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Safer Skies Through Education
To improve the Nation's aviation safety record by conveying safety principles and practices through training, outreach, and education. At the same time, FAASTeam Managers and Program Managers will establish meaningful aviation industry alliances and encourage continual growth of a positive safety culture within the aviation community.
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The information below should get you set up and started in the wonderful world of flight simulation.
WARNING !!!---MSFS is a very addictive hobby!!! However, please remember, nothing takes the place of professional flight training and flight instruction. MSFS is simply a great tool to "supplement" your flying, and flight training. And, it's a heck of a lot of fun!
There is invaluable information available with the hobby, and the ability to sharpen your skills, that is much cheaper and sometimes more educational than the real thing. Whether you want to shapen your skills and fly a mountian approach down to minimums, or just take a Sunday afternoon stroll around the patch, the hobby can be very entertaing and educational!
For you flight instructors, you may want to consider MSFS as an additional tool for instruction. You may also want to consider the possibility of using MSFS as addition revenue for your business. Even though currently MSFS is not logable as flight time, it is premissable to use MSFS in ground training. So the next time you have one of those rainy days that cuts into your pocket book, fire up the sim, and charge a few bucks for some quality ground school !
Microsoft Flight Simulator is available at most computer retailers. Comp USA, Best Buy, etc. As a footnote, FS2004 runs better on most older computers, while MSFS - X needs a pretty fast machine to run on.
MSFS contains a wide variety of commonly flown aircraft, however, there are other vendors that sell additional “Add On” aircraft not included with MSFS such as the Cirrus SR22, Citation Jets, Twin Comanche etc. There are many aircraft resources available to the hobby that have just about any aircraft imaginable. You can even have "your" personal virtual aircraft customized to match your paint scheme, and N-Number.
As far as flight controls and control systems, there are many companies that manufacture flight yokes, joy sticks, and many other associated aircraft components such as Radios, GPS, RADAR, and Flight Dispaly Systems for virtual aircraft.
Once you get set up and familar with Flight Sim, and really want to turn things up a notch, discover the world of Air traffic Control for Flight Sim. You can simply join for free, as a pilot or controller, and then log on to VATSIM, (Virtual Air Traffic Simulation Network) and experience the world of simulated air traffic control while flying your MSFS. You get "real" human ATC for just about anywhere in the world you wish to fly. Just click on the link below, see the left side bar, "New Pilots / New Controllers Start Here". Once you are registered, and on board, simply log on, file a flight plan, and experience the sensation of "as real as it gets"!
Additionally, if you want to venture over to the other side, you can apply to be an Air Traffic Controller. This side of the hobby will train you as a full blown virtual Air Traffic Controller.
The benefits? You will be able to better understand why ATC does what they do. So the next time you hear a clearance, you will fully understand what is going on, and have better respect for the system. Virtual ATC will help you become familar with what ATC is all about, so the next time you want to fly through a Class B, it will be a piece of cake!
Finally, once you get all set up, don't forget to visit our "Information" page at www.safecockpit.com/information for tons of available information and web site link for charts, flight planning, etc.