CHAPTER 11. Approaches and Landings

Faulty Approaches and Landings

Low Final Approach

When the base leg is too low, insuffi cient power is used, or the velocity of the wind is misjudged, suffi cient altitude may be lost, which causes the aircraft to be well below the proper fi nal approach path. In such a situation, the pilot would need to apply considerable power to maintain or gain altitude as required to fl y the aircraft (at an excessively low altitude) up to the runway threshold. When the proper approach path has been intercepted, the correct approach attitude should be reestablished, the power reduced, and a stabilized approach maintained. [Figure 11-36] Do not increase the pitch attitude without increasing the power since the aircraft decelerates rapidly and may approach the critical AOA and stall. If there is any doubt about the approach being safely completed, it is advisable to execute an immediate go-around.

High Final Approach

When the fi nal approach is too high, perform a steep approach as required for the height above the landing spot. Refer to the steep approach section earlier in this chapter.

Slow Final Approach

When the aircraft is fl own at slower-than-normal airspeed on the fi nal approach, pilot determination of the rate of sink (descent) and the height of roundout is diffi cult. During an excessively slow approach, the wing is operating near the critical AOA and, depending on the pitch attitude changes and control usage, the aircraft may stall or sink rapidly and contact the ground with a hard impact.

Whenever a low-speed approach is noted, the pilot should apply power and accelerate the aircraft to reduce the sink rate to prevent a stall. This should be done while still at a high enough altitude to reestablish the correct approach airspeed and attitude. If too slow and too low, it is best to execute a go-around.

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