How is ILAM for Aviation Management

If a pilot is trained on an aircraft, the first large part of the training takes place in the simulator. Here the prospective pilot learns everything about the technical systems of the aircraft, their operation and, of course, how to fly the aircraft itself. There are also procedures for dealing with system failures. Starting with individual pumps, through more complex electrical circuits to scenarios with smoke and fire.

This training ends with the so-called skill test. The pilot has now accumulated a knowledge of skills like a driver who has previously only driven on the road training area and has seen his vehicle there in all situations. The handling in real traffic is still missing.

What does a pilot learn in line training?

Christian P.

Line training is - as the name suggests - further training in regular line operations with guests on board. In contrast to training in the simulator, in line training mainly normal everyday situations are practiced. The trainer acts less as a teacher, but much more as a kind of coach who provides assistance to the trainee, explains topics but also asks about knowledge.

In practice everything is different

If a trainee pilot gets on a passenger aircraft for the first time after completing flight school and the type rating, many things are different. Above all, he is no longer traveling alone. He is now in one of many airplanes and has to find his way around, sort things and be attentive.

A multitude of instructions to the most varied of aircraft occur on the radio frequencies and your own callsign is quickly lost. And what was your call sign anyway? Is it still ABC224 or was that on the last flight half an hour ago? And what are the other planes actually doing?

If you hear an airplane at the same altitude or on the way to the same destination, you need to pay attention: where is the other airplane? Of course, this is also monitored by air traffic control, but a certain awareness of where other traffic is can be very helpful.

In this context, tactical considerations also come into play: In some areas there are only a few airways. If there is a lot of traffic here, you have to plan very carefully when to change heights. Under certain circumstances, it makes sense to climb to a higher altitude earlier, which is temporarily uneconomical, in order to block this altitude for yourself and then fly into the optimal area.

To do this, however, you have to know exactly who is still in the area and with which machines. It's no secret: the old A330 and A340 are much slower than the B777, 747 or the A380.

Are the air traffic controllers also different?

In general, there are good air traffic controllers all over the world - but the working environment is not the same everywhere, and so there are big differences for the pilots too. In China, for example, air traffic control as a whole is heavily influenced by the military.

In this respect, it is known that the published airways are practically never deviated from there. Instead, Chinese controllers like to guide traffic up to six nautical miles to the right off the airway so that oncoming traffic is possible.

In contrast, the airspace in Europe is becoming increasingly simplified. In individual countries, such as Hungary, airways have already been abolished in the upper airspace: the air traffic controllers give the clearances for the aircraft from one airspace border to the next. It is the same in many other European countries - even if there still exist "pro forma" airways.

If you also remove these airspace boundaries - for example because a very large country is continuously controlled by a flexible air navigation service provider - there can be very, very wide "directs", i.e. abbreviations: In North America, such abbreviations are not used over distances of more than 1000 kilometers Rarity.

There are also linguistic differences. English is just one of many of the permitted languages. The French are legally allowed to speak French on the radio, in Spain and South America Spanish is common and Chinese, Russian and Arabic are also allowed.

Last but not least, there are also the passengers and thus their concerns. Be it the need for information in the event of delays, special measures for animals in the hold or medical emergencies. The more passengers in total and the more people from different cultures there are on board, the more different concerns there are. For example, the question of which direction Mecca is currently facing on the plane is one that has to be answered easily. A point with the name "ISLAM" is stored in the flight data computer, which shows the exact direction (and distance) to Mecca.

About the author

In the series "Answers from the Cockpit", airliner pilot Nikolaus Braun regularly answers questions on pilot topics relating to aviation technology and flight operations. If you also have a question, write to [email protected]

Nikolaus Braun is a pilot with a large German airline and currently flies on the Airbus A330 / A340. The studied Dipl-Ing. (FH) for aviation system technology and management also advises part-time with his company Nikolaus Braun Aviation Consulting (NBAC) on projects in research, development, legislation and teaching.