Date of Award

12-2008

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science

Major

Aviation Systems

Major Professor

U. Peter Solies

Committee Members

Richard J. Ranaudo, John F. Muratore

Abstract

Over the past decade the United States Army has used a Full-Authority Digital Electronic Control (FADEC) system to control fuel flow to the engine of the OH-58D helicopter. Currently, part of the training is primarily conducted for the scenario of a FADEC system failure in the aircraft. Because of the complexity of this task, a number of accidents have occurred resulting in minor to severe damage to the aircraft. The United States Army has recently fielded two OH-58D Operational Flight Training Simulators in an effort to increase training efficiency and effectiveness. It is anticipated that the simulators will provide a safer environment and an effected transfer of training to the aircraft.

Currently the OH-58D training unit has implemented the simulator into the manual throttle stage of training. This implementation has occurred through verification and validation of the Program of Instruction (POI) currently in use. An investigation into the transfer of training from the simulator to the aircraft was conducted to further optimize the distributions of training time in the simulator versus the aircraft. The primary source of data was collected from aircraft and simulator trials and flight hours to evaluate the transfer effectiveness ratio. The secondary source of data was collected through the use of pilot surveys and questionnaires.

The pilots reported a mean workload rating of 2.52 using the Bedford Workload Rating Scale in the aircraft after the simulator, which indicates a low workload. The Pilots reported mild to moderate simulator sickness symptoms after flying in the simulator. A total severity score of 20.06 was computed through the use of the Simulator Sickness Questionnaire. When compared to other helicopter simulators this score is fairly high. Overall there were low Pilot-Vehicle Interface problems in the simulator and aircraft. There was no decline in Situational Awareness from the simulator to the aircraft. The overall Transfer Effectiveness Ratios indicated a positive Transfer of Training. The current Program of Instruction and simulator hours are validated. The focus in the simulator should be placed on Method of Instructions step two “failure at a hover” and step four “running landing or approach to a hover.”

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