Wind and Gusts

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Don’t let the mountain siren lure you

Article | Mar 26, 2013

Mountain flying can be a captivating adventure along beautiful valleys, over brilliant mountain lakes, and above sprawling icy-blue and -green glaciers as you climb to cross a mountain saddle or circumnavigate a peak—and once again continue the spectacular journey. But along with their beauty, mountains harbor lurking dangers that can snag a flight in one unforgiving moment.

Flight Amid Vertical Terrain

Article | Mar 25, 2013

AOPA's A Pilot's Guide to Mountain Flying Introduction Do you want to fly above snow-capped mountains, journey through narrow canyons and land at airports that have some of the most spectacular scenery in the world? If you haven't experienced this, you are in for a thrill. However, you will also be faced with greater challenges and different procedures.

Mountain Ways

Article | Mar 25, 2013

AOPA's A Pilot's Guide to Mountain Flying Coping with mountain weather BY THOMAS A. HORNE Why do so many weather-related accidents happen near hilly or mountainous regions? Three reasons come to mind.

Mountain Flying

Article | Mar 25, 2013

AOPA's A Pilot's Guide to Mountain Flying Mountain Flying BY THE AOPA AIR SAFETY FOUNDATION Introduction On behalf of the AOPA Air Safety Foundation staff, thank you for your interest in, quite literally, expanding your horizons by learning the techniques of mountain flying. Operations in the rapidly changing weather conditions and the thin air of the high country differ significantly from normal flight operations.

Weather Curiosity - Fronts

Article | Mar 25, 2013

The Weather Never Sleeps Storming The Front How Air Masses Wage Meteorological War BY JACK WILLIAMS (From Flight Training, May 1996.) Meteorologists use the war-like term fronts for one of the atmosphere's key weather makers, because Norwegian scientists developed the theory of fronts during World War I when headlines screamed about battles along the Western Front. The name seemed appropriate for the zone between contrasting air masses.

Weather Curiosity - Turbulence

Article | Mar 25, 2013

The Weather Never Sleeps Turbulence What Causes Bumps In The Air BY JACK WILLIAMS (From Flight Training, June 1997.) Anyone who's made more than a few flights has almost surely had at least one bumpy ride. To pilots and passengers, the bumps are the result of "turbulence." To an atmospheric scientist, turbulence is "a state of fluid flow in which the instantaneous velocities exhibit irregular and apparently random fluctuations." Those "irregular fluctuations" of the air create the bumps.

: Crosswind Conundrum

Article | Mar 25, 2013

: Crosswind Conundrum Mentoring Tips Crosswind Conundrum Demonstrating a flare for the cross-controlled touchdown It may be a bit sadistic, but one of my favorite spectator sports involves driving to the local airport on a windy day, parking near the runway, and watching inexperienced pilots enter into combat with a blustery crosswind. It is like watching a slapstick comedy.

Thunderstorms

Article | Mar 25, 2013

The Weather Never Sleeps --> Thunderstorms A Thunderstorm Unites Just About Every Hazard Known To Aviation! BY THE FAA (From Flight Training, February 1994.) Annually, and prior to the start of the season, we publish an issue of the Air Traffic Bulletin to focus your attention on the upcoming thunderstorm season and to remind all controllers and specialists of the hazardous weather associated with it. The more we understand the severe atmospheric hazards associated with thunderstorms, the better position we are in to aid the pilot in avoiding these hazards.

ASF - Weather

Article | Mar 25, 2013

Weather and Flight Experience Refer to your Mental Checklist This happened while I was a student pilot. I had long since soloed and done cross-country, but due to finances I had not been able to finish up.

ASF - Weather

Article | Mar 25, 2013

Weather and Flight Experience A Flash of Experience To say I was a newly minted pilot at the time of this story would be putting it mildly. Having just passed my practical on Wednesday, on Friday I flew the 300+ miles to Georgia to help a friend move into her dorm.

Author Richard Bach recovering, publishing, recollecting

Article | Mar 19, 2013

Richard Bach, relaxing after a flight with Puff, his SeaRey. Photo courtesy NiceTiger.

General apps

Article | Jan 22, 2013

Pilots use a wide range of apps in their flying--including flight training resources, charts and maps, logbooks, flight trackers, flight planning tools, and weather apps, to name a few. Some apps don't fall under one of these categories but are still relevant for pilots; check out five "general" aviation apps in this week's column. These are not endorsements of any app.

App roulette

Article | Nov 20, 2012

After throwing a list of apps into an online randomizer, AOPA's Benét J. Wilson takes a look at the top five that the program spit out. You might be surprised by what surfaced.

'Superstorm' Sandy floods East Coast airports

Article | Oct 31, 2012

New York area airports slowly began to reopen as day broke Oct. 31, while Atlantic City, devastated by the wind and flooding of the massive storm Sandy, was preparing for a presidential visit. General aviation airports and aircraft owners across several states were counting losses.

Summit news and product briefs

Article | Oct 11, 2012

Aero & Marine offers California use tax service Even nonresidents can be hit with a use tax for using, storing, or registering an aircraft in California, Aero & Marine Tax Professionals’ Tom Alston warned at AOPA Aviation Summit. However, many pilots who use their aircraft for business can use a commercial interstate flight hours test to avoid the tax legally, Alston said.

Aircraft designers crafting more bird-like wings

Article | Oct 04, 2012

At the cutting edge, aeronautical engineers are exploring ways to move forward by turning back the clock, making airplane (and unmanned aerial vehicle) wings more bird-like.

Dimple aerodynamics: A hole in one?

Article | Sep 20, 2012

Can golf ball dimples improve the aerodynamics of airplane wings? An article in the Journal of Aircraft theorizes that the dimples could expand the wing's boundary layer.

New take on ‘X’ plane wins NASA grant

Article | Sep 05, 2012

Cleared for Mach 2 after departure, this supersonic jet of the future would yaw 90 degrees and put a new set of wings into the wind.

Proficient Pilot: Look, Ma, no rudder!

Pilot Magazine | Aug 01, 2012

On one fine day in the mid-1950s, a pilot was departing Santa Monica, California, in a Model 18 Twin Beech that had just been returned to service after extensive maintenance.