Ever since the introduction of flight training simulators into the military service, flight training has never been as effective as before. At present, flight simulators are employed as a preparatory measure to real-time flying conditions. Flight simulators enable pilot trainees to get the first taste of how it is to fly an airplane. Flight training with simulator prevents the accidental loss of pilot and plane during training. Large airline companies generally require a flight simulation training for dedicated-aircraft types of pilots, especially, in times of maneuvering conversion from old aircraft to another aircraft brand or type.
The same is true when learning to how to fly an RC (radio-controlled) drone or unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV). Training with flight simulators definitely gives a new pilot firsthand understanding of the aerodynamic behavior of a drone; likewise, this flight simulation training prevents actual crashes of drones which could be a bit costly.
Drone pilot trainees are expected to experience flight mishaps that could lead to aircraft crashes on the early part of flying syllabus. However, on the part of those novices that crash drone regularly, it is definitely cheaper to acquire a flight simulation software for the drone to get acquainted with the flying characteristics of a real RC drone or UAV.
Choosing the Right Drone and Drone Simulator
Before purchasing a UAV or aerial drone, one should have a basic knowledge of the different drone choices and associated equipment. With this rudimentary knowledge and understanding of drones, one can readily assess a drone’s capabilities and drawbacks. First, one has to know that there are two main types of remotely-controlled UAVs or drones that are available in the market. There is the fixed-wing type and the rotary-winged helicopter-type drone. Despite the fixed-wing type’s prominence being the first one to be introduced in the market, the rotary-winged type is obviously gaining increasing popularity due to its flexibility and multitude of uses.
One should also learn the rudiments of the different methods of flying. There are two methods of flying a UAV or drone—either by a visual appreciation of the drone’s line of sight or by FPV (first person view) using rc drone with camera. At present, the FPV method is preferred by many because of its popularity and availability.
With regards to simulators, there are dedicated simulators for particular drone types that include flight controllers. Likewise, there are the “generic” simulator types that include simulations for both fixed and rotary wing drones. Early models of drone simulators offered a line of sight flying simulations, whereas newer drone simulators offer FPV flying simulations as well. Noteworthy, however, is the fact that these drone simulators operate on either Mac or Windows OS (operating system) only.
RC drones are tricky to fly, especially, if you are a novice pilot. A wrong appreciation of the drone’s flight attitude or a wrong touch on the pressure-sensitive flight controller can send the drone plunging towards its demise. This is why simulator training is needed before proceeding to actual flying. Like in real flying, drone flights should be learned in stages: the drone simulator training should come first to avoid any mishaps; then, the actual drone flying to apply the learnings from flight simulation training. At the onset, it is important to hone the pilot’s takeoff and landing skills before proceeding to the performance of other flying skills.