Wind and Gusts

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Technique: Wind warrior

Pilot Magazine | Feb 01, 2012

You just made the best landing of your flying life. So how come no one's applauding?

FAA issues notice of policy on new airborne wind energy systems

Advocacy | Jan 26, 2012

The FAA is asking for public participation as it integrates an emerging technology known as airborne wind energy systems into the National Airspace System.

Stratos jet undergoes wind tunnel tests

Article | Aug 24, 2011

A one-fifth-scale model of Stratos Aircraft’s Stratos 714 very light jet has just completed five days of testing in the University of Washington's Kirsten Wind Tunnel, the company reports.

Answers for Pilots: Hurricanes

Article | Aug 01, 2011

It's August and we're right in the middle of the Atlantic hurricane season, which officially began in June. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) Atlantic Hurricane Season Outlook predicts a 65 percent chance of an above normal season. Of course, while the weather experts can forecast probable activity, they can't predict the location of landfall until the storm track has been established, and even then, storms have been known to deviate from their projected path. So, for those aircraft owners who live on or near the Atlantic coast, the Gulf of Mexico, or the Caribbean Sea, having a hurricane plan for your aircraft is essential.

Member Guide

Article | Aug 01, 2011

2011 sweepstakes—your last chance Be sure your AOPA membership is current as of July 31, 2011, in order to be eligible to win this year’s sweepstakes airplane, a completely refurbished Cessna 182—the Crossover Classic. Increase your chances to win by enrolling in AOPA’s safe, secure, and convenient automatic annual renewal (AAR) program and you’ll receive five additional sweepstakes entries.

Safety Pilot:

Pilot Magazine | Jun 01, 2011

Do the current FAA Practical Test Standards (PTS) measure what’s needed in today’s flight environment? I have a standing wager that no one has yet taken: If all pilots merely flew to the current private pilot PTS just as they are written today, the number of accidents would plummet—no need for further “tinkering.” See if you agree.

Landing Insights: From the Trenches

Pilot Magazine | Feb 01, 2011

According to my logbook, I've just completed my 4,600th landing. Looking back on them, only a few fall into the "difficult" column and that’s the way it should be.

Stratos building wind tunnel model

Article | Jan 07, 2011

Stratos Aircraft engineers in Bend, Ore., have done the math and believe they have the right design for the Stratos 714 single-engine personal jet, but they want to confirm those computations in the wind tunnel first. A wind tunnel model should be ready for testing by summer.

Spoiler alert

Article | Jan 01, 2011

Turbofan airplanes are so aerodynamically clean that pilots can have difficulty slowing down and going down, especially at the same time. These aircraft do not have the drag created by windmilling propellers, which is why they typically have twice the glide ratios of piston aircraft.

Proficient Pilot

Article | Dec 01, 2010

The other day I read an article by Ross Detwiler in the October 2010 edition of Business & Commercial Aviation. The article conveyed a concept so simple in principle yet so profound in potential benefit that I immediately decided (at the risk of appearing plagiaristic) to pass it along to readers of this column.

Wx Watch: Meteogram weather

Pilot Magazine | Sep 01, 2010

Of all the products that make up a good preflight weather briefing, the Terminal Aerodrome Forecast (TAF) must surely rank very near the top in importance. TAFs give us 24- or 30-hour views into the anticipated weather conditions at select airports around the world.

Hurricane preparations include protecting aircraft

Article | Sep 01, 2010

As residents along the East Coast brace for the arrival of Hurricane Earl, aircraft owners in affected areas should include their aircraft in emergency preparations.

Wx Watch: Super Storms

Pilot Magazine | Aug 01, 2010

Let’s say it again. Thunderstorms are must-avoid killers with air currents violent enough to cause structural failure.

Wx Watch: Outflow info

Pilot Magazine | Jul 01, 2010

Thunderstorms are bad enough, but the surface outflows they generate can actually create more thunderstorms, low-level wind shear, gust fronts, and even tornadoes. The trouble begins, as with any convective situation, with an unstable atmosphere, a source of lift, and air moist enough to provide adequate liquid water content (LWC).

Technique: Rotten air

Pilot Magazine | Oct 01, 2009

Flags stood straight from their poles, plastered in place by blustery winds. It was a good day to grab Frederick, Maryland, instructor Tom O’Neill and conduct a research flight in search of practical tips to use for battling rough air.

Answers for Pilots: Hurricanes

Article | Aug 01, 2009

June 1 was the official start of the Atlantic hurricane season and activity typically peaks in August. According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Atlantic Hurricane Season Outlook, a near normal Atlantic hurricane season is expected.

Pilot Briefing

Pilot Magazine | Jun 01, 2009

Pilot certificate becomes ticket to the world Robert Gannon’s pilot certificate—and his Cessna 182—comprise his ticket to adventure. That’s the only reason he learned to fly.

Never Again: Windsock warning

Pilot Magazine | May 01, 2009

I’ve been flying more than 20 years, increasing my flying as my business has grown. I bought my first airplane, a Piper Turbo Saratoga, in 2006, got my instrument rating in it, and flew it 300 hours in one year for business and training.

Never Again Online: A blustery day in Ponce

Article | Apr 01, 2009

It was late May, 1970, a blustery day in Poncé, Puerto Rico, normally a no-fly day, at least for the kind of flying I was considering. But what the heck, I was an experienced twenty-seven-year-old pilot with a grand total of 180 hours of flight time and this flight would complete the last hour of a ten-hour contract for the local Volkswagen dealer.

This Eagle Has Landed

Pilot Magazine | Jun 01, 2008

I love landing. It’s my favorite thing to do in an airplane.

Technique: Windy Day Departures

Pilot Magazine | Apr 01, 2008

Wow, it’s windy this morning. Definitely a hold-onto-your-hat kind of day.

Wx Watch: Storm Survey

Pilot Magazine | Apr 01, 2008

All thunderstorms are not created equal. They vary from region to region, from season to season, and rely on slightly different mechanisms to help them fire off.

Technique: Am I a good pilot?

Pilot Magazine | Jan 01, 2008

It afflicts each of us. Every pilot who has pushed a throttle forward for takeoff has, at one time or another, wakened in the chill of the pre-dawn hours nurturing that very private uncertainty: “Am I a good pilot or do I just think I am?” Some pilots are incapable of the necessary introspection and self-evaluation required for the answer; some deal with it by deciding not to care, too often proving their disregard by creating the most foolish of impacts with the earth; and the majority of us are willing to pursue the question and want to find a working definition as to what a good pilot is so that we might enter that most exclusive of human fraternities.

Airframe and Powerplant

Pilot Magazine | Sep 01, 2007

Tie the airplane out of harm's way Mike Moll flew small airplanes — Piper Super Cubs, de Havilland Beavers, and Cessna 185s — in Alaska from the minute he turned 16 years old until he died in the early 1990s. His father, who also made a living flying in Alaska, taught Moll how to take care of himself and his airplane.