Winter

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IFR Fix: The sig in sigmet

IFR Fix | Dec 13, 2013

Two CFIIs plunge into icing conditions after failing to recognize the significance of a sigmet for icing.

Safety Pilot Landmark Accident: Unpredicted unadvised unaware

Pilot Magazine | Dec 01, 2013

The loss of a TBM 700 turboprop over New Jersey two years ago surprised many pilots. The Pratt & Whitney-powered single-engine turboprop is certificated for flight into known icing (FIKI).

Wx Watch: Eyes in the sky

Pilot Magazine | Nov 20, 2013

It’s a hackneyed phrase, but true: A picture’s worth a thousand words.

WX Watch: Look out below!

Pilot Magazine | Oct 01, 2013

Mention inversions and most pilots will get the general idea that these represent situations where temperatures rise with altitude rather than fall.

Ice-protection firm focuses on UAS market

Article | Aug 20, 2013

Worries about your unmanned aerial system icing up during a “long loiter” in a cold environment may soon be a thing of the past.

Take the Weather Challenge

Article | Aug 14, 2013

Do your eyes glaze over when you hear about Skew-T diagrams? Yawn at hearing about moist adiabatic lapse rates? Then gather your flying clubs members and soak up some practical weather knowledge with the Air Safety Institute’s “Weather Challenge” fall seminar, brought to you by AOPA Insurance Services.

Solo over both poles

Article | Jul 23, 2013

A solo polar pilot has completed a quest to add 90 degrees north to a logbook already marked with the South Pole.

Training Tip: Charting the carb-ice risk

Article | Jul 15, 2013

If a pilot doesn’t respond correctly to carb ice by applying carburetor heat as the aircraft’s operating checklist recommends, complete engine failure could follow.

IFR Fix: 'One vicious bundle'

Article | Jun 07, 2013

If a VFR pilot’s worst nightmare is to blunder into solid clouds, armed only with basic instrument flying skills, a similarly scary scenario awaits the instrument pilot who bets on sneaking through a stormy sector, and loses.

Aircraft maintenance tips: Spring cleaning

Aircraft Maintenance | May 23, 2013

Before you jump back into the air after a long winter and cold spring, it's wise to take some time to prepare your airplane for the busy flying season.

Wx Watch: Mesoscale discussions

Pilot Magazine | May 01, 2013

Most of us are diligent about studying convective sigmets, convective outlooks, and Nexrad radar imagery before our flights in the warmer months. They’re great for a broad-brush view of any convective situations, but there is another source of information that delves into greater detail, and provides analyses of situations that could be factors in your decision making.

The cold truth

Article | Apr 16, 2013

In rugged, remote country, harsh weather can be more life-threatening than an aircraft crash itself. In 2012, AOPA Online Managing Editor Alyssa Miller reported on what she’d learned in a weekend-long winter survival course held in the woods of northwest Montana.

AOPA Air Safety Foundation Safety Brief -- Braking Action Reports

Article | Mar 25, 2013

Safety Brief Cold Facts: Braking Action Reports Have you ever tuned in the ATIS at your favorite airport only to hear " ... braking action fair" and wondered what exactly it meant? These wintertime reports highlight one of the hazards of winter flying — taxiways and runways covered in snow, ice and slush.

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.

ASF - Aircraft Deicing/Anti-icing Equipment

Article | Mar 25, 2013

Aircraft Deicing and Anti-icing Equipment The resources listed below are provided as additional information to the AOPA Air Safety Foundation's Aircraft Deicing and Anti-icing Equipment Safety Advisor. The links below provide information on icing accident statistics, weather flying strategies, certification of aircraft, and suggestions on how to tell if your aircraft is approved for flight in known icing conditions.

Weather Curiosity - Clouds as Sign Posts

Article | Mar 25, 2013

Wx Watch Among the Clouds What's it like in there? BY THOMAS A. HORNE (From AOPA Pilot, March 1997.) We should all be weather-watchers, and not just on the days we plan to fly.

Weather Curiosity - Flight Preparations

Article | Mar 25, 2013

The Weather Briefing --> Weather on the Web The Internet is a valuable flight-planning tool BY JACK WILLIAMS (From Flight Training, January 2002.) Figure 1: Detailed North American surface analysis chart Figure 2: A simplified surface analysis chart Figure 3: A simplified weather depiction chart Figure 4: Part of a NWS weather depiction chart A few minutes of surfing the Web can usually give a pilot a pretty good idea about whether going flying today is a good idea. Looking at a few weather charts might make it obvious that the weather where you want to fly is so bad that it's not worth the trouble of obtaining a formal preflight weather briefing.

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.

Stability

Article | Mar 25, 2013

The Weather Never Sleeps Stability How bubbles of air can upset the atmosphere BY JACK WILLIAMS (From Flight Training, November 1996.) Air stability is one of those theoretical-sounding subjects that pilots should learn for good, practical reasons. This knowledge helps you make sense of preflight weather forecasts and actual weather you encounter in flight.

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 Severe Ice in Pennsylvania My encounter began one March morning in western Pennsylvania. I was a Part 135 pilot in a PA-32 and PA-34 and that morning I was to fly to DET to pick up cargo in the '6' and return to AFJ.

ASF - Weather

Article | Mar 25, 2013

Weather and Flight Experience Mountain Flying in Turbulence Tickets to a Seahawks game in hand, myself and three others climbed into the Cessna 206 for a quick trip up to Seattle from our homes in central Oregon. The weather was locked into a typical pattern, southwesterly winds pushing wet clouds up against the Cascades and up into the colder air aloft, making the perfect conditions for some really spectacular icing.

ASF - Weather

Article | Mar 25, 2013

Weather and Flight Experience Listen to your Briefer This is taken from my journal. At the time, I was an 800-hour pilot, current for IFR and flying the same plane that I had earned my IFR rating in five years earlier.

ASF - Weather

Article | Mar 25, 2013

Weather and Flight Experience High Altitude Icing A few years back I was flying over Evansville, Indiana at FL180 headed for Dallas. Conditions were IMC and I would have liked to go higher, but we had a 100kt head wind at FL200 and traffic.