Cockpit crew: At least two pilots
Photo: Wolfgang Rattay / REUTERS
The European aviation authority EASA rejects the industry's proposal to carry out flights with only one pilot in the cockpit from 2030.
From 2027, however, solo flying could be approved for certain flight phases.
The supervisory authority is examining a corresponding proposal from the European aircraft manufacturers Airbus and Dassault Aviation for solo flight in the less demanding cruising phase, said EASA manager Andrea Boiardi on Monday.
At least two pilots would still have to sit in the cockpit during take-off and landing.
The proposal contains restrictions for pilots with health problems or too few flight hours.
According to Boiardi, an earlier proposal by the industry to fly exclusively with only one pilot from 2030 is "absolutely unrealistic" because automation is not yet advanced enough and solo operations require a level of safety that corresponds to today's standard with two pilots .
Only the most modern aircraft, equipped to a higher level of safety than currently required by the minimum certification standards, could be used for solo cruising, he explained.
This would include the Airbus A350 and possibly the Boeing 787 and 777X.
The airline industry is aiming to address staffing shortages with the push, as relaxing the rules would allow pilots to rest on long-haul flights with no replacements on board.