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Pilot's Handbook of Aeronautical Knowledge
Weight and Balance
Weight Control

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Pilot's Handbook of Aeronautical Knowledge



Table of Contents

Chapter 1, Introduction To Flying
Chapter 2, Aircraft Structure
Chapter 3, Principles of Flight
Chapter 4, Aerodynamics of Flight
Chapter 5, Flight Controls
Chapter 6, Aircraft Systems
Chapter 7, Flight Instruments
Chapter 8, Flight Manuals and Other Documents
Chapter 9, Weight and Balance
Chapter 10, Aircraft Performance
Chapter 11, Weather Theory
Chapter 12, Aviation Weather Services
Chapter 13, Airport Operation
Chapter 14, Airspace
Chapter 15, Navigation
Chapter 16, Aeromedical Factors
Chapter 17, Aeronautical Decision Making












Compliance with the weight and balance limits of any
aircraft is critical to flight safety. Operating above the
maximum weight limitation compromises the structural
integrity of an aircraft and adversely affects its
performance. Operation with the center of gravity (CG)
outside the approved limits results in control difficulty.

Weight Control

As discussed in Chapter 4, Aerodynamics of Flight,
weight is the force with which gravity attracts a body
toward the center of the Earth. It is a product of the
mass of a body and the acceleration acting on the
body. Weight is a major factor in aircraft construction
and operation, and demands respect from all pilots.

The force of gravity continuously attempts to pull an
aircraft down toward Earth. The force of lift is the only
force that counteracts weight and sustains an aircraft in
flight. The amount of lift produced by an airfoil is
limited by the airfoil design, angle of attack (AOA),
airspeed, and air density. To assure that the lift
generated is sufficient to counteract weight, loading an
aircraft beyond the manufacturer's recommended
weight must be avoided. If the weight is greater than
the lift generated, the aircraft may be incapable of