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Loft Dynamics’ Inaugural Loft Fest Welcomes Aviation Innovators from Around the World

The first-ever Loft Fest concluded on Saturday, and we are so grateful to all the speakers, guests, and Lofties who made it such a wonderful and illuminating experience. Pilots, operators, investors, and industry veterans worldwide came together to share their insights and build connections. The three-day event has us feeling more excited than ever about the future of flight training and aviation safety.

Here’s a recap of Loft Fest 2024:

Day 1: SkyMaster Summit, Loft Dynamics HQ

We kicked things off at our HQ with a day for operators and pilots to learn about our simulators, discover the latest features and innovations, and showcase their skills in the cockpit. Guests had a behind-the-scenes look at how we design and build revolutionary VR flight simulators. Participants also had the opportunity to share feedback, inform future projects, and network with fellow operators, pilots, and experts committed to building a safer and more sustainable aviation industry.

Day 2: Stratosphere Symposium, Air Force Center, Dübendorf

Packed with fascinating insights and flight demos from some of the most renowned leaders in aviation, an airshow, the unveiling of new partnerships, and a performance from the Loft Band, the Stratosphere Symposium was an exciting day of discovery and connection. Here are a few of the highlights:

  • Pylon Aviation CEO Scott Urschel, one of the few aerobatic helicopter pilots in the world, discussed the critical importance of immersive training to address major risks such as flying in low-level environments. As Urschel explained: “We haven’t found new ways to kill ourselves in helicopters,” and many of these incidents can be prevented.
  • President of the Swiss Helicopter Association and National Councillor Martin Candinas discussed how Swiss companies are leading the way in aviation innovation.
  • After outlining several of the most urgent practical and regulatory challenges for helicopter training, former Air Zermatt CEO Gerold Biner climbed into the Loft Dynamics simulator and showed the audience how to execute perfect landings after a loss of tail rotor effectiveness and driveshaft failure.
  • Treg Manning, Vice President of Sales and Marketing for Airbus Helicopters North America, talked about the life-and-death importance of pilot training and explained why our industry needs to have the “humility to let innovation in.”
  • During the lunch break, we watched a P-51 Mustang fire up and take off.
  • Heli Austria CEO Roy Knaus participated in a panel discussion with Biner and Urschel on the demands of training for special operations. “The level of training was so low in the industry,” Knaus said, which is why he’s working to change this status quo.
  • Co-founder of UP Partners Ben Marcus delivered an inspiring, data-packed presentation on the rapid evolution of mobility in the sky and on the ground.
  • Loft Dynamics CEO Fabi Riesen signed a contract with Dufour Aerospace CEO Thomas Pfammatter, forging a partnership on the development of Dufour’s revolutionary Aero3 tilt-wing eVTOL.
  • Edelweiss COO David Birrer and Loft Dynamics VP of Research and Technology Dr. Prof. Guido Schuster joined a panel with Pfammatter, Marcus, and Knaus to discuss the future of flight simulation.
  • After a full day of presentations and panels from industry luminaries, guests toured the Loft Dynamics HQ, Dufour Aerospace, and the Air Force Museum. We finished the day with dinner, drinks, and music.

Day 3: Aviator’s Affair, Loft Dynamics HQ

We hosted an open house for family and friends at Loft Dynamics HQ. After a delicious Buure-Zmorge, we had a blast showing guests around our HQ, introducing our simulators, and getting to know everyone a little better. We are so grateful for our entire extended Loft Dynamics family, and the final day of Loft Fest was our way of saying thank you.

Loft Fest 2024 brought some of the best minds in aviation together to discuss how we can make our industry safter, more sustainable, and more innovative. We deeply appreciate our speakers for bringing their immense collective expertise to our program, and we would like to extend a special thanks to Dr. Frank Liemandt, who did a stellar job moderating the panels. We are already looking forward to next year, and we hope you will join us.