Frequency of running QTG's

Question

Do I have to run every QTG test every year, and if so can I run them all together as a batch ?

Answer

The running of QTG tests is not just to satisfy a regulatory requirement, it is meant to help ensure that the FSTD continues to meet the performance it was qualified to.  In that perspective, QTG checks should be used to quickly verify a FSTD's performance as part of its ongoing maintenance & quality checking.   In addition, and contrary to common belief, QTG tests are not the sole criteria used to establish and FSTD's performance, they are just spot checks.  For example, QTG tests do not verify the performance of systems, navigation or atmospheric conditions.

From a regulatory perspective, although not clearly defined in the past, it has always been the intention to run all of the QTG tests sequentially over a 1 year period.  It was also recommended that for things that may go out of tolerance more easily, such as control loading, motion and visual,  some of the tests should be run on a quarterly basis unless you can prove through your quality and compliance monitoring system that your FSTD does not change over long periods of time.

Also, don't forget that it was always an intention that all QTG validation tests should also be run manually (pilot flown) over a period of time (4 - 5 years), as automatic tests cannot be considered as truly end-to-end with the pilot in the loop.  

Having said all of this,  with the release of EASA rule, the requirements have become specific;

Reference CS-FSTD (A) page 43 of 154  - FSTD Recurrent Qualification Tests (9) (ii)

"The FSTD operator should run the complete QTG, which includes validation, functions & subjective tests, between each annual evaluation by the competent authority. As a minimum, the QTG tests should be run progressively in at least four approximately equal three-monthly blocks on an annual cycle. Each block of QTG tests should be chosen to provide coverage of the different types of validation, functions & subjective tests. Results should be dated and retained in order to satisfy both the FSTD operator as well as the competent authority that the FSTD standards are being maintained. It is not acceptable that the complete QTG is run just prior to the annual evaluation."