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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




Rime ice. Rough, milky, opaque ice formed by the
instantaneous freezing of small supercooled water droplets.

Risk. The future impact of a hazard that is not eliminated
or controlled.

Risk elements. There are four fundamental risk elements in
aviation: the pilot, the aircraft, the environment, and the type
of operation that comprise any given aviation situation.

Risk management. The part of the decision-making process
which relies on situational awareness, problem recognition,
and good judgment to reduce risks associated with each

RMI. See radio magnetic indicator.

RNAV. See area navigation.

RNP. See required navigation performance.

RT. See receiver-transmitter.

Rudder. The movable primary control surface mounted on the
trailing edge of the vertical fin of an airplane. Movement of
the rudder rotates the airplane about its vertical axis.

Ruddervator. A pair of control surfaces on the tail of an
aircraft arranged in the form of a V. These surfaces, when
moved together by the control wheel, serve as elevators, and
when moved differentially by the rudder pedals, serve as a

Runway centerline lights. Runway lighting which consists
of flush centerline lights spaced at 50-foot intervals beginning
75 feet from the landing threshold.

Runway edge lights. A component of the runway lighting
system that is used to outline the edges of runways at night
or during low visibility conditions. These lights are classified
according to the intensity they are capable of producing.

Runway end identifier lights (REIL). A pair of synchronized
flashing lights, located laterally on each side of the runway
threshold, providing rapid and positive identification of the
approach end of a runway.

Runway visibility value (RVV). The visibility determined
for a particular runway by a transmissometer.

Runway visual range (RVR). The instrumentally derived
horizontal distance a pilot should be able to see down the
runway from the approach end, based on either the sighting
of high-intensity runway lights, or the visual contrast of
other objects.

RVR. See runway visual range.

RVV. See runway visibility value.

SA. See selective availability.

St. Elmo's Fire. A corona discharge which lights up the aircraft
surface areas where maximum static discharge occurs.

Satellite ephemeris data. Data broadcast by the GPS
satellite containing very accurate orbital data for that
satellite, atmospheric propagation data, and satellite clock
error data.

Sea breeze. A coastal breeze blowing from sea to land
caused by the temperature difference when the land surface is
warmer than the sea surface. The sea breeze usually occurs
during the day and alternates with the land breeze that blows
in the opposite direction at night.

Sea level engine. A reciprocating aircraft engine having a
rated takeoff power that is producible only at sea level.

Scan. The first fundamental skill of instrument flight, also
known as "cross-check;" the continuous and logical observation
of instruments for attitude and performance information.

Sectional aeronautical charts. Designed for visual
navigation of slow- or medium-speed aircraft. Topographic
information on these charts features the portrayal of relief,
and a judicious selection of visual check points for VFR
flight. Aeronautical information includes visual and radio
aids to navigation, airports, controlled airspace, restricted
areas, obstructions and related data.

SDF. See simplified directional facility.

Selective availability (SA). A satellite technology permitting
the Department of Defense (DOD) to create, in the interest
of national security, a significant clock and ephemeris error
in the satellites, resulting in a navigation error.