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In support of the use of the Standard Test Methods for remote pilot training, NIST is making 3D models of the test method apparatuses available, free of charge. These virtual test apparatuses are available to anyone interested in integrating them into their simulation to help validate the tests and support online training and evaluation tools. These models may be used in simulators, either as the are, or modified and added to other environments. 
Simulations are a valuable tool for training and certification for reasons that include: 
  • Providing a low cost, no risk option for familiarizing beginner pilots with basic control of sUAS. 
  • Enabling the rapid, distributed deployment of training material to a large number of remote pilots to familiarize them with the training course. 
  • Allowing proficient pilots to experiment with "pushing the limits" in a low-risk environment. 
Practice and testing on a real sUAS, in a real environment, is still necessary. Using simulation ensures that a minimum level of proficiency is achieved in the given test prior to risking the real sUAS. 

Currently available models:

Models in development:

  • Sensor Test Lane
  • Obstructed Test Lane
  • Obstructed Building Scenario
  • Confined Test Lane
  • Confined Maze Scenario
  • Obstructed and Confined Bus Scenario
  • Combined Drone Park

Technical Details:

The models are provided as an .obj file, along with an accompanying .mtl file and individual texture files. Instructions for loading them into an example of a commercially available simulator are available from here . We encourage simulation vendors to make use of these models in their own simulations and to augment them with other models, automatic scoring, and so-on. At a first pass, including the models, and some way of recording screenshots, is all you need to implement for the simulation to be useful for training.
Please contact robottestmethods [at] (us) for any questions or comments. 
Created August 3, 2022, Updated February 3, 2023