Recently cadets from Victoria’s Point Cook, Mill Park and Sunbury Squadrons were some of the first people to try out Jet Flight Simulator Melbourne’s new F-16 Combat Flight Simulator.
Over the course of an entire day specially reserved for the League, 21 cadets and a couple of officers were given the opportunity to experience the thrill of a conducting a combat take off whilst sitting in the hot seat of a Lockheed Martin F-16 Fighting Falcon full cockpit simulator.
After getting comfy with the controls of possibly the most manoeuvrable combat jet fighter flying today, they then intercepted 4 bandits before diving down for some thrilling low level flying before returning and landing back at base. Some of these eager aviators took on the extra challenge of “landing on a stamp” as the simulator was reconfigured to permit them to try their hand at an aircraft carrier landing.
JFSM’s newest simulator is a full cockpit simulation of this legendary combat aircraft and is the only one of its type in Australia and accompanies its equally realistic Boeing 737-800 flight simulator. With a 180 degree wraparound screen, the simulation is so realistic that one of those watching a flight had to go outside because she was feeling air sick!
With little tuition, the cadets quickly adapted to the simulator’s HOTAS (Hands On Throttle and Stick) controls, then using the knowledge that they had gained about their aircraft’s performance envelope, they promptly and efficiently dispatched their opponents from the sky. After landing and exiting the simulator, a number were still wide-eyed and very talkative about the manoeuvres that they had performed to keep superiority of the skies. And many were very eager to have another go!
All-in-all it was a hugely enjoyable day for the cadets and gave them a bit of an insight into the workload of a modern combat fighter pilot.
The Australian Air League would once again like to thank Jet Flight Simulator Melbourne’s Jason, Mirko, Brad and Dee for their gracious hosting and wonderful support and assistance in this now annual event