The global flight simulator market is likely to witness rapid growth in the years to come owing to rising demand for new commercial and military pilots. Growing need for reducing the cost of pilot training can boost market growth. Virtual training is increasingly adopted as it ensures aviation safety and creates a realistic environment. Flight simulator enables the pilot or the flight squads to get comprehensive experience of flying the airplane in a more secured way. Moreover, the pilots get to practice in various complex situations that may not be accepted in the real environment.
High manufacturing cost of aircrafts and loss of human lives are the key driving factors in the market. Flight simulators need advanced engines, along with effective navigation and communication system. Any minor mistakes during training can give rise to human loss. These aircrafts help in avoiding mishaps during the training. Moreover, they offer high efficacy, and reduce fuel and manufacturing costs.
The market is witnessing high R&D investments in aerospace technology, along with technological advancements, in order to develop highly advanced simulators. Thus, increasing efforts to design advanced equipment and devices can have a positive impact on market growth. Additionally, advancements in computing technology have led to the development of better visual and motion systems for improved smoothness and fidelity. This can, in turn, support market growth in the years to come.
However, high cost involved in the making of flight simulator is considered to be one of the key challenges in the market.
The product is available in two different types, including fixed flight training devices (FTDs) and full flight simulator (FFS). Demand for FFS is high as it offers high fidelity and reliability. It accurately stimulates the aircraft and the environment. These systems create sound, motion, and visuals to create realistic training environment. For instance, Airbus introduced the new full flight simulator (FFS) in order to assist the staff training on the Airbus A330 Multirole Tanker Transport (MRTT). The device is developed by Airbus together with Indra, a prominent IT company in Spain. It is battle-proven and it joins the present devices for the A400M, CN235, and C295 programs. FTDs are training modules with limited visual display. These devices are preferred due to their real-time aerodynamic flight model, low cost, remote configuration and management, and modular approach.
The military and defense sector is likely to hold the largest share in the market due to extensive use of simulators for providing mission rehearsals and training to the armed forces. Rise in government expenditure and growing security concerns in the military sector are expected to increase the product demand. The commercial sector is expected to observe significant growth on account of rising demand for commercial pilots.
North America is expected to witness notable growth due to early adoption of the technology. Additionally, strict guidelines imposed by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and Federal Aviation Regulations (FARs) regarding use of simulators for training purpose are expected to boost regional growth.
Asia Pacific is likely to exhibit momentous growth in the coming years owing to growing demand for new airplane deliveries and rising air traffic. Growth of the aviation sector in the region can boost regional growth, which could be attributed to rise in trade and tourism. Emerging economies, such as India and China, are the key contributors to the growth. Improving economic condition and presence of middle-class population in these countries are also expected to boost regional market growth in the years to come.
Some of the leading companies operating in the flight simulator market are ZedaSoft, Inc.; Kratos Defense and Security Solutions; Rockwell Collins; L-3 Link Simulation and Training; and Meggitt Training Systems. Players are collaborating with technology providers in order to improve product range and reduce time-to-market. In addition, they are focusing on enhancing the Aircraft Simulation Technology (AST) to deliver superior product.
For instance, FlyInside Inc., a VR Aviation company, introduced a next generation Flight Simulator. It comprises latest VR support, ten high-quality stock aircraft, a 64-bit engine designed for modern GPUs and multi-core systems, and a scenery system.
Research Support Specialist, USA