Instrument Training at Redbird Skyport

Aviation Laboratory

At it’s core, Redbird Skyport is an Aviation Laboratory. Our mission is to research innovative ways to deliver the services the General Aviation community needs. Skyport’s goals are best described by our founder, Jerry Gregoire. The following excerpt is from a guest editorial for Aero News Network in 2011.

In 2010 Redbird Flight Simulations decided they needed to understand the effect of motion and other design features in a more systematic and measurable way. They approached several well known universities with large flight programs for help. Redbird offered simulators and support for use in training, in order to allow those schools, with their large student populations, to measure the results in a way that would help everyone involved build better systems. Redbird’s proposal to the schools was met with a collective yawn or something a little more rude than that. While the lack of intellectual curiosity among these institutions might have been a surprise, their unwillingness to engage their public institutions in efforts that were fundamental to their charter as research and learning institutions, was deeply disappointing.

To underline the challenge we all face in determining how to best design and utilize simulation in training, we have come to understand that flight simulators in their present form are primitive and inadequate. Companies that only manufacture simulators for a living will surely disappear and very soon. What is missing in our current designs is the true and certain future role of the simulator not just as a training tool, but as a training delivery system. Our current simulator designs are also inadequate because of our industry’s insistence on delivering training, not at the convenience and the optimal pace of the student, but based on the availability of the instructor. This is crazy stupid and given the state of the technology, completely unnecessary…

Lacking a solution for effectively testing our designs and efficiently developing new ones we have committed to building an R&D facility in the form of a working, for profit, flight school at an airport in central Texas. The work product of that institution will be available to and benefit everyone in the industry and we, and our development partners, are looking forward with great anticipation to its opening in the fall of 2011. As a step toward fixing the problems with flight training, it’s a drop in the bucket, but it’s a start.

You can read the complete editorial here

Every fall Skyport hosts the MIGRATION Flight Training Industry and Design Conference to bring industry professionals together to discuss the current trends and future of flight training. We also present the results of the experiments we are running at Skyport. If you would like to attend this year’s conference, please register here