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Plane & Pilot

Plane & Pilot May 2020

Plane & Pilot is the ultimate resource for active pilots who desire an information-rich magazine with timely and entertaining content. Get Plane & Pilot digital magazine subscription today for pilot reports on the newest LSA, certified piston-engine and light-turbine aircraft, expert tips on flying techniques, product reviews of the latest gear and seasoned aviator stories from the sky.

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11 Ausgaben

in dieser ausgabe

7 Min.
speculation shaming

There’s an old ethos in flying that pilots should never speculate on the cause of aviation accidents, especially when a high-profile crash hits the news. Some folks are vocal and passionate in sharing their feelings about this unofficial rule, which they often see as an almost religious absolute. But the world has changed, and with it, aviation. And some of the most important reasons that anti-speculation gatekeepers give for onlookers keeping mum simply don’t make sense anymore, even though admittedly, there are a number of really good reasons to temper our views anyway. When an aviation accident occurs, pilots understandably want to know why it happened. There are a lot of aviation accidents, too. Too many. In the last calendar year for which the NTSB published end-of-year statistics, there were 1,233 accidents.…

5 Min.

1. JATO BOTTLE ON AN ERCOUPE: Back in 1941, engineers wanted to know how much improvement to takeoff performance strapping a small rocket to the side of an Ercoupe could make. Answer: a lot. The test, conducted at March Field in Southern California, used a solid fuel rocket—yes, they still call it a JATO (jet-assisted takeoff) and not a RATO—that put out a modest 28 pounds of thrust for 12 seconds. Doesn’t sound like much, but that Ercoupe really went up fast! 2. 1,200 PEOPLE ON A 747? In the early 1990s, regime changes in Ethiopia sparked renewed concerns about the welfare of Ethiopian Jews, prompting Israel to launch Operation Solomon, which airlifted nearly 15,000 refugees to Israel in a span of just 36 hours. One of the planes pressed into service, an…

4 Min.
the nevada triangle

MYSTERY Roughly 2,000 aircraft have vanished within a 25,000-square-mile area known as the Nevada Triangle. What’s behind the mysterious disappearances, and why have most of the aircraft never been found? BACKGROUND While much of the world has heard of the infamous and ever-mysterious Bermuda Triangle, of similar intrigue is the lesser-known, but equally fascinating, Nevada Triangle. The area is bounded by the cities of Fresno, Las Vegas and Reno, and is speckled by the high peaks of the Sierra Nevada mountain range. Yosemite, Kings Canyon and Sequoia National Parks lie beneath, and tucked along the Triangle’s edges, adding to the sense of mystery, is the super-secret government facility known as Area 51. “Around 2,000 aircraft have gone missing in the Nevada Triangle over the past 60 years. That’s approximately three disappearances a month.” Around 2,000…

5 Min.
news of note

PISTON, BIZJET MARKETS THRIVING The General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA) recently released its year-end report on industry activity for 2019, and it notes some positive news for key GA segments. Among the highlights is a $2.5 billion jump in overall aircraft deliveries in 2019 in comparison to the year prior, an increase of more than 10%. In terms of high-performing segments, piston aircraft and bizjets saw a particularly strong year, with the former increasing by 16.4% and the latter seeing its strongest year in a decade. Piston airplanes made up the biggest market in GA, with over 1,300 deliveries made throughout the year. The majority of those went to North American customers, while the Asia-Pacific market was responsible for the second-highest level of demand for the fifth year in a row. While the…

1 Min.
cross check

ACROSS 1 _____ Action, from good to nil 6 Palindromic surveillance tech 9 Aviator-controlled runway illumination (acronym) 10 Slight drop 11 A good one is said to be when nothing falls off 13 The first airport with one was Cleveland in 1930 15 Slang for parking ramp area 20 ____ burst, strong downdraft 21 What comms are based on, abbr. 22 Effects rudder pedals fight 24 Less-urgent relative of an RA 26 What we might call an antenna on our car 28 The person on the other end of the conversation, for short 29 High-performance singles love these “teen” altitudes 31 Devices used to increase lift 33 Change of the wind’s direction or velocity, 2 words 35 Pressure measurement, abbr. 36 GPS lays it out, abbr. 37 Force acting on a plane due to acceleration or gravity, 2 words 38 Just one time DOWN 1 Designer of the AA-1, BD-10 and BD-5 2…

7 Min.
accident briefs

North American SNJ Chino, California, No Injuries The pilot of a tailwheel-equipped airplane reported that he was doing S-turns while taxiing and that he did not see any airplanes in the run-up area. While positioning the airplane in the run-up area, his airplane’s left wing collided with the propeller of a stopped airplane. The pilot of the stopped airplane reported that, after completing a run-up and waiting for a clearance to depart, he saw a “warbird” entering the run-up area. The other airplane continued straight, and the left wing collided with his airplane’s propeller. The tailwheel-equipped airplane sustained substantial damage to the left wing. Both pilots reported that there were no preimpact mechanical failures or malfunctions with their airplanes that would have precluded normal operation. PROBABLE CAUSE(S): The pilot’s failure to maintain clearance from a stopped…