From Entertainment to Education
Since 1996, hundreds of thousands of people from 6 year old kids to veteran space shuttle pilots, have flown in our simulators. We've even built flight simulators for the world's largest defense contractor, Lockheed Martin.
STEMulation Learning Systems began as A.C.E.S. (Air Combat Entertainment Simulation).
A.C.E.S. began in 1996 at the Miracle Mile shopping center in St.Louis Park, MN. The idea was to train customers how to pilot a fighter jet, put them in the cockpit, and let them fight against their friends.
Mall of America
In 2004, A.C.E.S. moved to the Mall of America in Bloomington, MN where it remained until 2017.
A.C.E.S was one of the longest lasting small businesses in the history of the Mall of America.
In 2013, we introduced the Surround-View flight simulator, which featured a seamless 9ft x 10ft spherical screen designed to completely immerse the pilot and simulate a sense of motion.
The Surround-View made $3 Million Air Force flight simulators look outdated, at a much lower price tag.
Back in March of 2005, we installed a small simulator laboratory at Farnsworth Elementary school in St.Paul, MN
Unbeknownst to us at the time, this would become the future of our company.
In 2010, Farnsworth Elementary expanded to become Farnsworth Aerospace K-8 and led to our next simulator lab project.
The lab was an overwhelming success at Farnsworth, and is still in operation to this day.
Public school students were now able to access aerospace curriculum and flight simulators from K-8th grade, and the next logical step was to bring this to high schools.
Johnson aerospace & Engineering high school
In 2014, we opened our largest lab at Johnson Aerospace & Engineering High School in St.Paul, MN
The inclusion of Johnson Aerospace and Engineering High School created the first PreK-12 aerospace magnet program in the country.
Due to radical changes in the mission and operation of the school, Johnson Aerospace & Engineering High School went from having the lowest MMR (Multiple Measurement Rating) of all the high schools in St.Paul, MN in 2011, to the highest MMR of all high schools in the Saint Paul Public School district by 2016.
air force academy high school
In mid-August of 2017, construction began on two classrooms that would be home to another 7 simulator lab at Air Force Academy High School in Chicago.
By the start of September 2017, the lab was almost completed. It was set to be opened at the end of November 2017.
a catastrophic loss.
Mike Pohl, the CEO of STEMulation Learning Systems, A.C.E.S. and the creator of the Surround-View and AeroDome flight simulators, passed away unexpectedly due to a heart condition on September 30, 2017 at the age of 56.
He was a true pioneer of flight simulation, and an even better Dad.
Let me introduce myself
My name is Charlie Pohl, I’m the son of Mike Pohl and am currently the Head of Design for STEMulation.
(I also built this website)
I was born 1 year after A.C.E.S. began and regularly spent time at the store, flying around and customizing things. Once I was old enough I worked as an employee there for over 3 years, until we decided to close. I hand-built every single computer used in the Johnson Aerospace Lab and the Air Force Academy HS Lab and assembled the simulators with my dad.
After he passed away in 2017, my mother Kristi Pohl and I were the only employees of STEMulation. The lab at Air Force Academy remained unfinished and it was my job to finish it without him, one month after he had died.
Even with my experience, finishing the lab without him was by far the most difficult thing I have ever had to do in my life. But I got it done.
Kristi Pohl was previously CFO of the company and has now become the CEO, focusing specifically on outreach and management. I focus on designing and providing support for the most intuitive and immersive simulation experience a school can offer.
My goal is to carry on the dream that my father brought to life.
My father’s formula was simple: Put a person in a flight simulator of such quality they truly forget that they’re still on the ground.
The mission is to provide ultra-realistic flight simulation to students who normally would be unable to access this technology, and teach them STEM with it. I believe this can now be achieved without our dome projection screens and at a lower cost, while improving immersion.
The solution: Next-Generation Virtual Reality.