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View Full Version : Military Sim time towards R-ATP

03-28-2018, 02:12 AM
Hey all,

I'm a military dude and I'm trying to determine if my sim time will count for credit towards my R-ATP. From what I can understand, 61.4 basically states that any flight training time desired to be used for satisfying the requirements for testing or checking must be approved by the FAA. However, 61.41 states that I can credit flight training towards the requirements of a pilot certificate or rating issued under part 61 if I received that training from a flight instructor of an Armed Force in a program for training military pilots of the United States. My argument here is that the FAA does not certify our pilot training programs or our airplanes for that matter, and all that time counts. Why would our sims have to certified by the FAA if our sims were part of a USAF flight training program? Also, does anyone out there know of any FAA guidance on the matter? I've been searching for a long time with no success...

All help is greatly appreciated!

03-28-2018, 04:32 AM
25 hours sim time counts toward an ATP but if you get hired by an airline they give you that in initial training anyway so dont focus on building simulator time!

03-28-2018, 03:54 PM
25 hours sim time counts toward an ATP but if you get hired by an airline they give you that in initial training anyway so dont focus on building simulator time!

It's more complicated than that.

You can credit various amounts of sim towards various ATP requirements. Examples:

- 25 sim towards the 50 in category/class (regional do this a lot, saves applicants from buying 25 more hours in a light twin).

- 50 sim towards the 75 instrument.

- 100 sim towards total time.

These numbers depend on what type of program the training was conducted under.

But the OP is correct, all references to sim in the FARs specify FAA certification of the device. You could write FAA legal and request clarification, but although I'm sure the military gear works fine, I doubt the FAA will be able to lean that way given the way the regs are written. But you never know.

But the way things stand now, the answer is no. There may be a historical reason for that, or perhaps no reason at all (ie they didn't think of it when they wrote the regs).

03-28-2018, 07:29 PM
Your sim time in the military was not flight training, see 61.1 definitions:

Flight training means that training, other than ground training, received from an authorized instructor in flight in an aircraft.

So this would not be creditable under 61.41, which only allows crediting of flight training.

And the previous posts are correct, an Flight Training Device or Full Flight Simulator must be qualified by the National Simulator Program, or more simplistically, the Administrator, for the tasks that it may be used for. Then training conducted in it may be credited as applicable for the various certificates and ratings in Part 61.

Also, make sure to look closely at the aeronautical experience requirements, here is some of the ATP:

(3) 50 hours of flight time in the class of airplane for the rating sought. A maximum of 25 hours of training in a full flight simulator representing the class of airplane for the rating sought may be credited toward the flight time requirement of this paragraph if the training was accomplished as part of an approved training course in parts 121, 135, 141, or 142 of this chapter. A flight training device or aviation training device may not be used to satisfy this requirement.

(4) 75 hours of instrument flight time, in actual or simulated instrument conditions, subject to the following:

(i) Except as provided in paragraph (a)(4)(ii) of this section, an applicant may not receive credit for more than a total of 25 hours of simulated instrument time in a flight simulator or flight training device.

(ii) A maximum of 50 hours of training in a flight simulator or flight training device may be credited toward the instrument flight time requirements of paragraph (a)(4) of this section if the training was accomplished in a course conducted by a training center certificated under part 142 of this chapter.

(iii) Training in a flight simulator or flight training device must be accomplished in a flight simulator or flight training device, representing an airplane.

Not going to go into those in detail, just to make note that some of those credit hours require the training to be conducted within an approved training program or under Part 142.

I think one of the general ideas in part 61 is that full flight simulator/flight training device/aviation training device time is not flight time, it's ground training time as defined in Part 61. When you can "credit" it for aeronautical experience requirements, you are substituting something that is not flight time, for flight time.

Not what you want to hear I'm sure, but I'm fairly certain this would be the interpretation that would be provided by legal counsel.