The new Basic and Advanced Pilot Certificates are here as part of the new RPAS rules in Canada and will be mandatory for all drone pilots effective June 1st.
Transport Canada has developed a set of Exams to test for each Pilot Certification (Basic and Advanced). Specifically for the Advanced Pilot Certificate, TC is also requiring a Flight Exam conducted by an accredited Flight Examiner.
You can access the Transport Canada Portal here to register yourself, your drones and take exams. Flight Reviews can be arranged via our contact form or via other Certified Training schools across Canada.
Basic and Advanced Exams
The new exams cover a range of topics covering both RPAS and manned aviation. If you can pull together a base level of understanding from the manned aviation world in areas like Aviation Charts, weather, radio and other associated topics, as well as RPAS related CARs and topics, it will prove useful in successfully passing your exams the first time.
We’ve pulled together a list of resources that we found useful during our study process for the online exam portion of the process.
Transport Canada will be publishing a RPAS related study guide later this year to assist students but in the meantime, this list covers most of the essentials. We’ve also included some documents from the FAA as they cover very similar topics and cover the maerial in a quite readable fashion.
We’re big fans of recommending formal training through a training organization for this maerial due to complexity and depth of knowledge required. We are working with schools such as Brampton Flight Center or Coastal Drone to assist new pilots to get the proper training to pass the exams and Flight Reviews as quickly as possible.
The two Transport Canada documents that are required reading are:
- Knowledge Requirements for Pilots of Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems 250 g up to and including 25 kg, Operating within Visual Line-of-Sight (VLOS)
- Flight Reviewer’s Guide for Pilots of Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems 250 grams (g) up to and including 25 kilograms (kg), Operating within Visual Line-of-Sight (VLOS)
If you are an experienced Operator, some updating and concentrated study may be enough to get you though the Advanced Exam and Flight Review.
Here’s the list…
- Transport Canada Aeronautical Information Manual (AIM)
- FAA AIM
- FAA Pilot’s Handbook of Aeronautical Knowledge
- FAA Remote Pilot sUAS Study Guide
- Aviation Weather Services Guide
- Canada Flight Supplement (CFS) sample version from 2009
- Designated Airspace Handbook (DAH)
- Flight Training Manual, Transport Canada, 4th Edition – link to book page
- Manual of Word Abbreviations (MANAB)
- PPL Flight Test Study Guide
- PPL Written Exam Study Guide
- Radio Operator’s License Study Guide
- VFR Phraseology
- Unmanned – Textbook for sUAS studies
- Airspace Notes
- Environment Canada Clouds Poster
- David Cooke from Inskyphoto.com put together this regulation cheatsheet and kindly shared it with the RPAS Community
- There is also a great set of study notes for the Private Pilots License developed by Jonathan Clark that provides a great foundation for the general aviation questions on the exams.
Flight Exam Preparation
There is not a lot of existing material to study for the Flight Review (FR) and it requires an extensive set of documents, checklists and procedures to be in place to be successful on the exam.
The best resource to get a view of what the FRs require is to take a course from a Training School to prep and practice for the exam. Failing that, Transport Canada has published a Flight Reviewer Guide that outlines the process and is definitely worth a read prior to booking a FR.
You can get the Flight Reviewer guide from Transport here.
We are advising out clients to get their exams done and their FRs booked as we expect that it will be very busy in April and May with students rushing to get tested prior to the June 1st start date for the new Regs.
As always, feel free to ask questions below, and tell us if you’ve found other material that we should to our list.