Author: Robert Chapin

  • Safety Pilots are Not Allowed Cross Country Experience

    Think twice the next time you log a “time share” flight or act as a safety pilot on a cross country flight.  According to legal interpretations from the FAA dated in 2009, only the pilot flying is allowed to log cross country time under § 61.  As explained in the Gebhart Interpretation: Section 61.65(d) contemplates that only the…

  • GPS Flight Planning – WAAS Going On?

    It’s time to review the rules for planning an IFR flight with GPS navigation.  Maybe the airplane has an old receiver without WAAS capability.  Or maybe the rules have changed too many times to remember the current limitations.  Where to find the answers? Destination Alternates – Without WAAS I’m starting with destination rules, because most…

  • Unmanned Aircraft, See and Avoid?

    The first proposal for unmanned aircraft regulations appeared in the Federal Register yesterday.  A small unmanned aircraft, less than 55 lbs, could fly for commercial purposes up to 500 feet above the ground.  I am in favor of adopting new technologies, and I took the time to write some constructive comments for the official docket.  This…

  • Re-Thinking Risk Assessment

    The best tool available for pilots to quantify overall flight risk is the form found in the FAA’s Personal and Weather Risk Assessment Guide.  However, that form is more than 10 years old and needs many improvements.  It is based on the “PAVE” method or checklist, and enables a pilot to assign a predetermined point…

  • R-ATP Denied at Baylor University

    Part 141 flight training graduates have been denied participation in the R-ATP program again, this time at Baylor University.  In its recent denial letter, the FAA explained that even though Baylor’s students are enrolled in an aviation degree program with part 141 ground and flight training, the lack of a ground training certificate in the…

  • Missed Approach Points in Jeppesen Charts

    The M.A.P. Study Guide is a list of notes I first developed during instrument-flight-instructor training because I needed a concise explanation of various approach profiles.  Now that I’m considering airline jobs, I’ve decided to adapt my study guide to the chart format used by Jeppesen, which is also used by many airlines.  I find the missed approach…

  • Engine Failure with Runway Remaining

    One of the most intimidating parts of flight training is the unlikely possibility that a single-engine training airplane could develop a single engine failure, thereby leaving no other engines available to help bring the airplane to a safe landing position.  While engine failures and emergency procedures are widely discussed and practiced within the general aviation community, not…

  • Reaching 1,000 Hours

    There is no time to celebrate.  For most new pilots, career advancement means flying 1,500 hours as fast as possible. Having a nice view is one of the daily thrills of flying professionally.

  • Denial of R-ATP Exemption for MSU Denver

    The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) this week denied an exemption to the Metropolitan State University of Denver that would allow graduates of Part 61 flight training to become eligible for restricted ATP (R-ATP) certification.  This is a complete reversal from the decision issued last week to Purdue University.  In denying MSU Denver, the FAA writes, “the…

  • R-ATP Part 61 Exemption for Purdue University

    The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) this week granted an exemption to Purdue University allowing graduates of Part 61 flight training to become eligible for restricted ATP (R-ATP) certification with reduced experience requirements.  This exemption is retroactive.  It is effective for all Purdue graduates from 2009 through 2016.  The R-ATP check rides can be conducted through…