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Volume 9, Issue 1 — January 2, 2009  

In This Issue:
Fuller prepares for challenges, opportunities
ATP reimburses fuel surcharge
AOPA’s automatic annual renewal hits record

  FT News  |   Inside AOPA  |   TRAINING PRODUCTS   |   FINAL EXAM   




Standard temperature

As we move through the flying seasons, January’s cold challenges us to persevere, while offering some spectacular flight conditions. Engine preheats become the norm. Winterization kits are installed on many aircraft, perhaps modifying operating methods. During planning sessions, calculating aircraft performance using cold-weather operating values provides the information pilots need. See the Oct. 31, 2008, “ Training Tip: New seasons, new decisions.”


To use the performance charts in many pilot’s operating handbooks for general aviation aircraft, it is necessary to know the standard temperature and how much the ambient temperature deviates from it. For example, the cruise-performance chart for a 1980 Cessna 152 offers three sets of performance values at the aircraft’s cruise altitudes: one set of values for 20 degrees below standard, one for standard temperature, and one for 20 degrees above standard. Intermediate values require the use of interpolation, discussed in the March 12, 2004, “ Training Tip.”


Mention standard temperature and most student pilots can readily recite the figures of 15 degrees C or 59 degrees F, and a barometric pressure reading of 29.92 inches. But that’s not the whole picture. “The standard temperature is 15 degrees C but only at sea level. It decreases about 2 degrees C (or 3.5 degrees F) per 1,000 feet of altitude above sea level. The standard temperature at 7,000 feet msl, therefore, is only 1 degree C or 34 degrees F,” Barry Schiff explained in his July 2007 AOPA Pilot column “ Proficient Pilot: Density altitude discussions.”


Although the cold temperatures of winter do not pose the performance-robbing risk of a high-density-altitude condition, safe, accurate planning means using correct values in planning. For example, at a given engine speed, “a difference of 20 degrees C (34 degrees F) above or below standard will influence power by 3 to 5 percent with corresponding changes in fuel flow,” Marc Cook wrote in “ Airframe and Powerplant: Playing with power.”


Here is an easy method for estimating standard temperature at altitudes below 35,000 feet, from Section 2 of AOPA’s Handbook for Pilots .

  1. Double the altitude
  2. Divide by 1,000
  3. Subtract 15
  4. Change the sign

The result will be the temperature in Celsius.


Happy new year! What is your new year’s resolution? To finish your private pilot or sport pilot certificate? To finally start that instrument rating or commercial certificate? To be a safe and proficient pilot? Visualize your goals, plan your method of accomplishing them, and use all of AOPA Online’s resources to help you. From FAA publications to AOPA Air Safety Foundation interactive courses, it’s all here for you. If you can’t find what you are looking for in our extensive online collection, call the knowledgeable staff in the Pilot Information Center, weekdays from 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Eastern.


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.



A Life Insurance Policy That Returns All of Your Premiums?

The Return of Premium Term Plan available from the Pilot Insurance Center features a level death benefit with fixed premiums and guarantees to pay back all premiums at the end of the policy.  A+ Rated Carriers. Call PIC at (800) 380-8376 or visit online.


Fuller prepares for a year of challenges, opportunities

Craig Fuller has taken the controls as president of AOPA–only the fourth president in the association’s nearly 70-year history. Fuller became president following an orderly three-month transition leading up to outgoing president Phil Boyer’s retirement on Dec. 31, 2008. “I see a year of challenges, but I also see a year of opportunities,” Fuller said in a New Year’s video greeting to members. “Much work has already begun with the new Obama administration. We’ve met with the transition team, and those officials have been concerned about the issues that concern all of us.” Read more and watch an introductory video on AOPA Online.


ATP reimburses fuel surcharge

Airline Transport Professionals, the national flight school dedicated to career pilot training, announced Dec. 30 that it had refunded up to $2,500 in fuel surcharges to its Airline Career Pilot Program students. According to the company, the refund was possible because at the time the students enrolled, aviation fuel was more than $6 a gallon. Because aviation fuel prices lag behind other fuel sources, the rebate wasn’t possible until fuel recently went below $4.50 a gallon, the company said. The rebate applies to all students who enrolled at mid-2008 pricing, and the course price has been lowered for those students who plan to start in 2009.


Flight school offers grant for military veterans

A Florida flight school is offering a grant to U.S. military veterans who wish to take professional flight training. Phoenix East Aviation (PEA) of Daytona Beach says it will contribute 5 percent toward the training tuition for veterans who qualify for educational benefits under the Montgomery GI Bill. A veteran must have a private pilot certificate and a valid medical certificate to qualify for reimbursement of pilot training under the GI Bill. The Department of Veteran Affairs will reimburse up to 60 percent of the approved training charges up to a maximum allowable; the Phoenix East Aviation grant further reduces training costs by more than $1,500 for a multiengine commercial/instrument course, PEA said.


World-record flight raises money for Lou Gehrig’s disease

Eighteen months of planning paid off for CarolAnn Garratt Dec. 11 after she and copilot Carol Foy completed their 160-hour round-the-world flight in a Mooney to raise money and awareness for Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease. Read more >>


Careers in Aviation names 2008 scholarship recipient

Saul Meza of Chicago is the 2008 recipient of the Flightline Group Scholarship, Careers in Aviation announced Dec. 22. Meza receives $2,500 to assist with his education. He will graduate in May from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University with a bachelor of science in aeronautical science. His fascination with flight took hold when he participated in his high school’s Navy Junior Research Office Training Corp. “Growing up in an inner-city neighborhood can give one a false sense of hopelessness,” he said. “But, like my parents, I vowed to seize every opportunity to reach my dream of receiving my degree, becoming a flight instructor, and eventually becoming a corporate pilot.”


AOPA member named ’08 National Aerospace Teacher of the Year

Leo Murphy of Fort Walton Beach, Fla., introduces elementary school students through adults to the wonders of flight and aeronautical principles. He is the director of Okaloosa County School District's CHOICE (Community High: Okaloosa Institutes for Career Education) Aviation Institute. The Air Force Association recently named him the 2008 National Aerospace Teacher of the Year for his efforts to entice students to learn about science, technology, engineering, and math. He takes students on field trips and brings guest speakers into the classroom to keep the subjects exciting. Murphy is an associate professor at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University and a retired Naval officer.

Inside AOPA

See AOPA’s 2009 Sweepstakes ‘Let’s Go Flying’ Cirrus SR22

There are no bad years to take part in AOPA’s annual sweepstakes—but this is an especially good year because the prize is simply extraordinary. The 2009 Let’s Go Flying Cirrus SR22 that some lucky AOPA member will win in 2010 (all AOPA members are automatically entered in the drawing) brings stunning performance and unprecedented safety and utility to general aviation.


Automatic annual renewal reaches new highs

Join the record number of AOPA members already taking advantage of the automatic annual renewal program and enjoy the benefits of convenience and savings. Nearly half of all AOPA members—more than 200,000 people—now participate in automatic annual renewal of their AOPA membership. Program participants enjoy savings on their annual dues and the convenience of knowing their membership is always current. Read more >>


Let’s Go Flying! featured in the news

AOPA’s Let’s Go Flying! Web site was recently featured in the KAKE-TV news story, “ Pilots Wanted.” The story, which addressed the growing need for general aviation pilots, included a satellite interview with AOPA Media Relations Director Chris Dancy. With media exposure and help from AOPA’s greatest resource—our members—the Let’s Go Flying! initiative aims to inspire new generations of pilots and keep GA strong. Want to help? Please refer potential pilots to the Let’s Go Flying Web site, where they can order a free learn-to-fly DVD.


‘Transition to Gliders’

Have you been thinking about flying without an engine? Gliding and soaring is a fun and economical way to get into the sky, and it makes powered pilots more proficient. The sixth edition of Transition to Gliders, by Thomas L. Knauff, was written expressly for those who have a private pilot certificate in powered aircraft. Knauff has written several books on gliding and glider instruction and has set gliding records. The book sells for $29.95, and quantity discounts are available for flight schools and clubs. See the Web site for more information.


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.


Question: I’m planning a career as a professional pilot, and I have heard that multiengine time is very important. Can I complete my private pilot training in a multiengine airplane?


Answer: It is perfectly acceptable for you to do your private pilot flight training in a multiengine airplane. Keep in mind, though, that your pilot certificate will be restricted to multiengine privileges only. FAR 61.109(b) outlines the requirements for obtaining your private pilot certificate in a multiengine airplane. You will find they are nearly identical to what would be needed in a single-engine airplane. Be sure to check out AOPA's subject report to read more about the differences between single-engine and multiengine flying.


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

We’ve devoted several weeks’ worth of “Training Tips” to night flying and the precautions you need to take. Sit back and enjoy this pilot’s description of a special nocturnal flight in the latest installment of “ The Joy of Flight” and you’ll understand why we say that night flying can be magical.

Picture Perfect

Pilots love to take photos, and they love to share them with other pilots. Now you can upload your flying photos to our brand-new online gallery, "Air Mail." Share your special aviation images, or view and rate more than 475 photos and counting. Highly rated photos will get put into rotation on the AOPA home page!


Want something to do this weekend? Wanting to plan an aviation getaway? See your personalized 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. You can also bookmark the personalized calender page to check it as often as you want. 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.

Flight Instructor Refresher Clinics

The next AOPA Air Safety Foundation Flight Instructor Refresher Clinics are scheduled in Sevierville, Tenn., and Seattle, Jan. 10 and 11; and Detroit, Jackson, Miss., and Charlotte, N.C., Jan. 17 and 18. 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 Mesa, Ariz., and Reno, Nev., Jan. 12. Topics vary—for details and a complete schedule, see AOPA Online.

Got news? Contact ePilot. Having difficulty using this service? Visit the ePilot Frequently Asked Questions now at AOPA Online or write to [email protected].

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Editorial Team : ePilot Editor: Alyssa Miller | Contributors: Warren Morningstar, Alton Marsh

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