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'AOPA ePilot' Custom Content'AOPA ePilot' Custom Content

The following stories from the March 21, 2008, edition of AOPA ePilot were provided to AOPA members who expressed an interest in the particular subject areas. Any AOPA member can receive information tailored to their areas of interest by updating their preferences online.

~ My ePilot - Turbine Interest ~
Customer demand for higher speed, a larger cabin, and longer range has led Gulfstream Aerospace to formally launch the G650-an entirely new design that nonetheless shares a pilot type rating with the company's current line of 350-, 400-, and 500-series jets. The largest Gulfstream ever, the G650 is likely the first of a new class of business jets offering transoceanic range and cruise speeds approaching Mach 1. It is yet to be seen what the General Dynamics unit's main rivals in this market- Canada's Bombardier and Dassault of France among them-will offer in response. Read more on AOPA Online.

My ePilot - Student Interest, Training Tips
Two recent Training Tips discussed cloud cover ( "What's the ceiling?" and "Cloud Tops"). Those clouds in the distance off your wing tip must be given wide berth, too. One day you might receive a clearance to enter or depart controlled airspace accompanied by the cautionary instruction, "Maintain VFR at all times." Why did the controller say that?

The caution was meant to remind you that you, as the pilot, should never let a radar vector or other instruction get you in trouble. "In many cases, particularly at radar facilities, the people on the ground have little idea of the flight conditions beyond what has been relayed by pilots," wrote Bruce Landsberg, executive director of the AOPA Air Safety Foundation, in the safety article "Just say 'unable.'" This isn't a concern only for instrument pilots trying to comply with instructions while avoiding turbulence or icy clouds. "A similar situation involving benign clouds can develop with a VFR pilot operating in Class B or C airspace. Pilots not on an IFR flight plan are expected to maintain VFR—period. If an assigned heading or altitude is going to put the airplane too close to a cloud, then advise the controller that you are 'unable to maintain VFR' and suggest an alternative heading or altitude."

Some experience flying nearer than is comfortable to clouds, in the company of your instructor, will eliminate any skepticism you may have about the importance of this responsibility. In his "Wx Watch" column in the November 2006 AOPA Pilot, Thomas A. Horne argues that gradual exposure to poorer weather conditions should be included in any comprehensive flight training. "I've always been an advocate for flight instructors taking primary students on flights in marginal VFR weather—both in the traffic pattern and away from it. This way, the student can see what a 1,000-foot ceiling and three-statute-mile visibility (the VFR weather minimums at airports with controlled airspace designated to the surface) looks like. The same goes for flights at altitude, flying in three-mile visibilities and trying to keep the prescribed distance from clouds. The student quickly learns that three miles isn't much visibility at all."

Even when there's no controller reminding you to maintain VFR, remember those wise words. They'll keep you safe!

My ePilot - Training Product
Tropic Aero, distributor of Garmin Aviation products as well as other types of pilot supplies, has created a blog on Garmin's popular line of GPS units. Entries are written from a pilot's point of view and will be updated twice per month. Current entries include a tutorial on how to receive traffic reports on the Garmin 396 and 496 handheld units, a breakdown of the differences between those two models, and some tips on using the Trip and Waypoint Manager software that's included with most GPSMap units. In keeping with the interactive nature of blogs, Tropic Aero invites pilots to submit ideas for future articles.

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.

My ePilot - Student Interest, Final Exam
Question: What different types of ailerons are used on aircraft?

Answer: The object of ailerons is to roll an aircraft about its longitudinal axis. There are two different types of ailerons commonly used, and each is designed to compensate for adverse yaw. Differential ailerons work by raising one aileron a greater distance than the other is lowered. This differing distance induces greater drag on the raised aileron/lowered wing by deflecting airflow, compensating for an increase in lift and induced drag on the lowered aileron/higher wing. Frise-type ailerons each move an equal distance in opposite directions. When this happens, increased lift on the raised wing increases induced drag. Frise-type ailerons project a lip on the leading edge of each aileron that, when raised, juts out below the wing. The lip creates parasite drag, offsetting adverse yaw. Remember, coordinated rudder application is still needed wherever ailerons are applied. Read more in the Pilot's Handbook of Aeronautical Knowledge .

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.

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.

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