Chapter 8—Approaches and Landings
Table of Contents
Normal Approach and Landing
Use of Flaps
Estimating Height and Movement
Stabilized Approach Concept
Go-Arounds (Rejected Landings)
Crosswind Approach and Landing
Crosswind Final Approach
Crosswind Roundout (Flare)
Crosswind After-Landing Roll
Maximum Safe Crosswind Velocities
Turbulent Air Approach and Landing
Short-Field Approach and Landing
Soft-Field Approach and Landing
Power-Off Accuracy Approaches
90° Power-Off Approach
180° Power-Off Approach
360° Power-Off Approach
Emergency Approaches and Landings (Simulated)
Faulty Approaches and Landings
Low Final Approach
High Final Approach
Slow Final Approach
Use of Power
Late or Rapid Roundout
Floating During Roundout
Ballooning During Roundout
Bouncing During Touchdown
Touchdown in a Drift or Crab
Wing Rising After Touchdown
Reverted Rubber Hydroplaning
EMERGENCY APPROACHES AND LANDINGS (SIMULATED)
From time to time on dual flights, the instructor should give simulated emergency landings by retarding the throttle and calling “simulated emergency landing.” The objective of these simulated emergency landings is to develop the pilot’s accuracy, judgment, planning, procedures, and confidence when little or no power is available.
A simulated emergency landing may be given with the airplane in any configuration. When the instructor calls “simulated emergency landing,” the pilot should immediately establish a glide attitude and ensure that the flaps and landing gear are in the proper configuration for the existing situation. When the proper glide speed is attained, the nose should then be lowered and the airplane trimmed to maintain that speed.
A constant gliding speed should be maintained because variations of gliding speed nullify all attempts at accuracy in judgment of gliding distance and the landing spot. The many variables, such as altitude, obstruction, wind direction, landing direction, landing surface and gradient, and landing distance requirements of the airplane will determine the pattern and approach procedures to use.
Utilizing any combination of normal gliding maneuvers, from wings level to spirals, the pilot should eventually arrive at the normal key position at a normal traffic pattern altitude for the selected landing area. From this point on, the approach will be as nearly as possible a normal power-off approach. [Figure 8-29]
With the greater choice of fields afforded by higher altitudes, the inexperienced pilot may be inclined to delay making a decision, and with considerable altitude in which to maneuver, errors in maneuvering and estimation of glide distance may develop.
All pilots should learn to determine the wind direction and estimate its speed from the windsock at the airport, smoke from factories or houses, dust, brush fires, and windmills.
Once a field has been selected, the student pilot should
always be required to indicate it to the instructor.
Normally, the student should be required to plan and
fly a pattern for landing on the field first elected until
the instructor terminates the simulated emergency
Slipping the airplane, using flaps, varying the position of the base leg, and varying the turn onto final approach should be stressed as ways of correcting for misjudgment of altitude and glide angle.
Eagerness to get down is one of the most common faults of inexperienced pilots during simulated emergency landings. In giving way to this, they forget about speed and arrive at the edge of the field with too much speed to permit a safe landing. Too much speed may be just as dangerous as too little; it results in excessive floating and overshooting the desired landing spot. It should be impressed on the students that they cannot dive at a field and expect to land on it.
During all simulated emergency landings, the engine should be kept warm and cleared. During a simulated emergency landing, either the instructor or the student should have complete control of the throttle. There should be no doubt as to who has control since many near accidents have occurred from such misunderstandings.
Every simulated emergency landing approach should be terminated as soon as it can be determined whether a safe landing could have been made. In no case should it be continued to a point where it creates an undue hazard or an annoyance to persons or property on the ground.
In addition to flying the airplane from the point of simulated engine failure to where a reasonable safe landing could be made, the student should also be taught certain emergency cockpit procedures. The habit of performing these cockpit procedures should be developed to such an extent that, when an engine failure actually occurs, the student will check the critical items that would be necessary to get the engine operating again while selecting a field and planning an approach. Combining the two operations— accomplishing emergency procedures and planning and flying the approach—will be difficult for the student during the early training in emergency landings.
There are definite steps and procedures to be followed in a simulated emergency landing. Although they may differ somewhat from the procedures used in an actual emergency, they should be learned thoroughly by the student, and each step called out to the instructor. The use of a checklist is strongly recommended. Most airplane manufacturers provide a checklist of the appropriate items. [Figure 8-30]
Critical items to be checked should include the position of the fuel tank selector, the quantity of fuel in the tank selected, the fuel pressure gauge to see if the electric fuel pump is needed, the position of the mixture control, the position of the magneto switch, and the use of carburetor heat. Many actual emergency landings have been made and later found to be the result of the fuel selector valve being positioned to an empty tank while the other tank had plenty of fuel. It may be wise to change the position of the fuel selector valve even though the fuel gauge indicates fuel in all tanks because fuel gauges can be inaccurate. Many actual emergency landings could have been prevented if the pilots had developed the habit of checking these critical items during flight training to the extent that it carried over into later flying.
Instruction in emergency procedures should not be limited
to simulated emergency landings caused by power
failures. Other emergencies associated with the operation
of the airplane should be explained, demonstrated, and
practiced if practicable. Among these emergencies are
such occurrences as fire in flight, electrical or hydraulic
system malfunctions, unexpected severe weather
conditions, engine overheating, imminent fuel