Professionals from the Remotely Piloted Aircraft (RPA) community and the U.S. Air Force (USAF) gathered at the first Remotely Piloted Aircraft Training Summit in Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph, Texas, to explore innovative ways to improve training.

The summit was led by four program managers for graduate and undergraduate RPA training systems and programs, and events focused on collaboration, insights, developing solutions and discussions about how technology could increase production of RPA pilots and sensor operators. Undergraduate and graduate RPA training officials looked at how to incorporate virtual reality, augmented reality, interactive multimedia and high-fidelity part-task trainers as tools into their curriculum.

In presentations, experts from the USAF’s Life Cycle Management Center and the Air Education and Training Command’s (AETC) Pilot Training Next shared their best practices and recommendations for RPA.

Since the AETC initiated efforts in 2016 to double its RPA ranks with the start of the first 24-person class, the 558th Flight Training Squadron at Randolph Air Force Base introduced new simulators and more instructors, and has plans to become more agile and learner-centered.