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Edda Systems eCoach simulator blog

This blog discusses subjects around the eCoach ATC simulator and other subjects related to ATC systems and simulations.

eCoach as a Multi-Purpose Tool

Even though eCoach is an ATC simulator for professional air traffic controller training, the tools included in the eCoach package makes it valuable for a variety of other purposes as well. Any ANSP will typically face a lot of challenges where eCoach can be of great value in risk reduction and cost savings.

eCoach Used in a Meeting Room

Figure 1: Discussing Airport Operations in Low Visibility

 

In this blog article, we will present eCoach core concepts and how these can be utilized in unexpected areas, thus providing value far beyond the simulator use.

 

Core Concepts

eCoach has some core building blocks that can be combined in various ways to provide synergy effects and thus cost and time savings in large projects. These building blocks are:

  1. Simulator: The eCoach simulator will transform exercise data into radar data streams and other simulated ATC data. The simulator pilot positions can adjust these data streams while the exercise is running.
  2. ATC System: The eCoach ATC system will process and present the simulated ATC data coming from the simulator side.
  3. 3D Tower presentation: This is an optional add-on to the system, which will also receive the data streams but present them as weather and traffic in a three-dimensional airport model.
  4. Designer: This is stand-alone PC software which is not directly involved in the simulator’s execution of exercises. It is used to define the aeronautical data (SIDs, STARs, taxiways, and so on) and the exercises to be run with the aeronautical data as environment or “ambient data”. The Designer has the components mentioned above built-in, for test and verification of the data produced whether it is aeronautical data or exercises.

For more background information, see our blog article What is an eCoach ATC Simulator? or download our brochure eCoach ATC Simulator.

The following descriptions are further elaborated in our e-book that you can download for free by clicking here.  

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Using an Existing ATC System for Training


For a lot of reasons, it is important that the air traffic control simulation environment is as close to the operational environment as possible. The ultimate solution is therefore to actually use the same ATC system for operations and training. The architecture of eCoach allows this to happen.
 
eCoach ATC Simulator Overview
Figure 1: eCoach ATC Simulator Overview
 
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How the ATC Training Center at Fornebu, Norway, was Established

 
 
Avinor needed required periodic continuation training for their air traffic controllers stationed at twenty controlled airports in Norway. This is how it was realized as a commercial service.
 
eCoach at IAAN, Fornebu

Background

Four parties are involved in this story:
  1. Avinor – The ANSP who needed training for their controllers.
  2. Integra – The main contractor and official supplier of the service.
  3. Edda Systems – Provider of the eCoach ATC training simulator to Integra.
  4. Skyguide – Provider of training of Integra’s simulator pilots.
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Airport Design and Development

Airport (re)construction is a money and work intensive affair; Both the construction period and putting it into operation can be successful and not so successful. The time from beginning of construction work until full operation should be as short as possible, yet not so short that bad decisions are being made, or accidents happen. How to reduce the risk? Use an air traffic control tower simulator!

eCoach Airport View

Background

It is common to think about ATC training centers as a place for education of air traffic controllers. However, with the right functionality available, it can also be of great value for evaluating plans for airport construction or re-construction. For a large airport or an ANSP responsible for many airports, it might very well be worth the effort to establish a minor, low cost, tower simulator in order to make sure that airport investments are realized as smoothly and safely as possible.

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New e-book: How to Acquire an ATC Training Simulator

How to Establish an ATC Training Center describes the overall process of starting up air traffic controller education. One aspect of this is to acquire the ATC training simulator to be used in the facility. We have made an e-book with more detailed discussions regarding this topic. The e-book can be found here. Together the two e-books provide overview and a starting point in just a few pages.

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New e-book: How to Establish an ATC Training Center

We have published an e-book as an attempt to help out in the early phases of planning new or upgrading existing professional ATCO education. The descriptions are valid from a single working position up to a large training facility. You can find the e-book here. There are no pictures in it in order to keep download and printing efficient. For pictures, please browse our web or Facebook site instead.

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What is an eCoach ATC Simulator?


An ATC simulator can be many different things. This blog is limited to the eCoach Air Traffic Control Simulator, for which the main purpose is to enable education of professional air traffic controllers. Education can be to train a person to become a certified air traffic controller (ATCO = Air Traffic Control Officer), or provide continuation training in order to maintain authorization.
 
 eCoach ATC Training Simulator Using Projectors
Figure 1: An eCoach ATC Simulator Installation
 

Background

An ATCO at work will get informed about the traffic situation based on several sources:
  1. Various computer displays presenting radar data, flight plan data, parking situation, and more. Altogether, this is referred to as an ATC System, or Air Traffic Control System.
  2. If the ATCO works in a tower, he will also look out the window and observe the airport directly. This is reproduced by the 3D Tower part of the simulator.
  3. The ATCO also needs to talk with other people. This is achieved via a Voice Communication System – VCS. It serves both telephone and radio communication.
In order to train the ATCO in a realistic manner, all the above need to be present in the simulator. However, it is not enough. An ATC system will get its data from live operational radar sensors and other sources. In the simulator, there is a separate part – the Air Traffic Data Generator – handling this aspect.
 

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