This workshop aims to make you more aware of what is required and expected of Category 3 test flying in New Zealand

The one-day workshop combines lectures, discussion, and exercises to explain basic flight test principles.

Candidates will learn how to conduct testing activity in a robust and methodical manner. By the end of the workshop, candidates will be better equipped to perform flight test activities in New Zealand in a safe, effective, and efficient manner.

Topics covered

  • Introduction to flight test – Definition of flight test in the certification context and how it fits into New Zealand's aviation regulations.
  • Responsibilities of test pilots – The need to objectively assess modifications, provide data to support certification, and the importance of being the 'voice of the operator'. Assessment and operator input can start as soon as there is a concept behind the modification.
  • Certification overview – Gain an appreciation for relevant rules and guidance relating to certifying a modification and the typical process behind that.
  • Test planning – Understanding the most appropriate way of approaching the test, becoming aware of the range of test techniques that can be used, and importance of communication and mutual understanding between all stakeholders involved in the testing.
  • Flight test safety – Gain an understanding of how to identify, assess, and control the risks associated with test flying.
  • Flying the test – How to fly a good test, understanding typical issues associated with test flights, and recognising when things aren't going to plan.
  • Reporting the test – Reviewing the quality of the data gathered, how to correctly portray qualitative opinions, and knowing how to put together a robust argument to support airworthiness.


The workshop is primarily aimed at pilots with little or no test flying experience who will be involved in Category 3 test flying in the future. However it would also benefit anyone who has little to no experience in aircraft test and is likely to become engaged in aircraft test activities in the future, including engineers.


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