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The Aircraft Electronics Technician (AET) standard, developed with industry and government including military
and FAA involvement by the National Center for Aerospace and Transportation Technologies (NCATT), a nonprofit
organization in Fort Worth, Texas. The first AET certification exam was given in 2006, and NCATT says there
are now around 2,600 individuals who have passed the test and are AET certified.
The AET standard outlines the avionics community’s sense of the fundamentals that every avionics technician
should know. Among them are the basics of direct and alternating current; circuit theory of operation,
troubleshooting, calculations and measurements; resistors, inductors, capacitors and transformers; analog
circuits and power supply circuits; and digital logic.
Since the AET standard describes a level of fundamental knowledge, it doesn’t change much. AET add-ons, or
endorsements, in areas such as autonomous navigation systems, dependent navigation systems, radio
communications systems, and onboard communication and safety systems that build on that foundation. The add
ons will available once the basic certification is met.
The AET certificate provides tangible value for military personnel.
According to Hestilow, the “Air Force, Navy and Army do reward individuals for the AET and other NCATT
The certifications can be used for promotion points, and in the Air Force a service member who achieves
AET certification can receive five credit hours toward a degree from the CCAF.
The AET certification has wide recognition among the military services, repair stations, avionics
manufacturers, and many in the training industry.
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