• Pilot Jobs Board
  • Pilot Resume Database
  • Pilot Interview Gouge
  • Airline Pilot Pay Rates
  • Career Articles
  • Flight School Directory
  • Blog
  • Message Boards
  • Resume Services
  • And much more...
Post a Pilot Job

United Airlines Pilot Interview Profiles

Date Interviewed: October 1999
Summary of Qualifications: NA
Were you offered the job? Don't Know
Pilot Interview Profile:

UAL is no longer maintaining applications for individuals more than 6 months from availability; I just got mine in prior to the policy change (about 9
months out). Five months prior to my availability date I received my
interview invite letter asking me to make my appointments; I opted to
schedule one month out (to get all my paperwork in order... a MUST!!)

My prep consisted of hours of pouring over 121 operations as well as the ATP
and FE examination prep books. Study generic turbojet systems! Study 121
domestic operations! I also opted to do all my pre-hire prep with
Arnautical, Inc. They had a DC10 sim very similar in handling to UAL's, and
their interview "poop" was right on the money (by the way, they're located
two floors below UAL's office!!) Get the prep package: paperwork
review/presentation, interview, mental math, sim brief/time... well worth the

All my contact with UAL employees were positive! It seems everywhere I went
I ran into someone who worked with UAL and everyone was very enthusiastic and
friendly.... this should tell you several things.

Upon my arrival (10 minutes prior to "reporting time"), I was led into a room
where two other applicants were seated. At our report time we began
compiling our paperwork for presentation to the interviewers. Key point:
have everything requested in the order stated, and if, for some reason, you
don't have a transcript or driver's record, enclose a letter stating it's on
its way and you'll get to UAL ASAP. After paperwork organization, we sat and
waited for our interview panel as they reviewed logbooks and compared the new
application with the old one previously submitted.

I was called in first.... be proactive and energetic!! YOU ARE EXCITED TO BE
small room where the Captain and HR rep smiled, introduced themselves and
tried their best to put me at ease. They said "we want you to do well, we
are here to hire you" !!! Never during this interview did I feel I was
being persecuted nor doubted; in fact, I thought they both went out of their
way to ensure they understood everything I was saying and make me feel

The application. They reviewed with me the application line by line. They
asked about the differences from the originally submitted application and the
one I turned in this day. They both were very gracious and thanked me for
bringing in the supporting paperwork I had. After the extensive review, they
asked me to review up my aviation career including dates and types of
aircraft flown (they took notes). KNOW THYSELF AND EXPERIENCE.

The logbook. As a military pilot I had not maintained a logbook until Jul of
this month, so there wasn't really anything to review other than ensuring all
hours matched EXACTLY. My military records are pretty thick (16 years worth)
and I'd spent days ensuring everything was just right. They only question
the CPT asked of me was the differences between CP, PI, PC, UT, IP, etc for
the military.

The HR questions. This is where they try to get to know who you are.
Remember no one is perfect, but don't spill your guts either. Pick several
stories and practice telling the story.... beginning (set up the scene they
can see clearly), body (what happened), and ending (how it ended, what you
could've done differently, and what did you learn).
1) Decribe an unfair policy you've had to work with.
2) Describe a problem in the aircraft you couldn't fix.
3) When was the last time a superior criticized you?
4) Why have you been so successful in your aviation career?

The technical. This is set up as a scenario. You'll be given a METAR,
Jeppesen airport diagram, enroute chart and approach chart. This is the fun
1) Read STL METAR (remarks included icing and TS movement)
2) What type of weather would you expect to encounter? Convert this C
temperature to F for me please. Do we need an alternate?
3) How wide is this runway?
4) At STL you are cleared to taxi from taxiway B to runway X, where do you
hold short?
5) Our flight will take 2 hours and 20 minutes. What are the IFR fuel
requirements? We will burn at a rate of 2400 pph, how much fuel will we use?
6) What is this number?.. and this number? What does it give you? MEA,
7) What is this? What requirements? Class B and describe.
8) We are flying at FL280 and one pilot gets up to go use the facilities.
What are the oxygen requirements for the crew? What does quick donning mean?
9) We are instructed to hold SE of X intersection. Draw the holding
pattern. What is our speed restriction? How far out to slow?
10) Brief this approach at STL... you have all the time in the you want
(FULL brief).
11) The glideslope goes out, where's your VDP? What is this dotted line
descent profile? VDP based on DME. Non-precision v precision profile.
12) What does this tell you? MSA
13) You've landed and tower tells you to taxi to the end of the rwy, what
type of lighting will you see?
14) What's an accumulator?

Unfortunately, of the six interviewed for the day, only three made it to the

I finished about an hour later and had to wait a full hour before I heard my
social security number announced. Then I had 20 minutes to be at the
simulator building for my brief so don't wander far!! The simulator is more
than fair, and if you take the sim prep you'll be more than acquainted with
the procedures. Very straight forward method to check your scan and
power/speed applications (wind shifts on final with no autothrottle).
Computer scored for accuracy and smoothness. The Captain was very friendly
and helpful, and wanted me to do well.

I should hear how I did this week. I gave it my best shot and am pleased
with that... now let's see if they were as pleased!! Good luck to you, and
remember, BE YOURSELF !!!

Date Interviewed: January 1999
Summary of Qualifications: NA
Were you offered the job? Don't Know
Pilot Interview Profile:

I received my invitation to interview the end of July, 1999 and set up the interview for 2 September. A month is plenty of time to get all your
paperwork together and study for the big day. I arrived in Denver on August
31 and did a practice interview with Arnautical (1-800-333-3538) that
afternoon. The following morning, I set up a practice simulator (again with
Arnautical). Then, that afternoon, I took the mental math class. The
interview prep and sim prep for me were worth the money (this was my first
interview). However, if you’re fairly comfortable with doing math in your
head, the math class may be a waste.

My interview was scheduled for 1245 and I showed up around 1230. There were
4 of us interviewing that afternoon to include: C-141 female aircraft
commander, Northwest
DC-9 female first officer, C-130 female aircraft commander, and a former DC-9
male captain who had been fired from his last job in a cargo company for a
hard landing.
We all finished our paperwork and started getting called in for our
interviews one by one at 1330. At 1330, the captain who was doing my
interview came and got me. We went to the HR ladies office and initially
made small talk about the weather. They both were very friendly and made me
feel at ease.


Looked at my logbook and had a question about my 2-year break in flying.
Also asked about a specific T-1 flight where I had written down refueling in
the comments--asked if it was an actual refueling flight or not.

Next, they went over my application. Asked if everything was still correct
(phone numbers, addresses, etc). While going over the application, they
asked a couple of questions--why are you getting out of the military, what
appeals to you about commercial aviation, what other airlines have you
applied to, why haven’t you applied to any cargo companies?


1. Tell us in bullet format about your flying career starting with UPT.
2. You got very good grades in college--what do you attribute that to?
3. TUA a time when you did not agree with a superior’s decision and how you
handled it.
4. TUA a policy you didn’t agree with but had to support.
5. TUA the most difficult person you had to fly with.
6. TUA a time when a subordinate challenged your authority as the aircraft
7. Have you ever failed any checkrides? Followed by, tell us about it.

After giving my answers, there were numerous follow up questions. My
recommendation when practicing is have someone listen to you and grill you
with as many follow up questions as they can think of--it will get you
thinking ahead, because at the interview, there will be follow-up questions.


1. Tell us 3 emergencies you could have with a turbojet engine.
2. What do ground spoilers do?

Given a METAR, TAF, approach plates, and enroute charts for a trip from San
Jose to Omaha.

3. Read the METAR strip (very straightforward)
4. Read the TAF strip
5. Can we takeoff from San Jose?
6. Do we need a takeoff alternate?
7. Do we need an alternate for Omaha?
8. Does runway 12L have transmissometers?
9. A couple of questions about symbols on the airport diagram (lighting,
thresholds, usable runway length)
10. On the enroute chart, he showed me a box which had HIWAS *2 in it.
He asked me what the *2 meant.
11. What are the cloud clearances for Class B airspace?
12. At Omaha, the glideslope is NOTAMed out. The landing lights are also
out, what weather do we need to fly the approach?
13. What is the reciprocal of 213?
14. Dump rate is 2500 lbs per minute, how long to dump 30,000 pounds?
15. You go 56nm in 8 minutes; what is your ground speed?
16. You are going 240 TAS with a 60 knot tailwind; how long will it take you
to go 200 nm?

My interview was just under an hour long. Afterwards, they walk you out and
you are given a phone number to call 1/2 hour to an hour later to see if you
have been called back to do the sim.

Date Interviewed: January 1999
Summary of Qualifications: NA
Were you offered the job? Don't Know
Pilot Interview Profile:

I had my Interview on a rainy Monday morning in Denver, recently. I am a die hard Ual fan. One goal in my life is to become a UAL FO, so I had all my eggs in one basket. Also I was a furloughed WESTAIR/ UX pilot and currently a ACA/UX captain. I had been studying and preparing
for this day for about 5 years. It actually only takes two weeks of studying (4 hours a day). For the Tech part, study your FEX Gleim Book,
Airline Pilot Tech. Interviews by Ron McElroy (call Cage Consulting at 888-899-Cage to order $28) and AIM. All you really need is the Airline
Pilot Tech....!! For the HR portion go over your logbooks and remember times of success, failure, critique, emergencies....Tab your logbooks for
identifying your accomplishments such as ATP, Type ratings, first solo. Also for the HR portion go to an interview prep. I recommend Cheryl
Cage or Bob Norris. I went to Capt Bob Norris and it was really a great way to get insight on the interview.

I spent about $1500 on the interview process:

I already had a Navy Suit ($500) with black lace up glossy Colehan shoes ($250).

1) BOB NORRIS= $295 Interview Prep
2) Kathy Hutchinson= $140 (resumebykh@aol.com) She does all the paperwork professionally and in order. The best in the business!!!
EMAIL her with your date and she will send you a checklist of what to do. Do not stress, she takes care of the hard part.
3) Arnautical Mental Math Prep= $70 (Worhtless, just buy their book for $11. The book is all u need or the Airline Pilot Tech Interview)
4) Arnautical Sim DC10 prep= $300 This is a must. All u need is one session of 3 hours long and u will pass the sim profile. The Arnautical sim
is harder than the UAL sim, so u will be ready.
5) Nordstroms = $150 bought a nice shirt, tie and socks.
6) Hotel Accommodations=$130 I stayed at the Raddison Stapelton Plaza for 3 night at $45/nite (UAL Discount). Place was kind of dark and
sullen, but it is right at the interview site and you will meet other applicants, so be social and friendly.
7) Rental car= $21 Airline rental car. It is right in the hotel and you'll need the car to go to Metro State College to fly the Arnautical DC10 Sim.
8) On record requests I spent about another $100


My interview was on a rainy cloudy Mon Morning. I was excited and very prepared. I was confident but a little bit nervous and I was walking
in the interview with 2 new letters of rec.. in addition to 15 on file. 3 were from Chief Pilots. I was ready to shine. All my paper work was
complete, up to date and in order (Kathy did a great Job). My logboks were tabbed and I even had a 3 page supplement to go along with my
logbooks explaining the way I calculated the logbooks. Ual does not count DUAL time, but the FAA does. I log my times per FAA and on the
UAL scantron, I adjusted my times to cater to UAL. This is the way it should be done. So I made this 3 page explanation for both the Capt and
HR lady, so if they had any explanations I would have my formula in front of them.

I went to the fifth floor in Stapelton Plaza and at around 645am a lady escorted me to the waiting room. She was friendly. She told me to start
filling out paperwork and I did. The other 3 guys showed up at 705am and we sat around for about an hour filling paperwork and talking
conservatively. Everybody is listening. The secretaries were real nice (Jennifer and Deena) and helped out a lot. Jenn and Deena collected the
paperwork and logbooks and gave them to the interviewers.

After the paperwork was done we waited around for about 30 minutes more. I heard from previous gouge that we were supposed to be
introduced and welcomed by a Captain and put at ease. That never happened. The first candidate (a great person-C5 Commander) was
escorted out to his interview first by a female Captain. Then my turn. A Captain POPAWOWSKI ( I forgot his last name, sounded like that)
escorted me to Ms. Susan Hechts office were the interview will start.

In the 30min that we were waiting to be interviewed the interviewers were already looking at our paperwork and logbooks.

In Ms. Hechts office, I introduced myself to her and smiled, then I reintroduced myself to the Capt. and he seemed irritated because I shook his
hand again.. OHH WELL! I was just being polite.

I sat down and they started by telling me they were on my side and to relax, they just wanted to know me.
The Captain started by asking why my first scantron had more time on it then my third update, I told him it was a mistake on my part and I
corrected it on the second update. Plus I had an explanation sheet for them. He said fine, but looked cold.

They went through my app to see if all addresses and phones were current. They did not ask anything on my grades, I graduated honors and I
did not have any speeding tickets. So the APP portion went quick.

The next portion was HR with SUSAN HECHT:They write a lot so know that. Also smile and look at both of them while speaking.


TUA your flying career: While I was telling my story Susan was fidgeting with her pen and desk drawer. I had heard they don't do that so I
was surprised.
TUA an emergency that happened that was not covered on the checklist.
TUA you were recently critiqued in the cockpit.
TUA time a subordinate questioned your authority.
TUA you were disappointed in your leadership.
Why have you never failed a check ride? Oral?

Remember they give no feedback and they are constantly writing. For each TUA there will be followups to verify your stories.

Next came the easy tech portion with Captain #? Remember look at HR lady also and smile, relax.

What is a TR, INV, FUSIBLE PLUG, Brake DEBOOSTER, Outboard Aileron (why is it there)?

Then did a trip from MIA-ORLANDO with ALT of TAMPA.
If we are cleared to taxi to this RWY are we cleared to cross this RWY? YES AIM
When do we need an ALT? 1-2-3 rule
How do depict the Alternate? OPSPEC is 400-1 or 200-1/2 ACA
What is this? MEA, MOCA and distance
Where is the FAF on this non precision approach? Maltese cross
If we need to dump 17500 in 3500/min how long? 5min
going 6miles in 2 min how fast? 180kts
going 260 miles in 40 minutes how fast? 320

I messed up on one mental math. They thanked me and asked if I had any questions. I said no and that I was honored to be there and I would
be honored to come back and be part of the family again. They smiled and escorted me out.

I went into my room and met up with the C5 guy. We called the number to find out if we had made it to the sim and we were denied. Only one
person out of 20 made it to the sim that Mon morning. I was shot down and felt like S#@t!!!

Remember no matter how hard you have studied and how many letters you have had no body knows how UAL hires so keep your head up and
go to the interview with the proper paperwork, scantron times ( this one killed me) and great attitude. And for all it is worth getting an interview
is great, there are 14000 apps on file and please do not do what I did by putting all your eggs into one basket. Although it was a cold interview
on behalf of all the morning applicants that day, the UAL interview is normally warm and relaxed. Good Luck have fun and enjoy the
experience. If you get hired congrats to a great future. If you do not get hired, Remember UAL has turned down a number of great people and
there are other places that are just as good to fly for that will hire you. It also depends on who you get for an interviewer and how they feel ie.
great weekend or crappy weekend?


Date Interviewed: January 1999
Summary of Qualifications: NA
Were you offered the job? Don't Know
Pilot Interview Profile:

Got a call from Continental Pilot Recruiting. They told me that they would like to invite me for an interview and gave me an option of dates (the first being about a week away) I opted for a slightly later date. Interview scheduled, they fix you up with a space avail. pass from the closest city they serve. Any accommodations or meals are your own responsibility. My interview was scheduled for 2:00 in the afternoon. Made my way to concourse C, gate 45. This is where Houston flight ops. is located. Sat down in the chairs and waited for someone to come and get me. At my scheduled time a Captain came out of the ops. door and called my name (even though I was the only person there at the time) He led me downstairs to their Operations area ( very impressive ) and asked how my trip was. I told him I had a great trip and actually came in the night before. I was taken to a small conference room in the Chief Pilots office where I was introduced to the two Captains that were to interview me ( one of whom was the Captain that escorted me to the ops area). Normally, there are 3-4 interviewers but on the day I went there were only two available. That was a relief for me as now I only had to impress 2 people instead of 4, and they were both Pilot types. They shook my hand and asked me to have a seat, offered me a soda or coffee or a glass of water----I accepted the water and offered to serve myself from the tray that was behind me. They were very friendly and told me to relax, take off my coat if I wished ( I declined ). I positioned the chair directly in front of the two of them and up close to the table, and then sat down. They asked me for my paperwork and application, plus the 50.00 check for processing. Also asked for my logs. One Captain looked through my logs while the other began asking the Questions. Questions: 1) Since you have applied to Continental Tell us what you know about the Airline? I found that their website @ flycontinental.com is and was a great source of information and probably all the info you would need to answer this question. 2) Tell us about your flying career from when you first started flying? 3) How would you feel about being based overseas? 4) How do you think the Pilot affects customer satisfaction, if at all? 5) What makes a good Captain? 6) If the flight attendant comes to you and tells you that the Captain is making unsolicited and unwanted sexual advances to her, what would you do? 7) Pulled out an approach plate and gave me a: you are here scenario, wx goes to 1200rvr what would you do? 8) Where do you see yourself in ten years? 9) Tell me about your good qualities. 10) Have you ever experienced a technical or procedural problem with someone you worked with and what did you do about it? 11) What can you do for Continental? 12) In two minutes tell us why we should hire you. There may have been a couple more questions along the same lines that I cant remember but the overall process was very friendly and as relaxed as an interview can be. They finished by asking if I had any questions and then explained that if I was successful at this phase, I would be invited back for the sim check which was just a 30 minute quick and dirty to see if you can keep the blue side upright. I understand that its an easy ride consisting of a normal T.O., climb to 4000 feet, 2 30 degree bank turns, a vector to a VOR for a hold and then RV to and ILS. Raw data to a full stop landing with the WX at 400 and 1. Then, if you are successful at the sim, they make you a conditional offer of employment, contingent on your background check and medical, which I understand is a very light medical. That's it-----good luck to all of you!

Remembered a couple more questions. Rank the following Safety, reliability, customer and employee. What is important during an emergency and what is the worst thing a crew can do during an emergency. Tell us about an emergency that you had.

Date Interviewed:
Summary of Qualifications: NA
Were you offered the job? Don't Know
Pilot Interview Profile:

UAL Interview HR Questions General Format:
General Questions
? When, Where, Capacity (I was serving, i.e. flight lead, IP, etc), Aircraft, Day/Night, Wx
? Lessons Learned, What I could have done better, How I’m a better person because of it
? What was your most challenging flying situation?
? Describe a personal characteristic that you’ve had to overcome during your Air Force career.
? What traits would you bring to the crew environment?

Prep/Other Airlines
? Are you looking at anybody else? (looking for commitment to flying)What other airlines have you applied to? (common)
? What applications are you currently filling out?
? Which ones are currently on file?
? Have you heard from anyone else?
? How did you prepare for this interview? (tell them everything – show them how much you want the job)
? What did you do to prepare for this interview?
? How did you prepare?
? What other carriers have you applied to?
? Have you applied to any commuters?

Flying Stuff
? What would you consider to be the high point of your Air Force career?
? Why are you getting out of the Air Force at this point?
? Would you have wanted to fly heavies in the Air Force? (he answered “sure”)
Why, then, were fighters you first choice?
? Tell us about your flying career in the Air Force. (asked nearly every interview – be ready for 3-4 minute dissertation – maybe most important question – include UPT performance, assignments, A/C, upgrades, jobs, additional duties, significant awards, etc.)

? Have you ever busted a checkride?
Tell us about it.
? Tell us about your worst emergency. (remember CRM)
What should you have done differently?
? Tell us about a time you changed your mind in flight about something not related to weather.
? Tell me about a time you had multiple emergencies that all needed your immediate attention.
? Describe a decision you had to make on short notice with little or no information available. (weather diverts are good ones to talk about here)
? Tell us about a time when you had to make a time critical decision without all the necessary info.
What was the rest of the crew doing while you were doing this?
What did your copilot think about your decision?
? Describe a flying situation where you had to make rapid decisions
? Tell me about a time your performed a procedure in the cockpit which wasn’t covered by a checklist.
? Tell me about a time when you had multiple considerations/decisions to make when flying and how you handled it.

? Tell us about a time you saw somebody violating a policy or procedure and what you did about it. How did he feel about you correcting him?
How was your relationship with this individual after the fact?
Did you involve your commander?
Why or why not?
? Tell us about a time you were pressured to break a rule.
? Tell us about a time you had to support the policies of a supervisor even thought you disagreed with it.
? Have you ever violated a FAR?
? Tell us about a time you used judgement to go against company policy.
? Tell us about a time you had to deal with an unfair company policy.
? Tell us about a time you were pressured to break a rule.
? Have you ever bent/broken a regulation?
? Tell us about a time you challenged company policy.
? Tell us about a time you had to obey a superior’s policy that you didn’t agree with.
What did you do?
Did you discuss the situation with your superior?
How did you handle it?
What was the result?
? Describe at time when you had to break policy/procedure in order to accomplish the mission. (make sure you describe a time when you clearly broke policy)

? Give us one word to describe yourself (dedicated).
? What was your most rewarding leadership experience?
? During this experience, what single event are you proudest of?
? What was your most rewarding leadership position?
? Tell us about a time you failed as a leader.
? Tell me about a time when you delegated a task and it led to failure.
? Tell me about a time you disagreed with a subordinate’s decision and how you handled the situation.
? Tell me about a time when you had to be assertive with a supervisor.
? Tell me about a time when you were able to help someone improve.
? Describe a situation in which someone challenged your decision as a leader or your leadership in general.

? The Story, Conflict, Sequence of Events
? Tell us about your toughest interpersonal relationship.
? Tell me about your biggest personality conflict.
? Tell us about a time you avoided a conflict.

? Tell us about a time you had a conflict in the cockpit.
? Tell us about a difficult decision you had to make while in flight
? Tell us about a time when you were frustrated in flight.
? Have you ever been frustrated with someone in the cockpit?
? Tell us about a time you had a problem in the aircraft you could not solve
? Tell me about a time when you were angry at a crewmember on your aircraft or at a support person
? Tell us about a time you felt uncomfortable with a crew member.
? Tell me about a time you had a hostile crewmember.
? Tell me about a time you had a person on a flight you didn’t get along with.
How did you resolve the situation?
? Tell us about a time your were critiqued in the cockpit (not during a checkride).
? Describe a time when you were uncomfortable flying with someone.

? Tell us about a time, in the past several months, when you were criticized.
Was it justified?
Looking back on it, would you have done anything differently?

? Tell us about a time you disagreed with what the captain decided to do.
How did this afect the rest of the crew?
Did you speak up?
Did you feel unsafe or uncomfortable?
How did this affect your relationship with the captain?
Did you talk to him about it after you landed?
Did you ever fly with him again?
How did it go?
? Tell me about a time you had to be assertive in order to get an aircraft commander or supervisor to follow proper procedure.
? Tell us about a time when you were criticized by a supervisor unexpectedly, not including training or checkrides.
How was your relationship with this person for the rest of the trip after this happened?
What did the rest of the crew think about this?

? Tell us about a time you had a conflict with a subordinate and how it was settled.
? Tell us about a time a subordinate told you what to do and how you handled it.
? Tell us about a time when you were recently criticized by a subordinate or supervisor (you listed and learned instead of defending your position).
? Tell us about a time when a subordinate let you down or didn’t do what you expected.
Did the rest of the crew support this?
? Tell us about a time you had to correct a subordinate.
Did the subordinate eventually agree with you or not?
? Tell us about a time a subordinate tried to pressure you or get you to do something.
? Tell us about a time a subordinate questioned your decision.
? Tell us about a time you had to be assertive as a subordinate
? Tell us about a time you had to resolve a conflict between two other people.
? Tell us about a time when a crew member challenged your authority.
? Tell us about a time you had to persuade/convince a crewmember to do something.
? Tell us about a difficult person you had to work with and how you handled it.
Tell us about someone you didn’t get along with, their personality, and describe a situation involving this person.

Bernoulli’s Principle—When a gas is accelerated, its pressure decreases.

Angle of Attack—Angle between the relative wind and the chord.

A wing will always stall at the same angle of attack. The load factor, weight and density altitude will cause the stalling true airspeed to vary but the stall angle of attack will always be the same.

Parasite drag increases with the square of the aircraft’s airspeed. Includes form, skin friction, interference and wave.

Induced drag is a byproduct of lift and is proportional to the angle of attack of the wing.

All three axes of rotation intersect at the center of gravity; thus the aircraft maneuvers around the CG.

The greatest change in airplane trim and stability will occur when power is added at slow speed.

Angle of Incidence—angle between the chord line of the wing and the longitudinal axis of the aircraft.

Aspect Ratio—ratio of wingspan to the mean aerodynamic chord. High aspect ratio (long thin wings) have increased lift and decreased drag at high angles of attack. They have the disadvantage of increased drag at high airspeeds. Aircraft with low aspect ratios have poor drag characteristics at low speed, but are more efficient at higher airspeeds.

As an aircraft burns fuel and becomes lighter, the optimum cruise altitude slowly increases and the speed that yields the optimum cruise performance slowly decreases.

Absolute Altitude—the altitude at which maximum climb power can just maintain level flight and zero rate of climb.

An airplane climbing at constant Mach number will experience a decrease in TAS as the temperature decreases.

Subsonic: < .75 Transonic: .75—1.2 Supersonic: 1.2—5.0 Hypersonic: >5.0

Critical Mach—the speed at which the first airflow over the wing reaches but does not exceed the speed of sound

Mach Tuck—As the critical Mach number is exceeded, part of the wing root is shock stalled. This causes loss of downwash on the tail as well as an aft movement of the wing’s center of pressure. The result is a pitch down tendency.

Swept wing greatly increases the critical Mach number, increases aspect ratio and effective camber, and reduces the maximum coefficient of lift. Also the wing tips have a strong tendency to stall first which gives early loss of aileron control with very little aerodynamic buffet on the tail surfaces.

Dutch Roll—A yaw causes the opposite swept wing to produce more lift and induced drag. This causes a roll in the direction of yaw and a corresponding yaw in the opposite direction. Usually dampened out by vertical stabilizer but a yaw damper may be required.

F = 9/5 C + 32 C = (F – 32) 5/9

The standard temperature at sea level is 15° C (+59° F). The standard pressure at sea level is 1013.2 mb or 29.92” Hg

Temperature Lapse Rate—2° C per 1,000’ to 38,000’.

Pressure Altitude—height above standard datum plane.

Indicated Altitude—current local altimeter, approximates actual height above sea level.

True Altitude—actual height above sea level. Higher than indicated when warm. Lower than indicated when cold.

Density Altitude—pressure altitude corrected for non-standard temps. Higher than pressure alt when warm and lower than pressure alt when cold.

Air Density—air’s thickness determined by pressure, temperature and humidity. Greater air density means more oxygen available for combustion. Increases with increasing pressure and decreases with increasing temp or humidity.

Tropopause separates Troposphere (Std lapse rate) and Stratosphere (Little change in Temp)

Surface Inversion—ground cools by radiation, cools the air near the surface. Lower air cooler than higher air—with small temp/dew point spread, fog or low clouds can develop.

Ice can form on an aircraft in flight when the temperature is below freezing and visible moisture is present. Highest accumulation is associated with freezing rain. Optimum temp for icing is 0° to –15° C. Almost no icing below – 40°C (-40°F).

Extremely heavy rain can form a film of water over the wing that can be roughened by impact of raindrops and cause a loss of lift.

If ceiling and visibility omitted from ATIS, weather is better than 5000/5.

Weight and Balance
Empty Weight—airframe, engines, permanently installed equipment, unusable fuel and undrained oil.
Basic Operating Weight (BOW)—empty weigh plus crew, and other standard operating items such as water and meals.
Payload—passengers, baggage and cargo.
Zero Fuel Weight—BOW plus payload.
Ramp Weight (Taxi weight)—zero fuel weight plus usable fuel.
Takeoff Weight—ramp weight less fuel burned during start and taxi.

Engine Systems
Components of a gas turbine engine: inlet, compressor, combustion section, turbine, exhaust

Turbine inlet temp is the major limitation to turbojet performance. Temps could reach 4,000° F and must be cooled to an acceptable 1,100° F to 1500° F. Turbine blades are usually made of super alloys, but are still very susceptible to damage if the engine operating limits are exceeded even momentarily.

Creep is the elongation of turbine rotor blades due to high torsion and heat stresses.

Indications of turbine damage are high EGT; high fuel flow and low engine RPM at all power settings.

Centrifugal-flow engine—similar to piston engine turbocharger (APU).

Axial-flow engine—modern multiple compressor stage engine with rotors and stators in the compressor.

Engine Pressure Ratio (EPR)— ratio of turbine discharge pressure to compressor inlet pressure. Primary thrust indicator; linear and automatically accounts for altitude and airspeed.

Compressor angle of attack—a function of compressor RPM and air flow velocity. Low air velocity tends to raise the angle of attack, as do rapid engine accelerations. One of the most critical conditions occurs when the aircraft is at low speeds (or stationary) and the power is rapidly increased. Bleed valves used to lower interstage pressure by automatically opening at slow engine speeds.

Proper start sequence: starter - ignition - fuel (SIF).

Engine starter usually turns high speed/pressure (N2) compressor.

The most critical parameter during engine start is EFT or TIT.

Hot start, hung start, and engine fire—shut off fuel and ignition and motor engine with the starter.

False EPR reading (high or low) can result from pressure probe (PT2) being iced over. Turn on engine anti-ice and monitor RPM as a back up.

Fuel Systems
Jet A (JP-5) most frequent; kerosene with corrosion inhibitors -40° F
Jet B (JP-4) more volatile—aids in cold starts -50° F
Jet A-1 similar to Jet A but made for low temps -47° F

Entrained water is the primary contaminant. Pressure fueling reduces the chance of fuel contamination.

An airplane should not be flown if there is any leak in an enclosed area where the buildup of fumes could create a fire hazard. If an aircraft has any sort of running leak where the fuel drips or runs along the skin contour, it must be taken out of service.

Fuel boost pumps—primary purpose is to provide positive flow of fuel to the engine driven pumps. They also help prevent vapor lock when atmospheric pressure is low.

Minimum fuel dump level—climb from sea level to 10,000’ and cruise for 45 minutes at max range airspeed.

If fuel temperature is below 32F, fuel heat should be used for 1 minute prior to takeoff and landing and for 1 minute every 30 minutes in flight. Not used during takeoff, approach and landing due to degradation in engine performance, heat damage to the fuel control or vapor lock.

With fuel heat, expect slight drop in EPR and increase in oil temperature.

Oil System
Cools and lubricates engine.

Most heat extracted at the turbine bearings.

Dry sump has externally mounted oil tank (Most modern aircraft).

Wet sump has oil tank integral within the engine.

Oil is cooled by fuel/oil heat exchanger.

Viscosity of oil is a measurement of the oil’s thickness.
Hydraulic System
Fluids are not compatible and are color-coded.

Skydrol—fire resistant but highly corrosive. Dangerous to eyes and skin.

Constant displacement pump—moves a set volume of fluid with each rotation. Requires pressure relief.
Variable displacement pump—delivers the amount of fluid that the system will accept at that moment.

Hydraulic fuses—protects against a leak; may work on pressure differential or quantity of flow.

Accumulators—protects system against pressure surges and provide a means of storing hydraulic pressure. Prevents damage to the lines and fittings during surges. Piston or spherical design with a pre-charge of air (nitrogen) on one side. Piston requires less weight and is more common. Hydraulic system pressure gauge reading may be from air side of accumulator. This can give a false reading of the actual system pressure.

Deboost valve—reduces brake system hydraulic pressure and increases volume of hydraulic fluid.

Antiskid usually locked out above 20 knots.

Actuators convert hydraulic pressure into mechanical work.
Single acting—Brakes
Double acting, unbalanced—Landing Gear
Double acting, balanced—Autopilot servos

Primary flight controls—ailerons, elevator and rudder
Secondary flight controls—all types of tabs
Auxiliary flight controls—flaps, speed brakes, spoilers and slats

Inboard ailerons—all flight regimes Outboard ailerons—slow speed only

Servo tabs—automatically move opposite a flight control to assist movement.
Trim tabs—moved opposite flight control by a separate control to relieve control pressure.
Anti-servo tabs—move in the same direction to prevent full deflection.
Control tabs—unlocked with no hydraulic press. Move opposite to move control surface during manual reversion..

T-tail requires more structural weight but tail is above turbulent airflow from wing.

Spoilers—increase drag and reduce lift.

Vortex generators—prevent shock-induced separation from the wing as aircraft approaches critical Mach by mixing boundary airflow with high energy airflow just above the surface. Increases aileron effectiveness at high speed. Also can prevent low speed flow separation on the rudder and elevator at high angles of attack. Slightly increase parasitic drag.

Krueger flaps—extend from leading edge to increase camber
Slats—extend from leading edge to create a gap or slot. Directs high energy air from under the wing to delay stall to higher AOA.

Electrical Systems
AC Generators—115 volts, 400 hertz

Why AC : High voltage AC allows for low current.
Easier to transmit over long distances.
Smaller wires and lighter motors.
Easily converted to DC with TRs.

Voltage controlled by voltage regulator and the freq. is determined by generator RPM.

Constant Speed Drive (CSD): Similar to an automatic transmission. Connects generator to engine. Converts varying RPM to constant RPM for generator. The AC generator frequency can be used to measure the generators RPM.

KW (Kilowatt): Measures the work being performed by the generator.

KVAR: Kilovolt Ampere Reactance; measures how hard the generator is working to produce the power being used. In other words, the amount of energy lost to power relays and charge capacitors.

Self exciting: Generator rotates, a permanent magnet produces a small residual voltage which energizes an electromagnet that creates the generator’s main field. A voltage regulator controls the residual current to vary generator output.

Transformer-rectifier Transformer changes 115 volts to 28 volts. Rectifier converts to DC.

Batteries Lead-acid (2 volts per cell) or Ni-cad (1.28 volts per cell). Both release hydrogen and oxygen and must be ventilated.

Thermal Runaway If a Ni-cad is overcharged excess oxygen can cause this. Indications are rising current and increasing battery temp. Cellophane layer between plates designed to prevent flow of oxygen from positive to negative plates.

Bonding jumper Metal connector between two areas. Reduce static buildup and lightning damage.

Static Wicks Dissipate static charge from control surfaces to prevent radio interference.

St. Elmo’s Fire Visible discharge of static electricity from the aircraft into the air.

Relay Magnetically operated switch—fixed core opens or closes a circuit. Allows control of remote, high current equipment.

Solenoid Magnetically operated switch with moveable core—operates mechanical devices.

Inverter Converts DC to 115 volt, 400 hz AC.

Generator Control Relay (GCR) Allows FE to control and monitor exciter circuit. Residual voltage indicated when: GCR is open or if generator field circuit breaker has tripped.

Parallel Bus Generators connect to a common bus to allow generators to share loads and keep all busses powered when a single generator fails.

When lights are first turned on there is an electrical surge because the filaments are cold. Resistance increases as the filaments heat up.

Pneumatic Systems
Air Cycle Machine Source of compressed air, heat exchangers and a turbine.

Usually air is bled from the engine compressor, sent through a heat exchanger, then through another compressor. After that it goes through another heat exchanger and then a turbine. Water is separated and the cold air is then mixed with hot bleed air to achieve proper temp. Energy from the turbine is used to turn the compressor. The turbine is the key. It extracts energy and expands the air, both of which cool the air.

Air conditioner pack cools air to enter cabin and consists of an air cycle system and its controls. An air cycle system has a source of compressed air, heat exchangers and a turbine (ACM).

Cabin pressure is controlled by opening and closing the cabin outflow valve. Valve opens on ground and gradually closes as aircraft climbs. Rate of climb normally around 300’-500’/min.

Rain and Ice Protection
Type I Deicing Fluid 80% minimum glycol
Type II Deicing Fluid 50% minimum glycol

Windshield electrically heated. Thermistors control temperature.

Ice can form in the inlets of jet engines with temperatures as high as 40F in relatively dry air and 45F in air with visible moisture.

Pitot Static Instruments
If pitot tube is blocked the airspeed will act like an altimeter.

If static line is blocked, static instruments will freeze. Airspeed will be low when above “blocked altitude” and high when below “blocked altitude.”

If a static line breaks inside a pressurized aircraft, altimeter and airspeed will both read low.

Warning and Emergency Systems
Thermocouple-type detection system triggers a fire alarm based on the rate of temperature rise. A reference thermocouple is placed in an area relatively well-protected.

Continuous-loop fire detection system has a loop of two wires separated by a ceramic material that becomes a conductor when hot.

Two-wire thermal switch system has individual sensors wired in parallel.

Photoelectric smoke detector measures the light transmissibility of air.

Visual smoke detector has an optical indicator and air is circulated through it.

Pulling a fire handle: Cuts of fuel to engine
Cuts off hydraulic fluid to engine driven pumps
Closes any bleed air valves
Deactivates the electrical generator
Arms the fire extinguishing system

Extinguishers Type A Ordinary combustible (paper or wood)
Type B Flammable liquids
Type C Electrical fires
Type D Combustible metals (magnesium)

Hijacking: Squawk 7500, maintain between 10,000 and FL250 and less than 400 KTAS
Nordo: Squawk 7600

Critical Engine: Engine whose failure would most adversely affect the performance or handling qualities of the aircraft.

Maximum takeoff weight factors: runway length
runway braking action
flap position
pressure altitude

Climb limited takeoff weight: flap position
pressure altitude

V1 (Takeoff Decision Speed) Speed during the takeoff at which the airplane can experience a failure of the critical engine and the pilot can abort the takeoff and come to a full, safe stop on the runway and stopway remaining, or the pilot can, at his/her option, continue the takeoff safely.

VR (Rotation Speed) The indicated airspeed that the aircraft is rotated to its takeoff attitude with or without an engine failure; at or just above V1.

V2 (Takeoff Safety Speed) Speed which ensures the airplane can maintain an acceptable climb gradient with the critical engine inoperative.

Specific Range = Nautical Air Miles (NAM) per 1,000 pounds of fuel burned

Va Design Maneuvering Speed A 18,000 MSL – FL600 IFR only
Vc Design Cruising Speed B Surface to 10,000’ Nation’s busiest airports
Vf Design Flap Speed Max speed 250 Turbine must be above floor
Vfe Max Flap Extended license, radio, VOR or TACAN, Mode 3
Vle Max Landing Gear Extended C Surface-4,000’ (5 NM), 1200’-4,000’ (10 NM)
Vlo Max Landing Gear Operating max speed 200, 4 NM below 2500’
Vlof V Lift Off radio, Mode 3, permission
Vmc Min Controllable with critical engine inop D Surface-2,500’ 4 NM radio required
Vmcg Vmc on ground Max speed 200
Vmo Max Operating speed E All other controlled; clearance for IFR
Vne Never Exceed G Uncontrolled
Vno Max structural cruising speed
Vs Stall or Minimum controllable speed
Vso Vs in the landing configuration
Vx Best angle of climb
Vy Best rate of climb

Calibrated Air Speed - Indicated corrected for installation error
Equivalent Air Speed - Calibrated corrected for adiabatic compressibility

- 250 below 10,000’
- 250 executing procedure turn
- 200 under Class B airspace
- 200 in Class C/D airspace below 2500’ within 4 NM
- 200 MHA to 6,000’, 230 6,001’ to 14,000’, 265 above 14,000.
- Speed adjustments: +/-10 knots / .02 mach
- Filed airspeed: +/- 10 knots or 5%
- ATC may restrict: 10,000 to FL280—250 min, below 10,000—210 min, w/in 20 mi. of landing airport—170 min
Turbine aircraft departing—230 min

Fireproof - burns like steel, Fire retardant - aluminum, Fire resistant - does not propagate flame after ignition removed
HEAVY=300,000 lbs+
LARGE=12,500 lbs+
Civil Twilight – Sun 6 degrees below horizon
STOPWAY: departure end overrun
MSA: 1000’ clearance w/in 25 NM (30) of primary nav facility. LOM (ILS), RWY WP (RNAV), MAP WP (GPS)
Visual Approach: IFR flight plan—proceed visually and clear of clouds with airport or preceding aircraft in sight (1,000 and 3)
Contact Approach: IFR flight plan—1 mile vis & clear of clouds—pilot must request—ground vis 1 mi. or more

QNE - 29.92 (Easy)
QNH - Local (Hard)
QFE - Above Field Elevation
TWEB - Transcribed WEeather Broadcast (on VORs), white T in black circle
HIWAS - Hazardous Inflight weather Advisory Service, continuous on selected VORs (black square)

ADF/NDB: NDB service volume - 25, 50 (normal), or 75 NM
Designations: H=beacon, MH/HH=Med H/Hi H, HW=Without voice CLASS Radius
No flags = continuous monitoring Compass Locator 15 NM
Compass Locator: (LOM/LMM), low power, low/med freq NDB, 15 NM max MH 25 NM
- LOM: first two of ID H 50 NM
- LMM: last two of ID HH 75 NM
Marker Becons: (W)=without voice
- Classes: Fan Marker (FM), Low Power Fan Marker (LFM), Z Marker
- Antenna arrays: Elliptical, Bone
- Idents
-- Enroute: transmits “R”, “.-.”
-- OM: FAF, dash/dash, “----”, blue (2 per second)
-- MM: Cat I DH, dot/dash “.-.-”, amber (2 per second)
-- IM: Cat II DH, 6 dots/sec “......”, white (6 per second)
- Use “low” sensitivity for ILS’s

T=Terminal: 25 NM/12,000’ AGL
L=Low: 40 NM/18,000’
H=High: 130 NM/FL 450 (plus 40NM/14,500’, 100NM/18,000’, 100NM above FL 450
W=Without voice
Checks: +/-4 ground/dual rcvr, +/-6 air, check every 30 days
VOR CDI dots are 5 degrees each
DME: 199 NM max, 1/2 NM or 3%, ident is every 30 sec. DME Required above FL240.

- 700’ wide at threshold I 200’ 2400’ (1800’ with TDZL/RCLS)
- 18 NM max II 100’ 1200’
- Good +/- 35 degrees within 10 NM and +/-10 degrees within 18 NM IIIA: 700’
- Critical Area: Wx < 800/2, must be clear with aircraft inside FAF IIIB 150’
- LDA—Localizer only; not aligned with runway. IIIC 0
- SDF—Less precise (6 or 12 degrees)
- 10 NM max
- Transmitter 750’ – 1000’ from approach end 1.4 ° wide beam
- OM=1400’, 4-7 NM
- MM=200’ high, 3500’ from threshold
- TCH is for GS antenna
- Critical Area: Wx <800/2, coupled/autoland approach, don’t hold overhead < 5000’ if wx < 800/2
- Cat I: Not inspected below 100’
- VVI approximately 5 x GS
- Dependent: runways >2500’, staggered 1.5-2.5 NM separation
- Independent Simultaneous: runways > 4300’, final monitoring
- Independent Simultaneous Close: runways < 4300’, final monitoring + Precision Runway Monitor (PRM) system
-- 3 NM or 1000’ vertical when turning to final
- Sidestep: runways < 1200’ apart

ALS: Approach Lighting System
RAIL: Runway Alignment Indicator Lights (Lead-in Lighting)
REIL: Runway End Identifier Lights (Flashing white at app end)
ALSF-1 ALS with Flashers for ILS Cat 1
ALSF-2 ALS with Flashers for ILS Cat 2
SSALF: Simplified Short Approach Light with Flashers
MALSF: Medium Intensity Approach Lighting with Flashers
HIRL: High Intensity Runway Lights (Runway edge lights)
MIRL: Medium IRL
RCLS: Runway Centerline Light System
RCLM: Runway Centerline Marking

ALS begins 2400-3000’ (1400-1500’ for non-precision instrument runways)
Departure end lights: 3000’ RCLS alternates red/white, 2000’ runway edge is amber, 1000’ RCLS is red
Aimpoint markers (broad white) is 1000’ down. Other marking are 500’ increments to 3000’ down
RCLS, TDZL, and HIRL are 50’, 100’ and 200’ respectively
Taxiway Turnoff Lights are green, 50’ apart
Beacon during daylight means <1000/3
VASI valid to 4 NM, +/- 10 degrees of centerline

NOS Charts:
Basic configurations are A1 (+- 1) and A4 (+- 1)
- A =ALSF-2 (Red sidebars, every 100’, 3000’ long)
- A1=ALSF-1 (Change red sidebars to red terminating bars)
- A2=SALS (Inner 1500’ of ALSF-1, no flashers)
SALSF (Inner 1500’ of ALSF-1)
- A3=SSALR (A4 with RAIL, 3000’ long)
- A4=Basic configuration is Simplified Short or Med Intensity (SSALS/MALS) (No red terminating bars, 200’
- A4 Dot = SSALF or MALSF (imbedded sequenced flashers, 1400’ long)
- A5=MALSR (Same as A3 except med intensity)
- Dot=Flashers (SF or RAIL)

Taxiway Centerline Lights: green
Clearance Bar Lights: 3 yellow
Taxi-Holding Position Lights: row of yellow or flashing yellow either side
Stop Bar Lights: row of Red, used when RVR<1200’

TCAS I - interrogates transponder and provides alert
TCAS II - I + resolution advisories vertically
TCAS III - TCAS II + vertical and horizontal advisories

Instructions 5 min prior, Slow 3 min prior
Clearance should include EFC time
Non-holding (parallel) up to 20 degrees over a 90 turn
MHA to 6000’=200 kts, @14,000’=230 kts (except Ala, NY Ctr, part of Wa Ctr and 210 kts when noted), 14,001’+=265 kts
1 minute (inbound) legs @ 14,000’ / 1½ minutes above 14,000’
Turn at 3deg/sec, 30 bank, 25 degree with flight director, whichever is less
+/- 5 degrees for determining entry
Standard is right turns.

- Accident
- Crewmember incapacitated
- Flight control malfunction
- Engine structural failure except blade and vanes
- Loss of two engines
- Fire
- Collision
- Damage exceeding $25,000 to repair
- Electrical failure requiring backup systems
- Down to one hydraulic system
- Evacuation
- Emergency with priority but no deviation, when requested
- Aircraft Accident

For IFR, triple 6: 6 approaches and 6 hrs instrument time in last 6 months (3 of 6 hrs in category)
Braking actions are “nil, poor, fair, good”
Wake Turb, large behind heavy=5 NM (2 min non-radar)
Position Report: CS, position/time/altitude, ETA/next reporting point
GPS accuracy = 100 meters (95% of time)—300 meters (99.99% of time)
4 Satellites needed for 3 dimensional solution—5 sats or 4 +baro for RAIM
Routes are 4NM wide
DISCRETE CODES - Mode 3 codes that don’t end in “00”
Reserved Mode 3/A: 7500, 7600, 7700, 7777
IFR separation is 3 NM within 40 of radar, 5 NM beyond
Notams(L)=Local, Notams(D)=Distant, FDC Notams (w/in 400 miles of FSS), bi-weekly NTA Publication
File IFR clearance >30 min before ETD, Request IFR clearance < 10 min before taxi
Obstruction clearance on takeoff: EOR @35’, 400’ prior to turns, 1.52 deg clearance, 2 deg climb (200’/NM)
Wait one minute for ATC to respond after freq change
Mandatory Radar Reporting
- Vacating altitude, Missed approach, can’t climb 500fpm, change in filed airpseed 5% or 10 kts, loss of navaids
- Time and altitude reaching holding fix, when leaving holding fix, any safety of flight info, wx not forecast or forecast hazardous
Mandatory Non-Radar Reporting: FAF, estimate off > 3 minutes
Aircraft categories: 1.3 x maximum landing weight stall speed (Vso)
Cat A=<91 kts, Cat B=91-120kts, Cat C=121-140, Cat D=141-165kts, Cat E=>166kts
Circling Approach radius: Cat A=1.3, Cat B=1.5, Cat C=1.7 NM, Cat D=2.3 NM, Cat E=4.5
“Min fuel” does not provide traffic priority
90% of birdstrike occur < 3000’, ducks and geese may be at 7000’
High percentage of near mid-airs < 8000’ within 30 NM of airport
Airborne radar cannot see volcanic ash
Jepp clearances provide 1000’ unless terrain > 5000’, then 2000’
Stabilized approach is 5 kts, < 1000fpm sink and engines spooled
VDP: subtract distance / 3 or time * 90%
Limitations to Radar: 1.Bending 2.Attenuation 3.Screening
STARS: “Descend Via”—Vertical and lateral, “Cleared”—route only
Sidestep—Runways 1200’ or less apart & mins published—if not, circling mins apply
Mandatory calls uncontrolled: before taxi, before taking runway, 10 mi. out, downwind, base, FAF, final, app complete, off runway
Adequate visual reference: Must have at least 1: HIRL, CL, RCLM or able to maintain directional control

WX Abbreviations
- Weather reports (METAR)
- Terminal Forecasts (TAF)
- Area Forecast (FA)
- AIRMET (WA): moderate icing/ mod turbulence, surface winds >= 30 knots, widespread ceilings <1000/3, mountain obscurement (when not already in the FA)
- SIGMET (WS): Non-TS severe turbulence/CAT, non-TS severe icing, dust/sand with vis<3 miles
- Convective SIGMET (WST): tornadoes, line of TS, embedded TS, 40% areas of TS coverage, hail=3/4”, wind gusts>=50 knots
- Severe Weather Bulletin (WW): Defines areas of possible severe TS/tornado activity
- Severe Weather Forecasts Alerts (AWW): Alert that WW is coming
- Center Weather Advisories (CWA): when meteorological conditions may affect traffic flow

Categorical Outlooks
- Low IFR (LIFR) < 500’ or 1mile. - IFR < 1000/3. - Marginal VFR (MVFR) < 3000/5. VFR > 3000/5

Runway Visual Range (RVR)
- Vis between towers. Issued once/minute. possible RVR values=600’ +200’ to 3000’, +500’ to 6000’.
- 1600’ ¼ mile 3200’ 5/8 mile 4500’ 7/8 mile 6000’ 1 ¼ mile
- 2400’ ½ mile 4000’ ¾ mile 5000’ 1 mile
“M” - indicates RVR is less than reportable sensor value.
“P” - indicates RVR is greater than reportable sensor value.
Prevailing visibility = 1/2 of horizon circle, not necessarily continuous

- Radiation Fog: Ground fog on clear cool nights with surface-based temperature inversion
- Advection Fog: Sea fog- Warm moist air moves over cooler surface. >15kts fog lifts to status clouds
- Precipitation Induced Fog: Warm rain falls through cool air
- Upslope fog: Moist stable air is cooled as it moves up a mountain slope
- Ice Fog: Very cold and water sublimates into the air

-Light(-): Scattered drops that do not completely wet a surface to individual drops easily seen
-Moderate: Individual drops not clearly identifiable, spray observable above surfaces
-Heavy(+): Falls in sheets, heavy spray several inches above surfaces

Structural Icing
- Requires visible moisture and < freezing (0 to -15C)
- Rime: Stratus, changes airfoil shape
- Clear: Freezing rain, glazes surface, most serious (accumulates fastest)
-- Trace: Perceptible ice
-- Light: A problem after one hour
-- Moderate: Deicing/anti-icing or in-flight diversion is necessary
-- Severe: Deicing/anti-icing does not control the hazard. Immediate diversion necessary.
-- Ice pellets = freezing rain at higher altitudes. Freezing rain = warmer air above.

- Remaining film should freeze at least 20 degree below ambient temp
- Type 1=80% glycol, Type 2 = 50% glycol
- One step uses heated fluid -- uses more fluid
- Two step uses heated type 1 then cold type 2 -- better holding time

- Occasional<1/3 of time, Intermittent=1/3 to 2/3, Continuous>2/3 of time
- Light: Unsecured objects displaced slightly
- Moderate: Food service/walking difficult
- Severe: Food service/walking impossible
- Extreme: practically impossible to control aircraft. May cause structural damage.
- CAT= turbulence not in clouds above 15,000’ AGL
- PIREP format: Location, Time, Intensity, Whether in/near clouds, Altitude, Type Aircraft, Duration

- Associated with any convective clouds
- One mile in diameter, expanding to 2 1/2 miles within 1-3000’ of ground
- Downdrafts up to 6000 fpm, 45 kts winds, up to 90 knots shear
- 15 minutes max for individual microburst

- Avoid by 20 NM above 1000’ for each 10 kts of wind
- Lightning: most likely within 5 degree C of freezing
- Cumulus stage, mature stage, dissipating stage.

- Associated with TS, temp inversions, jet stream, frontal inversions
- On the cold side of a front, worse with warm fronts
- Airspeed > 15 kts or > 500 FPM
- Detecting: Front passage, wind changes, power settings, airspeed variations.
- Recover with maximum power, pull until the descent stops or the stick shaker.

- Dynamic: >1/10”, 8.73 x SQR of tire pressure
- Viscous: thin film on rubber deposits
- Reverted Rubber: prolonged locked wheel causes entrapped water to form steam

Precipitation Static—St. Elmo’s Fire and comm/nav problems

- METAR or SPECI (Special report)
- Vis = statute miles (except a four digit number = meters). “P”=Positive (P6SM=6 SM+)
- VC=vicinity (5-10 miles)
- Descriptors: TS, DR=drifting, SH=showers, MI=shallow, FZ=freezing, BC=patches, BL=blowing
- Precip: RA=rain, DZ=drizzle, SN=snow, GR=hail (granite rain), GS=snow pellets (granite snow), PE=pellets, SG=snow grains, IC=ice crystals
- Vis: FG=fog (<5/8 mi.), BR=mist (5/8-6 mi.), HZ=haze, FU=smoke, PY=spray, SA=sand, DU=dust, VA=volcanic ash
- Other: SQ=squall, SS=sandstorm, DS=dustsorm, PO=dust swirls, FC=funnel cloud
- SKC=clear, FEW=1/8-1/4, SCT=3/8 to 1/2, BKN=5/8 to 7/8, OVC=overcast
- TCU=Towering Cu, CB=Cumulonimbus, VV=Vertical Visibility when sky obscured
- Temp/dewpoint: “M”=minus
- RMK=Remark, RE=Recent Event, $= Mx required, A02=Presipitation discriminator
- WS=wind shear+TKO (takeoff) or LDG (landing) + RW (runway)
- B45=Began 45 minutes after the hour
- SLP=Sea Level Pressure, with “10” assumed in front

- Issued at 0000Z/0600Z/1200Z/1800Z for 24 hours
- AMD=Amended, COR=corrected, RTD=delayed
- PROB=probability. PROB40 2123 = Probability 40% from 2100Z to 2300Z
- TEMPO=temporary conditions lasting less than an hour at a time
- FM=From. FM21=From 2100Z on. BECMG=Becoming. BECMG 2123=Becoming from 2100 to 2300Z

PART 121
121.99 The cockpit crews of domestic and flag must be able to communicate with their company dispatch offices along their entire route of flight.

121.195/197 Destination and alternate landing roll must be <=60% of available runway 115% of dry runway length is required of forecast wet or slippery

121.310 Emergency lights must be on or armed during taxi, takeoff, and landing. Escape slide must be armed during taxi, takeoff, and landing

121.315 A cockpit check procedure must be used before starting engines, taking off, or landing, and in engine and systems emergencies to prevent reliance on memorized procedures

121.319/319 If seating capacity exceeds 19 passengers an aircraft must have a public address system and a crewmember interphone system

121.333 Oxygen
>10,000’, 2 hour supply for each crewmember
>FL 250, quick donning (5 sec) 02 mask for each crewmember
>FL 250, One pilot must wear if the other leaves the controls
>FL 410, One pilot must wear

121.339 Extended Over Water Operations
Each required life raft must have a survival kit and locator light
Each person must have life preserver with locator light w/in easy reach
Each aircraft must have ELT

121.343 For the purpose of testing a flight recorder system, a total of 1 hr. of the oldest recorded data accumulated at the time of testing may be erased

121.356 All air carriers with more than 30 seats require TCAS II

121.357 May not dispatch (night or IFR) if weather exists along route that can reasonably be detected along route is present unless Wx radar operational

121.359 Cockpit voice recorder must operate from before starting engine checklist to completion of the final checklist

121.360 Turbine aircraft require GPWS

121.385 If an FE becomes incapacitated, duties may be performed by any crewmember qualified to perform FE duties. FE certificate not needed.

121.391 Flight attendants: 9-50=1, 51-100=2, 101-150=3, etc

121.439 3 takeoffs and landing in type within 90 days

121.458 No alcohol within 8 hours, or .04 BAT, or 8 hrs after an accident.

121.417 Crewmembers serving on pressurized airplanes operated above FL250 must have instruction on respiration, hypoxia, and decompression. Crewmembers must operate airplane emergency equipment every 24 months.

121.440/441 PIC requires line check every 12 months. PIC must have proof check or simulator within preceding 6 months. Pilot must have check or simulator within previous 24 months.

121.471 Domestic limits
Flying hours: 1000/year, 100/month, 30 in 7 days, 8 hours at a time
Rest in a 24 hr period: 9 hrs (for<8 hrs flying), 10 hrs (for <9 hrs flying), 11 hrs (for 9 or more) plus one full day (24 hours) off every 7 days

121.533 Each PIC has full control and authority in the operation of the aircraft, without limitation.

121.542 Critical phases of flight: Taxi, Takeoff, Landing and below 10,000 MSL. Non-safety-related activities prohibited.

121.613 May not dispatch unless ETA Wx is at or above landing minimums

121.617 To take off, Wx above landing mins or:
2 engine: alternate within one hour with one engine inoperative in still air
3/4 engine: alternate within 2 hours with one engine inoperative in still air

121.619 Alternate required (domestic carrier) if Wx <2000/3 (+/- 1 hr)

121.625 Weather at alternate must meet criteria in certificate holder’s ops specs. (91.169: Precision 600-2, Non-precision 800-2)

121.639 Fuel = destination + fly to alt (if required) + 45 minutes at normal cruise

121.651 Prior to FAF, visibility only required to shoot approach. After FAF, if Wx goes down, may shoot to mins.

121.651 Increase MDA/DH 100 ft and vis ½ SM for PIC with less than 100 hrs.

121.687 Dispatch Release: Aircraft ID Trip Number Type Operation
Wx Reports Min Fuel Sup Airports (dep,dest,alt)

121.695 PIC shall carry Load Manifest, Dispatch Release, and Flight Plan

A. General

Pilot in Command
The PIC is the final authority for the operation of the aircraft.
Deviation from any FAR is authorized if deemed necessary in an emergency.
The PIC must provide a written explanation of any deviation if requested by the Administrator.

May not act as crewmember if:
- 8 hours after consumption
- under the influence
- using any drug that affects faculties
- .04 or higher BAC

PIC must not carry any passenger that is intoxicated or under influence of drugs unless in an emergency.

B. Flight Rules

Preflight Requirements
PIC must become familiar with all available information concerning the flight to include:
-Fuel requirements
-Alternates available
-Known traffic delays
-Runway lengths
-Appropriate TOLD information

Safety Belts
Crewmembers must be at duty stations with belts fastened unless absent for duty or physiological needs.
Crewmembers must have shoulder harnesses fastened for takeoff and landing unless not equipped or they need to have it off to perform required duties.
Pilot may not takeoff unless each person on board is briefed how to fasten and unfasten.
Pilot may not taxi unless each person is notified to fasten safety belt.

Operating Near Other Aircraft
No person may operate so close as to create a collision hazard.
No formation unless by arrangement with other PIC and not with passengers for hire.

Right of Way Rules
Aircraft in Distress Converging—alter course to the right
Balloon Lowest landing aircraft has right of way
Glider Aircraft being overtaken has right of way
Towing or Refueling

Aircraft Speed
250 below 10,000 MSL
200 in class C or D within 4 miles of primary airport below 2500’.
200 underlying Class B
If the minimum safe speed is higher maintain min safe.

Minimum Safe Altitudes
Never below an altitude that would create a hazard to people or property if power failed.

Congested---------------1,000 feet above highest obstacle within 2,000 foot radius.
Not Congested----------500 feet above surface.
Sparsely Populated-----500 feet from person, vessel, vehicle, or structure.

ATC Clearance
Pilot may deviate only for emergency or TCAS resolution advisory.
Even if no deviation, if a pilot receives traffic priority for an emergency, he must provide a detailed report to the ATC facility within 48 hours if requested.

ATC Light Signals
Ground Flight

Steady Green Cleared for Takeoff Cleared to Land

Flashing Green Cleared to Taxi Return for Landing

Steady Red Stop Give way—continue circling

Flashing Red Taxi clear of runway Airport unsafe—do not land

Flashing White Return to starting point N/A

Alt Red & Green Exercise extreme caution Exercise extreme caution

Class D Restrictions
Two way radio communications—4 NM up to 2,500 MSL.
Large or turbine powered
- above ILS glide slope, visual glide slope, or 1,500 AGL until further descent for safe landing
- climb to 1,500 AGL as soon as practical on departure

Class C Restrictions
Same as D except transponder with Mode C required
SFC-4000’ within 5 miles / 1200’-4000’ within 10 miles

Class B Restrictions
Same as C except:
ATC clearance required to enter
Large or turbine powered must maintain above lower limits operating to primary airport
IFR—operable VOR or TACAN
Private Pilot Certification required (exceptions allowed)

Class A Restrictions
IFR only
Clearance required
Two-way radio and transponder with Mode C


Fuel Required
Enough fuel to fly to destination and then 30 minutes (day) or 45 minutes (night).

Special VFR—Day, 1 mile vis, clear of clouds, ATC Clearance, and instrument rating.

Unless under Special VFR must have a ceiling of at least 1000 at an airport in controlled airspace.

VFR cruising levels above 3,000 AGL
- West: Even + 500 above 290 IFR + 1000
- East: Odd + 500 above 290 IFR + 1000

Weather Minimums
Class A N/A

Class B 3 miles Clear of Clouds

Class C & D 3 miles 500 below 1000 above 2000 horizontal

Class E <10,000: 3512 >10,000: F111

Class G (Day) <1,200: 1 mile Clear of Clouds <10,000: 1512 >10,000: F111

Class G (Night) <1,200: 3512 * <10,000: 3512 >10,000: F111

*If at an airport traffic pattern within ½ mi. of the runway—1 mile Clear of Clouds.


Fuel Requirements
Enough to fly to intended airport and then to farthest alternate + 45 min at normal cruise.

No alternate required if wx is 2000 and 3 mi. or better.

WX for an alternate
Specified alternate minimums or (Per Part 91)
-Precision: 600 and 2 mi.
-Nonprecision: 800 and 2 mi.
-No approach: VFR from MEA

VOR Check
Required every 30 days
± 4° ground checkpoint
± 6° airborne check
± 4° variation between two separate systems

Descent below DH / MDA authorized when in a position to land within landing zone (Parts 135 & 121) and one of the following visible:

- threshold or threshold markings or lights
- touchdown zone or touchdown zone markings or lights
- runway or runway markings or lights
- approach light system

The pilot may not descend below 100 feet above the touchdown zone elevation using the approach lights as a reference unless the red terminating bars or the red side row bars are also distinctly visible and identifiable.

Standard Takeoff Minimums: Two engines or less—1 mile More than two engines—1/2 mile

MEA -- 1000 feet (2000 mountainous) above highest obstacle within 4 nautical miles.

MOCA -- Meets obstacle clearance for the entire route but only ensures navaid reception within 22 nautical miles (“T” on Jeppesen/ “*” on DOD).

Feedback Form