SUPRA – Simulation of UPset Recovery in Aviation – is a collaborative research project funded by the 7th Framework Programme of the European Union, under the 2nd Transport and Aeronautics Call. Within SUPRA nine established research organisations and SME’s from six different countries (Netherlands, Germany, Austria, United Kingdom, Spain, and Russia) collectively aim to enhance flight simulators beyond their current capabilities to allow for effective upset recovery training.
An aircraft upset can be defined as an airplane unintentionally exceeding the parameters normally experienced in line operations. This may concern unusual attitudes (large pitch or bank attitudes), and also inappropriate airspeeds which may result in stall of the airplane. Because the normal response of the airplane to pilot input may be altered during an upset, it is important to train pilots to adopt alternate control strategies to sustain or regain controlled flight. To do this effectively in a flight simulator, the simulator should realistically reflect the aircraft behaviour in upset conditions. However, current flight simulator technology is incapable of reproducing upset conditions, and aviation professionals are conservative in advocating the use of simulators for upset recovery training because the risk of negative transfer-of-training. The SUPRA project is aiming at developing simulator technologies that allow for better upset recovery training. The project will last for three years and will result in guidelines on simulator requirements (aerodynamic modelling and motion cueing) to be presented at an international workshop which will be organized in August 2012.