September 2016 Issue

Bottom of the White

When we get slow, we increase the likelihood of losing control, along with the consequences.

When transitioning between Earth and sky and back again, we fly at the lower end of the controlled-flight regime—as Goldilocks might say, “Not too fast, not too slow, but just right.” Pilots departing generally spend less time in the bottom range of their aircraft’s airspeed envelope than during arrivals and approaches. Departing, we accelerate into the takeoff roll, lift off and, still accelerating, climb. Arrivals are the opposite. We descend and slow to approach speed, enter the pattern, and decelerate even more when sliding down the final.

To continue reading this entire article you must be a paid subscriber.

Subscribe to Aviation Safety

The monthly journal of risk management and accident prevention, is packed with useful, timely information on basic and advanced technique, accident analysis and, most important, practical articles on how you can develop the judgment that will keep you in the air and out of the NTSB's files.

Already subscribe but haven't registered for all the benefits of the website? Click here.

Subscriber Log In

Forgot your password? Click Here.