Sequestration May Ground Pilots for Six Months or More

Massive cuts will ding pilots, just like a 34 minute blackout mid-game.

FILE - In this July 14, 2011 file photo released by U.S. Air Force, a 33rd Fighter Wing aircraft maintainer moves by the Department of Defense's newest aircraft, the U.S. Air Force F-35 Lightning II joint strike fighter (JSF), before giving the pilot an order to taxi the aircraft at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla.

Budget cuts could keep pilots and aircraft like this F-35 grounded.

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[RELATED: Officials Say Cuts Won't Hinder Ability to Protect America]

The Air Force tasked a chief learning officer in recent weeks to focus on improving these simulators, Selva says.

The Air Force has also found ways to save money in flight. It recently converted the massive amounts of paper on board each plane – for flight plans, manuals and other documents – into digital copies stored on iPads. It also calculated that pilots can save as much as 10 percent of their fuel by flying a specific distance from other planes in a "V" formation.

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