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Cactus521

Two very special weeks...

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I guess it's the dream of most of us simmers to be able to fly a real airliner - just to see if our computer learned skills are sufficient for the real thing. Since this is hardly possible without an ATPL and a big purse, a Level-D full-motion simulator would be the next best thing. Unfortunately, these are still quite expensive and you won't get more than an hour of flying time in these multi-million dollar training devices.Well, I had the once-in-a-lifetime chance of flying several Level-D sims at Lufthansa's flight training facility in Frankfurt. During the last days, I collected a total of 5.5 flying hours in the Airbus 320, 330 and the MD-11 :-hah"How did that son of a b**** get there?", I hear you asking with a little bit of envy in your voice. That's ok and just a normal psychological reaction ;-) Being a student in 11th grade, we were supposed to find a two-week internship which suits our career interests. Most of my classmates applied for those exciting jobs like 'chemical lab assistant', 'elementary school teacher' or 'librarian'. :-erksAs a wannabe airline-pilot I saw no other chance, but to send a letter of application directly to the lion's den, to the company that will hopefully be my employer in a few years: Lufthansa.After two months of anxious waiting - I guess they just had to make it a little more exciting - I recieved the positive answer. They would really let me work for Lufthansa Flight Training for two weeks. These two great weeks are now over and I could tell you so many things about all the friendly people and their interesting jobs, the nice and almost luxurious Lufthansa headquarters near EDDF, or all the work needed to keep a level-D simulator running and up-to-date (suprisingly, their problems are not too different from our all-day trouble with MS Flightsim, believe it or not!)But since I'm not allowed to tell any "sensitive" facts and you guys would simply be bored by all this, I'll just focus on my simulator rides.The first one came rather unexpected. After I had finished the "dirty work" for them (aircraft manual ammendments to be precise), I was in for a little reward :-) The engineers wanted to check some performance figures on the brand new Airbus 330-300 sim for the pending initial inspection. It was booked for 1 hour, but the actual test procedure took only 20 minutes. Hmm, what to do with the spare time...?? I was allowed to take my seat on the First Officer's side - and... WOW, what a great feeling. Better than the most luxurious living room. A lot of space for your legs, four big screens in front of you, a whole christmas tree of switches over your head and a nice, big throttle to your left. "OK, this looks familiar, just like your PSS Airbus", I thought. "Time to hit SHIFT + ENTER to raise the seat a bit. Oh wait, this is real life..." Adjusting the seat was remarkably easy using the electric switches. Meanwhile, we were parked on the Gate at Frankfurt, Terminal 1 (only minutes away from the simulator building's location). The engineer was just about to give me a guided tour of all the cockpit instrumentation, when he saw that I was happily punching performance figures into the FMC. "You don't do this for the first time, do you?" "Nope", I said with a big grin on my face. Well, I was able to configure the Scarebus up to the point where we were finished with pushback and engine start. By that time, the weather had changed... Heavy snows, a low overcast ceiling and turbulent air. I was ready to taxi and advanced the thrust levers just a little bit. The big bus began to roll slowly, but when I hit the right pedal to turn, nothing happened. It took me several hundred meters before I realized that the little wheel near my right hand wasn't called "steering tiller" without a reason... OK, the turn rate was a little too high and the nose wheel rumbled through the snow, making funny noises. :-hah Eventually, I was lined up with runway 25R, flaps set, lights on, ready to go. Thrust levers forward to 1.1 EPR, then through to the "TO/GA" gate. The sound of upwinding Rolls Royce engines is impressive! Just like the kickback feeling, induced by 2000psi hydraulic pressure. You could actually feel the wheel bumping over the centerline lights. "80 Knots." "Check!" ... "Go." ... "Rotate." Minimal backpressure was required on the Airbus sidestick. I rotated to 15

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Holger, Congratulations! It sounds as if you has a wonderful time although there is one thing that I found seriously lacking in the story you told us, you did not invite me! :-) I don't know about you but the first time I was in a full motion sim I never wanted to leave, actually I am still that way. You did great and I hope that you continue with your dreams and fly for Lufthansa. Lufthansa has always had a special place in my heart, it is a great airline. Who knows maybe someday you will be flying me around since I make frequent trips to Germany to visit my mom near Munich. I am an American but in my heart I am a Bavarian without a doubt. Thank you for telling us your story, it is always nice to hear when one of our flight sim family members gets to "move up in the world". Best of luck in the future, we are pulling for you! Take care,Philip Olsonhttp://www.precisionmanuals.com/images/forum/supporter.jpg

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Great story young man!I have more then enough space to host your video.send me an email and I will send you the ftp location (imageevent.com) and password. I have everything set up for you:http://imageevent.comdvds4bmxluftsimcopy the entire url and paste into the addresswe r bob@mid-illini.comRegards,BobS

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Philip, thank you for your nice comment! Though I don't dare looking in the future that far (they only select the best 10% out of 3000 applicants every year), one thing is for sure: Should you ever find yourself in a barrel roll during a Lufthansa flight, you know who's sitting in the cockpit ;-)Great setup, Bob! Thanks for that. E-Mail is on it's way.'Holger.

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Wow. Thanks for sharing that experience with us. It sounds amazing.BlairCYOW

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OK here are some videos for you. Please excuse the bad quality, it's just my old digital camera. The motion is off in the first two videos, that's why you don't "feel" the landings. Enjoy them nevertheless!... and special thanks to Bob Samuelson for the webspace!http://photos.imageevent.com/dvds4bmx/luft...T_A320_LOWI.wmv(10 MB) Runway 26 ILS approach into Innsbruck, Austria. Looks like a splendid winter-day for flying, but thunderstorms have been reported in the vincinity of the airport... http://photos.imageevent.com/dvds4bmx/luft...T_A320_LPMA.wmv(12 MB) The famous visual approach for Madeira's runway 05, using the special lighting system for a 30

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Hey congratulations! And what a pretty co-pilot you have :+ -Daniel

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If you have trouble with the video stopping and then restarting, you need to download to your HD and then play. I have a 1.5 down connection and it pauses on me.How to download? RIGHT CLICK on each provided link and select the "Save Target As". Save it where you can find it. ;-)EnjoyRegards,BobShttp://s95171098.onlinehome.us/junk/aopa.jpgSeems the rage to talk about the "size and speed" of each others computer. Beat this if you can for solving novel/unique problem anywhere in the cosmos. ..Have K&E and know how to use it!

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Good for you! I'd love to do that..You REALLY need to put me in contact with your First officer :)Horgy

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Also congratulations on a well written article in a languagethat I assume is not your mother tongue.You held my attention to the very last sentence.Wish you the very best in your future airline career.Regards, JAHamilton - Los Angeles.

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You're one lucky guy... Sitting on the Captains Seat of an 15 Million $ Simulator doing everything you like to and have a very cute looking girl on your right hand sight too :-) Did they even got AI Traffic in that Sim?? I thought I saw an aircraft on taxi out as you were touching down Runway 05 :-) P.S. Man sieht sich die Jahre in Goodyear auf der Piper, wir sollten in den gleichen Jahrgang kommen *g* :-cool Bye Bye,Matthias

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Hey I definately don't want to steal your spotlight but when I saw this I had to respond because of how much of a coincidence it is. A couple of months ago my school did the same thing, I chose to be an intern for Gemini Air Cargo (through connections by a friend is the only way I was able to). It was an amazing week. They flew me from my home town of Norfolk, VA to Dulles (their HQ building) to get my ID and paperwork then straight to JFK where I spent 2 nights. Then I got to sit in the jumpseat on an MD-11 for my flight to Cologne, Germany. Since the captain was a friend he let me sit in his seat most of the time over the Atlantic, it was so cool. Once in Cologne I spent 3 nights there before returning to JFK with a stop in Nottingham, England. From there they flew me back to Dulles where I staid 1 night and got to sit in on FO training for there DC-10's. Then they flew me home. All of this was on Gemini's expense costing me nothing!If you ever get the chance to do anything like this I recomend you take it because it was a trip of a lifetime and if anything only convinced me more (if I needed any more convincing) that I want a career as an airline pilot.I've attached some pics of the trip, I have a couple more if you want them (sorry I don't have alot and they're not very good quality because it was a crappy digi camera that died on me over the atlantic so i have nothing of Europe or the return trip).http://forums.avsim.net/user_files/123097.jpghttp://forums.avsim.net/user_files/123098.jpghttp://forums.avsim.net/user_files/123099.jpghttp://forums.avsim.net/user_files/123100.jpg

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Holger,Congratulations, especialy when i know how exiting it is to ride those sims (SAS Flight Academy 737-700). I hope you get the chance to do it again and again...Mattias SjolundBAV 1188

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Hi,Great story, and great movies.But, does the scenery not look very much like FS9? can you tell a bit more what scenery they use?Johan[A HREF=http://jdserver.no-ip.com]Personal Server[/A]A LITTLE LESS CONVERSATION, AND A LITTLE MORE ACTION PLEASE!HELP:http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=238882

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you are luckyThe scenery has come a long way in the new simulators since i went in a 762 one many years ago :-)

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Matthias,AI traffic in a full motion sim is a very unobstrusive experience. You're right, there are some aircraft standing / taxiing on the ground, but that's it. I have not seen one single aircraft in the sky, but I think you can set that up, too. TCAS training must be somehow possible. "WHOOP WHOOP, CLIMB -- CLIMB NOW!" :-hah Du, wenn wir beide wirklich den DLR-Test

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>Hey I definately don't want to steal your spotlight but when>I saw this I had to respond because of how much of a>coincidence it is. >Nah, forget about the spotlight. Spotlight on you ;-) Now, that is reallly a coincidence! Flying in the real thing is even better than flying a sim. It's a rare opportunity to be in the jumpseat or even the captain's seat nowadays. Isn't the MD-11 one excellent aircraft? I really enjoyed it!If you have more pictures... go ahead and post them!

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> But, does the scenery not look very much like FS9? can you tell a bit> more what scenery they use?Hi Johan,Of course that highly depends on the age of the simulator. The A320 I'm referring to, is almost 10 years old now. Newer sims like the MD-11 have improved graphics.But since these simulators are used for IFR training only, it's quite obvious that they didn't focus on faithful reproduction of landmarks. The textures used for land coverage look quite generic and not very sharp. As I said, in the vincinity of the airports, they use satellite photos in conjunction with some 3D objects. The terrain mesh has quite a low resolution, but sharp edges and silhouettes of mountains look very realistic. In general, FS2004 has waaay better graphics, believe me.So, what do they do with all the computing power they have? It's those little details that make up the realism. Like moving cars on the motorways. Red lights on the right lane, white lights on the left. Runway lighting that shimmers through the fog. Almost perfect snow and rain. Beautiful grey cumulus clouds at night. And so on...I hope the FS dev team makes some notes here, plenty of stuff that could be included in FS 10. ;-)Holger.

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Holger, you lucky son of a ***** :D I enjoyed reading that, you really put across the feeling of being there. Well done.

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I wonder what the Lufty Training captain would think of your British Airways signature... :-)Great story! Eric

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i think it would be a good idea to think about publishing a book about your experience. id for shure buy it.. :)

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Great Post!! Great Videos!! Well done!! Thank you!!billg

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Can you send me some video clips of this?billalicea@cableone.netThanks,BillP.S. You are one lucky guy!

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Sorry I am reading this a week late, but your writing style and story were both fantastic--great job on both and congrats for following your dream!-John

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Wow, thanks again for all the comments. Glad you enjoyed it!@ Chase:Great Idea! I thought about writing a tutorial for the upcoming PMDG747, based on real Lufthansa procedures. Do you think that I could make some bucks with that? $$$ :-hah ... just kidding!

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