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Receiver Autonomous Integrity Monitoring is a mouthful, but it’s descriptive. RAIM independently assesses the integrity of positions reported by a GPS receiver. RAIM is essential because half a dozen error sources can result in position errors ranging from negligible to unsafe. RAIM detects and, in some cases, corrects these errors. Only then can a pilot know […]
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Revisiting RAIM

Receiver Autonomous Integrity Monitoring is a mouthful, but it’s descriptive. RAIM independently assesses the integrity of positions reported by a GPS receiver. RAIM is essential because half a dozen error sources can result in position errors ranging from negligible to unsafe. RAIM detects and, in some cases, corrects these errors. Only then can a pilot know […]
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Tem-Work In Tampa

The Lear 35 medical-transport flight on which I was the captain had just departed Tampa International (KTPA) for Portland, ME (KPWM) carrying an elderly patient and his wife. It was a busy departure as we were already looking for deviations around the typical Florida summertime thunderstorms. The “pop”—accompanied by the sound of rushing air—came just […]
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Threading Needles

It’s not fun trying to make a left turn out of my neighborhood. It exits onto a busy, six-lane road. There’s no traffic light, just a gap in the median. Cutting across steady traffic demands patience, timing, and good judgment. Mistakes can be costly. The asphalt is littered with shrapnel from cars whose owners tried […]
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Readback: August 2021

That’s Just Some Clouds I’m curious about your comment in “It’s Raining Regs” IFR Clinic back in August 2018, where no alternate is required per §91.167 even though the ceiling is only 1800 feet. LeRoy MelcherHouston, TX We assume you’re referring to the statement in the article, “You needn’t file an alternate airport per exceptions […]
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Briefing: August 2021

Garmin Autoland Wins Collier Garmin’s Autoland system won the 2020 Collier Trophy as the top technological achievement in aviation. It was up against some formidable competition, including the Bell V 280 Valor, Boeing Confident Travel Initiative, Reliable Robotics Remotely Operated Aircraft System (ROAS), SpaceX Falcon 9 and Dragon 2, U.S. Department of the Air Force […]
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Caveat Emptor

Consider the contradiction we pilots face between the ultimate responsibility as PIC and working in an environment where the successful completion of our tasks requires us to trust those around us. As PICs we’re responsible for … everything. It’s the ultimate “buck stops here” situation where everything falls on our shoulders. We’re responsible for the […]
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Bearing to the Station

One friend of mine is a former Navy pilot who flew S-3 Vikings off carriers and commanded P-3 Orions. Despite such experience his transition to civilian light GA was full of new experiences—like mixture controls. He texted me one day thrilled over a bit of old school buried in the glass-panel display options. “This thing […]
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Download The Full July 2021 Issue PDF

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On The Air: July 2021

I rarely clog the radio frequency with unimportant chatter, but this was a very special day. It was March 19, 2015 when I completed my IFR checkride successfully. I was filled with excitement and gratitude as I reflected on hours of study and flight training with a fantastic instructor who, in the process, became a […]
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Summer Patterns

Summertime almost certainly means vacations, cookouts, and maybe some time on the beach. There are airshows, fly-ins, $100 hamburgers, and of course AirVenture at the end of July. Whatever the destination, there’s a good chance you’ll be putting in some flight hours in the coming months. Flying outside your home area means unknown weather patterns […]
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When Ya Gotta Circle

It’s a cloudy, breezy day, and you’re flying the family from northern Iowa to Chanute in southeastern Kansas. Other than a headwind and a Convective SIGMET covering part of the way, there’s no significant weather occurring, and the forecast is steady. So the concern at hand is the approach: Which one? There are two choices, […]
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Increased Workload

Since starting in 1984, I’ve logged over 1800 hours in more than 45 aircraft types. As much of this has been in the past four years under the employ of a major avionics shop, the recent experience factor provides a bit of confidence, especially since I’m quite familiar with most avionics offered today. A trip […]
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