PEORIA, IL (March 4, 2013) — At first look, the virtual reality parachute simulator looks like a giant baby bouncer made of metal, tethers, and wires. However, rather than train babies to stand, the state of the art piece of equipment teaches adults to fall. This model is the latest pursuit to teach military service members how to fluently utilize their parachute systems from the skies to the ground in a sophisticated virtual reality environment.
As described by creator-company Systems Technology, Inc., the “PARASIM Virtual Reality Parachute Simulator is the safe, efficient, and cost-effective solution to parachute training for airborne premeditated static-line and free-fall (sic) operations and for aircrew emergency bailout and ejection. PARASIM combines 3D virtual reality with validated parachute dynamics and realistic, instrumented controls, letting jumpers hone their skills on the ground before they ever take to the air.” Master Sgt. Chris Murphy of the 169th Airlift Squadron Aircrew Flight Equipment walked me through the purpose the simulator serves. “It’s a virtual reality parachute trainer. It does a couple different kinds of training,” he explained. “We have it set up for (an) emergency BA-22 back style parachute, which is what we have on our aircraft, but it will also do parachutes that the PJs would use, or Special Forces.”