Sport Pilot

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Each month, Flying answers questions about the new Sport Pilot/Light Sport Aircraft Rule with assistance from the Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA), the authority on the opportunities available within the category commonly known as "Sport Pilot":

Q: I am a private pilot with an instrument rating, single-engine land. I would also like to have the paper certificate for Sport Pilot. Is that possible and if so, how?

A: Since you already hold a private pilot certificate you will not be allowed to hold a separate Sport Pilot certificate. Your private pilot certificate automatically qualifies you to operate at the Sport Pilot level if you choose to do so. You would simply have to meet the medical requirements (valid U.S. state driver's license and no denial, suspension or revocation of your most recent FAA medical application) in order to operate at the Sport Pilot level.

Q: I operate an Allegro 2000 special light-sport aircraft (S-LSA). When contacting ATC I always say, "light sport N---." They frequently respond asking what type aircraft, to which I say, "Allegro 2000." But what they are looking for is the aircraft code number, which is assigned by FAA to each type of aircraft, and I have no idea what that might be.

I've contacted the importer, but have not received a response. Is there an official FAA listing of aircraft and type codes online? I don't think ATC is looking for Type Certificate Code numbers since the S-LSA are not type certificated. Any help with this will be appreciated. I'd like to be able to tell the controllers my aircraft code next time I'm in the system.

A: EAA is in the process of working with the FAA to develop a list of LSA aircraft designators and that list should be done early-to-mid-2007. We'll let everyone know when it's available, but here is a website you can use to look it up: faa.gov/ATPUBS/CNT/5-1.htm.

This information is contained in FAA Order 7340.1, Contractions- www.faa.gov/ATPUBS/CNT/Cnthme.htm -go to the bottom of the page, under Chapter 5. The link above is for the ENCODE section where you can look up your aircraft manufacturer, then the model number, to obtain the FAA designator code for the aircraft-that's the code the ATC folks are requesting.

Again, for existing S-LSA aircraft this code is not yet available, and for new S-LSA aircraft expect designator codes to be published about 6 months after their first aircraft is certificated.

For more information on Sport Pilot, go to EAA's Sport Pilot website at sportpilot.org. EAA, which also hosts the annual EAA AirVenture fly-in at Oshkosh, provides in-depth information on the website, as well as a Sport Pilot hotline and complete membership services for all aviation enthusiasts.Call 800/564-6322 for membership information.