The SIMONA Research Simulator

The Simona Research Simulator can realistically simulate all types of aircraft, helicopters and even cars. The simulator was specially built for TU Delft and is used as a laboratory for education and research in the fields of flight simulation technology and human-machine interaction.

The cabin of the Simona Research Simulator is constructed from lightweight material and can accommodate two crew members. The glass cockpit closely resembles that of a modern airliner, while a visual display system shows a computer-generated image of the outside world. The cockpit moves using a hydraulic system with six degrees of freedom: this is how the crew can experience realistic motion cues. The controls such as the yoke, sidestick, helicopter controls, and pedals all feel lifelike.

Students and researchers use the simulator for laboratory work on subjects ranging from fly-by-wire algorithms and Air Traffic Management to fundamental research into human perception and control. Students working on their Master’s thesis or dissertations conduct larger-scale experiments. Collaboration with industry and academic partners takes place in different forms: from one-on-one projects with companies such as Boeing, to extensive multidisciplinary consortia like SAFAR, a research project into the next generation of small aircraft.


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  • Flight Deck

    The cabin of the SIMONA Research Simulator is made of lightweight materials and holds a two person flight deck.

  • Motion System

    The six-degrees-of-freedom hydraulic motion system can provide the crew with realistic linear accelerations and rotation rates

  • Visual Display System

    The visual system provides the pilots with a computer generated view on the outside world. It has a wide field of view and projects the image at infinity to match vi...

  • Control Loading System

    To mimic the control forces of the real aircraft, the control column and rudder pedals use electric actuators.

  • Software

    The DUECA architecture provides real-time performance, low-latency data transport and precise synchronisation.