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Airplane Flying Handbook
Transition to Jet Powered Airplanes
PILOT SENSATIONS IN JET FLYING

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Airplane Flying Handbook

Preface

Table of Contents

Chapter 1,Introduction to Flight Training
Chapter 2,Ground Operations
Chapter 3,Basic Flight Maneuvers
Chapter 4, Slow Flight, Stalls, and Spins
Chapter 5, Takeoff and Departure Climbs
Chapter 6, Ground Reference Maneuvers
Chapter 7, Airport Traffic Patterns
Chapter 8, Approaches and Landings
Chapter 9, Performance Maneuvers
Chapter 10, Night Operations
Chapter 11,Transition to Complex Airplanes
Chapter 12, Transition to Multiengine Airplanes
Chapter 13,Transition to Tailwheel Airplanes
Chapter 14, Transition to Turbo-propeller Powered Airplanes
Chapter 15,Transition to Jet Powered Airplanes
Chapter 16,Emergency Procedures

Glossary

Index

When considering the proper time to apply reverse
thrust after touchdown, the pilot should remember that
some airplanes tend to pitch nose up when reverse is
selected on landing and this effect, particularly when
combined with the nose up pitch effect from the
spoilers, can cause the airplane to leave the ground
again momentarily. On these types, the airplane must
be firmly on the ground with the nosewheel down,
before reverse is selected. Other types of airplanes
have no change in pitch, and reverse idle may be
selected after the main gear is down and before the
nosewheel is down. Specific procedures for reverse
thrust operation for a particular airplane/engine
combination are contained in the FAA-approved
Airplane Flight Manual for that airplane.

There is a significant difference between reverse pitch
on a propeller and reverse thrust on a jet. Idle reverse
on a propeller produces about 60 percent of the reverse
thrust available at full power reverse and is therefore
very effective at this setting when full reverse is not
needed. On a jet engine, however, selecting idle
reverse produces very little actual reverse thrust. In a
jet airplane, the pilot must not only select reverse as
soon as reasonable, but then must open up to full power
reverse as soon as possible. Within Airplane Flight
Manual limitations, full power reverse should be held
until the pilot is certain the landing roll will be
contained within the distance available.

Inadvertent deployment of thrust reversers is a very
serious emergency situation. Therefore, thrust reverser
systems are designed with this prospect in mind. The
systems normally contain several lock systems: one to
keep reversers from operating in the air, another to
prevent operation with the thrust levers out of the idle
detent, and/or an "auto-stow" circuit to command
reverser stowage any time unwanted motion is
detected. It is essential that pilots understand not only
the normal procedures and limitations of thrust
reverser use, but also the procedures for coping with
uncommanded reverse. Those emergencies demand
immediate and accurate response.

PILOT SENSATIONS IN JET FLYING

There are usually three general sensations that the pilot
transitioning into jets will immediately become aware
of. These are: inertial response differences, increased
control sensitivity, and a much increased tempo
of flight.

The varying of power settings from flight idle to full
takeoff power has a much slower effect on the change
of airspeed in the jet airplane. This is commonly called
lead and lag, and is as much a result of the extremely
clean aerodynamic design of the airplane as it is the
slower response of the engine.

The lack of propeller effect is also responsible for the
lower drag increment at the reduced power settings and
results in other changes that the pilot will have to
become accustomed to. These include the lack of
effective slipstream over the lifting surfaces and
control surfaces, and lack of propeller torque effect.

The aft mounted engines will cause a different reaction
to power application and may result in a slightly nosedown
pitching tendency with the application of power.
On the other hand, power reduction will not cause the
nose of the airplane to drop to the same extent the pilot
is used to in a propeller airplane. Although neither of
these characteristics are radical enough to cause
transitioning pilots much of a problem, they must be
compensated for.

Power settings required to attain a given performance
are almost impossible to memorize in the jets, and the
pilot who feels the necessity for having an array of
power settings for all occasions will initially feel at a
loss. The only way to answer the question of "how
much power is needed?" is by saying, "whatever is
required to get the job done." The primary reason that
power settings vary so much is because of the great
changes in weight as fuel is consumed during the
flight. Therefore, the pilot will have to learn to use
power as needed to achieve the desired performance.
In time the pilot will find that the only reference to
power instruments will be that required to keep from
exceeding limits of maximum power settings or to
synchronize r.p.m.

Proper power management is one of the initial problem
areas encountered by the pilot transitioning into jet
airplanes. Although smooth power applications are still
the rule, the pilot will be aware that a greater physical
movement of the power levers is required as compared
to throttle movement in the piston engines. The pilot
will also have to learn to anticipate and lead the power
changes more than in the past and must keep in mind
that the last 30 percent of engine r.p.m. represents the
majority of the engine thrust, and below that the
application of power has very little effect. In slowing
the airplane, power reduction must be made sooner
because there is no longer any propeller drag and the
pilot should anticipate the need for drag devices.

Control sensitivity will differ between various
airplanes, but in all cases, the pilot will find that they
are more sensitive to any change in control
displacement, particularly pitch control, than are the
conventional propeller airplanes. Because of the higher
speeds flown, the control surfaces are more effective
and a variation of just a few degrees in pitch attitude in
a jet can result in over twice the rate of altitude change
that would be experienced in a slower airplane. The
sensitive pitch control in jet airplanes is one of the first
flight differences that the pilot will notice. Invariably
the pilot will have a tendency to over-control pitch
during initial training flights. The importance of
accurate and smooth control cannot be overemphasized,
however, and it is one of the first techniques the
transitioning pilot must master.

 

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