(a) Demonstration of skill. An applicant will be required to
pass practical tests on the prescribed subjects. These tests may be given
by FAA inspectors and designated flight navigator examiners.
(b) The examination. The practical examination consists of a
ground test and a flight test as itemized on the examination check sheet.
Each item must be completed satisfactorily in order for the applicant to
obtain a passing grade. Items 5, 6, 7 of the ground test may be completed
orally, and items 17, 22, 23, 34, 36, 37, 38, and 39 of the flight test
may be completed by an oral examination when a lack of ground facilities
or navigation equipment makes such procedure necessary. In these cases a
notation to that effect shall be made in the "Remarks" space on the check
(c) Examination procedure. (1) An applicant will provide an
aircraft in which celestial observations can be taken in all directions.
Minimum equipment shall include a table for plotting, a drift meter or
absolute altimeter, an instrument for taking visual bearings, and a radio
(2) More than one flight may be used to complete the flight test and
any type of flight pattern may be used. The test will be conducted chiefly
over water whenever practicable, and without regard to radio range legs or
radials. If the test is conducted chiefly over land, a chart should be
used which shows very little or no topographical and aeronautical data.
The total flight time will cover a period of at least four hours. Only one
applicant may be examined at one time, and no applicant may perform other
than navigator duties during the examination.
(3) When the test is conducted with an aircraft belonging to an air
carrier, the navigation procedures should conform with those set forth in
the carrier's operations manual. Items of the flight test which are not
performed during the routine navigation of the flight will be completed by
oral examination after the flight or at times during flight which the
applicant indicates may be used for tests on those items. Since in-flight
weather conditions, the reliability of the weather forecast, and the
stability of the aircraft will have considerable effect on an applicant's
performance, good judgment must be used by the agent or examiner in
evaluating the tests.
(d) Ground test. For the ground test, in the order of the
numbered items on the examination check sheet, an applicant will be
(1) Identify without a star identifier, at least six navigational stars
and all planets available for navigation at the time of the examination
and explain the method of identification.
(2) Identify two additional stars with a star identifier or sky
diagrams and explain identification procedure.
(3) Precompute a time-altitude curve for a period of about 20 minutes
and take 10 single observations of a celestial body which is rising or
setting rapidly. The intervals between observations should be at least one
minute. Mark each observation on the graph to show accuracy. All
observations, after corrections, shall plot within 8 minutes of arc from
the time-altitude curve, and the average error shall not exceed 5 minutes
(4) Take and plot one 3-star fix and 3 LOP's of the sun. Plotted fix or
an average of LOP's must fall within 5 miles of the actual position of the
(5) Demonstrate or explain the compensation and swinging of a
liquid-type magnetic compass.
(6) Demonstrate or explain a method of aligning one type of drift
(7) Demonstrate or explain a method of aligning an astro-compass or
(e) Flight test. For the flight test, in the order of the
numbered items on the examination check sheet, an applicant will be
(1) Demonstrate his ability to read weather symbols and interpret
synoptic surface and upper air weather maps with particular emphasis being
placed on winds.
(2) Prepare a flight plan by zones from the forecast winds or pressure
data of an upper air chart and the operator's data.
(3) Compute from the operator's data the predicted fuel consumption for
each zone of the flight, including the alternate.
(4) Determine the point-of-no-return for the flight with all engines
running and the equitime point with one engine inoperative. Graphical
methods which are part of the company's operations manual may be used for
(5) Prepare a cruise control (howgozit) chart from the operator's data.
(6) Enter actual fuel consumed on the cruise control chart and
interpret the variations of the actual curve from the predicted curve.
(7) Check the presence on board and operating condition of all
navigation equipment. Normally a check list will be used. This check will
include a time tick or chronometer comparison. Any lack of thoroughness
during this check will justify this item being graded unsatisfactory.
(8) Locate emergency equipment, such as, the nearest fire extinguisher,
life preserver, life rafts, exits, axe, first aid kits, etc.
(9) Recite the navigator's duties and stations during emergencies for
the type of aircraft used for the test.
(10) Demonstrate the proper use of a flux gate compass or gyrosyn
compass (when available), with special emphasis on the caging methods and
the location of switches, circuit breakers, and fuses. If these compasses
are not part of the aircraft's equipment, an oral examination will be
(11) Be accurate and use good judgment when setting and altering
headings. Erroneous application of variation, deviation, or drift
correction, or incorrect measurement of course on the chart will be graded
(12) Demonstrate or explain the use of characteristics of various chart
projections used in long-range air navigation, including the plotting of
courses and bearings, and the measuring of distances.
(13) Demonstrate ability to identify designated landmarks by the use of
a sectional or WAC chart.
(14) Use a computer with facility and accuracy for the computation of
winds, drift correction and drift angles, ground speeds, ETA's, fuel
(15) Determine track, ground speed, and wind by the double drift
method. When a drift meter is not part of the aircraft's equipment, an
oral examination on the use of the drift meter and a double drift problem
shall be completed.
(16) Determine ground speed and wind by the timing method with a drift
meter. When a drift meter is not part of the aircraft's equipment, an oral
examination on the procedure and a problem shall be completed.
(17) Demonstrate the use of air plot for determining wind between fixes
and for plotting pressure lines of position when using pressure and
absolute altimeter comparisons.
(18) Give ETA's to well defined check points at least once each hour
after the second hour of flight. The average error shall not be more than
5 percent of the intervening time intervals, and the maximum error of any
one ETA shall not be more than 10 percent.
(19) Demonstrate knowledge and use of D/F equipment and radio facility
information. Grading on this item will be based largely on the applicant's
selection of those radio aids which will be of most value to his
navigation, the manner with which he uses equipment, including filter box
controls, and the precision with which he reads bearings. The aircraft's
compass heading and all compass corrections must be considered for each
(20) Use care in tuning to radio stations to insure maximum reception
of signal and check for interference signals. Receiver will be checked to
ascertain that antenna and BFO (Voice-CW) switches are in correct
(21) Identify at least three radio stations using International Morse
code only for identification. The agent or examiner will tune in these
stations so that the applicant will have no knowledge of the direction,
distance, or frequency of the stations.
(22) Take at least one radio bearing by manual use of the loop. The
agent or examiner will check the applicant's bearing by taking a manual
bearing on the same station immediately after the applicant.
(23) Show the use of good judgment in evaluating radio bearings, and
explain why certain bearings may be of doubtful value.
(24) Determine and apply correctly the correction required to be made
to radio bearings before plotting them on a Mercator chart, and
demonstrate the ability to plot bearings accurately on charts of the
Mercator and Lambert conformal projections.
(25) Compute the compass heading, ETA, and fuel remaining if it is
assumed that the flight would be diverted to an alternate airport at a
time specified by the agent or examiner.
(26) Check the counter scales of a Loran receiver for accuracy, and
explain the basic (face) adjustments which affect tuning and counter
alignment. A guide sheet may be used for this test.
(27) Demonstrate a knowledge of the basic principle of Loran and the
ability to tune a Loran receiver, to match signals, to read time
differences, to plot Loran LOP's, and to identify and use sky waves.
(28) Take and plot bearings from a consol station and explain the
precautions which must be taken when tuning a radio receiver for consol
signals. Also, discuss those conditions which affect the reliability of
(29) Demonstrate the ability to properly operate and read an absolute
(30) Determine the "D" factors for a series of compared readings of an
absolute altimeter and a pressure altimeter.
(31) Determine drift angle or lateral displacement from the true
headingline by application of Bellamy's formula or a variation thereof.
(32) Interpret the altimeter comparison data with respect to the
pressure system found at flight level. From this data evaluate the
accuracy of the prognostic weather map used for flight planning and apply
this analysis to the navigation of the flight.
(33) Interpret single LOP's for most probable position, and show how a
series of single LOP's of the same body may be used to indicate the
probable track and ground speed. Also, show how a series of single LOP's
(celestial or radio) from the same celestial body or radio station may be
used to determine position when the change of azimuth or bearing is 30° or
more between observations.
(34) Select one of the celestial LOP's used during the flight and
explain how to make a single line of position approach to a point selected
by the agent or examiner, giving headings, times, and ETA's.
(35) Demonstrate the proper use of an astro-compass or periscopic
sextant for taking bearings.
(36) Determine compass deviation as soon as possible after reaching
cruising altitude and whenever there is a change of compass heading of 15°
(37) Take celestial fixes at hourly intervals when conditions permit.
The accuracy of these fixes shall be checked by means of a Loran, radio,
or visual fix whenever practicable. After allowing for the probable error
of a Loran, radio, or visual fix, a celestial fix under favorable
conditions should plot within 10 miles of the actual position.
(38) Select celestial bodies for observation, when possible, whose
azimuths will differ by approximately 120° for a 3-body fix and will
differ by approximately 90° for a 2-body fix. The altitudes of the
selected bodies should be between 25° and 75° whenever practicable.
(39) Have POMAR and any other required reports ready for transmission
at time of schedule, and be able to inform the pilot in command promptly
with regard to the aircraft's position and progress in comparison with the
(40) Keep a log with sufficient legible entries to provide a record
from which the flight could be retraced.
(41) Note significant weather changes which might influence the drift
or ground speed of the aircraft, such as, temperature, "D" factors,
frontal conditions, turbulence, etc.
(42) Determine the wind between fixes as a regular practice.
(43) Estimate the time required and average ground speed during a
letdown, under conditions specified by the pilot in command.
(44) Work with sufficient speed to determine the aircraft's position
hourly by celestial means and also make all other observations and records
pertinent to the navigation. The applicant should be able to take the
observation, compute, and plot a celestial LOP within a time limit of 8
minutes; take and plot a Loran LOP within a time limit of 3 minutes for
ground waves and 4 minutes for sky waves; observe the absolute and
pressure altimeters and compute the drift or lateral displacement within a
time limit of 3 minutes.
(45) Be accurate in reading instruments and making computations. Errors
which are made and corrected without affecting the navigation will be
disregarded unless they cause considerable loss of time.
An uncorrected error in computation (including reading instruments and
books) which will affect the reported position more than 25 miles, the
heading more than 3°, or any ETA more than 15 minutes will cause this item
to be graded unsatisfactory.
(46) Be alert to changing weather or other conditions during flight
which might affect the navigation. An applicant should not fail to take
celestial observations just prior to encountering a broken or overcast sky
condition; and he should not fail to take a bearing on a radio station,
which operates at scheduled intervals and which would be a valuable aid to
(47) Show a logical choice and sequence in using the various navigation
methods according to time and accuracy, and check the positions determined
by one method against positions determined by other methods.
(48) Use a logical sequence in performing the various duties of a
navigator and plan work according to a schedule. The more important duties
should not be neglected for others of less importance.