We’re into week 2 of the type rating, and we just had our progress test for the groundschool today, which everyone on the course passed! Â After a relaxing Friday night out, I spent a few hours on Saturday going through some performance related CBTs & finishing off the technical CBTs at the flight school with my simulator partner and a couple of other friends on the course. Â Saturday night was mellow and most of us were quite tired, so relaxed inside. Â I spent Sunday reviewing all the material we had gone through for the groundschool and gave particular attention to the the major systems of the 737-800 such as electrics & hydraulics.
The magic whiteboard that I had bought came to be really handy, as I could jot down notes & ideas conveniently and also test myself. Â In addition to reading FCOM Vol. 2, I also went through all the questions given to us in the file to test myself further and highlight any weak areas that I needed to go through. Â This was all in preparation for the progress test today, and ultimately the technical exam we will have to take early next week.
I had already done all the CBTs by Sunday, so spent yesterday completing the video sections. Â These were videos on subjects such as de-rotation, wake turbulence, tail strikes and other aviation-related safety issues. Â In addition, we also had to go through self-briefs on P-RNAV and VNAV. Â These are both subjects on navigation, essential to know before we start flying. Â I was done by around 5pm, and so decided to give the SOPs some of my attention. Â I spent an hour in the paper tiger (a paper mock-up of the flight deck) going through the safety and pre-flight checks, ensuring I knew where all the switches were and learnt the checks and flows. Â Just as I was done, my simulator partner turned up in time to practice together and help each other memorise the checks.
Today was spent reviewing the autoflight systems, with special attention given to the flight mode annunciator (FMA), which is the part of the primary flight display that tells the pilot what the automatic system modes in the aircraft are engaged or armed. Â The importance of understanding and using these were stressed, with an example drawn to the recent Turkish airlines crash in Amsterdam Schipol Airport, where the pilots failed to monitor the FMAs. Â After, the review we sat the progress test and then after lunch I decided to give the FMS trainer a go. Â Later in the day, we decided to go for a bit of plane spotting, and caught a landing jet in trouble. Â We weren’t sure precisely what was wrong, but we saw a few fire trucks on standby and escorting the landing aircraft.
I wish I had brought my DSLR with me! Â This week will be spent reviewing the groundschool and ensuring we’re slick with our SOPs!