Exercise 31 - Night Flying 2 - Cross-Country Navigation

PREPARATORY INSTRUCTION

Aim

For the student to become familiar with flying cross-country at night.

Motivation

Visual cues and psychological effects flying cross-country, are different at night. It is preferable that pilots first experience these in a controlled training environment.

Teaching Points

Explain the following:

    1. Comprehensive weather briefing and pre-flight planning are even more important than by day.
    2. Navigation features such as railways and country roads will generally not be visible to the pilot unless the ground is snow covered or there is a bright moon. At the same time cities and towns will often be visible from a greater distance than by day.
    3. Compass headings should be accurately maintained and corrections made only when the position, fixed by check points or radio aids is absolutely certain.
    4. Accuracy in time keeping is essential.
    5. The minimum enroute altitude flown, should be the cruising altitude appropriate to aircraft track, above the minimum enroute altitude (MEA) found on the Enroute Low Altitude and Terminal Area Charts.
    6. Assign a cross-country for the student to plan, that will take approximately 60 minutes to fly, consisting of 3 or more legs. Turning points should consist of features readily identifiable at night.

Confirmation

PRE-FLIGHT BRIEFING

Review and discuss the students plan.

AIR LESSON

Fly the cross-country as planned.

POST-FLIGHT DEBRIEFING

TIPS FOR INSTRUCTORS
    1. An effective instructional method is to fly a cross-country exercise that starts in the daylight and terminates after dark. In this way, the student can become aware of the problems of flying in fading and half light.
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