Overview and Key Facts
Jobs in 2031
What Do They Do?A pilot could...
Overview Listen to this sectionPilots fly airplanes, helicopters, and other aircraft to accomplish a variety of tasks. While the primary job of most pilots is to fly people and cargo from place to place, 20 percent of all pilots have more specialized jobs, like dropping fire retardant, seeds, or pesticides from the air, or helping law enforcement rescue and transport accident victims, and capture criminals. Pilots enjoy working and helping people in the "third dimension."
Do You Have the Skills and Characteristics of a Pilot?
- Operation and Control: ? Controlling operations of equipment or systems.
- Operation Monitoring: ? Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
- Monitoring: ? Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
- Critical Thinking: ? Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
- Active Listening: ? Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
- Judgment and Decision Making: ? Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
- Speaking: ? Talking to others to convey information effectively.
- Active Learning: ? Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
- Reading Comprehension: ? Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
- Complex Problem Solving: ? Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
Core TasksThink about if you'd like the typical tasks a Pilot might do:
- Use instrumentation to pilot aircraft when visibility is poor.
- Start engines, operate controls, and pilot airplanes to transport passengers, mail, or freight according to flight plans, regulations, and procedures.
- Check aircraft prior to flights to ensure that the engines, controls, instruments, and other systems are functioning properly.
- Monitor engine operation, fuel consumption, and functioning of aircraft systems during flights.
- Consider airport altitudes, outside temperatures, plane weights, and wind speeds and directions to calculate the speed needed to become airborne.
- Contact control towers for takeoff clearances, arrival instructions, and other information, using radio equipment.
- Obtain and review data such as load weights, fuel supplies, weather conditions, and flight schedules to determine flight plans and identify needed changes.
- File instrument flight plans with air traffic control so that flights can be coordinated with other air traffic.
- Check baggage or cargo to ensure that it has been loaded correctly.
- Order changes in fuel supplies, loads, routes, or schedules to ensure safety of flights.
- Plan flights according to government and company regulations, using aeronautical charts and navigation instruments.
- Choose routes, altitudes, and speeds that will provide the fastest, safest, and smoothest flights.
- Co-pilot aircraft or perform captain's duties, as required.
- Coordinate flight activities with ground crews and air traffic control, and inform crew members of flight and test procedures.
- Request changes in altitudes or routes as circumstances dictate.
- Write specified information in flight records, such as flight times, altitudes flown, and fuel consumption.
- Supervise other crew members.
- Fly with other pilots or pilot-license applicants to evaluate their proficiency.
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