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Automation vs Seat-of-the-pants-flying talking as devil's advocate - so no abuse plea

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Automation vs Seat-of-the-pants-flying talking as devil's advocate - so no abuse plea

Old 5th Aug 2013, 09:19
  #101 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by A37575
Believe me but if you do not have the skills to hand fly a fidelity compliant flight simulator then you sure are going to have a real problem flying the real thing. Regulators around the world accept that fidelity compliant simulators can be used for type ratings, instrument ratings, recurrent training. if a pilot is having trouble flying an ILS in a crosswind in a simulator then he will almost certainly run into the same trouble in the real thing.

So the answer to your question of could you maintain hand flying skills by simulator sessions alone, the answer is definitely yes. IMHO
I have always found simulator flying to be more difficult than actual flying. In general, to me at least, the actual aircraft is much more stable than the sim.
The sim is fine for procedural training.

Last edited by root; 5th Aug 2013 at 09:20.
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Old 5th Aug 2013, 13:09
  #102 (permalink)  
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because you don't feel G's in the sim

737 endorsement was ZFT. First line training session with a pax load differed only in three major respects from the sim sessions ..

(a) the aircraft was considerably easier to fly

(b) the aircraft visuals were far better and should be mandated for the sim

(c) it was much more fun

In every sim session, after a few minutes, I was sufficiently immersed in the doing to have difficulty distinguishing it from the aircraft IMC. Visual sim flight was always a tad surreal.

Perhaps that was just a reflection of my seat of the pants incompetence ?
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Old 5th Aug 2013, 14:52
  #103 (permalink)  
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John - 100% agree with your comments re the sim vs. the airplane.

The last transition course I had with the airborne component was on the L1011 (mid-80's) and we did circuits for four of the best-'funnest' hours of my career. From then on, simulators were good enough to certify pilots on-type without the airborne work.

For others wondering about this idea, six-axis (full motion) simulators have been used for thirty years + for airplane transition courses to save airlines money by not flying the real thing. It's also a lot safer practising the necessary engine-out procedures and all other system abnormalities that one can do in a simulator but never in an airplane.

But I would never look to simulators to "maintain" flying skills. A simulator is a training tool - mainly for procedures, (CAT II/III, engine-out, system failures, LOFT work etc). It is no substitute for a real aircraft and should never be looked upon, especially by regulators and accountants, as a suitable for such work.

Flying and thinking like a pilot cannot be learned in a simulator. It can only hone and replenish already-learnt skills.

A simulator only reaches its full potential in teaching and training when one is already a pilot and already skilled at thinking and handling and stayin' alive when the real airplane is trying to kill you.
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Old 5th Aug 2013, 20:15
  #104 (permalink)  
 
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Had a chat with an HOT about visuals. His airline is very restrictive about them, although he wouldn't admit it. He says that the G/A's spike on CAVOK days, so better not to let the chaps do them; they cost time & money. He'd love to spend more time to bring manual flying and visual approaches up to scratch, but there is no spare sim time or money. With so many pilots from differing backgrounds spread all over the network there is no possible over-sight. Solution? Create a corps of button-pushing SOP monkeys. Safer & cheaper. I can understand Flt OPs thinking, but it is very sad. Will it reap rewards? We won't know until there is a problem of significance. There have been many near misses, but just that.
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Old 6th Aug 2013, 04:19
  #105 (permalink)  
 
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We have to accept that civil aviation is a commercial activity. Present global economic mess Airlines are struggling to survive. They do not have funds to cater for every pilot's idea of safety.If they don't make profit even the best pilot goes home. So operating procedures have to cater for not only safety but economics as well.
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Old 6th Aug 2013, 06:45
  #106 (permalink)  
 
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We have to accept that civil aviation is a commercial activity.
That is precisely why the regulators have to step in and mandate raw data/handflying in the SIM. Then all operators will be on a level playing field.

The other point is, do you really think that AF or Asiana would have ignored pre-warnings about the accidents they had if they'd got them?

"Dear CEO, in 12 months your pilots are going to crash an A330 because they couldn't get out of a stall. What are to going to do about preventing that?".

"OK, every SIM session let's get our pilots to do some handflying and stall and UA recoveries, 15 minutes each."

If you think safety is expensive, wait until you have an accident.
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Old 6th Aug 2013, 09:20
  #107 (permalink)  
 
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You are saying handflying in SIM or actual aircaft? Sim offcourse they do. Anyway lot of thought is going into changing routine exercises in SIM training. They are changing to what is called EBT, evidence based training. With new technology some failures have become easy to deal with so they are being replaced with more error prone ones.
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Old 6th Aug 2013, 12:42
  #108 (permalink)  
 
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They are changing to what is called EBT, evidence based training
OMG, here we go again with yet more buzz-words. EBT. Ever since the first fabric covered flying machine pilots have been doing EBT. It is called dual instruction.

Pilot holds off high in the sim and gets tail strike. In other words it is evidence he needs more training. Isn't that "evidence based training" or have I completely missed the point?

If airlines, for whatever reason, elect not to permit hand flying on revenue flights then whether the ideal alternative or not, it would be logical to use the simulator for the purpose.

And that means making time available in the simulator and not wasting that expensive and valuable time 90% of the session by flogging around in the simulator on automatic pilot pressing buttons and reading time consuming checklists. It is called cost-efficiency.
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Old 6th Aug 2013, 13:27
  #109 (permalink)  
 
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"OK, every SIM session let's get our pilots to do some handflying and stall and UA recoveries, 15 minutes each."

Some do: it is not training as it should be, it is a tick in the box.
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Old 6th Aug 2013, 14:03
  #110 (permalink)  
 
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A37575
You surely are missing the point. There are some exercises in the recurrent and OPC which are mandetorily performed because it is regulatory requirement. In modern aeroplanes these exercises majority of pilots perform satisfacorily. While some others are not performed so well. They want to emphasize on those with the approval of authorities.
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Old 6th Aug 2013, 14:23
  #111 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Vilas
There are some exercises in the recurrent and OPC which are mandetorily performed because it is regulatory requirement. In modern aeroplanes these exercises majority of pilots perform satisfacorily.
Examples?

Originally Posted by Rat 5
Some do: it is not training as it should be, it is a tick in the box.
Rat, that was simply a fictitious quote I made up by a half-understanding CEO. That some companies do is great, even if it is only a tick in the box. At least it is a start.
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Old 10th Aug 2013, 11:39
  #112 (permalink)  
 
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I don't think practicing hand flying in the sim every few months would make the slightest difference.
To retain hand flying skills you have to be doing it every other day.
Par for the course in some types of operation.
Impractical in others.
I don't think there is a solution; we are just in a point in the development of aviation where a gap has opened between economics and human factors. Presumably the gap is economically acceptable right now and will close as technology improves.
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Old 10th Aug 2013, 15:02
  #113 (permalink)  
 
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Examples?
Rather than scoff at the idea of evidence based training, it might be worth at least trying to understand the concept behind it, and what the intention of it is. In other words: Yes, you have completely missed the point.
I was just after an example, not a lecture. And I was asking Vilas, not you. But while you're at it, in your experience of ATQP, what "standard" SIM events have you seen discarded so the time could be used for, say, 2E go-round practice?

Last edited by Capn Bloggs; 10th Aug 2013 at 15:03.
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Old 10th Aug 2013, 15:17
  #114 (permalink)  
 
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Aha, now I know. I have seen quit a few supposedly top notch pilots not be able to fly an approach in the sim raw data and no A/T.
Must be the lack of G feeling!
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Old 10th Aug 2013, 15:45
  #115 (permalink)  
 
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CaptBloggs &JS
A year and half back I read an Airbus presentation on EBT in which a statistic was provided as to which exercises are performed properly and which are not and percentages were given. Unfortunately I could not locate it but I am sure I can. I think Emirates is in forefront on this.
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Old 10th Aug 2013, 19:04
  #116 (permalink)  
 
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The answer lies with asking your friendly neighbourhood Sim instructor his take on this. Get enough beers in him and he will say 'how do these guys get jobs?'

Hence why it used to be mostly handflying tests with some use of the AP, now a Raw Data approach is considered an emergency event, with the caveat that Raw data is an HSI with out a Flight Director. So the level required of pilots these days has been recalibrated from 'robot that could be considered a pilot on some level' to 'pathetic in title only, let's hope the lights don't go out'.
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Old 11th Aug 2013, 01:49
  #117 (permalink)  
 
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An example

The situation: a 2 AM takeoff from a Middle Eastern airport (but not an oil-rich one), engine fails (non-recoverable) at Vr, and the captain has been warned against OEI return & approach to this airfield because of unreliable power (lighting) at this site.

A more reliable airfield is a 90 minute hop away.

Where is the lesser risk? Fly the circuit and hope the approach lighting behaves? Or set sail for the better-run airfield?
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Old 11th Aug 2013, 02:46
  #118 (permalink)  
 
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The need for change was felt due to
1.By regulation Flight Crew Training and checking is based on events, which may be highly improbable in modern aeroplanes.
2.Training programmes are consequently saturated with items that may not necessarily mitigate the real risk or enhance safety in modern air transport operations.
It was started as a safety initiative to enhance and harmonize airline training standards and was developed by industry stake holders under the umbrella of IATA starting 2008. It was to be added in PANS TRAINING in 2012 along with ICAO manual of EBT. It is supposed to be in two phases Recurrent and type rating. The Data came from Global Data report. Training criticality survey, Accident and incident analysis and enahnced EBT will also include Individual Operator Analysis. Global Data has cosidered LOSA reports, Flight Data Analysis studies(3,000000 flights),NTSB Data base(1962 to 2010, 22 aircraft types), 20000 SIM evaluations from airlines and Boeing pilot survey on trainig.
In short all the agencies that matter are involved. The article is too big to produce here. Those interested can go to the ICAO document.

Last edited by vilas; 11th Aug 2013 at 03:49.
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Old 11th Aug 2013, 14:27
  #119 (permalink)  
 
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That exercise is a time waster and could just as easily be covered in a class room discussion. What cannot be covered in a class room discussion is handling a 35 knot crosswind on a limiting runway length at night. Or loss of thrust on both engines following a volcanic ash encounter leading into a forced landing from 18,000 ft. Ever attempted a dead stick landing in a simulator? if you haven't, then the chances are high you would crash if for real.

These are just a few examples of the sort of basic handling skills absent in today's jet transport cockpits. Minimise the tedium of button pushing automatic approaches and time consuming check list reading and use valuable and rare simulator time to concentrate on manual skills that have been steadily eroded by automation addiction.
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Old 11th Aug 2013, 14:38
  #120 (permalink)  
 
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That exercise is a time waster and could just as easily be covered in a class room discussion.
No quarrel. It's not a handling exercise; it's a judgement exercise.
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