74

This is how I explain it, hopefully it helps more than hinders! Heading: This is where my nose points - and seeing as my nose is attached to my head, this is where my head (and thus my machine) is pointing relative to North. Course: This is my INTENDED path of travel that I have calculated taking into consideration winds, variation and declination. Track: ...


64

What you are hearing is "V-One", written as V1. It actually is said when they can no longer safely abort the takeoff with the remaining runway, but they still are not quite ready to takeoff. As they get a little faster, there should then be a second callout of "Rotate" when they have achieved the required takeoff speed, and that is when they actually ...


55

Background The Sequenced Flashing Lights are part of some approach lighting systems and are a row of strobe lights that flash in sequence to direct the pilots eyes to the runway. They are useful in conditions of bad weather, as they quickly catch the eye and help the pilot locate the runway threshold which might otherwise be hidden; however, during normal ...


43

For runways with other than hard surfaces it is common to list the runways with a letter G for grass or in the case of a seaplane base, with W for water. An example of this is runway 8G at Boulder (KBDU) and runway 35W at David Wayne Hooks (KDWH). You can see this information in the Chart Supplement pages and diagrams for each airport.


42

A rubber engine is not to be confused with a rubber motor (a rubber band which is twisted in order to store energy which can be released when the rubber band untwists. This type of engine is good for short energy bursts in small model airplanes). A rubber engine is an engine deck (tables of engine data) which can be scaled according to your needs. In a way, ...


40

The first "practical" autopilot was invented by George DeBeeson (the patent can be found here, updated here) - This seems to be the most likely reason for the informal name "George" for the autopilot system on aircraft. Autopilots are also sometimes called "Otto" (as in Otto the Autopilot from Airplane!, and our very own chat bot, but this seems to be less ...


38

It's called a holding pattern.


37

Flight levels use QNE or pressure altitude, while altitude references QNH or local pressure adjusted to sea level pressure. Altitudes are used at low levels and flight levels at higher levels. The transition between altitudes and flight levels differs by country and is generally just above the highest obstacle in that country. In the US the transition ...


33

"To firewall" is a phrase meaning to go to full power. Most aircraft throttle controls provide full power when moved to their furthest forward position - the direction towards the firewall separating the nose mounted engine from the cockpit in aircraft in the past. The phrase is still used, just as we "dial" a telephone even though the telephone dial is no ...


28

There are indeed only two 'official' classifications of aviation incidents, which are defined in ICAO Annex 13. Accident. An occurrence associated with the operation of an aircraft which takes place between the time any person boards the aircraft with the intention of flight until such time as all such persons have disembarked, in which: a) a ...


28

A detent is usually a discontinuity in force at a certain position: the control likes to move into that position, and moving it away takes more than average force. Image source In the image above, the flap detents are clearly identifiable as the notches in the guide rail: in order to move the lever away from a notch, it needs to be lifted first and can ...


27

Any body moving in a fluid experiences pressure forces over its surface. The concepts of center of pressure, aerodynamics center and neutral point are useful in understanding the effects of these forces. Let's take an airfoil moving in air with subsonic flow attached to the body. Center of Pressure The center of pressure is the point where the total sum of ...


27

Dry thrust usually means the non-augumented thrust i.e. thrust without the use of afterburners or liquid injection. The maximum thrust produced by jet engines w/o afterburner is sometimes called military thrust. The thrust of a jet eingine can be increased by using methods like water(+methonol) injection (mostly in older turbojet engines) or by using ...


27

Fail-safe does not necessarily imply that the system will continue operating after a fail. If the system stops operating but does not create a dangerous situation, it is still fail-safe. A non-essential service on board an aircraft such as the entertainment system can be fail-safe if it just stops operating because a fuse blows. If the fuse does not blow and ...


27

She kept the Squadron Leader updated as much as she needed to, but she preferred to keep comms chatter to a minimum when she was... Military-related terms: ...on patrol ...on station ...on a sortie ...on a shout [British English, specifically used for search and rescue] ...on recce/on recon [British and American English, respectively] General terms: ......


26

The 'Y' in YF stands for prototype according to the Tri-Service aircraft designation system. The 'F' stands for fighter, so YF stands for prototype-Fighter. These aircraft are operated by the US Department of Defense (USAF or USN). For example, YF-22 is the prototype (technology demonstrator) version of the F-22 Raptor. The 'X' series is the name given for ...


25

Capt left, 1st officer or copilot right. On older airlines with a flight engineer, he is behind and is called 2nd officer. It's the same as a ship. Capt is boss, 1st officer is second in command, 2nd officer if on board is 3rd in command. Capt always starts the engines and taxis the airplane since most airliners only have a steering tiller on the left, ...


24

There is no generic name in aviation describing the state of an aircraft being hold up and unable to land. The simplest term I have in mind is "circling the airport". Depending on the way the aircraft is circling the airspace, specific names can be used. Note that these terms carry specific technical meaning in aviation, although they may be misused by ...


24

In this context, it would mean the aircraft is loaded in such a way that the Center of Gravity is too far forward or aft. That's actually not the way we usually use the word "trim" in aviation but it's what it means in this case.


23

Ramp refers to the area in airport where the aircraft are parked. This term comes from the days of seaplanes. From this site: The term ‘Ramp‘ traces its roots back to the days of seaplanes when there literally was a ramp from the water to the terminal parking area. In case of seaplanes, the area is actually an inclined plane between the shore and water. ...


22

Acrobatic is being incorrectly used, although it is slightly more complicated than that. "Aerobatic" refers specifically to flight, and "acrobatic" refers specifically to feats of the human body, so referring to an aircraft as performing acrobatics is wrong. That said, the word "aerobatic" is derived from "aero-acrobatics" and sounds nearly identical, so ...


22

The components of attitude vector are called: yaw (or heading) is the angle of longitudinal (x) axis in horizontal plane, pitch is angle of longitudinal (x) axis from the horizontal and roll is angle of lateral (y) axis from the intersection of the yz (orthogonal to longitudinal axis) plane with horizontal. And their derivatives are usually yaw-rate, pitch-...


22

The "G" suffix refers to a Glider runway. The following verbiage is used in Advisory Circular: AC No: 150/5200-35 Page 15 RUNWAY IDENT "The following suffixes can be used in conjunction with runway identification numbers even if the runway is not painted accordingly: S = STOL runway, G = glider runway, W = water sealane or waterway, and U = ultralight ...


21

Both the MetroJet and GermanWings incidents were deliberate acts of destruction, not accidents in any common understanding of the word, or indeed in the sense defined by the Convention on International Civil Aviation. The Chicago Convention, as it's also known, defines an accident as: An occurrence associated with the operation of an aircraft [...] in ...


21

It's your aircraft's wake, as in wake turbulence.


21

In the aerobatic community we would call that the beginning of an Aileron Roll. It's harder than it looks.


21

The concept of 'density altitude' is kind of like the concept of 'wind chill'. Stick with me here, I'm going somewhere with this. Cold weather is dangerous for the human body, and wind (because of increased heat loss on human skin) makes it worse. But how much worse? Is it worse to be outside in -10C temperatures with a 20 knot wind, or -15C temperatures ...


20

Like with fixed wing aircraft, it is called the ceiling. Usually two ceilings are distinguished; service ceiling, where the aircraft can still achieve a positive rate of climb of either 100 fpm (propeller) or 500 fpm (jet). absolute ceiling, the theoretical altitude at which no positive rate of climb can be achieved. In other words: the maximum altitude at ...


20

The 'x' suffix is aviation speak in an abbreviated word called a contraction. You can think of the 'x' as "cut short" shorthand. Some are defined in manuals or advisory circulars. For example, WX is weather as defined in an old advisory circular, AC00-45. Official or not, a few others that come to mind are: MX - maintenance CX - cancel TX - transmit RX -...


20

No, by definition it isn't. There is drag. Drag is caused by different physical phenomena. According to the cause, it is classified to: Induced drag Induced drag is side-effect of generating lift over finite wing span. Lift is an upward force that the air exerts on the wing. By principle of action and reaction (Newton's third law of motion), the wing ...


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