The Black Sky Training Scenario Based Physiological Altitude Training course emphasizes the slow onset of hypoxia due to a failure of the cabin to properly pressurize. While rapid decompression is easily detected, the slow onset of hypoxia is much harder to recognize and is responsible for a number of fatal crashes in commercial aviation. The BST course trains you how to recognize the symptoms before it is too late and while corrective action can be taken.
The BST course is taught in an altitude chamber (hypobaric chamber) while operating a simulator under simulated flight conditions. Unlike other training schools, BST uses a hypobaric chamber so that you can experience all of the hypoxia symptoms (ear popping, bloating, etc.) and learn how to detect onset hypoxia quicker while there is time to correct the problem. During the "flight", candidates will do tasks simulating those they will do during an actual flight; pilots will fly the simulator while crew and passengers will operate a simulated on-board experiment.
This course is designed to provide the candidate with the necessary knowledge and skills to detect an unknown and dangerous change in the spacecraft's atmosphere that may otherwise lead to incapacitation and react quickly in a manner that will mitigate the dangers through appropriate actions per 14 CFR Part 460.5(a) (crew) and 14 CFR Part 460.51 (participant).
The course also provides the opportunity for the candidate to prove their capability to withstand the stresses of high altitude flight while performing simulated operational tasks per 14 CFR Part 460.5(b).
PREREQUISITES: Persons enrolled in this course must have:
*NOTE: Despite being healthy and free of upper respiratory symptoms a small percentage of participants will be unable to equalize their ears (Eustachian tube dysfunction). In such cases the flight physician will make an assessment and determine fitness to fly status.
- Proof of age -18 years of age or older. (16 with guardian consent).
- A Third Class Airman Medical Certificate or equivalent (Flight Participant).
- Second Class Airman Medical Certificate or higher (Flight Crew).
- An Airman's Logbook for recording of the training (applicable for ALL candidates)
- Must not have a cold, significant health problem or any other disqualifying condition.*
COURSE COMPLETION STANDARDS: At the completion of this course the candidate is expected to demonstrate knowledge of the following through testing:
The candidate must also successfully demonstrate the donning of an oxygen mask and the ability to perform within a hypobaric chamber (spacecraft simulator) without emotional distress, claustrophobia and or other disqualifying condition.
- Fundamental principles of the atmosphere and how it is related to the human body.
- Understand the fundamentals of respiratory physiology and its relationship to hypoxia.
- Show competence in the identification of the many different symptoms and physical signs of hypoxia.
- Show competence in the phenomena of neurological impairment (time of useful consciousness) due to hypoxia.
- Understand the effects of prolonged oxygen use.
- Understand the difference between Decompression Illness (DCI) and hypoxia.
- Demonstrate using different scenarios the difference between slow decompression and explosive decompression.
- Identify three personal symptoms of hypoxia.
Course length is 5 hours; preregistration is required.