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The commercial flight simulation market has been forecast to hit a market value of US$9.6 billion by 2018, primarily driven by replacements and upgrades of aging fleets with new generation automated aircrafts with sophisticated cockpit avionics.
The rapid proliferation of flight training schools, given the huge gap that continues to exist between demand and supply of well trained pilots is also poised to drive growth.
A flight simulator is a device that artificially re-creates aircraft flight and various aspects of the flight environment. This includes the equations that govern how aircraft fly, how they react to applications of their controls and other aircraft systems, and how they react to external environmental factors such as air density, turbulence, cloud, precipitation, etc.
The importance of flight simulation as a training tool cannot be undermined given its crucial role in training pilots for real life emergencies. Driven by years of refining technology improvements in simulation software, hardware, computer algorithms, computations, and graphics, flight simulation is today a multi-billion dollar industry.
Flight simulation is used for a variety of reasons, including flight training (mainly of pilots), the design and development of the aircraft itself, and research into aircraft characteristics and control handling qualities.
Like all other industries across the globe, commercial simulation technologies and equipment succumbed to the pressures of the tough economic climate. Although flight simulation offers an economic alternative to expensive flying in real-time, making flight training through simulation attractive during a weak economic climate, the cost-saving economics have been unable to offset the repercussions of the unusually pronounced length, depth and magnitude of the current recession.
The European commercial flight simulator market is running into a fresh set of challenges with the impact of the Euro crisis already being witnessed in the reduction of defence budgets for equipment as part of the financial drive to reduce public deficit in most European countries.
With most European banks compelled to carry higher capital, the ensuing tightening of lending norms is already restricting finance options for airline companies, thus reducing internal investments for simulation equipment purchase. The periodic flaring up Europe's financial problems is continuing to create an increasingly uncertain business environment in Europe.
For more information on the commercial flight simulator market, see the latest research: Commercial Flight Simulator Market
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