Albuquerque Soaring Club

Cross Country & Badge Flying

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    One of the ultimate joys in soaring is to soar cross country. By using the various sources of lift nature provides us with we are able to soar great distances in pursuit of badges, records, and just the satisfaction of knowing you were able to do so. The SSA & FAI Badge programs provide goals to be reached, as well as national and world recognition once those goals have been accomplished. Listed below are the requirements for some of these awards.

SSA Badges

 A Badge

"A" badge requirements
Preflight phase: The applicant has knowledge of 
1. Sailplane nomenclature 
2. Sailplane handling procedure 

Presolo phase 
Applicant has completed the following minimum flight
training program: 
1. Familiarization flight 
2. Cockpit check procedure 
3. Effects of controls, on the ground and in flight 
4. Take off procedure, cross wind takeoffs 
5. Flight during tow 
6. Straight and level flight 
7. Simple turns 
8. Circuit procedure and landing patterns 
9. Landing procedure, downwind and crosswind landings 
10. Moderate and steep turns up to 720 degrees in both
11. Stalls and stall recovery 
12. Conditions of spin entry and spin recovery 
13. Effective use of spoilers/flaps and slips 
14. Emergency procedures 
15. Oral exam on FAR's 
16. Solo Flight


B Badge

"B" Badge Requirements
Practice phase: 
1. Demonstration of soaring ability by solo flight of at least thirty minutes duration after release from 2000' tow (add 1.5 minutes/100' tow above 2000')

C Badge

"C" Badge Requirements
Precross-country phase: 
1. Dual soaring practice, including instruction in techniques for soaring thermals, ridges, and waves    (simulated flight and/or ground instruction may be used when suitable conditions do not exist) 
2. Have Knowledge of: 

cross-country procedure recommended in the American Soaring Handbook 
Glider assembly, disassembly and retrieving Dangers of cross-country flying 

3. Solo practice 
4. Demonstration of soaring ability by solo flight of at least sixty minutes duration after release fron 2000' tow (add 1.5 minutes/100' tow above 2000') 
5. While accompanied by a SSA instructor, demonstrate the ability to: 
make a simulated off-airfield landing without reference to the altimeter, perform an accuracy landing from the approach, touching down and coming to a complete stop   within an area 500' in length. 


Bronze Badge

Bronze Badge Requirements
1. Complete the ABC program with the C badge awarded 
2. log at least 15 solo hours in gliders, including 30 solo flights which at least 10 are flown in a single place glider 
3. Log at least two flights each which have two hours duration or more 
4. Perform three solo spot landings in a glider witnessed by a SSA instructor. The accuracy and distance parameters are based upon the gliders performance, current winds, runway surface condition, and density altitude. As a guideline, a minimum distance of 400' would be acceptible for a Schweizer 2-33. (this is a land and stop in a specified zone requirement) 
5. Log dual time in gliders with an instructor during which at least two accuracy landings (same as above) were made without
reference to an altimeter to simulate off field and strange field landings. 
6. Pass a closed book written examination covering cross-country techniques and knowledge. Minimum passing grade is 80%.

FAI Awards:

Silver Badge

The FAI Silver Badge involves 3 required elements.  Silver Altitude is a 1,000-meter (3,281-foot) altitude gain above an in-flight low point; Silver Duration is a 5-hour flight time after tow release and Silver Distance is a 50-km (31.07-mile) cross country flight.  As of January 1, 1996, a total of 5,826 Silver badges had been awarded in the US. 

Gold Badge

The FAI Gold Badge involves 2 required elements. Gold Altitude is a 3,000-meter (9,843-foot) altitude gain above an in-flight low point; Gold Distance is a 300-km (186.42-mile) cross country flight. As of January 1, 1996, a total of 2,140 Gold Badges have been awarded in the US. 

Diamond Badge

The FAI Diamond Badge involves 3 required elements. Diamond Altitude is a 5,000-meter (16,404-foot) altitude gain above an in-flight low point; Diamond Goal is a 300-km (186.42-mile) cross country flight using a pre-declared Out and Return or Triangle course; Diamond Distance is a 500-km (310.7-mile) cross country flight. As of January 1, 1996, a total of 818 Diamond Badges have been awarded in the US among a total of 5,846 worldwide.


FAI 1000km Diploma

A special certificate is issued with the completion of a 1000km (621 mile) flight