I can finally say goodbye to the FRASCA – it’s a Synthetic Training Device (STD), a.k.a. a simulator for the warrior. They’ve been used as an aid to get familiar with and practice instrument flying before doing it for real. The last lesson was following an actual VOR approach plate for Jerez, which involved various procedures. We’re taught several different techniques such as following a DME arc (basically following the circumference of an imaginery circle extending from a radio beacon), holding in the air and procedure turns and then everything comes together in following instrument plates. I’m finding my computer flight simulator quite helpful in practicing some instrument procedures by myself and preparing for my lessons. The positive thing about a simulator is that a lesson with it can go ahead whatever the weather outside (unless of course a lightening bolt kicks the power out – it has happened before).
We’ll be in full-time groundschool from next week since the mock exams are only a few weeks away not. They start on April 24..! The sheer volume of information that needs to be digested is astounding, and it’s not a case of learn and memory dump, much of it has to be retained, as it is applied on the flying side and will be required later on, so things need to be constantly refreshed. On top of that we’re told that the legal document which we use for reference in Europe, JAR-OPS1 will be replaced by EU-OPS1 in July, so there’ll be plenty more reading yet!