The company has acquired two H125 simulators – one at CAE’s training and simulator center in Gardermoen near Oslo’s main airport, and another installed in a mobile facility to be moved when needed.
Both simulators will be part of Helitrans’ new flight and helicopter training academy subsidiary, Scandinavian Aerospace Academy, which is due to open for bookings on 1 July.
The introduction of the new VR simulator follows regulatory approval from the Norwegian Civil Aviation Authority (Luftfartstilsynet) and the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA).
The simulator offers representative flight behaviour, a 3D VR visual system and sophisticated motion cueing, alongside full in-simulation body representation, a full replica cockpit and a ‘common tablet’ to enable the working through of checklists and to read charts.
It follows the installation of another VRM-produced H125 VR simulator to Swiss aircraft trainer Mountainflyers earlier this month. However, Helitrans says that Norway is the ‘first’ country in the world to ‘formally approve the use of this type of VR simulator’.
Ole Christian Melhus, CEO of Helitrans, said: “The entire Helitrans team, Norway's largest onshore helicopter operator, is proud to be the first company in the world to operate an approved VR based FTD Level 3 Airbus H125 simulator. The approval from EASA and Luftfartstilsynet warrants our decision to invest in this new technology, which will be paramount in increasing the safety level and, not least, bring the helicopter industry's training level in closer alignment to heavy aviation through the use of a simulator.”
The VR simulator comes after Norway revised its requirements for training and certificate renewal for pilots of onshore helicopters earlier this year – under the new rules, training and a certification test on a simulator are now required on an annual basis.