GETTING A POWERED FLYING EXPERIENCE
with the Australian Air Force Cadets
The goal of our flying training program is to give Cadets exposure to, and inspire their interest in, the aerospace industry through education in theoretical and practical skills of aircraft handling, aircraft engineering and flight operations.
Many Australian Defence Force and commercial aviators began their flying careers by learning to fly with the AAFC.
To foster an early interest in flying, all Cadets in their first year of membership, with parental consent, have access to at least one non-instructional aviation experience flight, at no cost to the cadet. Participants receive a formal pre-flight briefing, then fly as passengers where they partake in and observe a complete flight experience.
After appropriate training through the home training curriculum, and with their CO’s recommendation and parental consent, Cadets in their second year and beyond may undertake one instructional flight per year under the supervision of a qualified flying instructor – again, at no cost to the Cadet.
In a PEX flight, a Cadet can experience the joy of personally controlling an aircraft in flight, to inspire their motivation towards an aviation career pathway.
Within the continuum of experience we offer, selected Cadets may attend a formal Powered Flying Training course to undergo flight training according to the CASA Recreational Pilot License (RPL) curriculum, with the intention of flying their first solo flight (powered).
This is the ultimate aviation training program offered to Cadets, and is accredited towards the issue of an eventual pilot license, should they choose to continue training.
This training is usually conducted over a school holiday period and takes Cadets though the basics of safely operating an aircraft – such as manoeuvring, take-offs and landings, managing systems, making safe decisions and handling abnormal situations.
Progress is dependent upon many factors, but may result in Cadets as young as 15 years – the minimum legal age – having the opportunity to fly their first solo flight in a VH-registered powered aircraft.
In 2019, the Australian Air Force Cadets introduced a fleet of Diamond DA40 NG Star aircraft, which are ideal for flight training. These aircraft offer excellent visibility and comfortable seating for four persons, who can communicate using individual headsets. Each aircraft is fitted with a Garmin 1000Nxi dual flight display system, a fully capable autopilot, and a 170hp turbocharged AE300 engine which is controlled by the pilot using a single power lever.
In addition, approved service-providers may be used for CAE, PEX and CFT opportunities.
Powered flying programs are conducted by the Elementary Flying Training School (EFTS) through its three hubs – Amberley Flight (Queensland), Richmond Flight (NSW) and Point Cook Flight (Victoria). The flying experiences and training based out of these three hubs are a significant part of the national aviation effort.
In addition, other flying organisations may be approved to provide similar CAE, PEX and CFT opportunities in other aircraft types at other locations.
Cadets applying for powered flying training must have parental consent, and be recommended by their Squadron Commanding Officer based on their overall commitment to the AAFC through attendance at Squadron and Wing-based activities.
Selection to attend a Powered Flying Training course may involve an aviation theory test and an interview to assess suitability, enthusiasm and commitment to aviation.
Download the AAFC Powered Flying brochure here.