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| Training Tips |
WINDS ALOFT, AND MORE
It looks like a go. The outlook briefing, described in the October 20, 2006, Training Tips, was encouraging. Now as you obtain the standard weather briefing on which your flight planning will be based, it's time to focus on details.
"What are the winds aloft?" This is one of the most important questions you'll ask when gathering weather data. You need to know the wind speed and direction-remember, the direction is referenced to true north-at the altitudes you want to fly. But there's more information available to a careful observer in the winds and temperatures aloft forecast (FD).
For example, a radical change of wind speed or direction between adjacent levels suggests wind shear. Also, you can derive the expected freezing level, discussed in the November 26, 2004, Training Tips, and a critical item to pilots flying in cold weather. Thomas A. Horne offers strategies for avoiding trouble when cold clouds lurk in his February 2006 AOPA Pilot article "The Perfect Ice Flight."
06-10-24 02:07:00DATA BASED ON 240000Z
VALID 241200Z FOR USE 0900-1800Z. TEMPS NEG ABV 24000
|FT ||3000 ||6000 ||9000 ||12000 |
|BGR ||0506 || 9900-04 || 9900-09 ||3406-15 |
|BHM ||3212 ||3037+00 ||3249-01 || 3158+01 |
In the FD excerpt above, the forecast for BHM predicts a freezing level of 6,000 feet msl. Note that there's a temperature inversion at 12,000 feet (the temperature is warmer than below). Some unusual code appears in the winds aloft forecasts at BGR. The series 9900 tells you that at 6,000 feet msl and 9,000 feet msl, the winds will be 5 knots or less: light and variable. See Chapter 11 of the Pilot's Handbook of Aeronautical Knowledge.
Pilot reports included in your briefing or picked up en route can help you keep a check on the FD's accuracy. Listen for temperatures aloft reported along the route and for real-time winds aloft given by aircraft equipped to do so.
It was noted that winds aloft are given with reference to true north. Why? You'll find the explanation in the March 5, 2004, Training Tips article "Winds of Change."
| Your Partner in Training |
Fall is a perfect time to take a friend or a flight instructor on a sightseeing trek, whether to enjoy the changing colors of the foliage or to enjoy the view from the clear, crisp mornings that autumn can provide. But here's the thing: All of that low-level sightseeing requires you to be extra vigilant as you scan for other traffic that could be in your area, perhaps taking in the same sights as you. Review the suggestions in this article from the March 2005 issue of AOPA Flight Training, then read this advice on just how to keep your head on a swivel, outlined in the July 2001 issue of AOPA Pilot.
Do you have a question? Call the experienced pilots in AOPA's Pilot Information Center at 800/USA-AOPA. They're available to take your calls weekdays 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Eastern. As an AOPA Flight Training member, you have access to all of the features within AOPA Online and AOPA Flight Training Online. Login information is available online.
| Flight Training News |
NOTED CFIs ENSHRINED IN HALL OF FAME
Two veteran aviation educators were inducted last week into the National Flight Instructor Hall of Fame. Al Passell, who died of cancer in May 2005, had been an active instructor in the central United States since the 1960s and was a prolific designated pilot examiner. Highly regarded for his concise lessons, Passell also developed courses-including a three-day private pilot course that AOPA offered in the 1960s. Ralph Nelson, who had logged more than 10,000 hours before he died in 2006, served as director of the AOPA Air Safety Foundation and helped to found the National Association of Flight Instructors (NAFI). The safety crusader created and promoted A.M. Weather on public television as well as AOPA's "Weekend Ground School." The National Flight Instructor Hall of Fame is sponsored by NAFI and is located at EAA's AirVenture Museum in Oshkosh, Wisconsin. The deadline for nominations for next year's award is June 1, 2007.
ABLE FLIGHT TO PROVIDE SCHOLARSHIPS TO PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES
A new tax-exempt organization is gearing up to provide flying scholarships for persons with disabilities. Able Flight plans to announce the first two recipients of the scholarship program in December. They will be trained to obtain a sport pilot certificate in a Sky Arrow 600 light sport aircraft that has been factory-equipped with hand controls. The Sky Arrow was provided by Hansen Air Group of Georgia. "Learning to fly is a tremendous confidence booster and can motivate anyone, especially people with various physical disabilities, to reach for even higher goals in life," said Able Flight Executive Director Charles Stites. Able Flight is working with several educational facilities to help create vocational opportunities within aviation for scholarship recipients, he said. The group hopes to fund up to 20 scholarships in 2007, with 35 percent of those earmarked for veterans with disabilities. For more information, see the Web site.
SIMCOM TO OFFER REGIONAL AIRLINE TRAINING
SimCom Training Centers is expanding its services to include regional airline training, the company announced October 17. Programs will be supported with full-motion Level C and Level D simulators, and will target those aircraft that are used for both business aviation and regional airline purposes. Training will be conducted at SimCom's Orlando, Florida, facility. Training on the Dornier 328 and Jetstream 41 is set to begin in January. In related announcements made at the National Business Aviation Association's annual meeting in October, SimCom said that new Level C simulators for the Cessna Citation Jet and King Air C90A are now available, and a Beech Jet 400A will be available in the second quarter of 2007. For more information, see the Web site.
CENTRAL FLORIDA YOUNGSTERS TO PARTICIPATE IN AVIATION CAMP
Touring airplanes, watching aircraft demonstrations, and working with model aircraft are all part of this weekend's planned activities for a group of youngsters in central Florida. Thirty students will get the chance to fly model airplanes, meet with skydivers, and climb into airplane cockpits as they participate in Camp Wings, taking place November 4 and 5 in Belleview, Florida. Chris Hoefly, a pilot for Delta Air Lines and director of Camp Wings, said the nonprofit, volunteer-run camp is designed for students who have shown an interest in airplanes, flying, or aviation technology. The camp is in its third year, according to a story in The Villages Daily Sun.
| Inside AOPA |
BOYER TALKS AVIATION OPPORTUNITIES WITH COLLEGE STUDENTS
AOPA President Phil Boyer said there are myriad aviation opportunities available for college students. He recently spoke at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, Auburn University, and Southern Illinois University Carbondale. "You're entering an exciting time in aviation-the general aviation and airline industries are looking up, and new technologies and categories of aircraft are entering the market," Boyer told the groups. "But you don't have to be a pilot to be involved in aviation. You could be the engineer developing technology to make aviation even safer. Or you could manage an airport, investigate accidents, or even protect pilots' right to fly with AOPA. You have more options now than aviation students at any other time in history." To help students decide what aviation career might interest them, AOPA offers a new brochure with an Aviation Career Finder card that shows more than 60 career titles along with each position's education requirements and the type of employer. Request the brochure online.
CFI ROUNDTABLE PLANNED FOR AOPA EXPO
Any flight instructor who is planning to attend AOPA Expo 2006, which will take place November 9 through 11 in Palm Springs, California, is invited to participate in AOPA Flight Training's annual CFI Roundtable. The meeting will be from 11 a.m. until noon on Saturday, November 11, in the Palm Canyon A meeting room at the Hilton Palm Springs, located one block from the Palm Springs Convention Center. Topics will include the sport pilot certificate and an update on AOPA's Project Pilot. For more information, e-mail Mike Collins, editor of AOPA Flight Training.
HAVE YOU UPDATED YOUR AOPA MEMBER PROFILE?
To make the most of your membership and allow us to serve you better, please visit AOPA Online and update your personal member profile.
| Training Products |
CFI HOME STUDY KIT AVAILABLE FROM GLEIM PUBLICATIONS
A flight instructor certificate is a goal of many private pilots, even those who don't aspire to fly professionally. Gleim Publications offers a self-study kit for the CFI or ground instructor certificate. Each kit includes the latest edition of the Federal Aviation Regulations/Aeronautical Information Manual, Flight Instructor Flight Maneuvers, the flight/ground instructor FAA knowledge test, Flight/Ground Instructor and Fundamentals of Instructing (FOI) test prep CD-ROM, FOI FAA knowledge test, access to Gleim's flight/ground instructor and FOI online ground schools, and the Gleim Pilot Handbook, a consolidated, organized book of relevant FAA reference materials for pilots. All items come with a Gleim flight bag. The complete kit costs $154.95, and items within the kit can be ordered separately. Order online.
Note: Products listed have not been evaluated by ePilot editors unless otherwise noted. AOPA assumes no responsibility for products or services listed or for claims or actions by manufacturers or vendors.
| Final Exam |
| Question: I'm having a difficult time understanding the difference between magnetic deviation and dip errors related to the magnetic compass. What's the difference, if any? |
Answer: Magnetic deviation occurs when items such as radios generate weak local magnetic disturbances of their own and cause the compass to deviate from its correct magnetic north indication. This is why a deviation card is installed. The dip error occurs because of the magnetic compass's floating compass card. If the compass is level, it aligns itself with the magnetic field's horizontal component only. If the compass is tilted, it tries to align itself with the vertical component as well. When an aircraft makes a coordinated turn, the compass card tilts relative to the Earth's surface, and the north-seeking end of the compass dips earthward as well as to the north. Additional information can be found in the article "Mastering the Flight Instruments" from the February 2002 issue of AOPA Flight Training.
Got a question for our technical services staff? E-mail to [email protected] or call the Pilot Information Center, 800/872-2672. Don't forget the online archive of "Final Exam" questions and answers, searchable by keyword or topic.
| Picture Perfect |
|Looking for some really fabulous aviation photography? All the air-to-air photos and beautifully detailed ground images used by AOPA Pilot magazine over the years are yours at the click of a mouse button. Download your favorite images to use for wallpaper, send an e-postcard, or order prints online. For more details, see AOPA Online. |
| Weekend Weather |
|See the current weather on AOPA Online, provided by Meteorlogix. |
| ePilot Calendar |
| UPCOMING FLYING DESTINATIONS: |
Pensacola, FL. The Blue Angels Homecoming and 60th Anniversary Airshow takes place November 10 and 11 at Pensacola NAS/Forrest Sherman Field (NPA). Come see the very best in military aviation! Contact MWR NAS Pensacola, 850/452-6354, or visit the Web site.
To submit an event to the calendar or to search all events visit AOPA Online. For airport details, see AOPA's Airport Directory Online.
FLIGHT INSTRUCTOR REFRESHER CLINICS
The next AOPA Air Safety Foundation Flight Instructor Refresher Clinics are scheduled in San Diego, Albuquerque, NM, and Ashburn, VA, November 18 and 19. A clinic is also scheduled in Chicago, December 2 and 3. For a complete schedule, see AOPA Online. Can't make it in person? Sign up for the CFI Refresher Online.
AOPA AIR SAFETY FOUNDATION SAFETY SEMINARS
AOPA Air Safety Foundation Safety Seminars are scheduled in Boca Raton, FL, and Garden City, ID, November 6; Twin Falls, ID, November 7; Daytona Beach, FL, and Gainesville, FL, November 8; and Palm Springs, CA, November 9 through 11. Topics vary-for details and a complete schedule, see AOPA Online.