AOPA Online Members Only -- AOPA ePilot Flight Training Edition --Vol. 3, Issue 37

September 12, 2003

Volume 3, Issue 37 • September 12, 2003
In this issue:
FAA reducing medical backlog
Electronics association scholarships available
AOPA brief examines GA, homeland security

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Training Tips
A RIVER (OF FAST-FLOWING AIR)
Whenever you hear the term "jet stream" during a weather briefing, pay close attention. Chances are that the information you are about to receive will be very interesting.

What are jet streams? Here's the National Weather Service's definition: "Relatively strong winds concentrated in a narrow stream in the atmosphere, normally referring to horizontal, high-altitude winds. The position and orientation of jet streams vary from day to day. General weather patterns (hot/cold, wet/dry) are related closely to the position, strength and orientation of the jet stream (or jet streams). A jet stream at low levels is known as a low-level jet."

Not long from now, the presence of a jet stream may start to figure prominently in forecasts of interest to pilots of light aircraft. What starts the ball rolling is the increased contrast in air temperatures as northern latitudes begin to cool down. "As fall turns into winter, upper-air winds begin growing stronger and the jet stream begins to migrate south" following zones of greatest temperature contrast, explains meteorologist Jack Williams in his column "The Weather Never Sleeps" in the December 2001 AOPA Flight Training. Study the illustrated example presented in the article. Note that "in this case, the air could be coming all the way from the Arctic to smash into much warmer, humid air over the South and East. Winds will be strong at the upper altitudes and on the surface. Depending on the temperatures and where you are, rain, snow, and ice could be widespread."

Low-level jet streams may influence weather in summer and at night-perhaps on a calm evening when you least expect it. "Running into a 60-knot wind only 300 feet above ground level after calm surface winds lulled you into being relaxed could lead to more excitement than you really wanted," says Williams in his April 2001 AOPA Flight Training weather column.

Jet streams are also implicated in the presence of such phenomena as clear air turbulence, as explained in the FAA's Advisory Circular 00-30B Atmospheric Turbulence Avoidance. Click here to download it from AOPA Online. Also see answers to questions frequently asked of meteorologists from Meteorlogix, which provides weather to the Web site, for a discussion of the relationship between jet streams and pressure center movement.

Jet streams are of interest to all pilots, in all seasons, not just to jet pilots who regularly operate in the flight levels. As usual in flying, forewarned is forearmed!
Your Partner in Training
If two private pilots are on a cross-country flight sharing the responsibilities of the flight, can they both log the flight as PIC (pilot in command) cross-country? This is a common question among the general pilot population, but especially for new pilots. Click here to learn the answer and more about logging PIC time on AOPA Online.

Do you have a question? Call our experienced pilots, available weekdays between 8:30 a.m. and 6 p.m. Eastern time toll-free at 800/872-2672. As an AOPA Flight Training Member, you have access to all of the features within AOPA Online. For login information click here.
Flight Training News
FAA REDUCING MEDICAL BACKLOG
If you are one of the thousands of pilots whose medical certificate application is languishing in Oklahoma City, there's good news. The FAA appears to be making progress in reducing the backlog of applications that at times has exceeded 50,000. The agency's Aerospace Medical Certification Division has filled several key positions, ordered mandatory overtime for medical review staff, and implemented a new digital imaging system that converts paper files to electronic format. The best way for you to cut your waiting time for a special issuance, however, is to make sure that your application is properly completed and includes every supporting document the FAA needs to process it, said Gary Crump, AOPA's director of medical certification. Be sure to look at all the medical certification resources available at AOPA Online, he advised. AOPA members can speak to a medical certification specialist by calling 800/USA-AOPA.

ELECTRONICS ASSOCIATION SCHOLARSHIPS AVAILABLE
Scholarship opportunities for students pursuing careers in aircraft electronics, aircraft maintenance, and aviation business management are now available for the 2004-2005 school year, the Aircraft Electronics Association has announced. AEA will present 25 awards totaling more than $100,000, including three new awards for eligible aircraft electronics students and those working toward a degree in aviation business management. Scholarship application packages are available online. The deadline to apply is February 1, 2004.

BOY SCOUTS EARN AVIATION BADGES WITH HELP FROM SPORTY'S
More than 200 Boy Scouts earned their aviation merit badges and took a Young Eagles flight, all in one day, at Clermont County Airport in Batavia, Ohio. At Flight of Eagles 2003 on August 29, the scouts experienced a ground school session and an educational tour of the airport, and got to view a static aircraft display and exhibits by Aviation Exploring, GE Aircraft Engines, and Air Force ROTC. The event was sponsored by Sporty's Pilot Shop, Delta Connection Academy, and the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport. Young Eagles rides were provided by members of Cincinnati EAA Chapter 174.
Inside AOPA
AOPA BRIEF EXAMINES GA, HOMELAND SECURITY
Two years after the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, general aviation remains the most scrutinized segment of aviation, despite the fact that GA aircraft pose no significant terrorist threat to the United States, according to a security brief prepared by AOPA. The brief examines the steps that GA and AOPA have undertaken to enhance security, including the establishment of AOPA's Airport Watch program at the nation's public airports and the creation of a 12-point security plan by aviation industry groups. GA aircraft are incapable of causing significant damage and are not a threat to nuclear power facilities, the brief concluded. Read it on AOPA Online.

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Training Products
WIZWHEEL CG CALCULATOR FROM SPORTY's
Figuring out your airplane's weight and balance with fuel and passengers is a good practice for each and every flight. The WizWheel center of gravity calculator looks like an E6B but allows the pilot to quickly determine an aircraft's center of gravity based on an index created for a specific aircraft calculated from its empty weight and arm. The device is simple to understand and could be handy for the pilot who often flies the same aircraft-such as a given trainer at a flight school. It's available from Sporty's Pilot Shop for aircraft including the Beech A36, A36TC, B36TC, 58 and 58A; Cessna 172A through S, 182A through S, 310Q Turbo; Mooney M20C through F, and J through L; and Piper Archer, Warrior, Aztec, and Apache. The WizWheel retails for $49.95. Order online from Sporty's.
Final Exam
Question: I've heard folks at the FBO talk about "through-the-fence" operations. Can you explain to me what that term means?

Answer: The owner of a public airport sometimes allows independent operators (either businesses or individuals) offering an aviation activity to conduct their business on airport property without renting business space at the airport. This arrangement is called a "through-the-fence" operation. Common types of through-the-fence arrangements are for freelance flight instruction or aircraft maintenance. AOPA Online offers additional information on through-the-fence operations.

Got a technical question for AOPA specialists? E-mail to askft@aopa.org or call 800/872-2672. Don't forget the online archive of "Final Exam" questions and answers, searchable by keyword or topic.
Picture Perfect

The AOPA Online Gallery allows you to download your favorite images to use for wallpaper, send a personalized e-card, and order high-quality prints to be shipped directly to your doorstep. Search the hundreds of fabulous images in our archives and select your favorites today! For more details, see AOPA Online.

What's New At AOPA Online

Planning to attend AOPA Expo 2003 in Philadelphia? If you're thinking of flying to the event, you'll want to review the arrival and departure procedures for Philadelphia International Airport and Northeast Philadelphia Airport.

Weekend Weather
See the current weather on AOPA Online, provided by Meteorlogix.
ePilot Calendar
WEEKEND FLYING DESTINATIONS
Cincinnati, Ohio. The Cincinnati Lunken Airshow takes place September 13 and 14 at Cincinnati Municipal/Lunken Field (LUK). Celebrating the 100th of aviation and seventy-fifth of the airport, the event features aircraft from the Air Museum Planes of Fame. Contact Charlie Pyles, 513/321-4291, or visit the Web site.

Wichita, Kansas. The National Air Tour will be at Colonel James Jabara (AAO), September 12 through 14. Features about 30 vintage aircraft. Contact Bernadette Bradshaw, 316/337-9046, or visit the Web site. The tour is scheduled to continue through September 24. For more, see the air tour's Web site.

Nashua, New Hampshire. The 2003 Aviation Heritage Festival takes place September 20 and 21 at Daniel Webster College. The festival will feature a unique blend of vintage airplanes, distinguished guests, seminars, and aviation exhibits. Contact Dan Seufert, 603/577-6625, or visit the Web site.

Dulles, Virginia. The Dulles Plane Pull takes place September 20 at Washington Dulles International (IAD). Charity event and fly-in for the whole family. Contact Ed Levine, 703/450-7569, or visit the Web site.

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To submit an event to the calendar, or search all events, visit AOPA Online. For airport details, see AOPA's Airport Directory Online .

ASF FLIGHT INSTRUCTOR REFRESHER CLINICS
(All clinics start at 7:30 a.m.)
The next AOPA Air Safety Foundation Flight Instructor Refresher Clinic is scheduled in Richmond, Virginia, September 20 and 21. Clinics are also scheduled in Colorado Springs, Colorado, and Baltimore, September 26 and 27. For a complete schedule, see AOPA Online. Can't make it in person? Sign up for the CFI Renewal Online.

ASF PINCH-HITTER GROUND-SCHOOL COURSES
(Pinch-Hitter courses start at 9:30 a.m.)
The next Pinch-Hitter® Ground School takes place in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, October 26. For more Pinch-Hitter courses, see AOPA Online.

ASF SAFETY SEMINARS
AOPA Air Safety Foundation Safety Seminars are scheduled in Atlanta; Albany, New York, and Hartford, Connecticut, September 15; Lincoln, Rhode Island, North Syracuse, New York, and Knoxville, Tennessee, September 16; Henrietta, New York, Boston, and Nashville, Tennessee, September 17; and Cheektowaga, New York, Memphis, Tennessee, and Portsmouth, New Hampshire, September 18. Topics vary, see AOPA Online for complete details.

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