HomeNewsArticle Display

PTN innovations move to undergraduate pilot training

First Lt. Spencer Teiken from the 80th Operational Support Squadron at Sheppard Air Force Base, Texas, works through a virtual simulation problem during the Pilot Training Next Technology Expo at Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph, Texas, March 12, 2019. Technology currently being used at PTN was on display at the expo and subject matter experts and technology vendors were available to talk with attendees. (U.S. Air Force photo by Dan Hawkins)

First Lt. Spencer Teiken, 80th Operational Support Squadron at Sheppard Air Force Base, Texas, works through a virtual simulation problem during the Pilot Training Next Technology Expo at Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph, Texas, March 12, 2019. Technology currently being used at PTN was on display at the expo and subject matter experts and technology vendors were available to talk with attendees. (U.S. Air Force photo by Dan Hawkins)

Lt. Col. Joe Stallings (left), 12th Flying Training Wing Innovation Director, and Capt. Calogero San Filippo (right), Pilot Training Next instructor pilot, discuss virtual-reality flying technology while Staff Sgt. Joseph Sabin, Air Education and Training Command, flies a VR sortie at the PTN Technology Expo at Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph, Texas, March 12, 2019.  Flying training wings will formally begin integrating innovations from PTN into the undergraduate pilot training curriculum beginning May 31, 2019.

Lt. Col. Joe Stallings (left), 12th Flying Training Wing Innovation Director, and Capt. Calogero San Filippo, Pilot Training Next instructor pilot, discuss virtual-reality flying technology while Staff Sgt. Joseph Sabin, Air Education and Training Command Technology Integration Detachment, flies a VR sortie at the PTN Technology Expo at Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph, Texas, March 12, 2019. Flying training wings will formally begin integrating innovations from PTN into the undergraduate pilot training curriculum beginning May 31, 2019. (U.S. Air Force photo by Dan Hawkins)

Col. Samantha Weeks (right), 14th Flying Training Wing commander, and Maj. Ryan Brewer (seated), 14th FTW SparkCell director, sample emergency procedures augmented-reality technology at the PTN Technology Expo at Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph, Texas, March 12, 2019.  Flying training wings will formally begin integrating innovations from PTN into the undergraduate pilot training curriculum beginning May 31, 2019.

Col. Samantha Weeks (right), 14th Flying Training Wing commander, and Maj. Ryan Brewer (seated), 14th FTW SparkCell director, take part in an emergency procedures augmented-reality technology exercise at the PTN Technology Expo at Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph, Texas, March 12, 2019. Flying training wings will formally begin integrating innovations from PTN into the undergraduate pilot training curriculum beginning May 31, 2019. (U.S. Air Force photo by Dan Hawkins)

Staff Sgt. Joseph Sabin, Air Education and Training Command Technology Integrated Detachment, flies a virtual-reality sortie at the Pilot Training Next Technology Expo at Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph, Texas, March 12, 2019.  Technology currently being used at PTN was on display at the expo and subject matter experts and technology vendors were available to talk with attendees.

Staff Sgt. Joseph Sabin, Air Education and Training Command Technology Integrated Detachment, flies a virtual-reality sortie at the Pilot Training Next Technology Expo at Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph, Texas, March 12, 2019. Technology currently being used at PTN was on display at the expo and subject matter experts and technology vendors were available to talk with attendees. (U.S. Air Force photo by Dan Hawkins)

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-RANDOLPH, Texas (AFNS) --

Beginning May 31, 2019, flying training wings across Air Education and Training Command will formally begin integrating innovations from Pilot Training Next into the undergraduate pilot training curriculum, 19th Air Force officials announced at the PTN Technology Expo held March 12-13.


Taking lessons learned and data derived from technology use during PTN, the idea is to blend those training approaches and content into the syllabi for specific T-1 Jayhawk, T-6A Texan II and T-38C Talon aircraft flights at UPT wings to accelerate student learning and build better aviators for the future.


“The Air Force we need requires us to provide better pilots, more of them and at a cheaper price point because we can’t sustain or increase the current production engine in its current format,” said Maj. Gen. Patrick Doherty, 19th AF commander, during opening remarks at the expo. “Through analysis at PTN, we know many of the ideas and innovations are working towards those goals. Introducing the technology into our normal pilot production flight rooms is the next natural step to scaling these concepts across the flying training enterprise.”


PTN was deliberately set up to allow people to explore a new path to learning and many of the technology solutions developed there are now ready to be introduced at varying levels in UPT across the command, Doherty said.


“There is an enormous amount of innovation being done at PTN and spiraling off to our wings over the last year, and a good deal of proven data points have been discovered,” Doherty said. “Now it’s time to incorporate some of this data and technology deliberately into our training pipeline, blending and offsetting with our current syllabi and training devices for the optimum aviator with a mindset of being competitive and agile as they prepare themselves mentally for future warfare.”


Technology currently being used at PTN was on display at the expo, with subject matter experts and vendors on hand to talk with attendees about the technology and how the scaling process could work.


"One of the main reasons we needed to have this expo was the opportunity to show the UPT wings the technology we are using at PTN to introduce concepts to students earlier in pilot training," said Lt. Col. Paul Vicars, PTN director. "Having the people here who are making decisions on the path their units take, who understand their unit-specific obstacles and how to tackle them, is an important piece of the overall integration process."


For Col. Samantha Weeks, 14th Flying Training Wing commander from Columbus Air Force Base, Mississippi, pushing the envelope of technology integration into learning is a natural progression in the future of pilot training.


“Using technology to break long-held, industrial age training paradigms will allow us as an Air Force to fly higher, further and faster,” Weeks said. “The Air Force is giving us free reign to innovate without a great deal of constraint. Doing so enables us to graduate better pilots who are more lethal and ready to accomplish their mission.”


In addition to UPT wing commanders, other attendees included other major commands flying operations staff, wing innovation cell leads, as well as instructor pilots across the First Command.


“This is a culture change and early access to information for students is key,” said Capt. Jason Epperly, a T-6 instructor pilot with the 41st Training Squadron at Columbus AFB. “Just providing accessibility to study materials and our simulators will help the students gain proficiency earlier in their training.”


With AETC continuing to develop a world-class culture of innovation, the use of creative approaches at the speed of relevance is encouraging and the momentum of inspiration, energy, and freedom of action by young aviators was noticeable at the conference, Doherty said.


“Today’s technology is allowing us to deliver new content and highly effective instructional techniques, access, and repetitions of high quality virtual reality flying environment which is producing higher quality flying skillsets in the air at a much faster pace,” Doherty said. “We anticipate the immersive training devices, along with artificial intelligence instruction and some of the other new tools we have implemented, will relieve some pressure off of our current pilot production enterprise due to instructor manning constraints. It is time to explore downloading and left loading content, scaling these technologies at our undergraduate flying and graduate level FTUs to help our Air Force achieve higher readiness rates in the future. We are step by step alongside you frontline instructors and we have to chase out risk aversion from our culture and find solutions of the future faster. It is an exciting time to be a part of AETC and I challenge all of you to run fast, run long, run deep and make our Air Force stronger, smarter, and more lethal in the future. You are our pathfinders, we trust you.”

Engage

Facebook Twitter
Nothing says #goodmorning like a good morning #FODWalk! SSgt. Benjamin Jordan, production controller w/ the 911th… https://t.co/4u8R627zVt
It takes a lot to provide air support for a major military exercise. #Airmen from the 37th Airlift Squadron, based… https://t.co/wXXE5Rvj3A
#USAF, Republic of Singapore Air Force & the Royal Thai #AirForce join together to enhance the three nations' milit… https://t.co/NLN6cSLwjQ
How do you find your inner #hero? This #CitizenAirman creates his own #comicbooks to overcome his challenges & insp… https://t.co/PZr3wb9qjo
RT @SecAFOfficial: Great to chat w/ space coast community leaders about how Florida Coast partnerships enable our nation’s #space mission.…
RT @nyit: President Hank Foley moderated an insightful conversation featuring @USAirforce's Dr. Will Roper and @RepTomSuozzi and discussed…
Peace meets pandemonium as @20FighterWing Security Forces #Airmen go to battle in force-on-force training.… https://t.co/hP4l8H9XGi
LIVE at 10 am: @SecAFOfficial & @GenDaveGoldfein provide testimony at a Senate Appropriations Defense Subcommittee… https://t.co/Qc8h81cRPB
RT @AETCommand: A 81st #SecurityForces Squadron #militaryworkingdog aren't to be messed with! Truly a lethal force from @Keesler_AFB Read m…
Like cars, jets require routine maintenance too. See what the #USAF's B-52 Stratofortress endures to pass inspectio… https://t.co/gsxZFYLLE9
#Airmen across @RamsteinAirBase recently wrapped Exercise Tacet Vevari, better known as the "silent hunt" to identi… https://t.co/vBalvhLeWh
“The strategic value of the Arctic as our first line of defense has reemerged...” - USAF Gen. Terrence O’Shaughness… https://t.co/fbMi1qfz59
The #USAF’s budget would rise to $165B in #FY2020 under the White House spending plan unveiled March 12, a $10B inc… https://t.co/NjGUdeSiAE
This #Airman is paving a runway that would allow her to take off to a bright future for herself & those women & you… https://t.co/gcPWPk9u5f
#ICYMI: @28thBombWing #EOD accounted for 400+ @USNavy projectiles after highway collision. https://t.co/hbO70xcZpy https://t.co/GUeRPKwD03
In celebration of #WomensHistoryMonth, we recognize the first female #Airman to be selected for the grade of E-9, C… https://t.co/KIXeYUuBg8
RT @HQ_AFMC: This #rodeo didn't feature cowboys & girls--rather, it lasso'd up the next BIG ideas in @usairforce #innovation including new…
An #F16 flies over @TeamEglin, Feb. 14, 2019. The 40th Flight Test Squadron’s mission is to execute exceptional fig… https://t.co/DoTGJRvV8u
.@KunsanAirBase #Airman named 2019 Federal Engineer of the Year after leading a 324-member coalition team in execut… https://t.co/mR7Ee4rTuF