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AOPA Online Members Only -- AOPA ePilot Flight Training Edition --Vol. 3, Issue 4AOPA Online Members Only -- AOPA ePilot Flight Training Edition --Vol. 3, Issue 4

Volume 3, Issue 4 • January 24, 2003
In this issue:
AOPA seeks medical exemption for students
New aviation school directory offered online
Last year in numbers



Garmin International

AOPA Legal Services Plan

Comm 1 Radio Simulator

Sporty's Pilot Shop


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Copyright © 2003 AOPA.

Training Tips
Student pilots training at busy airports quickly learn that wake turbulence is more than just a theory presented in training texts-it is a fact of daily aeronautical life. Always balancing the need to help expedite the flow of traffic with the absolute necessity to stay clear of wingtip vortices-the so-called horizontal tornadoes that can upset a smaller aircraft passing through them-general aviation pilots capably shoulder a big safety responsibility, day in and day out. See all the phenomena designated as wake turbulence in the Pilot/Controller Glossary of the Aeronautical Information Manual (AIM).

"The key to avoiding the wake turbulence from another airplane is to visualize what the vortices are doing and stay out of their way," writes Jack Williams in the August 2002 AOPA Flight Training.

An extensive discussion of wake turbulence and avoidance techniques when flying or taxiing close to larger aircraft can be found in Chapter 7, Section 3 of the AIM. Note that it is necessary to consider the effect of wind on vortices when attempting to project their movement away from your takeoff or landing zone. The AIM points out that "a crosswind will decrease the lateral movement of the upwind vortex and increase the movement of the downwind vortex."

Familiarizing yourself with this discussion will not only make you a safer, more aware pilot, but it will also serve as the foundation of your knowledge when your examiner initiates a wake-turbulence discussion on your private pilot flight test. ( Click here to see Dave Wilkerson's "Training Topics" column in the January 2001 AOPA Flight Training for insights into what examiners like to see and hear from flight-test applicants concerning wake turbulence.) Then learn from the experience of a student pilot who, while on a solo cross-country, was confronted with a sudden change of arrival instructions and encountered wake turbulence in the ensuing attempt to comply. ( Click here to read the "Learning Experiences" article by Ray Davids in the June 2001 AOPA Flight Training.)

Remember that as pilot in command of your aircraft, you may decline instructions, or increase wake-turbulence holding intervals, if you feel uncomfortable landing or taking off behind another aircraft. Apply the techniques recommended and you can fly safely into or out of any airport.
Your Partner in Training
The checklist is one of the least expensive yet most effective safety devices available in the cockpit. Not following a checklist could result in dire consequences. Check out these informative and perhaps life-saving articles from past issues of AOPA Flight Training, and continue to search the magazine's archives for a wealth of information to help you achieve your goal of obtaining your pilot certificate.

AOPA Flight Training members have access to all of the features within AOPA Online. For members' section login information click here.
Flight Training News
AOPA last week hand-delivered to the FAA a request for an exemption that would permit AOPA members exercising student or recreational pilot privileges to use a valid driver's license in place of an FAA medical certificate. The exemption would be valid for two years. During that period AOPA and the FAA would collect new data to validate previous AOPA studies showing that a "driver's license medical" would not affect safety. AOPA and AOPA Air Safety Foundation statistical analysis have shown that only about one-third of 1 percent (0.3 percent) of GA accidents involved pilot incapacitation that could have been predicted by a medical certificate examination. "AOPA has been working since 1985 to reduce the medical requirements for pilots," said AOPA President Phil Boyer. "AOPA has the resources to collect and analyze an irrefutable mountain of data to prove that a driver's license medical is the right thing to do." For more information see AOPA Online.

Important training issues for the international regional airline community are the focus of a conference to be held March 3 and 4 in Orlando. The Regional Airline Training Conference will focus on advances in aviation training instructional methods; advances in regional airline primary training programs, including airline new-hire relationships with training schools; and supply and demand of regional airline pilots. Speakers will include representatives from the University of North Dakota, PanAm Flight Academy, Atlantic Coast Airlines, AvStat Associates, SimuFlite, and the FAA. For more information or to register, visit the RATS Web site or e-mail.

The Aviation School Directory, a database for student pilots, prospective students, flight schools, and training facilities, was launched in December, according to The directory has provided information to more than 3,000 prospective students since its debut, the company said. Participants register to use the site and search for aviation colleges, universities, flight schools, type rating programs, and professional training facilities. Selection can be narrowed by several criteria, including city, state, services offered, programs, or cost. In turn, participating schools will receive a follow-up lead each time a prospective student views the school's information. For more information see the Web site.
Inside AOPA
At Frederick Municipal Airport in Maryland you can hear two kinds of buzzing. One comes from airplanes and the other from activity at AOPA headquarters. What was AOPA buzzing about in 2002? Let some 2002 numbers speak for themselves. AOPA's Publications Division mailed 1.14 million copies of AOPA Flight Training magazine (just over 100 million pages) and 4.5 million copies of AOPA Pilot. AOPA's Communications Division conducted 450 media interviews and wrote 730 news releases to give general aviation that needed positive spin. AOPA technical specialists answered 180,000 phone calls and e-mails. The AOPA FBO Rebate program gave back more than $2.5 million to members last year, and more than $9.6 million since the program was started in August 1997. The total number of AOPA members utilizing the AOPA Insurance Agency topped 25,000. Some 33,000 pilots took part in Air Safety Foundation free safety seminars while more than 13,000 pilots attended ASF-sponsored Seminar-in-a-Box programs. And, of course, the association ended the year just shy of 391,000 members strong-a record that carries a lot of weight when our top-notch lobbying team descends on Capitol Hill to represent the interests of general aviation.

Work on the exterior of AOPA's 900-square-foot Pilot Facility at the Wright Brothers National Memorial in Kill Devil Hills, North Carolina, is nearly complete. Plumbing, heating, air conditioning, and wiring are finished and drywall installation has begun in the interior; it should be complete by the end of February. Then computer systems, a monitor for the new AWOS at First Flight Airport, and other amenities will be installed. The facility should be fully functional by early spring. AOPA, on behalf of its membership, donated the funds for construction. According to the National Park Service and First Flight Centennial Foundation, the Pilot Facility will be the only permanent structure at the historic site to remain following the 100th Anniversary of Powered Flight celebrations this December.

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Training Products
When it's time to tame ground reference maneuvers, pictures often speak louder than words. A new product from Flight Training Solutions, LLC, is aimed at helping CFIs teach S-turns, turns around a point, and basic traffic patterns. The Ground Reference Illustrator is a preprinted template that lets flight instructors prepare professional-looking diagrams of these sometimes-daunting exercises. The diagrams, 50 pages to a pad, include space for notes in the margins and on the back of each page. The Illustrator is sold in five-pad packages and is available in two versions: custom (printed with the name of your flight school or FBO on each page) costs $27.95 and basic is $24.95. To order, contact Flight Training Solutions, LLC, 5615 Steeplechase Drive, Waunakee, Wisconsin 53597; 608/850-5396.
Final Exam
Question: As I get ready to begin my cross-county flights for my private pilot certificate, are there any fuel requirements that I need to be aware of?

Answer: Yes, there are fuel requirements, and in your specific instance, since you are working on your private pilot certificate, you would be required to comply with 14 CFR 91.151, "Fuel requirements for flight in VFR conditions." This regulation states that: (a) No person may begin a flight in an airplane under VFR conditions unless (considering wind and forecast weather conditions) there is enough fuel to fly to the first point of intended landing and, assuming normal cruising speed-
(1) During the day, to fly after that for at least 30 minutes; or
(2) At night, to fly after that for at least 45 minutes.
For more information on fuel and fuel management, you may be interested in reading the AOPA Air Safety Foundation's Fuel Awareness Safety Advisor ( click here to download) and "Fueling Up" from the December 1999 AOPA Flight Training magazine.

Got a technical question for AOPA specialists? E-mail to [email protected] or call 800/872-2672.
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
Interested in knowing more about how the Wright brothers built and flew the first powered aircraft, or the events surrounding this December's centennial celebrations? AOPA Online's Centennial of Flight page has been updated.
Weekend Weather
See the current weather on AOPA Online, provided by Meteorlogix.
ePilot Calendar
Punta Gorda, Florida. Community Aviation Days Open House takes place February 1 at Charlotte County Airport (PGD). Includes aircraft displays, WWII bombers, flight demos, and aviation seminars. Contact Lionel D. Schuman, 941/575-4589, or visit the Web site.

Tampa Bay, Florida. TGI Fly-in Days Air Tattoo takes place February 1 at Peter O. Knight Airport (TPF). Join Tampa's centennial year celebration of powered flight. Contact Neil Cosentino, 813/251-4669.

To submit an event to the calendar, or search all events, visit AOPA Online. For airport details, see AOPA's Airport Directory Online . For comments on calendar items, contact [email protected].

(All clinics start at 7:30 a.m.)
The next AOPA Air Safety Foundation Flight Instructor Refresher Clinics are scheduled in Long Beach, California, and Baltimore, January 25 and 26. Clinics are also scheduled in Melbourne, Florida; Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas; and Las Vegas, February 1 and 2. For the Flight Instructor Refresher Clinic schedule, see AOPA Online.

(Pinch-Hitter courses start at 9:30 a.m.)
The next Pinch-Hitter® Ground Schools will take place in Dallas/Fort Worth, on February 2, and Sacramento, California, February 9. For more Pinch-Hitter courses, see AOPA Online.

AOPA Air Safety Foundation Safety Seminars are scheduled in Mesa, Arizona, and San Antonio, January 27; Tucson, Arizona, and Houston, January 28; Fort Worth, Texas, January 29; and Austin, Texas, and Albuquerque, New Mexico, January 30. The topic is "The Ups and Downs of Takeoffs and Landings." For the complete schedule, see AOPA Online.

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