Landing from an Instrument Approach


Gain the skills associated with performing with performing the procedures for a landing from an instrument approach.


This is the required reading for this lesson. Numbers in [brackets] indicate the starting and ending page in the referenced reading material. Read all the pages and sections referenced.

  • Instrument Flying Handbook
    • Chapter 9 - Navigation Systems
      • [9-38 to 9-39] "Approach Lighting Systems (ALS)"
    • Chapter 10 - IFR Flight
      • [10-13 to 10-22] "Approaches"


The notes below highlight the important parts in the referenced material. Reading the notes without having read the actual referenced material is generally not sufficient to pass the written exam!

IFH - Chapter 9

  • The approach lighting system (ALS) provides lights that will penetrate the atmosphere far enough from touchdown to give directional, distance, and glidepath information for safe visual transition from approach to landing.
  • A high-intensity flasher system, often referred to as "the rabbit," is installed at many large airports.
  • The visual approach slope indicator (VASI) gives visual descent guidance information during the approach to a runway
    • The standard VASI consists of light bars that project a visual glidepath, which provides safe obstruction clearance within the approach zone.
    • The normal GS angle is 3°; however, the angle may be as high as 4.5° for proper obstacle clearance
    • On runways served by ILS, the VASI angle normally coincides with the electronic GS angle

    Precision and non-precision ALS configuration

    Standard two-bar VASI

IFH - Chapter 10

  • No pilot may land when the flight visibility is less than the visibility prescribed in the Instrument Approach procedure being used being used
  • The landing minimums published on IAP charts are based on full operation of all components and visual aids associated with the instrument approach chart being used. Higher minimums are required with inoperative components or visual aids.

Tomas Hansson (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.)
Chief Flight Instructor, VATSTAR
DISCLAIMER: all information contained herein is for flight simulation purposes only.
March 2021

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