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AOPA ePilot Flight Training Edition Volume 9, Issue 26 — June 26, 2009  

In This Issue:
New Hot Spot targets VFR in the soup
Flight training scholarships available
Hertz perks for AOPA members

  FT News  |   Inside AOPA  |   TRAINING PRODUCTS   |   FINAL EXAM   



Two-minute turns

The June 12 Training Tip discussed the inclinometer, a component of the turn coordinator that helps a pilot correct yaw during flight. Another feature of the turn coordinator in an analog cockpit is the message “2 min” displayed on the instrument’s face. What does this mean, and why is it displayed prominently on the instrument?


You will learn about the standard-rate turn, also called the two-minute turn, while studying and practicing the basic instrument flying skills required by the Private Pilot Practical Test Standards. This kind of turn employs a shallow bank angle—a safe and reliable way to achieve heading changes when flying without visual references to the surface. For a noninstrument-rated pilot, it could be a life-saver.


“A turn to specific heading should be made at standard rate. Standard rate is defined as a turning rate of 3° per second, which will yield a complete 360° turn in 2 minutes. A turning rate of 3° per second will allow for a timely heading change, as well as allowing the pilot sufficient time to crosscheck the flight instruments and avoid drastic changes to the aerodynamic forces being exerted on the aircraft,” explains Chapter 5 of the Instrument Flying Handbook , one of the reference materials cited in the test standards for your basic instrument training.


To perform a standard-rate turn, establish pitch and bank on the attitude indicator, and then verify the standard rate on the turn coordinator. Bank angle is not shown on the turn coordinator (see Chapter 6 of the Pilot’s Handbook of Aeronautical Knowledge ).


Of course, the best use of standard-rate turning after an inadvertent cloud penetration is to fly a one-minute course reversal to escape instrument conditions. A testimonial to this emergency technique—and some useful commentary on the challenge of handling a real emergency—is found in a pilot’s letter to Flight Forum in the November 1999 AOPA Flight Training: “My flight instructor had prepared me well to navigate my way back out of the cloud by maintaining attitude and using a standard-rate, timed turn to a reciprocal heading. However, I was not quite prepared for the ‘startle factor’ of actually flying from VFR to IMC.”


The student’s experience is a perfect example of how mastering fundamental skills can solve big problems.


As a student pilot, you are a member of your airport's community, which includes the aviation businesses and pilots who base their personal aircraft there. You are obligated to know and follow any noise abatement policies that your airport utilizes. Where do you find these? Your first stop is the Airport/Facility Directory, which lists noise abatement policies and procedures under "airport remarks." (You'll also find them in the printed and online versions of AOPA's Airport Directory and on the back of Jeppesen instrument approach plates.) Noise ordinances vary, so pilots who plan to fly into an airport with a noise abatement program should call the airport's noise abatement office ahead of time to find out the details of its particular policy. For more information, see the July 2003 issue of AOPA Flight Training .


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.


New Hot Spot targets VFR in the soup

Low ceilings and visibilities rank as the greatest weather hazard to the VFR pilot. But tools are available to help VFR pilots steer clear of instrument meteorological conditions (IMC), and the AOPA Air Safety Foundation has compiled its most popular resources into a concise package: the new VFR Into IMC Safety Hot Spot. The Web page contains free interactive courses, including one that re-creates a VFR-into-IMC crash, along with key print resources and featured accident reports.

Flight training scholarships available

The International Council of Air Shows Foundation (ICAS) has scholarship funds to assist future pilots, flight instructors, and performers in completing the necessary training to reach their goals. Seven scholarships are available, including a $2,000 grant to begin or continue flight training, as well as several opportunities for aerobatic training. ICAS is accepting applications through Aug. 1. See the Web site for complete information and applications.

Women’s helicopter group offers scholarships

The Whirly-Girls, an international nonprofit organization of female helicopter pilots, is accepting applications for 2010 scholarships. Whirly-Girls members in good standing for at least one year prior to the application deadline are eligible for several training scholarships, including instrument refresher and mountain flying programs, as well as primary training. Applications are due Oct. 1. More information and applications are available on the Web site.

Hawaii helicopter flight school gets accreditation

Mauna Loa Helicopter Training Schools has been named an accredited institution by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges of Technology. Mauna Loa says that it is one of just three helicopter flight schools nationwide to earn that status. It operates on the islands of Hawaii, Kauai, and Oahu, and provides all rotorcraft ratings through airline transport pilot. The school operates a fleet of 13 Robinson R22s, three R44s, and a Cessna 172.

Inside AOPA

Take to the sky this Fourth of July

A mile of highway will take you just one mile... but a mile of runway will take you anywhere. Few people around the world have the freedom to take to the air and explore the nearly limitless sky. But in America, we have the special freedom to fly—over vast expanses of land, from sea to shining sea. So as you celebrate your freedoms this Fourth of July weekend, invite a friend along for an adventure in the sky! After your flight, share your story with AOPA. As part of our Freedom to Fly campaign, we’re going to plot each flight on an interactive map to show all of the locations where AOPA members took to the sky.

Hertz perks for AOPA members

Did you know that as an AOPA member, you are entitled to a free year of enrollment in the Hertz #1 Club Gold program? Imagine renting a car without the hassle of long lines and unnecessary paperwork, while earning points toward free rental days and other travel rewards. By taking advantage of this special offer, you will enjoy faster reservations and returns, discounted rates, and other benefits. Enroll online.

Show your support and get $100

Want everyone to know you’re an AOPA member and a supporter of general aviation? Looking to put some extra cash in your pocket? Just sign up for an AOPA checking account. You’ll receive $100 for opening a qualifying new account by Aug. 31, and you’ll also get checks, check cards, and statements that feature the AOPA logo. As an AOPA partner, Bank of America will return a portion of all revenue to AOPA. The money will be reinvested to fund our mission to maintain the freedom, safety, and affordability of GA. To open an AOPA checking account, visit your neighborhood Bank of America or go online. Use offer code SPEP100. A minimum opening balance of $1,000 and debit card transaction within the first 30 days are required.


Multisump allows for more sumping, less dumping

Sporty’s has a new fuel-testing device that combines the familiar, smaller fuel-testing cup with a larger reservoir that holds enough fuel for multiple tests. The Multisump has a small sampling cup at the top so you can visually check samples and then dump them into a larger area at the bottom to store tested fuel. The larger reservoir holds up to eight samples. The Multisump sells for $24.95 and can 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.


Question: My instructor has been teaching me about sectional chart symbols. He wasn’t sure why airports with runways longer than 8,069 feet are shown in the actual shape of the airport instead of a circle. Why is that?


Answer: Sectional charts are drawn to scale. The round airport symbol is approximately 0.192 inches in width. The cartographers who create the charts decided that runways longer than 8,069 feet would be rounded to 8,100. At the sectional chart scale, this would make the runway bigger than the airport circle symbol. For more information on sectional chart symbols, take a look at the Aeronautical Chart User’s Guide .


Got a question for our technical services staff? E-mail [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

Pilots love to take photos, and they love to share them with other pilots. Now you can upload your flying photos to our online gallery, "Air Mail." Share your special aviation images, or view and rate more than 2,000 photos and counting. Highly rated photos will get put into rotation on the AOPA home page!

AOPA career Opportunities

Ever dream of turning your passion for aviation into a career? We're looking for a Director of Airspace and Modernization and an Aviation Technical Specialist. To learn more about other AOPA career opportunities, visit AOPA Online.


Want something to do this weekend? Planning 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 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 Newark, N.J., July 11 and 12; Jacksonville, Fla., and Memphis, Tenn., July 18 and 19; Pittsburgh, Pa., July 25 and 26; Costa Mesa, Calif., Atlanta, Ga., and Champaign, Ill., Aug. 15 and 16. 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 Oshkosh, Wis., July 29, 30, and 31; Germantown, Tenn., Aug. 31; Nashville, Tenn., Sept. 1; Maryville, Tenn., Sept. 3. 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 Flight Training Editor : Jill Tallman | ePilot Editor: Alyssa Miller | Contributor: Alton Marsh

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