VRM Switzerland delivers the first Airbus H125 VR training aircraft to the United States

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VRM Switzerland Press release | March 6, 2022

Estimated reading time 5 minutes, 58 seconds.

VRM Switzerland, world leader in virtual reality helicopter training devices, delivers its training device to Colorado Highland Helicopters (CHH). The Durango, Colorado-based helicopter operator and flight school has ordered an Airbus H125 simulator to provide basic flight training, mountain flying and special operations such as loading instruction by external sling. CHH intends to qualify the aircraft as the first FSTD VR under Federal Aviation Administration regulations.

Once a pilot dons the VR headset, they dive into a fully immersive training environment. VRM Switzerland Photo

From the Robinson R22 to an Airbus H125 FSTD

VRM Switzerland presented its Robinson R22 simulator at previous HAI Heli Expos. “This year, the helicopter community has the opportunity to explore our latest development, the Airbus H125 FSTD right next to the Airbus Helicopters stand at HAI Heli Expo 2022,” says Fabi Riesen, CEO and co-founder of VRM Switzerland. . “Over the past year, our engineers have refined the training solution into a high-level machine that enables very realistic training. Strength is precision never before seen in the simulation of helicopter flight behavior , in maneuvers in general and especially near the ground. Pilots classified H125 can use and fly our aircraft without any adaptation time”, he adds.

State-of-the-art technology to improve flight safety

“Once the pilot wears the VR headset, they immerse themselves in a fully immersive training environment. 360° 3D panning allows the execution of realistic scenario-based training as they would is just one part of the whole system.Equally important is the high resolution visualization during ground maneuvers, with sun like shadow effects and the highly dynamic motion platform that allows the pilot to accurately feel the finest attitude and touchdown changes. This in combination with digital simulation to enable the realistic representation of the flight behavior”, emphasizes Fabi Riesen. An in-house developed precise pose tracking system allows the pilot to see the movements of his hand and body in the virtual world.The system does not require gloves or additional sensors.A full-scale replica cockpit with all the controls p ertinents gives the rider haptic feedback when operating buttons, knobs and engine control components. The control load system accurately represents flight control forces. Thus, the entire system creates a unique full-body immersion. This has the great advantage that the pilot has exactly the same perceptions as in the real helicopter.

Simulator training at the highest level

“VRM Switzerland’s system allows training from junior pilot to the most experienced specialist,” says Gerold Biner, CEO and pilot of Air Zermatt. Flight Assist allows the instructor to recover from unwanted flight attitudes or hand over individual commands to the student as done in basic training on the actual helicopter. Scenario-based training exercises in challenging weather situations day and night, challenge and improve pilots’ crew resource management (CRM) skills. Typical use cases are practicing emergency procedures, external sling loading instruction, night vision goggle (NVG) training and other special operations exercises requiring an exact reproduction of reality . “As one of the first customers, we will increase flight safety with this FSTD by reducing training and operating costs”, predicts Gerold Biner.

First American customer: Colorado Highland Helicopters

CHC’s Brandon Laird and Dayle Morningstar Laird. VRM Switzerland Photo

Colorado Highland Helicopters will receive its H125 trainer this spring. “In cooperation with the FAA and VRM Switzerland, CHH will assist with qualification under Federal Aviation Regulations to apply training credits to pilot certificates. This will be a milestone, qualifying a VR device in the United States. We are excited to bring this technology to our training,” said Brandon Laird, owner and chief pilot of Colorado Highland Helicopters.

VRM Switzerland is already working closely with the FAA to improve rotorcraft FSTD qualification methods and standards within a US Helicopter Safety Team Safety Improvement Working Group (USHST). In addition, a goal is to introduce new methods of pilot training by taking advantage of the emergence of new technologies such as virtual reality, to reduce the cost of pilot training and increase its effectiveness within the community. rotorcraft.

This press release was prepared and distributed by VRM Switzerland.

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