Dr. Paul Chapman (above, left) has been busy completing his paragliding simulator, which allows budding paragliding pilots to gain experience without leaving the ground. This development, a world first, has been performed on behalf of the BHPA (British Hand-gliding and Paragliding Association). The BHPA talked to a lot of universities about the project, but decided to go with Hull when Paul told them he was a qualified skydiver and very keen to learn to fly paragliders.
The simulator will prove to be an effective learning tool because the pilot will be able to learn the paragliding controls, understand thermals and be able to negotiate air traffic before even lifting off the ground. The team has created a realistic visual simulation where fields, mountains and landing strips can be seen, along with other paragliders.
The simulator’s use is not limited to paragliding - the software has been written so that it can be easily modified for para-motoring or hang-gliding. This opens up a huge potential market worldwide.