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IATA introduces virtual reality to MRO training

To tackle the limitations of operational training for ground staff, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) has developed a virtual reality training program.

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January 27th 2017

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It is a major breakthrough in ground staff training and Orient Aviation experienced it first hand in Geneva recently. Read More » Wearing a virtual reality headset, a user of RampVR is transported to an airport tarmac where he or she can walk around an aircraft, inspect it for damage, view the position of ground equipment and identify foreign objects on the tarmac that could damage taxiing aircraft.

IATA’s product manager airport and ground operations, Dimitrios Sanos, said because practical training is complex and costly, ground staff operational training is theoretical and typically conducted in the classroom.

But by using the plug and play RampVR program, which combined virtual reality hardware and software specifically for an enhanced training experience, trainees are immersed in their working environment. Sanos said the virtual reality program also reduced the need for extensive training on the airport apron.

IATA’s system accurately replicates the airport ramp to a level that is indistinguishable from the real world. It can generate random errors or damage on various aircraft types that a student, on a walk round of the plane, can identify. It also simulates various conditions such as day, night and fog.

The system offers airlines and other users selected modules pre-loaded to perform training. Instructors and IATA can provide on-site support and training for new RampVR users.

RampVR eliminates the need for security pass clearances for trainees, removes the risk of injury during training, allows responses to abnormal ramp incidents to be incorporated in introductory training and provides more flexible training schedules.

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