By Liz Crumbley
Spectrum Volume 20 Issue 29 - April 23, 1998
The Department of Aerospace and Ocean Engineering (AOE) will officially open the Flight Simulation Laboratory, the only research facility of its kind, on April 24 at 4 p.m. in Hancock Hall.
The centerpiece of the laboratory is a 2F122A Operational Flight Trainer, a computer-controlled flight simulator worth $13 million, donated by the Naval Air Station Oceana in Virginia Beach. The flight trainer originally was designed to simulate the operation and response of the Navy A-6E Intruder and was used as a training tool for flight maneuvers on aircraft carriers. It simulates aircraft flight controls, instruments and systems, as well as visual, aural, environmental and motion sensations. The three-window visual display shows surrounding terrain throughout take-off, maneuvers and landing approach.
The simulator's capabilities will be demonstrated during the opening ceremony.
These capabilities already are being used in both classroom instruction and research. AOE undergraduate students can experience the flight phenomena discussed in dynamics, stability and control classes, and also can participate in hands-on flight-control-system design. Research projects using the simulator include implementation of non-linear control-law design for highly maneuverable aircraft, as well as studies of problems associated with aircraft control.
AOE faculty members and graduate students also are making extensive modifications to the simulator, including expansion of the computer architecture and re-configuration of the cockpit crew station to accommodate an engineering workstation.