The FAA has issued a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) to raise the number of hours in an approved aviation training device (ATD) that can be credited toward an instrument rating. The new rule replicates a direct final rule issued on December 3 last year that would have allowed credit for up to 20 hours (up from 10) of aeronautical experience in an approved ATD or 10 hours in a basic ATD under Part 61 or up to 40 percent of total flight training hour requirements in a Part 141 approved instrument-rating course.
The final rule would have become law, but under the FAA's rulemaking process a single adverse comment negates a direct final rule; the agency did receive one such comment. In the adverse comment, the author claimed that pilots need correlation of all senses and use of sounds and feel to recognize unusual attitudes. The FAA pointed out that pilots need to disregard sensory perceptions and rely on instruments. “The FAA believes that training in ATDs and FSTDs, when used in conjunction with training in an aircraft, teaches an instrument student to trust the appropriate sense, vision, to successfully operate an aircraft in low visibility conditions.”
The NRPM is open for public comment until July 16.