This is a feedback of my Type Rating training on the Boeing 737-800NG. It lasted for 2 months and I believe it is quite long. I don’t have any other point of view but in my opinion, the flight training there is “high standard”. I was really happy about the facilities and professionalism of all the people and instructors I met there.
CAE Amsterdam is actually located in Hoofdoorp which is about 8km to the west from Schiphol Airport.
Basically, we start the first 2 weeks with the CBT’s (Computer Based Training). As you can read, you are in front of a computer everyday and you start learning all the systems of the aircraft (Airplane General, Air Systems, Anti Ice and Rain, APU, Automatic Flight, Electrical, Engines, Fire Protection, Flight Controls, Flight Instruments, Flight Management and Navigation, Fuel, Hydraulics, Landing Gear, Warning Systems…)
During that time, we also have classes with a ground instructor for a better understanding of the main systems. We have a one day introduction course about SOP’s (Standard Operational Procedures). We also start to train with the EFB (Electronic Flight Bag), this is simply an iPad. Each Pilot gets one, we have different softwares we use for flight preparation, OPT (Onboard Performance Tool by Boeing), all the plates, Docunet which is a platform including all documents like FCOM, FCTM, AFM, Ops Manuals, FCIs, Enroute charts and many other… In fact, we have almost everything we need on the iPad which is a great thing, makes life a lot easier!
Then, we start to learn all the SOPs (Standard Operational Procedures) and flows with the “MOCKUP” for the different steps of the flight. This need to be know by heart. This is a lot to learn at first but it becomes natural after a while. We have SOPs and flows for the following:
- Flight Deck Safety Inspection
- Preliminary Flight Deck Procedure
- Preflight Procedure
- Final Flight Deck Preparation
- Before Taxi Procedure
- Taxi and TakeOff Procedure
- On Cleared Active Runway
- After Landing Procedure
- Taxi In Procedure
- Shutdown Procedure
- Secure Procedure
The MOCKUP room is made of several “paper cockpit” where the students can repeat and repeat all the flows and SOPs. It is really useful at the beginning.
Finally, after 2 weeks, we start the most interesting phase of the Type Rating: The Simulator. We have 12 FBS (Fixe Based Simulator) and 7 FFS (Full Flight Simulator) + the LST (Licence Skill Test). The schedule was 4 days ON / 4 days OFF, but you obviously need to study on your days OFF…
For the first 10 FBS, we are paired by 2 crews. One crew acting as PF (Pilot Flying) and PM (Pilot Monitoring) while the other crew is just observing from behind. This is a 4 hours session each time, 2h flying, 2h observing with 1h30 briefing and 1h debriefing.
From FBS11, we are just one crew, so it is 2h PF, 2h PM.
The goal of the Type Rating is to familiarize with normal procedures, SOPs, but most importantly on non-normal procedures with use of the QRH (Quick Reference Handbook) and also the memory items:
- Aborted Engine Start
- Engine Overheat
- Engine Fire or Engine Severe Damage or Separation
- Rapid Depressurisation / Emergency Descent
- Airspeed Unreliable
- Runway Stabilizer
- APU Fire
Two days after the skill test, we had the PSCT: Preliminary Simulator Circuit Training. This is just a one hour sim to prepare for Base Training where we do touch and go.
Below are also some pictures of Amsterdam. I had some time to visit that beautiful city. I wanted to be a real Amsterdam citizen so I bought a second hand bike. It was really useful to go to the school and all my trips actually cause transports are quite expensive!