Students and pilots who want to practice fly-in procedures to events like Sun ’n Fun or EAA AirVenture, brush up their basic flight maneuvers, or test their skills with new flight situations have a new option for a personal flight simulator, Redbird Flight Simulations announced April 10.
Redbird officially launched the AOPA Jay, a single out-of-the-box unit, during the Sun ’n Fun International Fly-In & Expo in Lakeland, Fla. AOPA has joined Redbird in selling the simulators because the association’s research of the flight training industry revealed that “quality flight simulation is an important element in the success of student pilots,” AOPA Editor in Chief Tom Haines wrote in his detailed review of the AOPA Jay in “This bird really flies” in the April 2013 issue of AOPA Pilot.
“The new AOPA Jay has been designed by the innovators at Redbird Flight Simulations to bring the benefits of a sophisticated, realistic ‘flight’ experience to flying clubs, schools, homes, or offices,” said AOPA President Craig Fuller. “It’s an easy way for pilots to keep their skills sharp and for nonpilots to experience aviation in a way that has never been more accessible.”
“We set out to build an all-in-one unit that is ready to fly five minutes after opening the box—and we succeeded in that,” said Redbird Flight Simulations Founder Jerry Gregorie. “But the Jay opened the door to offering content and building community in a way that’s completely new.”
The AOPA Jay currently comes with 13 immersive scenarios for pilots to fly, with new ones being added each month. In addition to flying these missions, pilots can join a virtual community to share their favorite simulator flights with other AOPA Jay users.
“We even have the potential for pilots in different parts of the world to share their favorite flights, share the same cockpit or fly multiple aircraft in the same airspace,” said Redbird Media Director Jeff Van West.
Visitors try flying the AOPA Jay in the AOPA tent at Sun ’n Fun.
AOPA Jay simulators are set up in AOPA’s tent at Sun ’n Fun for members to test their hand at the scenarios that have already been created.
In addition to AOPA, other associations and aviation publications have joined the AOPA Jay community in support of engaging pilots: Flying magazine, IFR magazine, PilotWorkshops, King Schools, National Association of Flight Instructors, Experimental Aircraft Association, Sennheiser Aviation, American Bonanza Society, Recreational Aircraft Foundation, Carenado Aircraft, A2A Simulations, and Mega Scenery Earth.