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Frasca updating UND simulator fleetFrasca updating UND simulator fleet

Editor's note: This article was updated May 20 with additional information on the University of North Dakota's existing simulator fleet.

Frasca International has begun updating the University of North Dakota’s (UND) fleet of flight training devices by adding new simulators that feature the latest Garmin G1000 NXi digital avionics suite, a process that will span several years. The simulator company founded nearly 60 years ago by Rudy Frasca and the university known for its aviation program are working together to bring new technology to the school which already operates scores of Frasca training devices spread among its campuses.

Frasca International Inc. is updating the University of North Dakota's simulator training fleet with Garmin's G1000 NXi avionics suite, as pictured in a Piper Seminole flight training device. Photo courtesy of Frasca.

To date, one Piper Seminole simulator has been delivered, with three more devices simulating the university’s Garmin NXi-equipped Piper Archers and Seminoles scheduled for July.

“They've been our partners for 39 years,” explained Frasca official Peggy Prichard. “North Dakota has a wonderful aviation program and they've been very progressive about updating their aircraft fleet, so the sims have to match the aircraft.”

The school’s aerospace program uses more than 20 Frasca flight training devices at the Grand Forks, North Dakota, main campus and the university’s satellite locations.

The new technology features Frasca’s TruVision Global visual system, its Simplicity operating system for instructors, and other options that are popular with aviation schools. The units will be delivered as they become available, Prichard said.

A collegiate aviation student checks out a mobile Frasca flight simulator during the National Intercollegiate Flying Association's National Safety and Flight Evaluation Conference. Photo courtesy of Lisa Ross, Parhelia Multimedia.

“Frasca's commitment to keeping up with technology and their excellent customer service makes them an easy choice,” said UND Aerospace Director Don Dubuque, who praised the company for helping “provide the highest level of professional aviation education to our students.”

John Frasca, the company president, added that the relationship with UND was “a very significant achievement” and added, “Our partnership with them just keeps getting stronger over the years.”

Indeed, Frasca has demonstrated a commitment to the entire collegiate aviation community. Representatives recently returned from the National Intercollegiate Flying Association's National Safety and Flight Evaluation Conference (SAFECON) at Ohio State University in Columbus, where they displayed a mobile simulator adjacent to aviators competing in 23 flight and ground events at the annual SAFECON event.

“We do aviation technology and safety research with a lot of colleges,” said Prichard. “The universities are really our grass roots and we’ve grown out from there to the military, the airlines, and commercial aviation.”

The simulator specialists are also “doing a lot with helicopters right now and with police aviation,” Prichard added, noting that Frasca is currently “in about 70 countries.”

David Tulis

David Tulis

Associate Editor Web/ePilot
AOPA Associate Editor Web/ePilot David Tulis joined AOPA in 2015 and is a seaplane-rated private pilot who enjoys vintage aircraft, aerobatic flying, and photography.
Topics: Flight School

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