you would find on the most modern General Aviation aircraft."
The rate for the new simulator is $100 per hour. Currently, the University is offering a special where pilots can book five hours for the price of four. This block of time is ample for most instrument certification update procedures.
Pilots interested in booking time in Averett's new simulator should contact Travis Williams, Chief Flight Instructor, at 434-791-5705, or via e-mail at: email@example.com
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