A Japanese airline is introducing virtual reality (VR) training to help its mechanics identify and predict future risks and to improve safety in all aspects of aircraft operation.
All Nippon Airways’ new VR Safety Training System will use 3D simulations of work environments to create real-world scenarios based on common work-related accidents.
The airline already uses VR technology in its flight attendant training to ensure the flight crew are prepared for a wide range of in-flight scenarios. ANA first started using the advanced training system in 2018, with all 800 new flight attendants receiving VR training in three scenarios: internal cabin fire, sudden depressurisation and in-flight equipment check.
“Safety has always been a top priority for ANA, and incorporating the latest VR technology into our training procedures is the next step in creating a safer environment for our employees,” commented Tatsuhiko Mitsukura, executive vice president of ANA. “Time and time again, we have embraced advanced technology to train our employees because we believe that it is important to remain at the cutting edge when it comes to safety.”
Workers participating in the VR training programme for mechanics will go through a series of narrated simulations, following instructions while performing a range of basic safety actions. If they make any mistakes, trainees will experience sensory cues and will be prompted to review their actions so that they are able to understand the precise nature of their mistakes.
This process of immersive learning will better prepare the mechanics to respond appropriately in real-life scenarios, the airline said.
ABI Research predicts that the global VR market will exceed $24.5bn (£19.1bn) in revenues by 2024, growing at a compound annual rate of 45.7%, with the value of commercial and enterprise deployments overtaking the consumer segment by 2021.
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