One of the
most valuable aspects of flight simulators is their use in "conversion
training." When a new aircraft is introduced, or an old one retired, pilots
have to learn how to fly a new aircraft. This is expensive, and can be dangerous.
Although there are two seat "trainer" versions of single seat fighters, they
are few in number. Conversion pilots often end up flying solo before they are
completely confident of their skills with the new aircraft. That's where flight
simulators became very useful. After studying the manuals and new cockpit
layout, pilots are much more comfortable climbing into the simulator of the new
aircraft. After about twenty hours in the simulator, including many hours
working on emergency situations, pilots are really, really ready to climb into
the real thing for their first solo flight.