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AOPA ePilot Flight Training Edition - Volume 8, Issue 39AOPA ePilot Flight Training Edition - Volume 8, Issue 39

Volume 8, Issue 39 • September 26, 2008

In this issue:
NetJets employees to get flight lessons from OSU
Test your knowledge of flying's ups and downs
AOPA Expo: General sessions feature farewell to Phil

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Training Tips

Outbound on a solo cross-country, you contact air traffic control and request VFR traffic advisories to your destination. Whether the ATC facility you contact is an approach/departure control or an air route traffic control center (ARTCC), your communications will now consist of traffic callouts from ATC and your reports of whether you spot the traffic.

Listen carefully to the wording of ATC's advisories. The more you use the service, the more familiar the language will become. "Routinely requesting this ATC service during your cross-country flights affords you an added margin of safety. It also makes you more comfortable talking to ATC and gives you a ready source for hearing new aviation phrases," urges the New Pilot's Guide to ATC Communication on the AOPA Flight Training Web site.

Suppose ATC called out traffic that you have been unable to spot. That's not unusual. ATC will continue to advise you of the other aircraft's position until the controller informs you that "traffic is no longer a factor." 

Now suppose that the controller uses a different phrase, telling you that your traffic is "no longer observed." This phrase, according to the Pilot/Controller Glossary, an appendix of the Aeronautical Information Manual , means that "the traffic described in a previously issued traffic advisory is no longer depicted on radar but may still be a factor." That's a different matter entirely. Perhaps ATC's radar coverage ceases below a certain altitude along your route. Or the other aircraft may have changed altitudes or descended to its destination airport.

If ATC has called out no traffic for a while, remain vigilant. The controller could be busy with other duties or on another frequency. "Pilots have to remember that this service to VFR aircraft is provided based upon the workload of ATC. When ATC is busy, providing services to IFR flights always has priority over the needs of VFR flights," explains the answer to a frequently asked question about traffic advisories on the AOPA Flight Training Web site.

If you spot your traffic and report it in sight, keep scanning! Chances are good that there are other aircraft out there that you—and ATC—may or may not ever see.

Your Partner in Training

The cost of flight training can be an impediment to realizing your dream of learning to fly. AOPA offers an additional program to help you cover the cost of your flight training. It's called the AOPA Flight Training Funds program. The program offers credit lines, flexible terms, and predictable payments. Click here to learn more. You'll also find articles in the AOPA Flight Training archives that offer ideas for cutting the cost of learning to fly, such as the tips discussed in " Save some green: 8 steps to controlling costs when learning to fly" in the June 2008 issue of the magazine.

Did you know that student pilots who join AOPA are three times more likely to complete their flight training? Membership includes unlimited access to aviation information by phone (800/USA-AOPA, weekdays from 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Eastern time) or from AOPA Flight Training Online or AOPA Online. If you're not already a member, join today and get the pilot's edge. Login information is available online.

Flight Training News

NetJets is outsourcing flight instruction for some of its nonpilot employees and their families to Ohio State University's (OSU's) aviation department, according to a report in Ohio's Columbus Business First publication. NetJets, an aircraft fractional ownership company, is based in Columbus. The report said the company donated four aircraft to OSU, which then hired three NetJets flight instructors and a program manager who had handled the aviation company's flight school program.

If there's one thing that student pilots, CFIs, and high-time veterans all have in common, it's a susceptibility to takeoff and landing mishaps. Mastering fundamental takeoff and landing skills requires attention to detail and a healthy respect for the limitations of airplane and pilot. Is the runway long enough? Will you clear obstructions? What is the density altitude? How do you compensate for a crosswind? When should you go around? Test your takeoff and landing knowledge with the latest Safety Quiz from the AOPA Air Safety Foundation. For expert tips and techniques, join fellow pilots at the foundation's free live safety seminar, Mastering Takeoffs and Landings .

The School of Aeronautics at Liberty University in Lynchburg, Va., has added two new programs for the 2008-2009 school year: helicopter training and aviation maintenance. The helicopter program became available for the fall 2008 semester and will benefit students who are considering missionary aviation as well as those interested in working in the helicopter industry, according to Dean Dave Young. The aviation maintenance technician school will be launched in January 2009 and will especially benefit students on the mission aviation track, as most mission organizations require pilots to be mechanics as well, the school said.

AOPA President Phil Boyer on Sept. 18 accepted a special award on behalf of the association from the National Aeronautic Association (NAA) and Air Care Alliance, honoring AOPA's longtime support for public benefit flying. "New pilots often ask me, 'What can I do with my license now that I have it?'" Boyer said. "Well, this is it. Through groups like Air Care Alliance, put your certificate to work for others." AOPA has long supported pilots who take part in public benefit flying, which includes, among other things, flying medical patients to distant treatment centers, the Civil Air Patrol's aerial search and rescue missions, and disaster relief operations. See the complete story on AOPA Online.

Inside AOPA

General sessions at AOPA Expo offer a unique opportunity for attendees to get the latest news affecting general aviation through panel discussions with aviation insiders. The opening general session, “The Day Before Yesterday: What the Election Could Mean for GA,” on Thursday, Nov. 6, will feature a panel discussion with former FAA Administrator Jane Garvey, National Air Transportation Association President James Coyne, and other key aviation representatives. Members of AOPA’s executive management team will lead the general sessions on Friday, Nov. 7, and Saturday, Nov. 8. Friday’s session will focus on key activities AOPA has undertaken since Expo 2007. Saturday’s session will focus on identifying the AOPA services and GA issues and opportunities that will affect us all over the next decade. The discussion will also feature insights and parting words from AOPA President Phil Boyer.

The Wright Flyer III replica, built by Mark Dusenberry of Dover, Ohio, captivated John Lane's camera lens at daybreak on Oct. 5, 2005, during the 100-year celebration of the Wright brothers' first practical flight at Huffman Prairie, Dayton, Ohio. Lane, who started the Lebanon Warren County Airport in the early 1950s, is somewhat a celebrity himself after receiving the Charles Taylor Master Mechanic and Wright Brothers Master Pilot awards. See a large image of the winning photo and the other monthly winners on AOPA Online. Voting for finalists and the 2008 grand prize winner will begin online Oct. 10.

Aerodynamics is a critical subject for pilots to grasp, but the traditional textbook approach can make this topic a snoozer. That's why the AOPA Air Safety Foundation took a decidedly different tack, creating a graphics-rich learning experience in its recent online course, Essential Aerodynamics: Stalls, Spins, and Safety . "A picture is indeed worth (at least) a thousand words, and the dynamic, interactive graphics were a marvelous aid to comprehension and learning, especially for this sometimes difficult topic," pilot and AOPA member Todd Johnson wrote in a recent note to the foundation. Johnson and his wife took the 60-minute online course together and described the multimedia format as "fantastic."

Airplanes, like all machines, need to run to stay in top form. And we've been running the 2008 Get Your Glass Sweepstakes airplane every chance we get. Read this week's sweepstakes update for an up-to-the-minute status report on where 208GG is now.

Stay tuned to future issues of AOPA ePilot Flight Training Edition. We’ll unveil a new look soon. Don’t worry, we’ll still deliver the best news, including training tips, scholarship opportunities, general aviation and flight school updates, and more.

Training Products

A new guidebook from Aviation Supplies & Academics Inc. seeks to help flight instructors incorporate scenario-based training into their teaching methods. Train Like You Fly by Arlynn McMahon discusses scenario-based training--or, using a script of real-world experience to address flight training objectives--and shows instructors how to create effective scenarios and teach systematic risk reduction and aeronautical decision making. The 232-page soft-cover book sells for $19.95 and can be ordered online from ASA.

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: What does "taxi to" mean when obtaining taxi instructions at a towered airport?

Answer: If the ATC instruction to "taxi to" a specific runway for departure does not include any holding instructions, you may cross all runways along your route with the exception of the assigned departure runway ( AIM 4-3-18). Pilots should always read back the runway assignment, any clearance to enter a specific runway, and any instruction to hold short of a specific runway or to taxi into position and hold. If you are unsure of the assigned taxi route, request progressive taxi instructions; ATC will then guide you with step-by-step instructions. For additional information on ground operations at towered airports, read " Taxiing at towered airports" from AOPA Flight Training as well as the AOPA Air Safety Foundation's Safety Advisor, Operations at Towered Airports.

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.

What's New Online

Logan Flood was building time for the aviation job of his dreams when a horrific accident nearly took his life. Seven years and many surgeries later, he is flying for the airlines. Read Flood's unforgettable story at AOPA Online. See Dave Hirschman's blog about Logan and contribute your thoughts about inspiring pilots.

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 or send an e-postcard. For more details, see AOPA Online.

Aviation Events & Weather

Want something to do this weekend? Wanting to plan an aviation getaway? See our online calendar of events. We’ve enhanced our calendar so that with one click, you can see all of the events listed in the calendar regions you selected when personalizing ePilot. Now you can browse events listed two weeks to a few months out to make your planning easier. Before you take off on an adventure, make sure you check our current aviation weather provided by Jeppesen.

To submit an event or to search all events in the calendar visit AOPA Online. For airport details, including FBO fuel prices see AOPA's Airport Directory Online.

The next AOPA Air Safety Foundation Flight Instructor Refresher Clinics are scheduled in San Jose, Calif., Indianapolis, Ind., and Nashville, Tenn., Oct. 4 and 5; Fort Lauderdale, Fla., Oct. 11 and 12; Windsor, Conn., Wichita, Kan., and Corpus Christi, Texas, Oct. 18 and 19. 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 are scheduled in Clayton, Mo., Plymouth Meeting, Pa., and Greenville, S.C., Sept. 29; Decatur, Ga., Sedalia, Mo., and Bethlehem, Pa., Sept. 30; Springfield, Mo., and New Cumberland, Pa., Oct. 1; Huntsville, Ala., and Pittsburgh, Pa., Oct. 2. Topics vary-for details and a complete schedule, see AOPA Online.

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