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Copyright © 2006 AOPA.
| Training Tips |
You know the rule. It's Federal Aviation Regulation 91.151, and you consider it every time you plan a flight. It basically says that when you land, there should be at least 30 minutes of fuel in your tanks after a VFR day flight and 45 minutes' worth at night. That quantity is determined using a fuel-consumption standard that assumes "normal cruising speed." The rule reminds pilots that flying at power settings that increase fuel consumption-higher airspeeds or climbs to higher altitudes than planned-erode reserves.
One reliable way to track your fuel is to fly the profile you planned (altitude and power setting) and to know in advance how changes to your plan would affect fuel burn. Remember that fuel burns given in your pilot's operating handbook are based on proper leaning technique. (See Mark Twombly's article "Fuel School" in the September 2002 AOPA Flight Training.) It's critical to monitor groun dspeed. Are stronger headwinds slowing your progress? The importance to flight planning and safety of this performance parameter was discussed in the December 12, 2003, Training Tips article "Grasping Groundspeed."
Most training flights won't approach the fuel capacity of your aircraft. For those that do, why not set your minimum reserve at more fuel remaining than required by regulations, even if that means an extra fuel stop for safety (and practice)? "What's the major cause of engine stoppages? You got it: running out of fuel. This makes having plenty of fuel one of your best outs. But how much is enough? Regulations require that you plan your flights so as to land with 30 minutes' fuel reserve on day VFR flights and 45 minutes' worth of fuel on night VFR and flights under IFR. Those are the legal minimums, but personally it makes me nervous to land with that little fuel aboard," Thomas A. Horne counseled in his August 2000 AOPA Pilot article "Escape Chutes: What's Your Way Out?" For more information, download the AOPA Air Safety Foundation's Fuel Awareness Safety Advisor.
A related issue: Do you know how much fuel was in your tanks when you began your flight? If your aircraft is topped off each time it flies, no problem. If not, some guesswork or measuring may be involved. Yet another reason to include an extra margin of safety in your planning!
| Your Partner in Training |
So what kind of gear do you really need to learn to fly? Check out "Getting the Gear You Need" for the best tips on stocking your student-pilot flight bag. You'll learn how to find what you need at the right price. And don't forget, our Pilot Information Center specialists at 800/USA-AOPA are available to give you advice as well, every weekday from 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Eastern time.
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 |
FEDEX DONATES CARGO PLANE TO PURDUE
FedEx Corporation this week donated a retired cargo airplane to Purdue University's Department of Aviation Technology. FedEx officials turned over the keys to the Boeing 727-100 on Tuesday at a ceremony held at Purdue Airport's Hangar 1 ramp. The freighter was taken out of service by FedEx in late July. Valued at $650,000, it will be used as an on-ground training lab that can be taxied by students but will not be flown. It will be the first jet cargo aircraft laboratory at the university, which also has a 1970s-era B-737 and a B-727 built in the 1960s that serve as nonflying labs.
NEW SAFETY QUIZ COVERS INTERCEPT PROCEDURES
You study them hoping you'll never need to use them, but in today's ultra-secure airspace, the odds are greater than ever that you'll need to know intercept procedures. Take the AOPA Air Safety Foundation Safety Quiz and test your knowledge on the frequency and squawk code that should immediately come to mind; what to do if you can't communicate with intercepting aircraft; and what to do if the intercepting aircraft and air traffic control's instructions conflict. Take the quiz on AOPA Online or challenge yourself with another Safety Quiz topic in the "Previous Quizzes" section.
AOPA MENTOR WINS AUGUST PHOTO CONTEST
Last fall, David Ziegler was a student pilot at New Jersey's Greenwood Lake Airport when a windy day forced him to stay on the ground and take photos of airplanes rather than flying them. "I got up on a cliff that overlooked the runway and started shooting," he said. The result is the August Photo of the Month, a pastoral image of a Cessna 172 launching into a beautiful fall morning. Ziegler has since earned his private pilot certificate and flies Cessna 172s and Piper Warriors whenever he can. He's also signed up to be an AOPA Project Pilot Mentor to help someone else achieve their dream of flight and says the experience has energized him. "I think I learned as much as the person I was mentoring," he said. Ziegler has since acquired his advanced ground instructor certificate, is going to add an instrument rating, and is planning to work toward his commercial certificate.
FLORIDA INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY BUYS ELITE TRAINING DEVICES
Florida Institute of Technology's College of Aeronautics Simulation Center at Melbourne International Airport recently purchased two Elite advanced aviation training devices (ATD). The G501 and G502 full cockpit trainers replace older-generation FTD Level 3 trainers and are part of the college's simulation technology modernization program. The new Elite ATDs were designed to meet specific training requirements for integration into the school's curriculum. For more information on Elite simulators, see the Web site.
BELL RELOCATES, EXPANDS TRAINING FACILITY
Bell Helicopter's training academy has moved to the Alliance Airport north of Fort Worth, Texas. The facility includes a newly designed customer center with 18 large classrooms and three overhaul labs, as well as more than 41,000 square feet of hangar space for maintenance training. A helicopter-specific landing strip and helipads located within a few minutes' flight time from the customer training academy are dedicated to autorotation and emergency procedure flight time. The facility has a fleet of seven helicopters and uses two flight training devices. In addition to transition training for fixed-wing pilots, the center offers technician training and professional pilot programs for advanced pilots throughout the year. For more information, see the Web site.
| Inside AOPA |
FAA SLAPS CHICAGO IN FINAL DECISION ON AOPA COMPLAINT
Chicago will pay a $33,000 fine for illegally tearing up Meigs Field airport without proper notification. And the city will have to repay $1 million of airport funds that Mayor Richard M. Daley illegally diverted from O'Hare and Midway airports to give to the destruction contractors. And with the more than $550,000 the city has already spent attempting to fight the fine and repayment, hapless Chicago taxpayers are out close to $1.6 million, and they've lost a world-class airport that generated $57 million a year in economic activity for the city. The FAA announced the final settlement with the city Monday. The city admitted no wrongdoing. "But this sends a clear signal to other cities that the FAA is serious about upholding its regulations and that AOPA is serious about holding everyone's feet to the fire when it comes to protecting airports," said AOPA President Phil Boyer. AOPA filed the original complaints that resulted in the fine and fund repayment. "Many of us always thought that the civil penalty of $1,100 per day was 'chump change' to a city with the budget of Chicago," said Boyer. "But whether he admits it or not, it shows that Daley violated FAA regulations and could have put aircraft at risk." And for the future, it won't be chump change. That's because after Meigs, AOPA successfully lobbied Congress to increase the fine to $10,000 per day, to make it much more painful for another city to attempt a midnight airport raid. Notice of the proposed closure must also be published in the Federal Register. See AOPA Online.
AOPA DONATES $25K TO EMBRY-RIDDLE SCHOLARSHIP FUND
AOPA President Phil Boyer on Tuesday presented Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University with a check for $25,000 for the AOPA Career Pathways Scholarship fund. Each year, AOPA contributes a percentage of the AOPA membership dues of every Embry-Riddle alumni to an AOPA scholarship for students in ERAU's Aeronautical Science program. Some 6,200 Embry-Riddle graduates are AOPA members. AOPA President Phil Boyer presented the check during a Pilot Town Meeting in Daytona Beach, Florida, home of one of the university's two residential campuses. AOPA established the AOPA Career Pathways Scholarship in 1997 and to date has given some $150,000 to the fund. The university applies the contributions to an endowed scholarship to help aviation students. The AOPA Career Pathways Scholarship is part of a landmark alliance between the world's largest aviation organization and the leading aviation university in the United States.
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 |
SPORTY'S DVD FOCUSES ON TAKEOFFS AND LANDINGS
All pilots are trying to improve their takeoffs and landings (and some are working on that elusive greaser). A new DVD from Sporty's explores the different types of takeoffs and landings and the many factors that affect their outcome. Takeoffs and Landings attempts to provide viewers with a comprehensive review of the basics and offers some tips and tricks for consistently smooth operation. In-flight footage shows different techniques and methods, and the DVD covers crosswind techniques, slips, crabs, no-flap landings, emergencies, and recoveries from less-than-perfect landings. Takeoffs and Landings is available for $29.95 and may be ordered online or by calling 800/SPORTYS.
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: When can I log night time for the purposes of meeting the requirements for getting a private pilot certificate? |
Answer: Under 14 CFR 1.1, "night" is defined as the time between the end of evening civil twilight and the beginning of morning civil twilight, as published in the American Air Almanac, converted to local time. There is a calculator that can help you determine when civil twilight is based on the date and your location. For more information on night regulations, visit AOPA Online.
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. |
| What's New At AOPA Online |
|When you've spent hour after hour trying to land an airplane, or working on maneuvers, or trying to figure out weather, it can be easy to forget why you want to get your pilot certificate in the first place. If you need a reminder, take a look at the latest installment of "Why We Fly." It's a pictorial that beautifully illustrates the adventures that await you when you become a private pilot. |
| Weekend Weather |
|See the current weather on AOPA Online, provided by Meteorlogix. |
| ePilot Calendar |
| UPCOMING FLYING DESTINATIONS: |
Princeton/Rocky Hill, New Jersey. The Bellanca-Champion Club East Coast Fly-In takes place September 22 through 24 at Princeton (39N). Citabrias, Decathlons, Scouts, and Bellancas of all types and all enthusiasts are welcome. Contact Robert Szego, 518/731-6800, or visit the Web site.
Bartlesville, Oklahoma. The 50th Annual Tulsa Regional Fly-In takes place September 22 and 23 at Bartlesville Municipal (BVO). This event attracts approximately 500 aircraft for the two-day event. The public is invited to experience the best of sport aviation aircraft as well as aviation personalities, educational seminars, and exhibits. Contact Charles W. Harris, 918/622-8400, or visit the Web site.
Petersburg, Virginia. The Virginia Regional EAA Fly-In takes place September 30 and October 1 at Dinwiddie County (PTB). Event features forums, vendors, aircraft and kit companies, judging, pancake breakfasts, youth tent, and more. Contact Dee Whittington, 804/358-4333 or Judy Sparks 703/590-9112, or visit the Web site.
Alva, Oklahoma. The Oklahoma Festival of Flight takes place September 30 and October 1 at Alva Regional (AVK). Free breakfast and discounted fuel for those who fly in, Saturday and Sunday airshows! Check Web site for pre-registration and prizes. Contact Tyson Tucker, 580/327-1565, 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 Clinic is scheduled in Indianapolis, October 7 and 8. Clinics are also scheduled in San Jose, California, and Columbia, South Carolina, October 14 and 15. 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 North Hills, California, St. Louis, and San Antonio, September 25; Ontario, California, Olathe, Kansas, and Houston, September 26; Costa Mesa, California, Springfield, Missouri, and Fort Worth, Texas, September 27; and San Diego, Albuquerque, New Mexico, and Austin, Texas, September 28. The topic is "Emergency Procedures." For details and a complete schedule, see AOPA Online.