Pilots simulate silence

New facilities could help reduce noise at Moorabbin Airport

6 APR 11 @ 07:00AM 

NEW flight simulators at Moorabbin Airport could potentially reduce airport noise, according to a training school.

Oxford Aviation Academy has expanded its airline pilot training facilities at the airport, with six new classrooms, student briefing rooms, study areas, library and support facilities effectively doubling its ground training capacity.

Upgrades include an enhanced simulator training centre equipped with the latest-generation jet simulator for airline pilot training, as well as a new Cessna 172 instrument flight training simulator.

Trainee pilots on the new twin-engine jet simulator at Moorabbin Airport. PICTURE: ANDREW BATSCH

The academy’s head of sales, innovation and development, Pablo Mueller, said the simulators were used by students training to become pilots for airlines including Qantas, Jetstar Australia and British Airways.

“It is the first of its kind in Australia,” he said. “The idea is that the simulator teaches them to function as a crew, as they would for an airline.”

Mr Mueller said the academy was aware and understood residents’ complaints about airport noise and that the simulators could help cut some of the trainees’ time spent in the air.

Moorabbin Airport Residents Association president Tom Uren encouraged other training schools to get on board.

“We’re disappointed the general training schools are not doing the same (with flight simulators),” he said.

Kingston Council recently announced it wanted all pilot training at Moorabbin Airport to end by 2030 if stringent noise measures weren’t introduced. It said helicopter training should end by 2015.

Another of the council’s recommendation’s to the Moorabbin Airport 2010 Master Plan was the increased use of flight simulators.

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