Even after Michael Black retired from his gig as a commercial pilot, he took his work home with him — in the form of a partial Boeing 767 cockpit and flight simulator packed into a bedroom in his Oregon home.
Black built his homebrewed simulator from authentic Boeing aircraft parts, supported by five computers and four flat-screen monitors to deliver a full cockpit view. This report, by KMTR-TV of Eugene, Ore., doesn't say what kind of software or simulator the computers are running, but says the computer generated landscape displayed on the cockpit windows is supplemented by satellite images. So Black can re-create flying anywhere in the world, in real time.
The real trick is the use of fresnel lenses, which create the illusion of a moving landscape as a pilot in the simulator moves his or her head. He's continually adding on to the project, and hopes to create the back of the cockpit next.
After that? Why not first class? Then bring friends over, serve drinks, and play an anodyne romantic comedy on their seatback LCDs. Maybe then a jetbridge hooked up to the sliding glass porch window? Sky's the limit.
Video of the simulator and Black operating it is at the link below.
Pilot builds flight simulator in his bedroom [KMTR-TV, thanks Bill L.! Image via KMTR-TV.]