Cockpit Simulation Facility

The Cockpit Simulation Facility (CSF) operates a set of fixed-base, high-fidelity aircraft simulators. In turn, clients use these simulators for human-in-the-loop research studies to test new technologies and procedures for the National Airspace System.

The facility provides flight deck simulation environments that are customizable to meet each client’s individual research needs. The CSF’s in-house software and hardware personnel can create custom display graphics, install new avionics, and build unique scenarios for client research requirements. The facility also provides a full suite of data collection and audio/video recording capabilities.

The facility has in-house simulated air traffic control stations with high-fidelity radio software, access to professional controllers, and a contract in place to quickly recruit dozens or even hundreds of pilots for use as subjects in cockpits in client studies. The CSF, therefore, provides a one-stop-shop for flight deck aviation research.

The facility's simulators can be operated in stand-alone mode, but additionally, the simulators have distributed simulation capabilities. They are connected to the Target Generation Facility and other laboratories at the William J. Hughes Technical Center and have previously connected with NASA, Boeing, and other facilities as well.

Available Flight Deck Simulators:

Boeing 737 Simulator

  • High-fidelity collimated visual system
  • Touch screen MAX-style display units with customizable graphics
  • Genuine avionics throughout the center console
  • Active force-load system for realistic yoke feel
  • Fully-functional simulated radio communications

Airbus A320 Simulator

  • High-fidelity collimated visual system
  • Customizable display unit graphics
  • Includes a combination of simulated and genuine avionics
  • Genuine Airbus sidesticks for high-fidelity handling
  • Fully-functional simulated radio communications

Sikorsky S-76D Helicopter Simulator

  • Created from the shell of an actual S-76B helicopter
  • Includes original flight controls and linkages for extreme realism
  • Converted to S-76D glass cockpit with simulated and genuine avionics
  • Customizable display unit graphics
  • High-fidelity wrap-around visual system with chin windows
  • Audio transducers for realistic helicopter sounds and vibrations
  • Fully-functional simulated radio communications

Reconfigurable General Aviation Simulators

  • The facility operates multiple general aviation simulators
  • Customizable display unit graphics
  • Fully-functional simulated radio communications

Past Research

The CSF supports multiple research studies each year. Past studies have included multiple Weather Technology in the Cockpit research topics, Center of Excellence of Partnership to Enhance General Aviation Safety, Accessibility and Sustainability (PEGASAS) general aviation research topics, Trajectory-Based Operations, Interval Management, runway signage, lighting analysis, commercial airline optimized weather avoidance, and unique electronic flight bag research applications.

Last updated: Thursday, March 14, 2024