Electronics group Thales has launched a modular simulator system and is to enter the airline training service provision market.
A launch ceremony at the company's new production plant near London Gatwick airport in the UK today unveiled the company's latest series of full-flight simulators, dubbed RealitySeven. The unique aspect of these training devices, says the company, is that they are completely modular assemblies.
Marketing director Mark Dransfield says: "Thales's new 'RealitySeven' full-flight simulator is based on a modular design, with a common core element independent of the aircraft type. Different aircraft modules can effectively be 'swapped' out, as a customer's fleet or training business needs change, without the entire simulator needing to be replaced. It suits those who need [either] a fixed-base training device, with or without visual display, or a full-flight simulator."
Dransfield also says it provides "a better instructor environment", improving one of the weakest areas in simulator training.
Thales has set up a division to offer customers fully packaged training solutions, of which simulators are only a part. Its packaged product is not the same as that of competitor CAE, says Dransfield. CAE not only manufactures simulators, but also runs third party training centres for pilots and cabin crew, whereas the Thales offer is to make all the arrangements to meet whatever training needs an airline has, where it wants them.
This, says Dransfield, can range from the ground-up construction of an airline's own training centre to the provision of simulators and fully qualified instructors, and finally management of the centre if that is what the airline wants. It also offers to arrange finance and full support of whatever kind of training operation the airline has in mind.