July 2010 Issue

Lighten Up Your Landings

The biggest problem with executing a proper landing? Many pilots work extremely hard to mess them up.

I once counted as many as 10 pitch pumps between a jet transport arriving at 50 feet above the runway and touchdown. As the power came to idle (a bit further down the runway than necessary), the copilot planked it down with a predictable, rather heavy kerplunk. All survived. And they could use the airplane again. But thereís got to be a better way. Itís the last couple hundred feet where many pilots lose the finesse, presuming they had any to begin with. Itís the case whether operating VFR or IFR, since most operations this close to a runway are visual.

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