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How to Become Navy Pilot

Update on 2024-04-15

How to Become Navy Pilot

How to become Navy Pilot

The Indian navy is an integral part of the three branches of the armed forces. The main objective of the Indian Navy is to protect the nation’s maritime borders and prevent any sea-based threats or attacks against the country. The Navy also collaborates with other nations for the fulfillment of human welfare goals and operates as a part of disaster relief programs.

A Navy Pilot is one of the revered parts of maritime armed forces and is one of the most challenging professions. The answer to the question of what is A Navy Pilot is that a Navy Pilot is an individual whose work is to protect the maritime borders of the country by flying over the seas. The main objective of the Navy Pilot is to track and attack enemy aircraft, ships, and submarines that might be a possible threat to the country. 

So, if you ask, What is a Navy Pilot, He or she is the one who protects the country from sea-based enemy combats. A Navy Pilot’s job is challenging yet honored as it is a part of the revered armed forces and contributes to defending the country from any external threats or attacks. let's know  How to become Navy Pilot

Eligibility and Qualification for becoming a Navy Pilot

The rules for eligibility and qualification for becoming a Navy Pilot are quite strict as the profession of a Navy Pilot is very challenging and requires rigorous training and selection procedures.

 The first step to becoming a Navy Pilot is that the candidates should fulfill the criteria for Navy Pilot Service Selection Board( SSB) Interview which is necessary for joining the Indian armed forces

The chief qualification which is the most important criterion for admission to the Indian Navy as a PIlot or Observer is that the candidate should have a BE/BTech degree with Physics and Maths as the main subjects in Class 12 with 60% marks. Also, 60% of marks in English is an essential criterion for Navy Pilot.

Both men and women are selected in the Navy Pilot and Observer cadre

Besides, there is a list of physical characteristics which are necessary criteria for eligibility and qualification for becoming a Navy Pilot. These are given in the table:

Physical standards






69 Kg

6/6 6/9 for distant vision

Correctable to 6/6 6/6


152 cm

48 Kg

6/6 6/9 for distant vision

Correctable to 6/6 6/6

Candidates should not be color blind or night blind.

The requirements for the physical standards of the Navy Pilot training remain constant under any circumstance.

Also, Aspirants who do not have the necessary degree or have any Back paper in their Graduation are not eligible to apply for the Navy Pilot entrance examination.

The candidates who meet the above-required criteria can apply for the SSB interview at the Indian Navy’s official website. Following are the criteria for Selection in the SSB interview:

  • The candidate will be selected at the SSB interview on the basis of merit.
  • Selected candidates for the position of Navy Pilot have to undergo medical fitness examination
  • Once the candidate is selected for the SSB Navy Pilot exams he or she has to undergo 22 weeks of Naval Orientation training at the Indian Naval Academy, Ezhimala. Following this, the candidate has to undergo Stage 1 and Stage 2 Flight Training. This training can be conducted at any one of the following places:
  1. Indian Air Force Academy
  2. Naval Establishment 
  3. Rashtriya Udan Academy

After successfully completing the Navy Pilot’s training the candidate will be given the much-desired WIngs or the Aviation Badge which means that he or she is commissioned to fly an aircraft.

Steps to becoming a Navy Pilot

Now let's understand in step by step -How to become Navy Pilot. A Navy Pilot has a prestigious and thrilling position in the Indian armed forces. A Navy Pilot’s role is a challenging yet thrilling one. The Navy Pilot’s role is to defend the Nation’s maritime threats and attacks from external enemies.

The Steps to Becoming A Navy Pilot are rigorous and demanding as this requires strict regimes to follow fulfilling the criteria is not easy as reading this article "How to become Navy Pilot". Since, the navy Pilot’s job is to protect the country from all dimensions of the island, air, and sea the job demands great skills and presence of mind.

A look at the steps for becoming a Navy Pilot:

  • The candidate has to undergo 22 weeks of Naval Orientation training at the Indian Naval Academy, Ezhimala.
  • The candidate has to pass the Pre Flying training course at the School for Naval Airman(SFNA) at Southern Naval Command, Kochi.
  • Selected trainee Pilots will undergo AB-Initio flying training at Air Force Academy, Dundigal, or Indira Gandhi Rashtriya Udaan Academy, Amethi.
  • Pilots who have successfully completed the training program are divided into 3 different streams depending upon their expertise which includes Fighter pilots, Fixed winged Pilots, or Rotary Pilots.
  • The trainees who have been selected as Fighter Pilots and Fixed Winged Pilots undergo further training at the Air Force Academy. On completion of the Air Force training, these Pilots can fly either Fighter Jets or Dornier Aircrafts.
  • Candidates who were selected for the Rotary wing stream go to Helicopter Training School at Hyderabad.
  • After completion of the designated training in the different streams, the candidate receives the much-coveted Wings which is the official Aviator Badge. They are then commissioned to the Naval Air Squadrons located in different parts of the country.

A career as a Navy Pilot

now let's go into more detail on How to become Navy Pilot. A career as a Navy Pilot is a demanding profession and requires courage and determination. Also, the Navy Pilots should have characteristics like controlled aggression, focus, and presence of mind. A Navy Pilot’s job is the most challenging and risky and very few have the skills and ability to join the Naval Aviation to protect the country’s maritime borders.

The Navy Pilots can be deployed in any one of the following:

  1. Fighter Pilots
  2. Fixed Wing Pilots
  3. Helicopter Pilots
  4. Observers
  5. Technical Officers

Let us now discuss the career as A Navy Pilot according to their respective roles and responsibilities

Fighter Pilots

  • Gets appointed in the Indian Navy to fly the MIG squadron INAS 303.  
  • Operational roles in the Indian Navy include the air combat roles to defend the country’s integrity from external forces. 
  • Experienced Naval Air Squadrons are specialized in long-range airstrikes in case of combat-like situations.
  • Experts in air to air refueling, weapon delivery, and air to air weapon delivery.

Fixed Wing Pilots:

  • They undergo the Dornier Operational Flight Training.
  • Electronic warfare role for some Pilots on completion of training. They are appointed as Donier Squadrons INAS 310,311 and 318 located in Goa, Visakhapatnam, and Port Blair respectively. 
  • The remaining are commissioned as warfare squadrons in Anti Submarine or Maritime Reconnaissance. 
  • Fixed-wing pilots keep patrolling over the oceans to keep a watch over possible attacks or enemy threats to the country.

Helicopter Pilots:

  • Rotary wing Pilots or Helicopter Pilots are deployed to fly the Helicopter Chetak which patrols mainly over the coast. 
  • Responsible for medical emergency support and rescuing the critically injured from the shores, oil rigs, or ships.
  • After sufficient experience on the shores, these helicopter Pilots operate from the Aircraft Carriers as anti-submarine helicopters or warning helicopters. The warning helicopters have the ability to watch over the seas for any attacks and ensure timely measures to protect the Indian Navy. 
  • Senior Helicopter Pilots take advanced training courses and become Instructors in the Naval Academy.

Observer Pilots

  • Officers deployed in the observer category undergo helicopter training and fulfill major responsibilities as a weapon or sensor specialists.
  • Operate communication equipment like Radar, Sonar, and electronic warfare equipment.
  • Responsible for launching and firing airborne weapons when the need arises. 
  • Participates in all naval operations including the search and rescue operations.
  • Flies various aircraft of the Indian Navy like Sea King, Dornier, and Kamov.

Technical Officers

  • They are the Backbone of Naval aviation as they ensure smooth operations and manage the service-related issues of the aircraft.
  • Operates from shore as well as the sea.
  • Responsible for maintaining power plants, weapons, and sensors of the aircraft at different locations.
  • Handles state of the art equipment like Radar, Sonar, and Communication equipment.

Job profiles and areas of Navy Pilot

The job profiles and areas of A Navy Pilot are manifold and full of challenges. The Navy Pilot has to undergo rigorous and specialized training to fulfill the responsibilities in the Naval Aviation sector.

The Navy Pilots are responsible for flying aircraft in the Indian Navy which includes Fighter Aircraft and Helicopters. They form the backbone of the Naval Aviation and are allotted different duties based on their skills, experience, and area of expertise.

The Navy Pilots are responsible for onshore and offshore activities of the Indian Navy. The onshore activities of the Naval Aviator are to transport the injured or deliver weapons. The onshore duties of a Naval Officer include Maritime Reconnaissance, launching of weapons, and detecting and targeting enemy submarines.

The Job profiles and areas of a Navy Pilot are mainly divided into 5 sections. These include:

Fighter Pilots:

  • Fixed Wing Pilots
  • Helicopter Pilots 
  • Observers
  • Technical Officers

Experienced and senior Navy Helicopter Pilots can take advanced training courses and join the Naval Academy as instructors.

Other Navy Pilots who have long flying hours to their credit can join any major  Government or Private airline as the chief Pilot or aircraft maintainer. All the above job profiles and areas of Navy Pilot are extremely important as they help in protecting the integrity of the country from the enemy by securing the maritime borders and the Naval fleet. The Navy Pilots also participate in humanitarian tasks like rescue missions and transport of the critically injured.


A Navy Pilot has a respectable and admirable career yet his role is extremely challenging and requires determination, out-of-the-box thinking, and courage. A Navy Pilot protects the maritime borders of the country from external forces and is responsible for the smooth operations of the aircraft. They participate in emergency operations and combat missions and provide logistic support to the Naval fleet.

I hope you understood this article "How to become Navy Pilot" 

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