STANDARD SECTION FORMATION PROCEDURES
LEAD: "Ground, RKT 203, flight of two, taxi with Bravo."
Jet aircraft taxiing in close interval increases the risk of "foreign object damage" (FOD). To
minimize this risk, squadron Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) will define the approved taxi
interval. Additionally, it is customary to taxi formations on opposite sides of the taxiway
centerline (when adequate taxiway width is available). While taxiing a prudent distance apart is
important for FOD prevention, it is also essential that formation integrity be maintained. Every
effort should be made to prevent other aircraft from taxiing between the formation's elements.
Checklists, taxi reports, and radio frequency changes will be conducted in accordance with the
"Student In-flight Guide." These procedures will be covered in greater detail in the "Formation
Flight Conduct" section.
Passing the last active taxiway, the OUI may switch to tower. At the hold short, the crewmember
of each aircraft will check the other aircraft for integrity. The wing OUI will give lead a thumbs-
up when the lead aircraft has been checked and tower freq is dialed into the UHF. Lead OUI will
not check in wing on Tower at the hold short.
LEAD: "Tower, RKT 203, flight of two, takeoff."
After cleared to take the duty runway, students will initiate the canopy drill and complete takeoff
checks. Lead will switch the flight to departure after takeoff clearance has been issued.
LEAD: "RKT 203, cleared for takeoff 7R, switching departure. Turbo, button 6."
When both aircraft are set in position on the runway, the wing will give a thumbs-up to lead and
lead will check in wing on departure frequency.
The purpose of a section takeoff is to get the formation airborne in the safest and most
expeditious manner. Section takeoffs may be done three different ways:
Section Go: Both aircraft roll and rotate in formation.
2. Interval Go: The wing aircraft initiates takeoff roll after a mandated timed delay (defined
3. Individual Go: Aircraft take off individually and a rejoin in flight when VMC flight
Many factors go into determining which is the best method for getting a section airborne.
Weather, standing water on the duty runway, crosswind limitations, and like-aircraft
configurations (i.e., flap settings and fuel states) are a few of the deciding factors.
5-8 STANDARD SECTION FORMATION PROCEDURES