Virgin America has opened a new $11.7 million flight training facility in Burlingame, California that is equipped with a Required Navigational Performance (RNP)-certified CAE Airbus A320 full flight simulator.
The simulator has a training capacity of more than 6,000 hours each year. The airline previously trained its pilots at simulator facilities in Texas and Florida and began training at the new facility earlier this spring.
"We're pleased to invest in a next generation training facility that positions us for the next five years of growth and beyond," says the airline's president and CEO David Cush.
The new facility will help Virgin America move to RNP approaches in the next 12 to 18 months, and the airline estimates that utilising RNP approaches to its full capability could reduce fuel usage by up to 400 pounds per flight.