Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Flying the A320

Yep that's right, I flew an Airbus A-320... sort of.  My friend is a first officer at Virgin America, and he snuck me in to their training facility to try my hand at their full level-D training simulator.  Wow.  I thought my home simulator was cool... I got a few pics but they don't do it justice, insanely realistic.. a perfect cockpit replica, full motion and intense visuals.  I managed to land a Cat1 ILS to minimums, and it was actually a piece of cake.  The Airbus is so automated.  Even in hand flying mode, you basically just guide it to what it wants to do.   It's so automated it follows the program, you set the speed and it sets the throttles, you set the fix and the altitude in the FMS and it handles the rest.  Fly by wire.

The visuals were intense and the whole experience was basically indistinguishable from flying the real plane.  In fact, my friend said his first flight in the real plane was with a full load of passengers.  Nice.

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