Glossary   F - J

FAA   See Federal Aviation Administration

FAA inspector   FAA personnel who can administer practical and proficiency tests and can issue pilot certificates

FAA knowledge exam   Written exam administered by the FAA as a prerequisite for pilot certification Passing the knowledge and practical exams is required for pilot applicants to be issued FAA certificates or ratings

Federal airways   Class E airspace areas that extend upward from 1,200 feet to, but not including, 18,000 feet MSL, unless otherwise specified

Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)   The federal agency within the Department of Transportation that has the responsibility of promoting safety in the air, by both regulation and education

Federal Aviation Regulations (FARs)   The former name of the part of 14 CFR comprised of rules prescribed by the FAA governing all aviation activities in the United States

Field elevation   The highest point of an airport’s usable runways measured in feet from mean sea level

Final   Leg of the traffic pattern that is a descending flightpath starting from the completion of the base-to-final turn and extending to the point of touchdown

Fixed-pitch propellers   Propellers with fixed blade angles Fixed-pitch propellers are designed as climb propellers, cruise propellers, or standard propellers

Fixed-wing aircraft   An aircraft whose wing is rigidly attached to the structure The term fixed-wing is used to distinguish these aircraft from rotary-wing aircraft, such as helicopters and autogiros

Flare   See roundout

Flight plan   Specified information relating to the intended flight of an aircraft that is filed orally or in writing with an FSS or an ATC facility

Flightpath   The line, course, or track along which an aircraft is flying or is intended to be flown

Fog   Cloud consisting of numerous minute water droplets and based at the surface; droplets are small enough to be suspended in the earth’s atmosphere indefinitely (Unlike drizzle, it does not fall to the surface Fog differs from a cloud only in that a cloud is not based at the surface, and is distinguished from haze by its wetness and gray color )

Force (F)   The energy applied to an object that attempts to cause the object to change its direction, speed, or motion In aerodynamics, it is expressed as F, T (thrust), L (lift), W (weight), or D (drag), usually in pounds

Four forces   The four fundamental forces of flight: lift, weight, drag and thrust

Four-stroke engine   The principle of operation for some reciprocating engines involving the conversion of fuel energy into mechanical energy The strokes are called intake, compression, power, and exhaust

Front   The boundary between two different air masses

Front tube   The structural member of the carriage that attaches to the top of the carriage mast to the front of the fuselage It acts as a control stop for the control bar to avoid high angles of attack

Fuel efficiency   Defined as the amount of fuel used to produce a specific thrust or horsepower divided by the total potential power contained in the same amount of fuel

Fuel injection   A fuel metering system used on some aircraft reciprocating engines in which a constant flow of fuel is fed to injection nozzles in the heads of all cylinders just outside of the intake valve It differs from sequential fuel injection in which a timed charge of high-pressure fuel is sprayed directly into the combustion chamber of the cylinder

Fuel system   The system that delivers fuel to the carburetors or the fuel injection system composed of a fuel tank, fuel pickup, fuel filter, and fuel pump

Fuselage   The section of the WSC carriage that consists of the cockpit, containing seats for the occupants and attachments for the landing gear and wing

G loads   Load imposed on an airframe due to inertia (centrifugal force) 1G of load factor represents the weight of the actual aircraft 2G represents effectively twice the aircraft’s actual weight

Glidepath   The path of an aircraft relative to the ground while approaching a landing

Glide ratio   The ratio of the forward distance traveled to the vertical distance an aircraft descends when it is operating without power For example, an aircraft with a glide ratio of 10:1 will descend about 1,000 feet for every 2 miles (10,560 feet) it moves forward

Global positioning system (GPS)   A satellite based radio positioning, navigation, and time transfer system used for as a reference for navigation and measures ground speed

Go-around   The termination of a landing approach Reference the AIM Pilot/Controller Glossary

Go/No-go decision   Decision of whether or not to make a flight based on environmental, personal or mechanical factors A focus area for human factors study

GPS   See global positioning system

Gross weight   The total weight of a fully loaded aircraft including the fuel, oil, crew, passengers, and cargo

Ground-adjustable propeller   A type of aircraft propeller whose blade pitch angle can be adjusted when the engine is not running The adjustment requires loosening the blades in the hub

Ground effect   A condition of improved performance encountered when an airfoil is operating very close to the ground When an airfoil is under the influence of ground effect, there is a reduction in upwash, downwash, and wingtip vortices As a result of the reduced wingtip vortices, induced drag is reduced

Ground track   The aircraft’s path over the ground when in flight

Ground wires   The wires on top of the wing attached to the king post which hold up the wings on the ground and during negative loads during flight The fore to aft ground wires which hold the king post in place fore to aft

Groundspeed (GS)   The actual speed of an aircraft over the ground It is true airspeed adjusted for wind Groundspeed decreases with a headwind, and increases with a tailwind A GPS measures ground speed

Hazardous Inflight Weather Advisory Service (HIWAS)   Recorded weather forecasts broadcast to airborne pilots over selected VORs

Heading   The direction in which the nose of the aircraft is pointing during flight

Headwind   A wind which blows from the direction the aircraft is flying The ground speed of an aircraft (the speed the aircraft is moving over the ground) is less than the speed through the air by the velocity of the headwind

Headwind component   The component of atmospheric winds that acts opposite to the aircraft’s flightpath

HIWAS   See Hazardous Inflight Weather Advisory Service

Horsepower   The term, originated by inventor James Watt, means the amount of work a horse could do in one second One horsepower equals 550 foot-pounds per second, or 33,000 foot-pounds per minute

Hour meter   An instrument installed in many aircraft to show the actual number of hours the engine has operated

Hydroplaning   A condition that exists when landing on a surface with standing water deeper than the tread depth of the tires When the brakes are applied, there is a possibility that the brake will lock up and the tire will ride on the surface of the water, much like a water ski When the tires are hydroplaning, directional control and braking action are virtually impossible An effective anti-skid system can minimize the effects of hydroplaning

Hyperventilation   Occurs when an individual is experiencing emotional stress, fright, or pain, and the breathing rate and depth increase, although the carbon dioxide level in the blood is already at a reduced level The result is an excessive loss of carbon dioxide from the body, which can lead to unconsciousness due to the respiratory system’s overriding mechanism to regain control of breathing

Hypoxia   State of oxygen deficiency in the body sufficient to impair functions of the brain and other organs

ICAO   See International Civil Aviation Organization

Ident   Air Traffic Control request for a pilot to push the button on the transponder to identify return on the controller’s scope

IFR   See instrument flight rules

ILS   See instrument landing system

IMC   See instrument meteorological conditions

Indicated airspeed (IAS)   The direct instrument reading obtained from the airspeed indicator, uncorrected for variations in atmospheric density, installation error, or instrument error Manufacturers use this airspeed as the basis for determining airplane performance Takeoff, landing, and stall speeds listed in the AFM or POH are indicated airspeeds and do not normally vary with altitude or temperature

Indicated altitude   The altitude read directly from the altimeter (uncorrected) when it is set to the current altimeter setting

Incident   An occurrence other than an accident, associated with the operation of an aircraft, which affects or could affect the safety of operations

Induced drag   That part of total drag which is created by the production of lift Induced drag increases with a decrease in airspeed

Instrument flight rules (IFR)   Rules governing the procedures for conducting instrument flight Also a term used by pilots and controllers to indicate type of flight plan

Instrument landing system (ILS)   An electronic system that provides both horizontal and vertical guidance to a specific runway, used to execute a precision instrument approach procedure Instrument meteorological conditions (IMC) Meteorological conditions expressed in terms of visibility, distance from clouds, and ceiling less than the minimums specified for visual meteorological conditions Flight without visual reference to the horizon

Interference drag   Type of drag produced by placing two objects adjacent to one another Combines the effects of form drag and skin friction

International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO)   The United Nations agency for developing the principles and techniques of international air navigation, and fostering planning and development of international civil air transport

International standard atmosphere (IAS)   A model of standard variation of pressure and temperature

Inversion   An increase in temperature with altitude

Isobars   Lines which connect points of equal barometric pressure

Jet stream   A high-velocity narrow stream of winds, usually found near the upper limit of the troposphere, which flows generally from west to east

Keel   See wing keel and carriage keel

Judgment   The mental process of recognizing and analyzing all pertinent information in a particular situation, a rational evaluation of alternative actions in response to it, and a timely decision on which action to take

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