The Performance Of Pilots Flying Multiple Types Of Aircraft

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Introduction The purpose of this study is to examine the performance of pilots flying multiple types of aircraft in an experimental setting. Pilot performance will be assessed by written tests and simulator sessions. This study will build on a previous field study, Pilots Flying Multiple Aircraft Types or Multiple Flightdeck Layouts, which was conducted for AVS 4504 Aviation Safety Analysis. The results of that study showed a need for a simulator study to further identify if pilots have issues maintaining currency in multiple types of aircraft. The following is a summary that is found in the Pilots Flying Multiple Aircraft Types or Multiple Flightdeck Layouts field study. (Raub, 2016) In aviation pilots rely heavily on muscle memory cognitive biases while flying. Once pilots become familiar with a certain aircraft or flight deck layout their hands will reach for controls without needing to look for them. Pilots will also develop certain cognitive biases in aircraft to help reduce their workload and increase mental capacity. The fact that both muscle memory and cognitive bias are handled in one’s subconscious a pilot will not always be aware they are even occurring. Under FAA rules there is no limit on how many different aircraft a pilot can maintain currency in under part 91. Under part 135 pilots are generally limited maintaining currency two aircraft types. Under part 121 pilots are limited to maintaining currency in one aircraft type. This could lead to safety issues
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