Instrument Regulations Explained SC


61.57(c)(d)Faa online ground school

  • 6 months to do:
    • 6 approaches
    • Holding Procedures and Tasks
    • Intercepting and tracking courses through the use of navigational electronic systems
  • Additional 6 months to do it with a safety pilot to “get current”
  • After that needs IPC (prescribed by ACS) (61.57(d))


  • Must be instrument rated to fly special VFR at Night (civil twilight to civil twilight, sun 6 degrees below horizon)


  • Unless in a holding pattern of 2 minutes or less, VFR cruising altitude applies when more than 3,000ft agl, unless otherwise authorized by ATC


  • Fuel requirements to point of intended landing, to alternate, and 45 mins thereafter (normal cruise speed)


  • No alternate required if 1hr before and 1hr after ETA weather is forecast 2,000ft ceiling and visibility 3sm.  (Ceiling is lowest layer that is “obscuring” “broken” or “OVC”)
  • Alternates unless otherwise listed must have Instr Apprch Proc
    • Precision 2sm-600ft
    • Non-precision 2sm-800ft
    • No Apprch Proc needed if at planned ETA descent can be made from MEA and landing approach completed under basic VFR


  • VOR Checks
    • Every 30 days
      • VOT broadcasts 360 radial (reads 180 to the station) +/- 4 degrees
      • Airborne check should be done over prominent landmark along designated airway at a low but safe altitude, at least 20nm from station +/- 6 degrees
      • Dual VOR Check, air or ground +/- 4 degrees
      • VOR ground checkpoint on ground is +/- 4 degrees
      • Designated spots in Chart Supplement
    • Check must be documented with:
      • Date
      • Place
      • Bearing Error
      • Signature


  • Descent below MDA never
  • Descent below DA/DH
    • Allowed when:
      • Aircraft is Continuously in a position to land normally
      • Flight vis is not lower than apprch proc vis mins.
      • Has at least one of the following distinctly visible to the pilot:
        • Approach Light System (may not descend below 100ft above tdze using approach lights as a reference unless the red terminating bars or red side bars are also distinctly visible.
        • The threshold
        • The threshold markings
        • The threshold lights
        • The REIL
        • The visual approach slope indicator
        • TDZ or TDZ markings
        • TDZ lights
        • Runway or RWY markings
        • RWY lights
  • Cannot land operating under 91,121,125,129,135 when flight vis less than mins.
  • Must execute a missed approach immediately when:
    • A/C is below MDA
    • Upon arrival at DH/DA when above items are not in view, or when view is lost
    • Whenever an identifiable part of the airport is not distinctly visible during a circling maneuver at or above MDA, unless the loss of sight results only from normal bank of the aircraft during the approach.
  • Takeoff Minimums
    • Applies to parts 121,125,129,135 not part 91 opps
  • RVR
    • If RVR mins are prescribed for takeoff or landing, but not available for intended use RWY, RVR can be converted using table in 91.175(h)(2)
  • Must maintain last assigned altitude when being vectored for approach until on published portion of the approach
  • No Procedure turns unless cleared by ATC or Apprch Proc
  • Outer Marker can be replaced by PAR, Compass Locator, ASR, DME, VOR, or RNAV
  • EFVS can allow descents below DH/DA and MDA


  • Cannot operate under IFR:
    • Below MOCA
    • Below MEA when more than 22nm from VOR when using VOR Navigation
    • Below 2,000ft above highest obstacle within 4nm radius of flight path in Mountainous areas
    • Below 1,000 above the highest obstacle within 4nm radius of flight path in non-mountainous areas.
    • Climb to a higher min IFR altitude shall begin immediately passing point at which higher altitude begins, except when ground obstructions intervene; the point at which higher altitude applies should be crossed at applicable MCA


  • IFR Altitudes
    • In controlled airspace must maintain assigned alt by ATC, unless “VFR on Top” then appropriate VFR cruise ALT
    • Except in holding pattern or 2mins or less; when below 18,000ft, maintain odd thousands eastbound and even thousands westbound (0-179, 180-359 magnetic)


  • IFR Comms – Must Report
    • Required Reporting Points, time passing and ALT
    • Unforecast weather conditions
    • Any other information pertinent to the safety of the flight


  • IFR Comm Failures
    • If in VFR conditions at time of failure, or VFR conditions encountered, continue flight under VFR
    • If in IFR conditions
      • ROUTE:
        • Last Assigned, if radar vectored then by the direct route from point of failure to fix, route, or airway specified in the vector clearance
        • In absence of assigned route, use expected
        • In absence of both above, then filled route
      • ALT
        • Highest of the following:
        • MEA for route flown, Assigned, Expected

lost communications procedure for ifr


  • Malfunction Reports
    • Shall report as soon as practical malfunctions of:
      • Navigational, Approach, Communications Equipment
    • Must include when making report:
      • A/C Identification
      • Equipment Affected
      • Degree to which capability of pilot to operate in IFR system is impaired
      • Nature and extent of assistance desired from ATC.


  • Required Instruments are same as for night VFR flight plus:
    • 2 way radio
    • Gyro Rate of Turn
    • Slip Skid
    • Sensitive Altimeter adjustable for Baro Pressure
    • Clock with HH:MM:SS with second hand or digital presentation
    • Generator/Alternator of adequate capacity
    • Gyro Pitch and Bank (AI)
    • Gyro Directional Ind. (DG, HSI)
    • Opps above FL240 require DME or RNAV