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FAA Releases New Rule on Flight Sim Training
December 4, 2014 - On Wednesday the FAA released a rule that will allow pilots to log up to 20 hours of time towards an instrument rating with advanced aviation training devices (ATD), stating that current flight training simulators “have proven to be an effective, safe, and affordable means of obtaining pilot experience.” The previous 10-hour maximum will remain in place for training with basic aviation training devices, defined in the recently updated Advisory Circular 61-136A.The new rule replaces the 2009 rule that limited allowable logged hours to 10. That rule was frequently circumvented by Letters of Authorization (LOA), which were granted to ATD manufacturers so that flight schools could exceed the 10-hour limit. In January, the FAA determined that “it may not use LOAs as a means to exceed express limits that have been placed in the regulations through notice and comment rulemaking.” The new rule will become effective on January 20, 2015.