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Test Pilot School Textbooks

Video lecture

UND on-line OEI Aerodynamics Simulator

FAA and EASA Flight Test Guides

Design of safety critical procedures

Test Pilot Schools around the globe

Links recommended by AvioConsult

Test Pilot School Textbooks

The United States Naval Test Pilot School (USNTPS) and the United States Air Force Test Pilot School (USAFTPS) have approved their course books for public release with no limitation on the distribution. Below, you'll find the URLs and titles of some of these books.

United States Air Force Test Pilot School (USAFTPS)

USAFTPS textbooks on performance and flying qualities can be downloaded from the USArchives or Defense Technical Information Center (DTIC) websites:

ADA170957: Performance Phase Textbook, Volume I, 1986
ADA170959: Flying Qualities Textbook, Volume II, Part 1, 1986
ADA170960: Flying Qualities Textbook, Volume II, Part 2, 1986 (Chapter 11 = Asym power)
19970117  : Flying Qualities Phase Planning Guide, 1996 (Engine-out demo/data, p. 3.83)

AD1115005: Pitot-Statics and the Standard Atmosphere, 4th edition (Jul 2020). After opening the downloaded file AD1115005.pdf from DTIC, double click the file name.

United States Naval Test Pilot School (USNTPS)

USNTPS textbooks can be downloaded from the USNavalTPS Alumni Association website. The textbooks available from this website are:

FTM-103: Fixed Wing Stability And Control     (Chapter 6 = Asym power)
FTM-106: Rotary Wing Performance
FTM-107: Rotary Wing Stability and Control
FTM-108: Fixed Wing Performance
FTM-109: Systems Testing

Video lecture on YouTube

A 42 min. video lecture, in which the real value of the minimum control speed airborne (VMCA) is explained as taught at all formal Test Pilot Schools and most aeronautical universities, including the review of two accidents using views from the cockpit, is available on YouTube. Click here

A pdf file with slides and script used in this video can be downloaded here

University of North Dakota (UND)

UND has made available an On-line One Engine Inoperative Aerodynamics trainer; visit.

FAA and EASA Airworthiness and Certification regulations and Flight Test Guides

FAA Airworthiness Standards and EASA Certification Specifications provide guidance for airplane design.

FAR 23 & 25 Part 23 and 25 Airworthiness Standards; VMCA in 23.149 and 25.149
EASA CS 23 & 25 EASA CS 23 & 25 Certification Specifications; VMCA in 23.149 or 23.2135, and in 25.149

FAA and EASA Flight Test Guides provide guidance of airplane flight-testing. Their links are provided for readers to be able to download these Guides and learn about the way airplanes are flight-tested, including engine-out testing:

AC 23-8C FAA Flight Test Guide Part 23 Airplanes (Controllability and Maneuverability, including VMCA testing, in Section 4.4 § 23.149)
AC 25-7D FAA Flight Test Guide Part 25 Airplanes (Controllability and Maneuverability, including VMCA testing, in § 5.4)
CS 23 FTG  EASA Flight Test Guide (VMCA testing on page 257)

Design of Cockpit and Other Safety Critical Procedures

As a service to readers who may be involved in developing safety critical (cockpit) procedures, a number of links are presented below to guidance documentation that might be of interest.
Despite this (NASA) documentation being available for many years already, the reviews of accidents reports and airplane manuals as presented on the Downloads and Accident pages of this website prove that there are many manufacturers, operators and flight schools out there who do not include experts of all domains that should be consulted for developing safety critical procedures other than only of the flight operations domain, such as a high level of knowledge/qualification on airplane design and engineering, flight-test and human factors. The presented reviews show that many procedures and safety speed definitions are not in agreement with airplane design and certification methods and with flight-test techniques and did lead to many fatal accidents.
This shortfall was addressed in the paper Safety Critical Procedure Development Requires High Level Multi-Disciplinary Knowledge presented by AvioConsult during the EuroControl Safety Forum, Brussels, June 2019. Links to video and pdf of the presentation are provided on the Downloads page, click here.

Interesting documentation on this subject:
Designing Flightdeck Procedures, NASA/TM—2016–219421, Oct. 2016, Immanuel Barshi;

On the Design of Flight-Deck Procedures, NASA Contractor Report 177642, June 1994, Asaf Degani and Earl L. Wiener;

Human Factors of Flight-Deck Checklists: The Normal Checklist, NASA Contractor Report 177549, May 1990, Asaf Degani and Earl L. Wiener;

On The Typography of Flight-Deck Documentation, Nasa Contractor Report 177605, Dec. 1992, Asaf Degani.

Test Pilot Schools around the globe

During and following World War II, Test Pilot Schools were founded by the lead aviation nations because so many expensive prototype airplanes and personnel were lost during flight-testing because of the lack of adequate engineering and flight-test knowledge gained by (airline) pilots prior to and during regular flight training.
Pilots and engineers who graduated from one of the Test Pilot Schools, for which the entry level is usually an MSc degree in engineering, know there definitely is a difference in knowledge and experience to be able to talk knowledgeable about performance and flying qualities of aircraft and conduct (experimental) flight tests and aircraft evaluations in a safe and responsible way.  They also learned to read and interpret recorded flight data, which are also used during accident investigations.


USAF Test Pilot School (USAFTPS) at Edwards Air Force Base, CA, USA. Provides two one-year long courses per year to graduate as experimental test pilot or flight test engineer for fixed wing aircraft. Students (MSc or BSc with entry exam) undergo some 540 hours of academics, 50 hours of labs, 21 scored academic tests, nine graded reports, comprehensive oral exams and about 130 hours of flying in 20+ different types of aircraft.
Cost for training for an Experimental Test Pilot is approximately US$ 1,000,000 and for a Flight Test Engineer US$ 350,000, both excluding salary and expenses.


US Naval Test Pilot School (USNTPS), Patuxent River, MD, USA, offers courses for experimental test pilots and flight test engineers for fixed wing and for rotary wing aircraft (helicopters).  The curriculum is similar to that of the USAFTPS.


Empire Test Pilots' School (ETPS) is located in Boscombe Down, Wiltshire, UK. Training provided is similar to training by USNTPS.


L'Ecole du Personnel Navigant d'Essais et de Reception (EPNER). French Test Pilot School, located at Istres, France. Training provided is similar to the other Test Pilot Schools above.


ASTE's Air Force Test Pilot School (AFTPS), HAL Bangalore, India.


National Test Pilot School, Mojave, CA, USA.


International Test Pilot School, Ontario, Canada.