This week we started the IR theory. Even though sitting full days in class doesn’t beat flying, I am pretty excited to have reached this point. Now we’re getting to the real stuff.
The schedule this week was quite different from what we’ve been used to lately. We normally had 2-3 plane reservations per week. Now we’re sitting in class 7 hours a day 5 days a week. Nevertheless, this is something I have been looking for and now we’re getting closer to the type of flying that will wait for us in our future careers.
The objective of Instrument Rating is for us to achieve a level of competence required to fly an airplane according to IFR (Instrument flight rules) in IMC (Instrument meteorological conditions) using 200 ft (60 m) as the minimum decision height. In plain language this means that we will be able to fly in cloud, in bad weather and make an approach and landing even if we only see the runway when we’re at 200 ft (60 m).
The requirements to start the IR training are PPL (or CPL) and NF rating. The IR phase consists of 200 hours of theory and 50 hours of flight training of which minimum 15 hours are flown in an actual plane and the rest, 35 hours, can be flown in a training device. The Bonanza trainer FNPT II is equipped among other things with GPS and Autopilot. The Beechcraft Bonanza is a low-wing, single-engine piston aircraft with 300 horsepower. It weighs double what the Cessna weighs and has retractable landing gear. I wrote more about the aircraft some time ago: Aircraft. That earlier post is missing the latest addition to the fleet that will arrive next year. I talked about the Diamond DA42 VI a while ago: First week in Pori.
It looks like we will be sitting in class for the rest of the year and IR flight training as well as PIC flying will commence in January after the Christmas holiday. This week we’ve had Air Law, Communications and Navigation. We’ve covered some of the IFR specific fraseology, IFR charts and regulations concerning IFR as well as studied some radio technology. Once again I have to note that we have such excellent teachers. Most of all, obviously, I enjoy the commercial pilots who are able to share their stories and experience from the job. This week we had a Finnair/Flybe captain who also worked as an air traffic controller before. All in all the quality of the teachers has been amazing so far. I’m not expecting anything less in the future. Next week I’m looking forward to Meteorology and Psychology and hopefully more flying captains!
One more thing. A tradition of some sort is for the Academy classes to design a badge. This of course stems from the long tradition of air force, navy and army badges. Without further ado, here’s our badge, that’s going to earn its’ place on my pilot bag as well as my flight suit. I think it turned out pretty nice. What do you think?