Abstract for: Dynamics of Combat Aviator Training

This paper presents an application of system dynamics to understand the behavior of the AH-64 Advanced Aircraft Course at the U.S. Army Aviation Center of Excellence. This course trains Army lieutenants and warrant officers as combat aviators. In the last several years, a large “bubble” of students awaiting the different phases of training has developed because of organizational and process problems within the course. This paper presents a system dynamics model of the course and recommends policy changes to eliminate the backlog of students awaiting training. The model incorporates both the organizational aspects of the course, including personnel and equipment; as well as the processes within the course. Base on output from the system dynamics model, the best course of action for the U.S. Army Aviation Center of Excellence is to add additional days to the course to account for weather and increase the number of hours available for training on a daily basis. This policy enables the center to eliminate the “bubble” of students and stabilize the process of training combat aviators.