For the Microsoft product, see Microsoft Flight Simulator.
For all other uses, see Flight simulator (disambiguation).
A flight simulator is a device that artificially re-creates aircraft flight and the environment in which it flies, for pilot training, design, or other purposes.
Flight simulation is used for a variety of reasons, including flight training (mainly of pilots), the design and development of the aircraft itself, and research into aircraft characteristics and control handling qualities.
An area of training was for air gunnery handled by the pilot or a specialist air gunner.
Firing at a moving target requires aiming ahead of the target (which involves the so-called lead angle) to allow for the time the bullets require to reach the vicinity of the target.
This is sometimes also called "deflection shooting" and requires skill and practice.
During World War I, some ground-based simulators were developed to teach this skill to new pilots.
The best-known early flight simulation device was the Link Trainer, produced by Edwin Link in Binghamton, New York, USA, which he started building in 1927.
He later patented his design, which was first available for sale in 1929.
The Link Trainer was a basic metal frame flight simulator usually painted in its well-known blue color.
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