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March 14, 2014, AOPA ePilot: Flight Training EditionMarch 14, 2014, AOPA ePilot: Flight Training Edition

ePilot Flight Training Edition

March 14, 2014 - VOL 14, ISSUE 11

Training Tips

Airspace in a flash

The March 7 "Training Tip: 'Arrival or through flight'" presented a scenario in which a pilot on a cross-country faced a decision about how to navigate through an area of Class C airspace. On any route, the current combination of flight conditions and airspace can present myriad decisions to ponder, and raise procedural questions that may have eluded you in ground study.

For example, what's the proper action if you are planning a return flight to a home airport located beneath a Mode C veil, if your transponder happens to be inoperative? Sectional charts are for VFR navigation, so should you learn the elements of the IFR system depicted? What does it mean when someone refers to a terminal radar service area (TRSA) as "left over" from a previous system of airspace classification? How should you fly within its boundaries? There's a special conservation area up ahead. Will you overfly it at an acceptable altitude? Is it true that a new kind of airspace is appearing on navigation charts?

Whether you are planning your cross-country, or already flying it, knowledge based on studying some specific examples beats mere memorization of the terms, and will save you time crafting and flying your route. To make the airspace study process more realistic and effective, the AOPA Foundation's Air Safety Institute has produced a set of airspace flash cards available online or for download that present typical depictions of charted airspace areas, followed by a second flash card giving their description, requirements, and a frequently asked question about it similar to those posed above (along with the answers).

Take that TRSA: Where does it fit in the national airspace classification system?

"TRSAs are 'leftovers' from the previous (pre-1993) airspace classification system. As a general rule, they exist at airports where traffic load requires enhanced radar service but that aren't busy enough to justify Class C airspace," the TRSA flash card explains.

As for whether there is new airspace on sectional charts: not exactly. Overhead prohibition areas, enforced by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, not the FAA, have existed for some time above some marine wildlife sanctuaries. As their flash card explains, they "have just recently been placed on aeronautical charts."

Let this training aid, and this online safety quiz, help showcase your flashy knowledge of airspace.

Flight Training News


AOPA Foundation makes donation to Able Flight

Able Flight will be able to train more people with physical disabilities thanks to an $8,000 donation from the AOPA Foundation. Read more... Share:  


Apps of the week

Wrangle the weather with these five apps

Take a look at five apps designed to help pilots check and track the weather. Read more... Share:  



Wisconsin company offers upset training to pilots

A Wisconsin company is now offering its upset training course to all pilots. Read more... Share:  


Embry-Riddle online course covers human factors in accidents

The mental and physical factors that contribute to aviation accidents will be the topic of a new, free massive open online course (MOOC) offered by Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University - Worldwide. The class, which runs from April 7 to May 11, is limited to 2,000 students. Students enrolled in the course will have the flexibility of viewing lectures and working on assignments based on their own schedules. There will also be live sessions where students can watch the instructor and ask questions in real time.



Brief passengers, they'll thank you

When an accident happens, a little information can sometimes make a big difference. The Air Safety Institute's video Critical Information: The Passenger Safety Briefing helps broach this sensitive issue, with tips on how to prepare your passengers. Watch the video to learn more... Share:  


Central Michigan University receives unmanned helicopter

Central Michigan University has acquired an unmanned aircraft—a six-foot-long helicopter—equipped with a hyperspectral camera that the university says will significantly advance research imaging of Great Lakes wetlands. The camera takes extremely high-resolution images in 334 colors, compared with typical cameras that create images using combinations of three primary colors. Researchers will use the helicopter, controlled via computer or by radio waves, to capture images of vegetation in wetlands throughout the Great Lakes basin.



Always something going on at AOPA campus at Sun 'n Fun

Whether you're at Sun 'n Fun for a day or the week, there will always be something happening at the expanded AOPA campus. In addition to the primary membership tent, the association will offer a new "activity tent" for education, programming, and socializing, and an outdoor courtyard area. Read more... Share:  

Training Resources

SkySpotter: Pireps made easy

Created by pilots, for pilots, pilot reports (pireps) are a great source of real-time, in-flight weather conditions—offering a "sneak peek" of what you'll encounter in flight. This Air Safety Institute course covers how to get, use, and give pireps to help you become a better SkySpotter. Take the course...

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 8 p.m. Eastern time) or from Flight Training Online or AOPA Online. If you're not already a member, join today and get the pilot's edge.



AOPA Live This Week

Airplane, skydiver collide; new Debonair engine

It's AOPA Live This Week® from the Aircraft Electronics Association convention in Nashville, Tenn. We're one step closer to a driver's license medical for more pilots as the Senate has taken up the bill. We've got pictures of a crash between an airplane and a skydiver—find out what happened. The Sweepstakes Debonair gets a new engine. Plus, the latest from the AEA convention. AOPA Live This Week, March 13... Share:  

Career Pilot to hold career fair

Future & Active Pilot Advisors ( will be holding a career fair for pilots on March 21 in Los Angeles and May 1 in Las Vegas. The fair will also hold a session for future professional pilots and those actively looking for an aviation university or flight school covering the projected need for new pilots, financing your education or flight training, and developing a rational career plan.


Boeing, Hainan Airlines expand pilot training agreement

Boeing and China's Hainan Airlines have signed a five-year pilot training agreement to support the carrier's introduction of the 787 Dreamliner to its fleet. Under the deal, Boeing Flight Services will extend the airline's existing contract for flight training at Boeing's Singapore and Shanghai training campuses on three Boeing models—the Next-Generation 737, 767, and 787.

For more aviation career news, see the Flight Training website.

Plane Spotter

Oklahoma's 'radical' racer

Some airplanes just look the part; the mere sight of them conjures images of aviation in purest form. If an aggressive-looking racer with a strikingly straight wing, short gear, and steel-tube frame brings to mind the Red Bull Air Race, it's because the Zivko Edge 540, built in Guthrie, Okla., is flown by race pilots including Paul Bonhomme, winner of the first race of the 2014 series. Light, agile, and "streamlined to perfection," the Edge's "radical wing" is "acknowledged as a pioneering feat of design," says the air racing organization.

Training Products offers flight sim device bundle is selling the Saitek Pro Flight Basic Flight Simulation Bundle with X-Plane 10. The bundle includes the Saitek Pro Flight Yoke System, the Saitek Pro Flight Rudder Pedals, and X-Plane 10, a flight simulator for personal computers. The cost is $324.99.


ASA offers private pilot test prep bundle

ASA's "Test Prep 2014 Bundle: Private Pilot" covers study questions for the private and recreational pilot FAA knowledge exam, supported with answers and explanations. It includes a softcover book, the prepware download edition, and free 24-month access to Prepware Online. The cost is $54.95.

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.

Member Benefits

Members only

The next five most common medical conditions at FAA

After discussing the top five medical conditions seen at the FAA's Aerospace Medical Certification Division, former manager of FAA Aerospace Medical Certification Warren Silberman presents the next five—and the associated certification requirements. Read more... Share:  


Member benefits

FYI from AOPA Insurance Services

AOPA Insurance Services extends its coverage beyond aviation aircraft and renter's insurance in order to provide pilots like you with the most complete protection possible. Find out about other types of coverage. Share:  


How the captain earns the money

How does an airline captain earn his or her salary? Chip Wright says it's not during normal operations, but during the abnormal ones—when the hard decisions have to be made. Read more... Share:  


Take me flying

When you get your pilot certificate, don't leave behind the four-legged passengers. Read more... Share:  

Instrument Tip


Trains at the DER

At 500 feet per minute and 95 knots of groundspeed in the windless conditions, was the altitude gain per nautical mile sufficient? Read more... Share:  


Flash-based, login required

GPS for IFR 101

GPS units require study and practice to be used safely before launching into instrument meteorological conditions. For a rock-solid foundation of practical knowledge, start with this basic introduction course, full of safety tips and advice that will help you avoid common mistakes, before you delve into a receiver-specific course. Take the course...

Final Exam


I'm getting ready for a solo cross-country flight to a towered airport with intersecting runways. I've heard that occasionally this airport conducts land and hold short operations (LAHSO). The runway lengths show I should have plenty of room to land and come to a complete stop before the intersecting runway, but I'm nervous about complying with the clearance. Do I have to accept a LAHSO clearance?


No. A pilot has the final authority to accept or decline a LAHSO clearance and is expected to decline the clearance if he or she feels it will compromise safety. Student pilots should not participate in the program. (Source: Aeronautical Information Manual 4-3-11.)

Got a question for our technical services staff? Contact AOPA.

Career Opportunities

Aviation job board

Job of the week: Flight instructors at Pilgrim Aviation

If you are a CFI interested in top pay, flying safe, and having fun, Pilgrim Aviation is looking for you. Pilgrim Aviation, an FAA-approved flight school under Part 61, offers both primary and advanced flight training. It has an owned fleet of 11 aircraft, including a 2013 Cessna Skycatcher light sport aircraft, and Redbird LD advanced aviation training device. Click here for full job description and to apply.


AOPA career opportunities

Join the AOPA team

Ever dream of turning your passion for aviation into a career? We're looking for an accounting operations supervisor, Air Safety Institute intern, director of insurance business operations, and member services representative. To learn more about other AOPA career opportunities, visit AOPA Online.

Education and Seminars

Flight Instructor Refresher Courses

Mar 15-16 - San Mateo, Calif.; and Virginia Beach, Va.

Apr 5-6 - Denver, Colo.; Cincinnati, Ohio; San Diego, Calif.; Tampa, Fla.; and Indianapolis, Ind.

Apr 12-13 - Atlanta, Ga.; Waltham, Mass.; Salt Lake City, Utah; and Ashburn, Va.

May 3-4 - Fort Lauderdale, Fla.; Albany, N.Y.; and Pensacola, Fla.

For a complete schedule, see AOPA Online. Can't make it in person? Sign up for the Air Safety Institute's new Online eFIRC.

Air Safety Institute Safety Seminars

Mar 18 - Raymond, Miss.

Mar 19 - Baton Rouge, La.

Mar 21 - Greenville, S.C.

Mar 24 - Ypsilanti, Mich.; and Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

Topics vary—for details and a complete schedule, see AOPA Online.

Aviation Calendar

Want something to do this weekend? Planning an aviation getaway? See AOPA's enhanced calendar of events. Now you can filter events by date range, airport ID, state, or region. Before you take off on an adventure, make sure you check our current aviation weather provided by Jeppesen.

To include an event or to search all events in the calendar, visit AOPA Online. For airport details, including FBO fuel prices, see AOPA Airports.

AOPA Featured Events

Apr 26 — San Marcos, Texas. San Marcos Municipal Airport (KHYI). AOPA Fly-in.


May 31 — Indianapolis, Indiana. Indianapolis Regional Airport (KMQJ). AOPA Fly-in.


Jul 12 — Plymouth, Massachusetts. Plymouth Airport (KPYM). AOPA Fly-in.


Aug 16 — Spokane, Washington. Spokane Felts Field (KSFF). AOPA Fly-in.


Sep 20 — Chino, California. Chino Airport (KCNO). AOPA Fly-in.


Oct 4 — Frederick, Maryland. Frederick Municipal Airport (KFDK). AOPA Homecoming.


Nov 8 — Brunswick, Georgia. Malcom McKinnon Airport (KSSI). AOPA Fly-in.

Picture Perfect

AOPA's online photo gallery allows you to upload your own aviation photography as well as view, rate, and comment on others' photos. Take a look, and submit your own photos!

AOPA ePilot

ePilot Flight Training Editor:

Benét Wilson

Production Team

Katie Richardson
Lezlie Ramsey
Melissa Whitehouse


Sarah Deener
Alyssa Miller
Jim Moore
Jill W. Tallman
Warren Morningstar
Alton K. Marsh
Dave Hirschman
Tom Horne
Ian J. Twombly
Dan Namowitz

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