Learn How To Talk To Air Traffic Control With This New App
It’s very important to know aviation phraseology and communication if you want to pilot a plane at some point in your life. We all know that pilots don’t just pop on their radio and say, “Hey guys, I’m about to land in Norfolk International Airport. You have any free spots?”. In fact, it’s much more complicated than that. Of course, pilot schools usually teach students all of the vocabulary, but it can take months to actually retain all of the necessary information.
But don’t worry! There are ways to get all your aviation communication skills much faster. You could listen to ATC (Air Traffic Control) online and learn how pilots and dispatchers talk in real life. There are even apps that let you listen to ATC talks online (see our recent article about the best apps for pilots).
Not long ago, two alumni from Purdue University found a new way to teach pilots how to communicate even faster. They developed an app that not only lets you listen to pilots, but records how you speak back and analyzes your speech skills. It’s an aviation radio simulator that’s aimed to help new pilots master their communication skills.
The app, aptly named PlaneEnglish, was developed by Muharrem Mane, an alumnus from the School of Aeronautics and Astronautics, and Eren Hadimioglu, an alumnus from the School of Aviation and Transportation Technology. Based on press releases and interviews from the developers, the app will reduce the time it takes for a new pilot to become proficient in aviation terminology, phraseology and communication. The app also gives feedback through voice recognition and speech analysis.
PlaneEnglish will help users reach certain standards for English language use from FAA and International Civil Aviation Organization.
“It’s a combination of ease of access — train on the go — the way we’re doing the speech analysis, and feedback to the user that is something that doesn’t exist out there” says Muharrem Mane. “We’ve gotten feedback that this is something very different and very new in the area of flight training”.
There are already over 50 lessons you can take on the app. They guide you through simple and complicated situations in midair, during taxi and at takeoff. Each lesson has pictures that help you understand such details as altitude, flight direction, and distance from an airport.
You must use the correct phraseology to pass a lesson. The app analyses your speech rate and other factors. There are 5-10 exchanges between a pilot and ATC in each lesson. You are graded on your responses in each lesson. The developers say that each lesson is completely different – you can’t just memorize it, you have to understand everything to pass.
You can currently download PlaneEnglish for Android. It’s just $9.99 per month (or $4.99 per month if you subscribe for one year). The developers have plans for the iOS version of the app as well. You can support the development on their Kickstarter page.
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