Simply stated, learning to fly by reference to instruments will make you a better pilot. Although the Robinson helicopter is not certified to fly in instrument meteorological conditions (IMC), the skills you learn during your training can be applied to everyday flying and to the helicopters you will fly later in your career.
Not only is an instrument rating required for flight into IMC, many VFR helicopter operators are now requiring their pilots to have an instrument rating, in case of inadvertent encounters with bad weather.
To enroll in the instrument rating course, you must possess either a private or commercial helicopter pilot certificate, meet the SFAR 73 requirements, and be endorsed to act as pilot in command of the Robinson R22. 40 hours of dual instruction are required for the initial instrument rating.
If you have an airplane instrument rating, the add-on helicopter instrument rating requires a minimum of 15 hours of dual instruction.
Stage One: Fundamentals of Instrument Flying
This stage will teach you the basics of instrument interpretation, including basic attitude flying, navigation by reference to instruments, and emergencies under IFR. Upon completion of stage one, you will have a thorough understanding of how the flight instruments operate and how they interact with the surrounding environment.
Stage Two: Instrument Approaches
During this phase of training, you will learn how to use GPS and radio navigation to safely make an approach to an airport in Instrument Meteorological Conditions.
Stage Three: IFR Cross-Country
The final stage of training combines everything you have learned so far, to complete a cross-country flight under Instrument Flight Rules. After successful completion of stage three, you will have earned your instrument rating.
For those completing our professional pilot program, the instrument rating is the second step in the program, and will be completed while building time for the commercial license.
- IFR Dual Instruction $325 per hour
- Ground Instruction $60 per hour
- Estimated Cost $12-$14,000