IAF to adopt new procedure for pilots selection by 2009

November 24th, 2008 - 9:19 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Nov 24 (IANS) Keeping up with the paradigm shift in the technological evolution in the field of aviation, the Indian Air Force (IAF) will adopt a new selection procedure for pilots by 2009 that will test their cognitive process rather than hand-eye-leg coordination, an official said here Monday.The new test is designed by the military research body Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO).

“The new test will be inducted in 2009. The new test will give more importance to cognitive process over hand-eye coordination,” DRDO’s Chief Controller of Research and Development W. Selvamurthy told reporters here.

Selvamurthy was addressing the press before the inauguration of conference of DRDO’s Life Sciences Laboratory.

The current Pilot Aptitude Battery Test (PABT), was designed by the DRDO in 1960s and can only be undertaken once in a lifetime. There are three selection boards for the IAF at Varanasi, Mysore and Dehradun.

“With high performance aircraft coming in, scores of information is flashed on the screen and the pilot flying at a hypersonic speed has to think fast and do multi-tasking in a small fraction of time,” Selvamurthy said.

“Hence, there is a paradigm shift in the new PABT which will focus more on cognitive thinking than hand-eye-leg coordination.”

Currently the division of pilots into fighter, transport and helicopter is on the basis of the performance of the pilots during training.

“The new test will help in the trifurcation of pilots into fighter, transport and helicopter branch by objectively identifying their aptitude during the time of selection,” he added.

The IAF is building infrastructure and the new test will be inducted by next year.

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