VRpilot, a Danish company that designs, develops and sells virtual reality (VR) training applications for use by ATOs, airlines and air forces, has recently announced that major US airline Alaska Airlines has strengthened its commitment to use virtual reality for pilot training, increasing its number of headsets with VRpilot’s software.
After implementing an initial delivery of the novel training devices in its pilot training programs in July this year, Alaska Airlines is now scaling its number of VR headsets available for pilot training starting early 2023, according to VRpilot.
“Virtual reality is a valuable asset in our training device portfolio,” said Janet Ann, Alaska Airlines Manager of Instructional Systems Design. “VRpilot has customized their software and interface to fit Alaska Airlines’ unique training procedures. With a VR training program, our new hire and fleet transition pilots now have unlimited time to familiarize themselves with the 737 flight deck and develop muscle memory for their pilot flows before they step into simulator training.”
VRpilot’s VR-based flight deck procedure training platform, VRflow, enables students to become familiar with procedures, cockpit layout and aircraft systems on their own before setting foot in a simulator. The VRflow platform uses virtual reality to help prepare students so that they are ready to focus on multi-crew cooperation training from the get-go, without spending instructor and simulator resources on technical skills training, such as cockpit layout and procedure knowledge.
Alaska Airlines uses VRflow for its type-rating courses on the Boeing 737-800SFP on Pico Neo 3 Pro headsets, according to VRpilot. Alaska Airlines’ version of VRflow is also tailored to the airline’s own specific procedures and cockpit layout.
Commenting on the announcement, Daniel Maass, VRpilot Partner, stated: “We’re thrilled to see Alaska Airlines commit so strongly to the use of virtual reality in pilot training. It’s a testimony to the value of VR technology when it is designed, implemented and used the right way. We are proud to support Alaska Airlines’ operation.”
In addition to Alaska Airlines, VRpilot also announced that Aviomar, a leading European flight academy, has selected VRpilot’s solution to deliver VR procedure training tools for Aviomar’s Ryanair mentored APS MCC course on the Boeing 737NG.
Captain Yari Franciosa, Chief Instructor – MCC, Aviomar, said: “We are excited to announce our partnership with VRpilot. Combined with our high quality training standards, VRflow technology will help us optimize our APS MCC courses, leading to a faster and more accurate learning for our students.”
Maass added: “Aviomar’s decision to implement VRflow for procedure training is a testimony to the value and maturity of our product. We are proud to support Aviomar’s operation with the next generation of procedure training tools.”
For more information on VRpilot and its VRflow platform for procedure training for Air Traffic Organizations, airlines and air forces, please visit the company’s website.
Image credit: VRpilot / Alaska Airlines