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Airbus Official Urges Major Pilot Training Changes

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Airbus Official Urges Major Pilot Training Changes

Old 13th Apr 2015, 09:29
  #21 (permalink)  
 
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I was one of best presentation during the conference and everyone was looking for it.
Looking forward to the slides, sadly i couldn't stay the whole conference. As a kinda new airbus pilot it would have been especially interesting to me i guess
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Old 13th Apr 2015, 09:51
  #22 (permalink)  
 
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Airbus is already moving to EBT with their ACE for A350XWB training (and will roll out that new training to A330 and A320 conversion courses too).


Royal Aeronautical Society | Insight Blog | ACEs high - A350XWB pilot training
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Old 13th Apr 2015, 10:04
  #23 (permalink)  
 
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Harry Nelson, a high-level company safety expert and former vice president of the European jet maker’s flight test department, called for fundamental changes to improve manual-flying proficiency and other cockpit skills that have been de-emphasized over the years.
There have been a number of recent accidents and serious incidents involving a dearth of basic skills and the related possibility of automation not only eroding those skills, but leading us astray on our way to understanding our place on the flight deck. While there's likely a number of canaries in the coal mine along the way, Air France Flight 447 springs to mind as the final straw in that camel's back.

Mr. Nelson told roughly 600 pilots from around the globe that too many veteran aviators have come to view recurrent training sessions as an unwelcome annual or semiannual chore that can endanger their jobs if they perform poorly—rather than an opportunity to fine-tune skills, improve decision making and learn new safety concepts using increasingly realistic simulator technology.
I believe a less punitive, and more supportive recurrent training system would fix this issue (in bold) - not unlike the same consideration given for substance abuse and mental health issues would solve another problem we'll refer to as the other 3 ton gray colored visitor in the sitting room - but that's another story and another conversation in another thread.

Hands on flying is fine, there is really no substitute, and more sim time is also a great idea, but the real issue, I believe, is moving from the punitive to the supportive in all areas. It is the most humane and as it turns out, the most effective way to run an organization - in the long run.
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Old 13th Apr 2015, 10:11
  #24 (permalink)  
 
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"If they know that 50 or more percent of their next simulator will require demonstration of hand flying skill, maybe pilots will practice more on the line."

Someone got a comment on this in there before me but as a non pilot this seems like a quite insane inversion of what it seems reasonable to expect
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Old 13th Apr 2015, 11:01
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The problem lies with the perceived risk of hand flying, or in fact, any part of the flight where the pilot has a major input into the progress of the a/c. Reaserch accidents associated with Non Precsision Approaches. Unfortunately, we humans make mistakes and when they happen the business risk to the airline is huge. The business protects itself by postively encouraging pilots to not fly manually, because, overall this is safest. What it does not do, is allow for the outlier occurances where a skilled hand flyer will save the day. Catch22.
In our outfit we used to have a bi annual manual handling sim, this was introduced after another crash associated with mis handling. Unfortunately, we have now gone the other way and are on course to only visit the sim Once a year!! We are told that this is in no way anything to do with saving money. Really?
For my money, I'd simply turn the clock bac 15 years and add a fully manually flown NDB approach using RAW Data back into the Airbus LPC/OPC. If you could do that you were an adequate pilot.IMHO.
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Old 13th Apr 2015, 11:01
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When the weather is bad, or at the end of a long duty period, maximum use of the automatics is appropriate. In some emergencies the automatics are your best friend. In others they could be your worst enemy.
But any pilot who can not hand fly takeoff to 10,000 feet and 10,000 feet to touchdown on a CAVOK day, and do so willingly, and with the support of Company policy, is setting the scene to fail his next simulator. The Company which prohibits such practice deserves it too.
We, as professionals, owe that much to the people who really pay us.....our passengers.

Last edited by Mach E Avelli; 13th Apr 2015 at 21:37.
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Old 13th Apr 2015, 12:10
  #27 (permalink)  
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I cannot think of a reason to not click off the autopilot/autothrottles on final approach on a VFR day, except for laziness.

But there's a lot of laziness out there. And managers who don't have the skills so they don't want anyone else to either.
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Old 13th Apr 2015, 12:21
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Agreed, HUCK, but that is not what der management vant us to do!!
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Old 13th Apr 2015, 13:00
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For my money, I'd simply turn the clock bac 15 years and add a fully manually flown NDB approach using RAW Data back into the Airbus LPC/OPC. If you could do that you were an adequate pilot.IMHO.
The A330s I fly lack a certain piece of fundamental equipment to track an NDB.

But I completely agree with you.
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Old 13th Apr 2015, 13:06
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The business protects itself by postively encouraging pilots to not fly manually, because, overall this is safest. What it does not do, is allow for the outlier occurances where a skilled hand flyer will save the day.
The business is killing itself by telling everyone that "we can't trust our pilots".

Just put a big red button on the center console that engages the "emergency super autopilot" which overrides any manual attempt to overcome a nasty situation by the pilots (soon to be implemented I'm sure).
When active it will produce a nice funny tune with the electronic voice "you're fd nanana … you're fd nanana..."

In silicon we trust.
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Old 13th Apr 2015, 13:22
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There is no hope of any meaningful changes world wide following the Airbus presentation. Or any other of the hundreds of similar presentations over the years. Lots of talk, of course - but SFA after that.

Not when you consider at least major airline in China requires its first officers to wait for five years before they are given a take off or landing during line flying. Or another nearby country that forbids its 737 first officers from conducting take off and landings and also non-precision approaches, until 1000 hours on type.

I never thought I would see the day that I would give up talking about the subject of degradation of manual flying skills v automation dependency. But ethnic culture with all its deadly pervasive influence on flight crews will never change. Time to change the subject and smell the roses, methinks..
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Old 13th Apr 2015, 13:29
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I remember when I went to fly for Air Europe after 33 years in the RAF, flying in the F100 was FUN. It was competitive to see who could get LGW to CDG fastest entirely hand flying. When that paled it was raw data. Unfortunately we didn't have limited panel! I hasten to add that it was in suitable weather (and you could get the CDG ATIS on the ground at LGW). Management asked us to tone it down as the CS were having too little time to dish out the goodies. In my final airline stint on the A320, non auto flying was still quite prevalent as we were often going into little Greek island fields that had no significant aids, and hand flying was often the most economic way (and easiest) of doing it. Of course we still used the AP most of the time but we all took pride in our skills. Why have things changed so dramatically in such a relatively short time ?
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Old 13th Apr 2015, 13:37
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Why have things changed so dramatically in such a relatively short time ?
Because pontifex,

the scum of the earth fish-and-chips eating tracksuit wearing yobbos who had no right whatsoever to the jet-set life 30 years ago can now fly to those Greek Islands for 50 quid.

Who will fly them there?

Guys who pay for their own uniform, food, Type rating and accommodation.

Go pontificate over that
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Old 13th Apr 2015, 14:01
  #34 (permalink)  
 
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Because pontifex,

the scum of the earth fish-and-chips eating tracksuit wearing yobbos who had no right whatsoever to the jet-set life 30 years ago can now fly to those Greek Islands for 50 quid.

Who will fly them there?

Guys who pay for their own uniform, food, Type rating and accommodation.

Go pontificate over that
Never was a truer word said
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Old 13th Apr 2015, 14:37
  #35 (permalink)  
 
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Absolutely spot on.
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Old 13th Apr 2015, 15:13
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Yes but; devil's advocate: there are no airlines in operation that exist to give us a job that allows us to play with big boys toys. If putting more bums on seats to make profit requires adopting the business model you suggest then so be it. That should not have led to a dilution of piloting skills. It should not have led to a reduction of annual sim time. It has, and the never ending circular debate will be about whether it is all a cost saving exercise. The critics will say yes, and the management will claim that as there has been no increase in major incidents, even accidents, then safety has not been compromised and thus 'what's the problem?" I don't see a direct connection between LoCo & lower pilot skills. In the charter days we flew cheaper than national majors, and I might suggest we were better handlers. There was a company culture of skilled handling because it was necessary. Many destinations had no radar or ILS: it was middle of a rainy night and a circling into Corfu was required. If you couldn't fly you couldn't land on the black shiny bit. Kos, Samos, Heraklion and many others come to mind. Today, the toys are more like play stations and the airports are more wiz-bang. It can be argued that on a daily basis the skills required are less than bygone days; but then Murphy, Mother Nature & Human factors combine to make it a really bad-hair day. Play station rules do not apply. You need to be able to play a real game of tennis with real balls and a real net, not some cosy lounge Wii version.

"The typerating program for the A350 was developed around that focus with just flying manually at the start and then gradually introducing more and more of the autoflight system throughout the course."

Back to the future; finally, hopefully. I hear a national B777 operator has adopted this style after SFX. It's the way it was, should have stayed and hopefully will return to. If you look at the total manual flying time allocated in a standard jet TQ curse it is dreadfully little. Base training is not a fill in, either.
Someone quoted the opportunity to experience an engine failure on departure at 100', just as you relax a little. They also said it was not too hard. Good for you, but I guess you are in the top 20%. This is where you get a bird strike, not V1+1kt. Give an engine failure just as you hit TOGA on a G/A from an NPA. You were in CMD mode and then the A/P disconnects and bang goes an engine just as you revert to manual. You are left holding the baby or hot potato. Deal with it. Real life, real problems, real possibilities requiring real skills. If you can't hack it then you should be found out. Such a simple change in regulations at no cost but a massive increase in skill set. There could be much changed in the standard OPC/LPC check that would require more skills to be demonstrated and at no cost to the check time. The items would be more relevant and a true test.
Where is the first DFO to so order such changes? Those who want their guys to be the best & safest 'pilots'. Where is the first XAA to order such changes so ALL their pilots can be the best & safest? Maybe there is a lost world somewhere where it already happens. Let's keep searching.
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Old 13th Apr 2015, 16:30
  #37 (permalink)  
 
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Where is the first DFO to so order such changes? Those who want their guys to be the best & safest 'pilots'.
Training costs money as does employing high calibre pilots. This increases outgoings and makes fares more expensive. Show me a DFO who wants to end up losing pilots and paying increased wages to attract talent and spending even more money on lengthy training.

With modern technology an airline pilot today doesn't have to be as skilled as a B707 pilot needed to be in the 1960s. This is why terms and conditions have been on a downward slide for decades.

Automation has made flying safer, most of the time it works. Regular practice in a simulator is needed to maintain the basic skills for when it doesn't.

Management would rather have the automatics used and have fewer incidents occurr then have to deal with the inevitable incidents which will happen when pilots practice manual flying.

We have had accidents because pilots couldn't manage without the automatics and there will be accidents which wouldn't have occurred if pilots had used the automation instead of flying manually.
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Old 13th Apr 2015, 16:49
  #38 (permalink)  
 
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macdo,
I reckon a good test (practise?) of manual skills is an NDB approach with an engine out and with a nasty crosswind, followed by a go-around and then another approach and landing. If you can hack that well, you can manage most things.
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Old 13th Apr 2015, 16:52
  #39 (permalink)  
 
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the scum of the earth fish-and-chips eating tracksuit wearing yobbos who had no right whatsoever to the jet-set life 30 years ago can now fly to those Greek Islands for 50 quid.
And for 50K or so the track-suit wearing wannabes can fly them there!
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Old 13th Apr 2015, 18:13
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"With modern technology an airline pilot today doesn't have to be as skilled as a B707 pilot needed to be in the 1960s. "

I would argue the opposite. 707 pilots didn't have to fly CDA's to an RNP approach... oh and 38 knot crosswind limits....
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