The Aussies Have Built One Badass Flight Simulator

By Andrew Liszewski on at

Your typical fake cockpit simulator has limited maneuverability, but this high speed robot arm can move in multiple axis at the same time, accurately recreating the feeling of flying including the extreme g-forces that come with it.

Built by the Centre for Intelligent Systems Research at Australia's Deakin University, the Universal Motion Simulator was partially funded by the government and military looking for a cheaper way to train pilots, and even drivers. What sets it apart from traditional simulators is the robot arm's ability to keep the rider moving or spinning on two axis at the same time, allowing it to better recreate the feeling of actual flight maneuvers. The large space needed for the arm to whip a pilot about means that projection screens are impractical, so they simply wear a head tracking video helmet that ensures that what they see matches what they feel.

The movements of the arm in the video are frighteningly fast, and while it can reproduce the feeling of fighting up to six Gs so a pilot can affectively train for combat, I suspect it's capable of ramping that up to the point where it could easily cause bodily harm. So I'm suspecting you won't see it appearing as a new thrill ride at your local theme park anytime soon. [Deakin University via Hackaday]