Height Monitoring Flights (GMU)
RVSM Height Monitoring Flights
Flat rate per aircraft + travel expenses
INITIAL HEIGHT MONITORING FLIGHT
An initial RVSM height monitoring flight is due within 6 months following issuance of an aircraft’s first RVSM LOA. When purchasing an aircraft, it’s wise to check if and when the last height monitoring flight was completed. Operators can look on the FAA’s NAARMO website to make this determination. If no initial height monitoring flight is reflected on the website, a new operator will have 6 months following issuance of its RVSM LOA to complete the initial height monitoring flight.
RECURRENT HEIGHT MONITORING
Recurrent RVSM height monitoring is required at 2-year or 1,000 flight hour intervals, whichever is longer. (An aircraft that is used 200 hours per year won’t require recurrent height monitoring for 5 years; whereas a Part 121 aircraft might require one every year). The aircraft and operator must have a valid RVSM authorization on file with the State of Registry prior to completing a monitoring flight. It is important to record the number of hours on the aircraft on the day the flight was completed in order to show an FAA inspector the aircraft is within the 1,000 flight hour window.
RVSM HEIGHT MONITORING STATUS IS TRANSFERABLE TO A NEW OPERATOR
RVSM height monitoring status applies to aircraft, not operators; so the status transfers with the aircraft upon a sale, lease or other change of operator. If a monitoring flight was not completed, the new operator has 6 months from the date of issuance to complete an initial height monitoring flight. Otherwise, the operator continues to track hours flown since the last RVSM height monitoring flight to determine if and when a recurrent height monitoring flight is due.
METHODS OF COMPLIANCE
No special aircraft equipment is required to complete a GMU flight. An approved FAA subcontractor carries a GPS unit onboard the aircraft. This equipment is independent of the aircraft equipment. The aircraft must be flown at any RVSM level for 30 minutes. Turns are acceptable but flight level changes are not. The monitoring flight can be accomplished with or without passengers. The technician can meet the aircraft at a convenient location for the operator.
The AGHME system was developed to monitor all aircraft passing through the site’s optimal coverage area. The AGHME systems do not require any special monitoring devices be installed on the aircraft in order for the aircraft to be monitored. Aircraft must be equipped with a Mode S transponder.
There are five AGHME constellations in the US (Atlantic City, NJ, Wichita, KS, Cleveland, OH, Phoenix, AZ, Portland, OR) and two in Canada (Ottawa, Ontario and Lethbridge Alberta).
No prior coordination is required with Air Traffic Control. The aircraft simply has to be flown straight and level at any RVSM level over the optimal coverage area of the AGHME location. Monitoring results are posted on the FAA’s NAARMO website within 4-6 weeks of the monitoring flight.