Experimenter is a magazine created by EAA for people who build airplanes. We will report on amateur-built aircraft as well as ultralights and other light aircraft.
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20 Vol.4 No.4 / April 2015 THE ADDITIONAL PILOT PROGRAM All pilots have to meet the same operational criteria that would be expected to fl y any airplane: a certifi cate that matches the category of airplane, a current fl ight review (formerly known as BFR) and medical (if required by the category), and the prescribed FAA defi nition of currency. The requirements for a QP are much more codifi ed and require fi lling out the two worksheets/matrices shown in the AC. Although at fi rst glance they appear complicated, if they are read several times it becomes clear what each matrix is meant to accomplish. One establishes "recency/currency" not unlike the way FARs do for currency for every pilot (three takeof s and land- ings in 90 days, etc.), but the parameters are raised for QPs under the APP. For instance, rather than three takeof s and landings in 90 days, anything less than 10 takeof s and landings in the same period is a disqualifi er as is anything less than 40 hours of fl ying in the last 12 months. It raises the bar for currency, which only makes sense. The matrix, which is aimed at determining a pilot's ability to act as a "qualifi ed" test pilot, is as stringent as you'd expect and is designed to meet EAA/FAA's goal of seeking out experienced, well-qualifi ed pilots but is not so tough that there isn't a large number of pilots who can easily meet the requirements. Also, if the pilot seeking to be qualifi ed is lacking in some area—for example, not enough landings in the prescribed period—he or she can quickly do what is required to match the requirement and simply fi ll the matrix out again and attach to the logbook. All of the matrices and qualifi cation gymnastics are dealt with between the QP and BP. The FAA isn't directly involved or look- ing over anyone's shoulders. It's an honor system, but the intent of going with the APP has to be clearly spelled out with the DAR/ inspector who's overseeing this particular aircraft's testing and certifi cation. The intentions to use the APP system must be writ- ten into the operating limitations before the fi rst fl ight. CL ARIF YING THE QUALIFIED PILOT WORKSHEETS Two points need clarifi cation on the qualifi cation matrix. First is the defi nition of "model family of aircraft." Basically each matrix asks for the pilot's experience in dif erent specifi c areas (total time in same category and class, etc.). It awards the applicant "points" for dif erent factors—a pilot who has 500 hours in the same category and class as the aircraft gets 20 points, one with 1,000 hours gets 35 points, etc. Points awarded for the dif erent areas must add up to a minimum of 90. When it comes to the time fl own in the same "model family" as the subject airplane, it is referring to how closely the airplane fl own matches the subject airplane. The time doesn't have to be in the same make and model. However, it must be in an aircraft that approximates the fl ight characteristics and operation of the subject airplane. It is up to the BP and the QP applicant to determine whether the airplanes the BP has experience in are similar enough to the aircraft to be tested and that the QP's skills in one would transfer to the other. A Stearman probably wouldn't be in the same "model family" as an RV-6, but any other RV defi nitely would be. Presumably, a Thorp T-18 would be, too. A Bonanza, probably not. The decision that determines the similarity is made by the BP and QP. No one else gets involved. However, if there is any doubt as to the similarity between types, the AC strongly encourages contact- ing the kit manufacturer or type clubs. The other area that needs clarifi cation is the area marked "Phase 1 Experience." This needs discussion because, if the appli- cant doesn't have any time fl ying a homebuilt during Phase 1 testing, he gets a 75-point penalty. If that's the case, you can have all sorts of fl ight time and be a graduate of the Naval Test Pilot School and still might not get 90 points. However, that's not a deal-breaker: Only one fl ight in Phase 1 in any airplane eliminates the 75-point penalty. So, if the applicant makes the initial fl ight in the subject airplane or fl ies some Phase 1 time in any other airplane, he's instantly quali- fi ed, and the BP can be on board for every fl ight after that. Once the BP completes the required maneuvers and has fl own the fl ight time outlined in the aircraft initial test require- ments under the watchful eye of the QP, he's qualifi ed in the airplane and can have an OP fl y with him. QUALIF YING AS AN OBSERVER PILOT Since the OPs will be fl ying with BPs who have been qualifi ed to be PIC on the airplane, the OP qualifi cations aren't as stringent. In fact, an OP only needs a recreational or sport pilot certifi cate (if it is an LSA) and, of course, the appropriate category and class ratings for the test aircraft; to be endorsed for the fl ight environment; and to have a current fl ight review and medical. LOGBOOK DOCUMENTATION The logbook entries required to document the APP are fairly simple and matched to the type of second pilot involved as well as tests performed. The BP must log: • The name of the QP on each flight where one is used. A typical log entry might read, "Wings-level stall tests. John Doe was my QP." • Each of the aircraft tests called for in the initial test program must be logged. • Each of the maneuvers required in the BP maneuver list (BPML) laid out in the APP has to be documented. The maneuvers are designed to verify the airplane performance in various situations as well as increase the BP's familiarity with the aircraft in those areas. The QP must fi ll out the QP worksheet and recency matrix. The worksheet is fi lled out only before the initial fl ight and must be attached to the logbook. The recency matrix must be fi lled out before each fl ight, but there is no formal requirement to attach the recency paperwork to the logbook; however, it would be wise to keep it readily available for the FAA, should the need arise. The OP must fi ll out the OP worksheet before the initial fl ight and attach it to the logbook. This doesn't need to be done on any except the fi rst fl ight as an OP. ABOUT THE POWERPL ANT AND FUEL SYSTEM Because power failures appear to be a major cause of accidents in the fi rst eight hours, the FAA has made tests of various