European flight simulator designers blend robotics and practice cockpits to cut costs of full-motion simulation

FARNBOROUGH, England, 17 July 2010. European flight simulator designers are creating cost-effective full-motion flight simulators for helicopter pilots by using a heavy-duty industrial robot to provide motion to the simulator's cockpit.

Simulation and training experts from helicopter services and training company Heli Aviation GmbH in Wallerstein, Germany; the Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics in Tübingen Germany; and industrial robot specialist KUKA in Augsburg, Germany, are designing a helicopter flight simulator called the Heli Trainer that uses a KUKA robot to move the simulator's cockpit as it emulates the motion of flight.

The Heli Trainer uses a cockpit from a Guimbal Cabri G2 two-seat light piston-engined helicopter designed by Bruno Guimbal, a former Eurocopter engineer. The Cabri G2 cockpit is attached to a KUKA 1,100-pound-payload, six-axis robot that is certified to carry passengers. This industrial robot is the same type used for the Robocoaster, a robot fitted with rollercoaster-style seats. A linear traversing axis can be added to simulate landing and takeoff exercises.

The KUKA Aerospace Group will display its automation solutions for the aerospace industry at the Farnborough International Airshow July 19 to 25 in Farnborough, England.

The Heli Trainer enables trainees not only to use less time to develop a feel for movements and better understand the consequences of their flight control actions, but also to perform maneuvers in a safe environment with a steep learning curve, KUKA officials say.

“What makes the Heli Trainer unique is its ability to reproduce the movements of complex real systems in the smallest of spaces so that the pilot thinks he is in a real aircraft,” says Gary Taylor, KUKA’s United Kingdom aerospace manager.

For more information contact Heli Aviation online at, KUKA at, or the Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics at

Subscribe to Avionics Intelligence

Get All the Military Aerospace Electronics News Delivered to Your Inbox or Your Mailbox

Subscribe to Military Aerospace Electronics Magazine or email newsletter today at no cost and receive the latest information on:

  • C4ISR
  • Cyber Security
  • Embedded Computing
  • Unmanned Vehicles

Military & Aerospace Photos

Most Popular Articles


Harsh Environment Protection for Advanced Electronics and Components

This webinar will offer an opportunity to learn more about ultra-thin Parylene conformal coatings – how they are applied, applications they protect today, and the properties and benefits they offer, includin...

New Design Tools That Help You Develop Radar That Sees the Un-seeable and Detects the Undetectable

Xilinx EW/ISR System Architect, Luke Miller, has new tricks and he’s going to tell you all about them in a new Xilinx Webinar—for free. His Webinar will cover new ways to implement Radar functions including ...
Sponsored by:

Press Releases


Curtiss-Wright Corporation today announced that its Defense Solutions division has received a contract from Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC) to supply its small form factor ...

Innovative Integration Announces the FMC-Servo

Camarillo, CA June 19, 2015, Innovative Integration, a trusted supplier of signal processing and data acquisition hardware and software solutions, today announced the FMC-S...


Curtiss-Wright Corporation today announced that its Defense Solutions division has further enhanced its innovative VRD1 high definition (HD) video management system (VMS) w...

All Access Sponsors

Mil & Aero Magazine

August 2015
Volume 26, Issue 8

Download Our Apps




Follow Us On...


Military & Aerospace Electronics

Weekly newsletter covering technical content, breaking news and product information

Cyber Security

Monthly newsletter covering cyber warfare, cyber security, information warfare, and information security technologies, products, contracts, and procurement opportunities

Defense Executive

Monthly newsletter covering business news and strategic insights for executive managers

Electronic Warfare

Quarterly newsletter covering technologies and applications in electronic warfare, cyber warfare, optical warfare, and spectrum warfare.

Embedded Computing Report

Monthly newsletter covering news on embedded computing in aerospace, defense and industrial-rugged applications

Unmanned Vehicles

Monthly newsletter covering news updates for designers of unmanned vehicles