Put your aviation knowledge to the test with these interactive quizzes.
- Quiz #164: Down to Minimums
- ATC does not treat IFR and VFR pilots equally, but VFR pilots can benefit from a grasp of IFR procedures. See how much you know about the dark art of instrument procedures by unraveling this quiz.
- Quiz #163: Sound Good, Fly Sharp
- Flying's easy. Sounding good on the radio while talking to ATC or swapping position reports on CTAF takes panache and a firm grasp of FAA-approved/suggested phraseology. Discover how smooth you sound by taking this quiz.
- Quiz #162: Global Consistency Is Near
- Ralph Waldo Emerson said, "A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds." The FAA is on an unstoppable quest to achieve universality in aviation terminology. See if your answers are consistently correct in this quiz.
- Quiz #161: Aloha and Cleared For Takeoff
- Navigating the Hawaiian Islands is fairly easy: Look across the water for your island destination and, then, go there. It's like stepping across stones on a koi pond. Navigating tropical regulations takes mastery of this quiz.
- Quiz #160: FAR Review
- The FAA was shocked -- shocked! -- to learn that, despite rules that air traffic controllers shan't snooze on the job, some sleep-starved staff have vectored in the arms of Morpheus. See what FARs might be lost in your dreams.
- Quiz #159: Separation Anxiety
- Everyone knows that air traffic controllers keep aircraft from bumping into each other, but just how much separation does ATC provide? That's not an essay question. Instead, separate fact from misconceptions about ATC service in this quiz.
- Quiz #158: We Need More Pilots
- As the pilot population declines, the Department of Transportation might consider listing Pilotus americanus on the endangered species list. Reverse this decline by recruiting new students who will marvel at your score on this quiz.
- Quiz #157: Emergencies
- Like art, an in-flight emergency is in the eye of the beholder. And if you're holding the throttle attached to a sputtering engine, then it's time to stay calm and fly this quiz.
- Quiz #156: What Next?
- Successful aviating involves more than just doing the right thing. Aeronautical nirvana is achieved when you also know the proper sequence of events. How well you can predict the future will determine your quiz score.
- Quiz #155: Free Stuff
- Free beer tomorrow; free lift today! That's not the FAA's new slogan but, instead, a reminder that some things in life -- and flight -- are free. Defend your free access to the sky by acing this free quiz.
- Quiz #154: What The World Needs Now ...
- ... is more pilots. And some pilots need to become professional flyers, even if the airlines keep merging into one. So, if you're ready to fly for hire -- or for food -- ace this Commercial-pilot quiz.
- Quiz #153: Call the Tower
- When something goes awry en route, ATC has a specific, Miranda-like phrase to let you know you've screwed up and need to make a few phone calls. Test your knowledge of reportable values in this quiz.
- Quiz #152: Master the Forces of the Universe
- The aviator's universe exists inside that thin layer of nitrogen, oxygen and spent carbon surrounding the earth. How you maneuver through the ether determines aeronautical success. How you answer the following questions determines your score.
- Quiz #151: Something Special in the Air(space)
- Special Use Airspace (SUA) isn't special because Mr. Rogers said so. Instead, it's special because someone inside that airspace may be taking aim at you. Show your special grasp of SUA by acing this quiz.
- Quiz #150: Cumulonimbi
- Whatever the time of year, thunderstorms can be a real showstopper for flight. Test your knowledge of CBs and TCUs before your passengers can scream, "OMG!"
- Quiz #149: On Other Than Fixed Wings
- What if airfoils spun to produce lift? What if a gas that makes your voice sound like Alvin and the Chipmunks lifted an aircraft? And what if someone wrote a quiz about it? You'd ace it, right?
- Quiz #148: Whaddya Know?
- Airlines lock their flight crews in the cockpit so passengers won't embarrass them by asking a lot of tough questions. We have no such qualms. Time to unlock your pilot minds and take this quiz.
- Quiz #147: From Briefing to Touchdown
- From preflight briefing to IFR cancellation, the PIC faces a boatload of Aeronautical Decision Making (ADM). Helping, or hindering, are countless FARs and AIM suggestions. Count how many you can handle with this quiz.
- Quiz #146: Obscure Regulations
- Seemingly insignificant regulations can bite. So bite back and defang the FAA's oft-overlooked regs by testing your grasp of the Code of Federal Regulations. (Think old-school FARs, if you like. We do.)
- Quiz #145: Speed and Altitude
- Go fast, go high. But before you reach beyond the surly bonds, make sure you know the territory or at least the terminology by acing this quiz.
- Quiz #144: Cross-Country Planning
- Dig through the closet and dust off Mom's old E6B flight computer, because it's time to go old school with a cross-country planning quiz. (You'll get your GPS back later.)
- Quiz #143: Mommy, Where Does Lift Come From?
- Eventually, all pilots face the uncomfortable moment when passengers ask about the facts of flight. Don't blush, stammer or tell them to "Go ask your flight instructor." Instead, tell them to take this quiz.
- Quiz #142: Tame That Checkride
- All pilots experience the jitters when the Designated Pilot Examiner (DPE) slithers into the aircraft and hisses, "Let's see what you know ..." So, let's quell all fears and see what you know about Practical Tests Standards.
- Quiz #141: Through The System
- While you navigate the National Airspace System (NAS), air traffic controllers apply a slug of rules to keep it all flowing. The more you know about how the system works, the smoother you'll sound.
- Quiz #140: Winter Be Damned
- When temperatures drop below an acceptable level of civility, pilots must face some cold realities: What you don't know about ice could severely chill your flight plans. Ace this ice-bound quiz to once again feel the warmth.
- Quiz #139: Good Night, Moon
- As winter approaches, days get shorter ... well, not shorter; they're still 24 hours each, but they do get darker. To master nighttime's dark side, shed light on the following questions.
- Quiz #138: Watch Out For That Tree
- TERPS means terminal instrument procedures, and procedure designers (a.k.a., TERPSters) build safe arrival and departure paths to clear ridges, trees and tall shrubbery near many airports. Test your TERPS savvy or prepare to bring us that shrubbery.
- Quiz #137: Twilight Zones
- Submitted for your consideration: VFR and IFR procedures with one foot in the 1950s and the other in your 21st-century cockpit. Despite satnav bliss, the National Airspace System (NAS) clings to archaic items that you should know.
- Quiz #136: Adrift in an Unstable Sky
- In a stable world, the weather is never claggy, airplanes fly upright and avgas is 50 cents per gallon. Sorry, this quiz is in the real, unstable world, so straighten up and answer right.
- Quiz #135: Summertime ...
- ... and the flyin' is easy, provided you remember a few things about warmed-up air molecules, hot holding patterns and steamed air traffic controllers working vacation overtime.
- Quiz #134: Give Yourself WINGS
- Time to blow off a little steam -- FAASTeam. That's shorthand for FAA Safety Team, a relatively new program promoting aviation safety. Test your knowledge of the program and some of its hotter topics.
- Quiz #133: Stuff You Should've Learned in Ground School
- Chances are you learned how to convert Celsius to Frankenstein, but can you remember all the other testable -- and forgettable -- minutiae from your primary training days? Neither can we, so let's see what you know.
- Quiz #132: Peek Behind the ATC Curtain
- The Pilot/Controller Glossary contains terms used on both sides of the NAS fence. Too often, pilots don't understand controller phrases, and controllers don't know the pilot stuff. You'll know it all by acing this quiz.
- Quiz #131: Reflections On Short Final
- When you're on final, aiming for the numbers, with passengers squawking, "Are we there yet?" there's little time to preplan. So, take a moment -- assuming you're not on final -- to test your approaches to landing.
- Quiz #130: Weather or Not
- Clouds, as Joni Mitchell warns, may get in your way, but knowing what's around you in the atmosphere turns weather challenges into clear skies. Well, maybe not, but it makes answering these questions much easier.
- Quiz #129: Winter Sport Flying
- "Oh, the weather outside is frightful, but ski-flying is so delightful. So long as you fly in Minnesota, let it snow, let it snow ..." Who're we kiddin'? Winter sucks. So hasten spring's arrival by smoking this quiz.
- Quiz #128: Go Global
- Some things old, some things new and a few things out of the blue make up the way we navigate. Answer the following questions correctly and you're cleared direct-to anywhere in the world, with your GPS.
- Quiz #127: Ramp Check
- Run away! Run away! No, it's not that scary. You can turn the tables on an FAA spot-inspection by having your paperwork in order and answering a few questions.
- Quiz #126: Control Input
- Ercoupe pilots, cover your ears. The rest of you, please get your feet off the floorboards and help us get a grip on a few questions about control surfaces. Proper input coordination is required.
- Quiz #125: What's Up?
- The sky's the limit of infinite possibilities when you don't let terminology and regulations hold you down. Let's dissect a few loftier ones to answer questions that have teased aeronautical brains since before Pratt met Whitney.
- Quiz #124: Back To School Quiz
- Shoes shined and hair slicked down, let's see what you remember after the long summer's break. Those who don't score well on this quiz will be forced to spend more time at the airport.
- Quiz #123: IFR Update
- Home from Oshkosh, your head is filled with Sean Tucker acrobatics in the fourth dimension. But darkening skies delay your dreams of air-show stardom as you pause to demonstrate your IFR savvy with a quiz.
- Quiz #122: Welcome To Brainteaser Refresher Camp
- Camp Wannaflybettah is open to pilots who obey a few camp rules: Don't drink from the seaplane pond, believe anything in the pilots' lounge or swallow the occasional red herring in the following questions.
- Quiz #121: Stress -- Deal With It
- Stress accompanies flight -- Don't Panic! Some stress is good, some not so. Recently, while checking out in a stubby-winged Thorp T-18, the Brainteaser author stressed himself and the airplane. Share the humiliation and test your stress limits.
- Quiz #120: Something Old, Something New
- As the tsunami of change washes over the FAA, leaving it groping for a user-fee lifeline, pilots know to surf the crest, riding old terms, new ways and hope into aviation's future.
- Quiz #119: Those Who Can -- Teach
- As a pilot racks up aerial experience, thoughts turn to passing along that largess. Let the quest for the flight instructor's ticket begin. And, there will be a quiz. All FAR questions, here, are based on Part 61.
- Quiz #118: Cleared ILS Approach
- "Four from the marker, maintain 2000 until established on the localizer, cleared ILS 22 approach." Readback correct. In a GPS world, the ground-based Instrument Landing System still breathes. See if you can keep the needles crossed.
- Quiz #117: Why Make Bad Landings?
- Would you rather bounce in a quiz or on real pavement? Let's turn base leg to final to see how well you recognize a bum approach. Caution: Subjective opinions included.
- Quiz #116: Along the Airways
- Before you can truly appreciate the ease and convenience of the modern sat/nav world, the pilot should master the pre-Columbian world of federal airways. See what you know about these ancient routes between ground-based navaids.
- Quiz #115: Beyond Fixed Wing
- We've taken it on the chin for not quizzing much outside the fixed-wing realm. The Brainteaser's response: "You can fly without fixed wings -- who knew?" See what you knew about things that go whump-whump-whump in the night.
- Quiz #114: Aerodynamically Speaking
- When airfoils slam into enough innocent air molecules at just the right speed, lift results. Seems like magic, but there is a little science involved. So let's explore a few basic tenets of aerodynamics.
- Quiz #113: Get Instrument Rated
- It seems as though every pilot is either instrument-rated or working on an IFR ticket. Whatever your status, let's review the Part 61 requirements to legally cross swords with an ILS in the clag.
- Quiz #112: Take a Commercial Break
- The transition from Private to Commercial pilot begins when you give yourself an "F." Subpart F of FAR Part 61 clears you to fly for hire. So get your Lazy-8 off the couch and ace this quiz.
- Quiz #111: Flapped, Foiled and Dragged
- The Earth's atmosphere is composed of 78 percent nitrogen and 21 percent oxygen, leaving only one percent for airplanes. Let's see what we can force into that airspace with a few aerodynamic questions and controversies.
- Quiz #110: Turn Sour Notes Into Sweet Approaches
- Whether you're a Jepp fan or sing NACO's praises, instrument approach procedures are full of tidbits you need to know before entering the clag. Test your interpretative mettle in this musical IFR trip.
- Quiz #109: Instrument Failure Is An Option
- Flying on the gauges is easy. Instructors make it seem hard by covering up instruments with sticky notes. They're not being jerks but, instead, are simulating instrument failures. Show that you're prepared for failure by acing this quiz.
- Quiz #108: Pre-Solo Prep
- It's time to leave your Citation, Cirrus or Citabria and forget everything you thought you knew about flight, because you're going aloft, again, for your first solo. Let's begin with the mandatory pre-solo quiz as per FAR 61.87.
- Quiz #107: SIGMET/AIRMET Savvy
- Slam into a developing thunderstorm that shakes your dentures loose and you'll appreciate the significance of a good weather briefing. Or you can circumnavigate that learning step and test your severe weather planning skills here.
- Quiz #106: Fly Raw Cross-Country
- Long before GPS, pilots navigated with compass, plotter, and E6-B computer. Lindbergh found his way to Paris using a cheese sandwich. You, too, can dead-reckon like an aviation pioneer by testing a few basic skills
- Quiz #105: Think Clearly
- Flying instruments is not particularly difficult. It's figuring out what Air Traffic Control expects that fogs the brain. Learning the hidden powers of IFR and VFR clearances launches any pilot on a direct route to success.
- Quiz #104: Preflight This
- No person shall begin a flight without ensuring that most of the aircraft parts are attached in an airworthy fashion. That inspection requires more than a laminated checklist, so let's preflight the logbook, fuel, and pilot's airworthiness.
- Quiz #103: More Power To Ya
- If power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely, then many pilots strive for the ultimate in degradation by strapping on bigger engines to reach beyond our grasp of powerplant knowledge. Let's see how power-hungry you absolutely are.
- Quiz #102: Smooth Maneuvers
- No, the title doesn't reflect our moves on the dance floor. Instead, it refers to your pilot skills in something other than straight-and-level flight. Being cool, you'll coordinate your mind and feet to answer the following questions.
- Quiz #101: Risk Analysis
- Flight involves risk. ATC and AFSS supply information, but only the pilot-in-command can analyze potential threats and make the go/no-go call. Winter offers lots of decision-making material, some of which might stick to your pitot.
- Quiz #100 -- New Stuff, Old Stuff
- In this -- the 100th Brainteaser quiz -- we cast a net across the vast sea of aviation knowledge to snag what's old, new, and even a little blue while challenging your crosswind technique.
- Quiz #99 -- Step Up To Twins
- Congratulations, Mrs. Hollow, it's twins. Twice the power at four times the expense lures the single-minded pilot into the multi-engine PIC seat with a multitude of multi-faceted questions. So grab a fistful of throttles and answer away.
- Quiz #98 -- Foggy Nights and Pretty Approach Lights
- Nighttime on an airport is a wondrous time splashed with sparkling lights, beckoning stars, and more than a few regulations and silly ways to embarrass yourself, unless you know the answers to the following questions.
- Quiz #97 -- Unscramble Your Head
- When your brain is unfairly teased in flight, how well you score on this quiz may determine your ability to handle unusual aeromedical factors, attitudes, and illusions.
- Quiz #96 -- More To Flight Than Wings and Wheels
- Fixed-wing, land airplanes can be so restricting. So shuck those tires and bolt on some floats -- or trade your old airfoils for rotors -- to fly seaplanes and helicopters. First, though, a few terms.
- Quiz #95 -- A New Sport Pilot
- Welcome, Sport Pilots, to aviation -- an exclusive club open to anyone who dreams far above the madding crowd's ignoble ground life. Before you touch the heavens, however, review some old- and new-school terms.
- Quiz #94 -- Call Me A Taxi
- You may think you understood ATC's instructions, but what you thought you heard might not be what the air traffic controller meant to say. Confused? Then verify your clearance in this quiz before you taxi.
- Quiz #93 -- Thundering Questions
- What can be taller than Mount Everest, wetter than a sloppy kiss, and meaner than a tax audit? Yes, thunderstorms. ATC offers some help around these gorgeous beasts, but successful circumnavigation depends on you.
- Quiz #92 -- Load Factors and Fictions
- If the airplane has four seats, you can cram in four people, right? Perhaps not. The PIC must not only figure how much weight is being carried but how that load affects safety. Are you balanced?
- Quiz #91 -- Lots To See and Avoid
- On a recent episode of the hit reality show, "This Old Control Tower," the host dodged weather, scanned for traffic, and wrestled a live TRSA. See how you'd handle reality on this flight.
- Quiz #90 -- Decode VIP, AP, LOM
- From the edge of outer space to the low-life missed approach environment, all pilots should be able to spit out obscure aviation terminology and know how to apply the info for safer flight.
- Quiz #89 -- A Little Off The Airway
- A pilot's brain can atrophy in the direct-anywhere GPS world, so let's wander about the airways reviving your knowledge of IFR and VFR symbols, contractions, and other needling minutiae -- including how much your VOR needle can move.
- Quiz #88 -- Can You Get There From Here?
- Flying from point A to point B can involve a seemingly pointless exercise in dissecting regulatory minutiae. Since the Brainteaser writer leads a pointless existence, let's get to the point and see what you know.
- Quiz #87 -- Who Ya Gonna Call?
- If anything can go wrong it will, and if not in flight at least on this quiz. See how you'd handle this string of stressful equipment failures without blowing your cool.
- Quiz #86 -- Restrictions and Procedures
- There are three reasons for getting the instrument rating: safer flying, lower insurance rates, and swaggering rights in the pilot's lounge. To retain the right to preen, you need to review a few IFR procedures.
- Quiz #85 -- Got Speed? Got 'Chute?
- Airspeed control is essential to safe flight. Without it, a good parachute might be advisable. Let's see what you know about good airspeed and good parachute management. Cirrus pilots may wonder what the difference is.
- Quiz #84 -- Special VFR
- Want to feel special inside controlled airspace? Request a Special VFR clearance. While your VFR buddies scratch their headsets, you'll scud-run with FAA approval. Let's review the SVFR rules to see how special you really are.
- Quiz #83 -- Oh No, LAHSO
- LAHSO means Land And Hold Short Operations, and it's the FAA's controversial way to squeeze more air traffic onto the same old runways. Your task is to, well, land and hold short of other traffic. Got LAHSO? Hope so.
- Quiz #82 -- Navigate Through Turbulent Times
- Smooth skies are the stuff flying dreams are made of, but bouncing past a thunderstorm or trailing in the wake of a low-flying whale can shake you awake. Cinch your seatbelts and see how you'd rate these turbulence encounters.
- Quiz #81 -- Know Your Limits
- The freedom of flight is only limited by your imagination and a few thousand federal regulations. Let's navigate down to the regulatory minimums without slipping too many surly FAR bonds.
- Quiz #80 -- Radar Contact
- Don't you love that cozy feeling you get when an air traffic controller whispers, "Radar contact," in your headset? But what service attaches to these words? Whether IFR or VFR it helps to know your radar vs. non-radar terms and expectations.
- Quiz #79 -- Let's Be Clear On This
- The bedrock of air traffic control is the word "clear." Whether cleared for takeoff or cleared for an instrument approach, understanding the forces that this word unleashes clearly puts you in the accomplished pilot's seat.
- Quiz #78 -- Equipment Check
- Your accountant figured out how to deduct your flying lessons from your federal return. So, you buy a Cessna 172, and want to get in at least one flight before the IRS audits your dream. First, however, you need to see if the airplane will pass an FAA audit.
- Quiz #77 -- We Want Information
- What do you know and when should you know it? Information changes on any flight. Ceilings drop, winds shift, and -- sadly -- special use airspace (SUA) pops up on short notice. Let's take off and see what information is available.
- Quiz #76 -- The Weather Outside Is Frightful
- In the age of Stormscopes, Doppler radar, and data uplink you'd think the weather would get the message and behave. But no, pilots still need to analyze the skies for themselves, with a little free help from flight service. See how you weather these questions.
- Quiz #75 -- Aerodrome Operations
- You can successfully fly hundreds of miles across burning sands, frozen tamarack, and deadly L.A. freeways, but all that Zen-like aero-bliss can turn to grief if you don't understand the operating rules in the airport environment. Have fun navigating the following scenarios.
- Quiz #74 -- Hold, Circle, and Yield Right-of-Way
- Flight opens the entire world to your imagination, so imagine yourself in the IFR-meets-VFR real world where you have to know what the other pilots are up to.
- Quiz #73 -- IFR Charts And Procedures For All Pilots
- Rumor has it that some pilots fly inside clouds. Yikes! How can they see the interstate highways? VFR pilots should have at least a passing acquaintance with IFR procedures if only to know where IFR traffic might appear. All instrument-rated flyers could use the occasional brush-up on instrument terms and procedures.
- Quiz #72 -- Grab Those VFR Sectional Charts And Fly
- FAR 91.103 says that you need "all available information" before launching on any flight. Yeah, right. Where's a PIC supposed to glean all that stuff? Surprisingly, much of what you need -- IFR or VFR -- is on the lowly VFR sectional chart. But you need to decode a few things ...
- Quiz #71 -- Special Use Airspace
- Temporary Flight Restrictions (TFRs) have become permanent, roving annoyances to pilots. Other Special Use Airspace (SUA) restrictions have vexed aviators for decades. Test your knowledge of off-limits airspace.
- Quiz #70 -- Mommy, Where Do Controllers Come From?
- The art and science of air traffic control (ATC) began life in humble surroundings without exerting much control. Let's peak behind the FAA's historical curtain to see who pulled the early levers of aviation power.
- Quiz #69 -- Talk The Talk
- Whether you're talking on a busy air traffic control (ATC) frequency or some sleepy uncontrolled airport's CTAF (Common Traffic Advisory Frequency), how you sound determines how others will treat you. When the phraseology is flying fast do you sing like a 747 captain or squawk like Donald Duck? See how you'd treat these snatches of aviation verbiage.
- Quiz #68 -- Additional Ratings and Endorsements
- Some pilot privileges require a written exam and a grueling checkride administered by a grumpy examiner. Others are gained through additional training from a friendly CFI and a low-anxiety sign-off. Know the difference?
- Quiz #67 -- Is Your Aircraft Airworthy Of You?
- Whether you own or rent, before going aloft it's important for the pilot in command to calculate just how many pounds of paperwork it takes to make the aircraft airworthy. From annual inspection dates to transponder certification rules there's a boatload of regs to apply. See how many you can recall.
- Quiz #66 -- Just How Current Are You?
- While sorting your laundry, a pilot certificate slips from your Dockers' pocket. "Nice pants," you think and then notice your name on the certificate. You decide to go flying, but before rolling the Turbo-Ercoupe out of the hangar, you should preflight your pilot paperwork.
- Quiz #65 -- A Touch of Class Airspace Review
Your flying is truly a class act, so you should have no trouble dissecting and labeling the various classes of airspace. What can get sticky are all the nit-picking regulations that apply inside this alphabet jungle. Note: When international differences apply, the answers in this test presume the flight is within U.S. airspace.
- Quiz #64 --So You Want to Get an Instrument Rating
- Whenever there's a low overcast or reduced visibility at the local airport and CAVU a few miles away, the non-instrument-rated pilots often sit around the pilots' lounge and talk about this and that while waiting for the weather to improve. But in the back of each pilot's mind there's a thought that begins with, "If I had an instrument rating ..." What is it that keeps pilots from getting instrument rated? Is it the lack of time, money, confidence, knowledge about the privileges and responsibilities of the instrument rating or the training required? This quiz encompasses those privileges, responsibilities and training requirements for obtaining and utilizing an instrument rating in the United States. All questions assume that the pilot has an airplane single engine land rating on a private or commercial pilot certificate issued by the FAA.
- Quiz #63 --Aviation Weather Products
- Most pilots are familiar with the Aviation Routine Weather Report (METAR) and the Aviation Terminal Forecast (TAF) products of the National Weather Service (NWS). There are many other aviation weather products available to pilots, who must obtain "all available information" for any flight (according to FAR 91.103). The purpose of this quiz is to refresh pilots' knowledge regarding those weather products, including the official designators (METAR, TAF, etc.), location of the originating sources, and the content of the products. Most of the information for this quiz can be found in FAA publication AC 00-45E, Aviation Weather Services.
- Quiz #62 --Special IFR
- Pilots who fly under Instrument Flight Rules in the United States are expected to know and to follow the IFR regulations and procedures as written in the Federal Aviation Regulations (FAR) and the Aeronautical Information Manual (AIM). Some of the procedures are used only on relatively rare occasion in certain areas of the country or only at a small number of airports, so it's quite possible for a pilot to fly for years and accumulate thousands of flying hours under IFR and never have to deal with these procedures, while pilots in other places use them on a weekly basis. This quiz is designed to test your knowledge of some of these lesser-known (and hence "special") IFR procedures.
- Quiz #61 --Very High Frequency Omni Range
- VOR navigation has been around for a long time, and it's not likely to go away for quite some time. Although LORAN and GPS navigation have both threatened to make VOR navigation obsolete, that's very unlikely to happen in the near future. Knowledge of how the VOR system works (including both ground and airborne equipment) is essential for both VFR and IFR pilots. This quiz will refresh and test your knowledge regarding this important navigational tool.
#60 -- National Transportation Safety Board, Part 830
- Most pilots will never be involved in an aircraft accident. Nevertheless, it's important
for pilots to know their legal responsibilities if they are involved in an aircraft accident or
certain incidents in the United States, or anywhere if a U.S.-registered aircraft is involved.
NTSB Part 830 specifies what those responsibilities are, and AVweb's Irv Siegel has a quiz
is designed to test your knowledge and refresh your memory regarding this information.
#59 -- The Price Is Right!
- Pilots are inundated with numbers -- airspeeds, fuel flows, radio
frequencies, takeoff and landing distances -- but to most of us, the numbers
that matter most are the ones preceded by dollar signs. Do you know what it
costs to rent an airplane, to buy a gallon of 100LL, to renew a medical
certificate, or to lease a tee-hangar? Have some price-guessing fun with Irv
Siegel's latest interactive quiz.
#58 -- More Pilot/Controller Glossary
- Our Quiz #50,
"Pilot/Controller Glossary," was one of our most popular, and
many readers asked for more. Well, here you are! Once again, this quiz is
based on the Pilot/Controller Glossary (in the FAA's AIM), whose purpose is
to define and explain the terminology used by pilots and controllers when
communicating on ATC frequencies. You're invited to test and to extend your
knowledge of that terminology.
#57 -- Flight Instructor Practical Test
- The FAA has just published a new Practical Test Standard (PTS) for the
Flight Instructor Airplane certificate. The CFI-A checkride has a justly
deserved reputation as one of the toughest in aviation. Whether you're
already a CFI, a pilot who aspires to become a CFI, or just curious about
what a flight instructor practical test is all about, Irv Siegel's latest
interactive quiz will give you a preview.
#56 -- Pilot Proficiency Awards Program
- The Federal Aviation Administration has established a Pilot Proficiency
Award Program to recognize pilots who participate in recurrent proficiency
training. Advisory Circular AC 61-91H details the requirements for this
program, and its benefits for participating pilots. Brush up your knowledge
of this important subject by taking Irv Siegel's latest interactive quiz.
#55 -- Cleared For The Approach
- The ATC instruction "cleared for the approach" allows a pilot
flying under IFR to descend and land according to procedures that must be
adhered to if the pilot is to conclude the flight safely. Although most of
these procedures are straightforward, there are a number of "gotchas"
that can trap the unwary pilot. Check your understanding of these procedures
by taking Irv Siegel's latest interactive quiz.
#54 -- Acronyms, Abbreviations and Contractions
- Pilots are often confused by the numerous acronyms, abbreviations, and
contractions that are found in weather reports and forecasts, regulations,
NOTAMs, advisory circulars, etc. You
re probably familiar with the most
common of these shorthand notations, but there are others that are less
frequently seen but still important to anyone concerned with the safety of
flight. Irv Siegel
s latest interactive quiz will test your knowledge of
these acronyms, abbreviations and contractions -- some common and others
less common but important.
#53 -- Density Altitude
- Every pilot knows that aircraft takeoff and landing performance varies
with field elevation, temperature, humidity, altimeter setting, runway
slope, wind velocity, wind shear, turbulence, etc. Some of these factors are
consolidated into the quantifiable term "density altitude," which
then can be used to help predict aircraft performance (or lack thereof). A
solid knowledge of density altitude -- what it is, how it's determined, and
the effects that it has on aircraft performance -- is essential for all
pilots. Solidify yours by taking Irv Siegel's latest interactive quiz.
#52 -- Rules of Thumb
- Rules of thumb help to cut pilot workload by substituting a simple rule
for what could be a complex calculation. Irv Siegel
s latest quiz is based
on a number of such very useful rules. You should be able to answer these
questions without resorting to your whiz-wheel, electronic calculator,
computers, or even pencil and paper ... and if you can't now, the quiz
answers will teach you how.
#51 -- Up, Up, and Away!
- Balloon flying predates powered airplane flying by over two centuries.
Some consider it sport flying at its purest. Knowledge of wind and weather,
regulations, and proper flying technique are every bit as important for
balloon pilots as it is for pilots of other types of aircraft. Brush up your
ballooning knowledge by taking Irv Siegel's latest interactive quiz.
#50 -- Pilot/Controller Glossary
- For clear and unambiguous communications between pilots and controllers,
it's vital that there be agreement about the meaning of words. In the
Aeronautical Information Manual, the FAA has published a Pilot/Controller
Glossary that defines and explains the terminology used by pilots and
controllers when communicating on ATC frequencies. See if your knowledge of
this lingo is up to snuff by taking Irv Siegel's latest interactive quiz.
#49 -- Basic Aerodynamics
- Knowledge of basic aerodynamics is necessary for anybody wishing to obtain
a pilot certificate. As the years go by, many pilots fail to refresh their
knowledge of this subject, or to increase it beyond the simple explanations
of lift, weight, thrust, and drag. Assess your aerodynamic knowledge by
trying your hand at Irv Siegel's latest online quiz.
#48 -- Basic Attitude Instrument Flight
- Two different approaches to attitude instrument flying are "control
and performance" and "primary and supporting." Many CFIIs
favor one of these methods over the other, with the result that many pilots
learn only one method. Knowledge of both methods gives a pilot more
confidence while flying on the gauges, as each method reinforces the other.
Irv Siegel's latest online quiz deals with the basics of both methods.
#47 -- Security Control of Air Traffic
- We all hope that the terrifying and tragic events of September 11, 2001,
will never be repeated, and that any future attempted terrorist attacks will
be prevented from being carried out. To this end, pilots must be well versed
in ATC security procedures that apply when penetrating an ADIZ, when
intercepted, and in the event of a national emergency. This is the subject
of Irv Siegel's latest online quiz.
#46 -- Aviation Facts and Myths
- In the musical "The King And I," the King says, "In my head
are many facts of which I wish I was more certain I was sure. Is a
puzzlement." Similarly, in aviation there are many "facts"
that we think we know, but that turn out to be myths. See how you do
separating myth from fact in Irv Siegel's latest online quiz.
#45 -- The FAA's New Instrument Flying Handbook
- The FAA recently published a brand new version of its "Instrument
Flying Handbook" with a brand new identifying number: FAA-H-8083-15.
This new edition differs substantially from its predecessor (AC61-27C), and
features up-to-date illustrations and information about all aspects of
instrument flight, including GPS and other recent avionics advances. It's a
"must read" for every instrument pilot and instrument student. Irv
Siegel's latest interactive quiz offers a taste of what it has to offer.
#44 -- Becoming A Commercial Pilot
- Obtaining a private pilot certificate is a challenging and rewarding
experience. Many pilots then go on to obtain an instrument rating, thereby
making their pilot certificates much more useful. But, is there reason to go
after the commercial pilot certificate if one does not have a career in
aviation in mind? For many pilots, the answer is a resounding
"Yes!" Certainly, the training involved in obtaining that
certificate will make any pilot sharper and more proficient, and Irv
Siegel's latest interactive quiz is a good place to start.
#43 -- Name That Aircraft!
- How well do you know the different types of airplanes that you see in the
sky? Given a detailed description off an aircraft -- wingspan, cruising
speed, number of engines, aerodynamic configuration, etc. -- can you figure
out the aircraft type? If so, then you should do well on Irv Siegel's latest
interactive quiz, which tests your ability to match the descriptions and
parameters of different aircraft with their names.
#42 -- Aviation History
- Most AVweb Brainteasers have focused on pilot knowledge that's
important for safe, efficient, and legal operation of aircraft. This one is
a bit different. Knowledge of aviation history isn't necessary for a pilot
to safely, efficiently, and legally fly in today's airspace, but a knowledge
of the contributions of aviators in years gone by is necessary for us to
truly appreciate our ability to take to the skies in the 21st century. Our
debt to our predecessors can only be paid if we continue their quest for
knowledge and flying experience.
#41 -- Medical Facts for Pilots
- The Civil Aeromedical Institute (CAMI) is the FAA organization responsible
for medical certification, research and education. The CAMI Web site
features a series of "Medical Facts For Pilots" brochures covering
subjects like alcohol, altitude sickness, OTC medications, pilot vision,
seat belts, smoke toxicity, and human factors. These are the basis for Irv
Siegel's latest interactive quiz. Try it ... you'll learn something!
#40 -- Safety Guide for Private Aircraft Owners
- The FAA offers many useful publications for the aviation community, but
some of them are little known and seldom read. One of these -- FAA
publication FAA-P-8740-4A, "Safety Guide for Private Aircraft
Owners" -- is the basis of this month's interactive quiz by Irv Siegel.
Test your knowledge on a wide range of subjects important to GA pilots: fuel
and oil, spark plug fouling, tire pressures, carbon monoxide, propeller
nicks, maintenance test flights, and more.<;br>
#39 -- Aviation Safety Reporting Program
- Best known to pilots for its get-out-of-jail-free provisions, the FAA
Aviation Safety Reporting Program (ASRP) is designed to encourage the free
and unrestricted reporting of safety-related information by users of the
National Airspace System (NAS). The ASRP utilizes the National Aeronautics
and Space Administration (NASA) as a third party to receive aviation safety
reports from users and de-identify those reports to protect submitters from
FAA prosecution. For pilots to use the ASRP effectively, it's necessary for
them to understand exactly how the program works. This quiz will test your
knowledge of the ASRP, and will enable you to fill in any gaps in your
knowledge regarding the program.
#38 -- VFR Cross-Country
- Most airplanes are designed for traveling from airport to airport,
transporting people (and sometimes baggage and packages) from point A to
point B. In such cross-country flying, a pilot's goal should be to make each
flight safe and efficient and pleasurable, so that every passenger is eager
to fly again on a future trip. Irv Siegel's latest interactive quiz is
designed to make pilots think about some of the many aspects of a VFR
cross-country flight in the United States and how they would handle each of
the situations described.
#37 -- ILS Components
- When the ceiling is low and the visibility is poor and the wind is
howling, pilots need all the help they can get in order to navigate to the
runway and make a successful landing. The most common precision instrument
approach is the Instrument Landing System, and instrument students spend
many hours practicing and honing their skills at flying a stable and
accurate ILS approach. Keeping the needles centered is a pilot's first
priority, but it's also important to have a good working knowledge of the
entire ILS system, and how each of its components contributes to the pilot's
positional awareness. Irv Siegel's latest quiz will test your knowledge of
those components and the tolerances involved in the design and execution of
an ILS approach.
#36 -- VFR Weather Minimums
- Okay gang, it's back to basics with Irv Siegel's latest interactive quiz.
In the United States (as well as just about every ICAO country), weather
minimums for VFR flight vary according to the type of airspace, height above
the ground, height above mean sea level, and whether it's daytime or night.
Most of us learned these weather minimums when we were student pilots, but
in the intervening years our knowledge may have gotten rusty, and in some
cases the regulations may have changed. Take this quiz and refresh your
knowledge of the weather minimums required to fly under visual flight rules.
#35 -- Terminal Instrument Procedures (TERPS)
- Instrument departure and arrival procedures in the U.S. are designed in
accordance with FAA Order 8260.3B, titled "United States Standard for
Terminal Procedures" and affectionately nicknamed "TERPS."
Pilots who are familiar with the criteria used to design instrument
procedures are less likely to make critical mistakes when executing them.
Irv Siegel's latest interactive quiz puts your TERPS knowledge to the test.
#34 -- Cessna 150
- Many pilots have learned to fly in the venerable Cessna 150 and its
successor, the 152. The 150 remains a favorite for flight schools all over
the world, and is the focus of Irv Siegel's latest interactive quiz. For
those pilots who have owned, operated, or learned to fly in one of these
aircraft, this should be a relatively easy exercise. For others, it's an
opportunity to learn about one of the most popular training aircraft in the
#33 -- Knowledge Test Questions
- Four times a year, the FAA makes changes to its question banks for
virtually every knowledge test. Irv Siegel's Brainteaser for this month
consists of new and changed questions recently added to the Commercial
Pilot, Instrument Pilot, and Airline Transport Pilot test question bank. Irv
has chosen the 15 new questions that he considers most relevant to actual
flight in the real world ... AND he's furnished the answers to these
questions, which the FAA does NOT do.
#32 -- Frequency Change Approved
- In the early days of aviation, pilots didn't have to contend with radio
communication and navigation. Nowadays, though, knowledge of what
frequencies to expect will lead to a more enjoyable aviating experience.
(Who among us has not tried to put a VOR frequency in a communications
transceiver, or vice versa?) Try this frequency quiz by Irv Siegel, and test
your knowledge regarding frequency assignments.
#31 -- Visiting Las Vegas
- Las Vegas, Nev., is a favorite destination for general aviation and air
carriers alike. Hemmed in by high terrain and gigantic military restricted
complexes, the airspace can get very busy and the controllers very
unforgiving of pilot goofs. There's a lot of critical information packed
into the Terminal Area Chart and the Airport Facility Directory, and Irv
Siegel's latest interactive quiz will test your ability to dig out that
information. (Hint: It's harder than you think.)
#30 -- Specialty Takeoffs and Landings
- How long has it been since you had to do a soft field takeoff, or a slip
to a landing over an obstacle? Other than for practical exams and perhaps
for the occasional flight review, most pilots rarely perform anything but
normal departures and arrivals. Irv Siegel's latest interactive quiz is
designed to refresh your knowledge and get you ready to go out and practice
some of these specialty takeoffs and landings.
#29 -- Pressurization
- As pilots move up to bigger and faster aircraft, there is a natural desire
to fly at higher and higher altitudes. At first, breathing supplemental
oxygen is satisfactory, but many pilots find that costly and inconvenient
(as do their passengers), not to mention that breathing even pure oxygen
isn't enough at very high altitudes. It is then that pilots turn to
pressurized aircraft. Pressurization enables us to fly at high enough
altitudes to maximize fuel efficiency, get above most inclement weather, and
take advantage of strong tailwinds, all without having to be tethered to an
oxygen mask. Irv Siegel
s latest interactive quiz deals with aspects of
pressurization that are important to any pilot who is thinking of stepping
up to a pressurized aircraft.
#28 -- Slow Flight and Stalls
- It takes knowledge, talent, and practice to be able to fly an aircraft at
the edge of its performance envelope, especially at the lower airspeed
limits. Pilots learn some of these maneuvers in preparation for a private,
commercial, or flight instructor practical test, but unless they are
practiced on a regular basis, knowledge decays and skill atrophies, often to
the point where the benefits of the original training are all but lost. Irv
Siegel's latest interactive quiz will help you gauge how much you remember
about this stuff, and perhaps serve as a reminder that we all need to get
out and practice it from time to time in order to maintain our basic pilot
#27 -- Becoming a Flight Instructor
- Did you ever have the urge to teach others to fly? Did you hold back from
doing it because you thought that it was too difficult or costly to become a
certificated flight instructor? While it's true that there's a whole new set
of skills required for teaching others to fly, the main requirement is that
you be able to communicate effectively with other people. Irv Siegel's
latest online quiz may help you decide whether CFI-dom is for you.
#26 -- METAR, Revisited
- The FAA recently released a new update of its "Aviation Weather
Services" advisory circular (AC 00-45E). It's not yet in print, but can
be downloaded from the FAA's Flight Standards Web site at http://www.faa.gov/avr/afs/afs400/.
Since this newly-revised AC discusses how to interpret and use coded weather
reports, it seemed to AVweb's quizmaster Irv Siegel like a good
time to revisit the topic of decoding METARs, which many pilots find to be
the most cryptic of those reports. Have a shot at Irv's latest interactive
quiz and see whether you need a brush-up on your cryptographic skills.
#25 -- Becoming An Aircraft Owner
- Every renter-pilot harbors a secret (or perhaps not-so-secret) desire to
become an aircraft owner. The difficulties encountered in renting aircraft
-- aircraft being returned late by previous renter, not topped off with
fuel, equipment not working, flat spots on tires, chewing gum wrappers and
dirty styrofoam cups left in seatback pockets, etc. -- will be relagated to
the distant past when you own your own aircraft. But, like most things in
life, there's a tradeoff. Becoming an aircraft owner brings on a whole new
set of responsibilities, and these are the focus of Irv Siegel's latest
#24 -- Cold-Weather Flying
- Cold-weather flying requires a specialized set of pilot skills and
knowledge in order to be accomplished safely. Just as you wouldn't drive
your car in severe winter weather without the proper preparation, the same
is true for flying an aircraft under such conditions. Try your hand at Irv
Siegel's latest interactive quiz and see if you're ready to tackle the
winter flying season.
#23 -- Speeds
- Pilots are obsessed (or at least they should be) with the need for speed
-- not necessarily the most speed, but the appropriate speed. For virtually
every aspect of flight, there's a particular speed that's optimum. Going
faster or slower than the optimum speed may be inefficient, unsafe, or even
deadly. Irv Siegel's latest interactive quiz poses a variety of situations
wherein the pilot has to choose the correct speed at which to operate or on
which to base certain calculations. Are you up to speed?
#22 -- Emergencies
- Flying is easy when everything goes as planned. It's how we react when
something unexpected happens that separates great pilots from the
not-so-great. What would you do if your engine started losing power? If your
oil pressure suddenly dropped to zero? If you found yourself low on fuel? If
you lost an engine in a twin? If you inadvertantly entered IMC while flying
VFR at night? Irv Siegel's latest interactive quiz challenges you to think
about how you'd handle these and other emergency situations.
#21 -- Operation at Non-Towered Airports
- Non-pilots often believe that a non-towered airport is inherently unsafe,
and many pilots who do most of their flying at airports with operating
control towers are uncomfortable when flying in or out of non-towered
fields. Even pilots who have extensive experience operating at non-towered
airports have picked up bad habits over the years. Regardless of your
experience at non-towered airports, Irv Siegel's latest interactive quiz is
sure to get you thinking about good operating practices at such airports.
#20 -- Night Flying
- In the United States and many other parts of the world, autumn is a lovely
season for flying. The foliage is changing color, creating spectacular
scenery, and the weather is generally pleasant. But autumn also brings
dwindling daylight hours and more hours of darkness. A flight that ended in
daylight during summer might now mean a landing after dark. In case you're a
little rusty on the finer points of flying at night, this interactive quiz
should provide an educational brush-up.
#19 -- Airman Medical Certification
- You passed your last aviation medical exam with flying colors. But now,
your family physician tells you that you've got a medical problem of some
kind. Perhaps your blood pressure is higher than it should be, or your blood
sugar is a bit elevated, or you passed a kidney stone. How does this affect
your FAA medical certificate? Irv Siegel's interactive quiz covers these and
other medical certification questions that every airman should be able to
answer. Can you?
#18 -- Operating at Tower-Controlled Airports
- Whenever you fly into or out of an airport with an operating control
tower, your every move and transmission is under the FAA microscope. Better
know the rules, or you risk getting that dreaded request to "phone the
tower." Pretty confident you know your stuff? Try taking this
interactive quiz and find out for sure!
#17 -- FAA Compliance and Enforcement Policy
- Whether you're a pilot, a mechanic, an airline executive or another sort
of certificate holder governed by the Federal Aviation Regulations, at some
point you'll probably come in contact with a man in a white shirt and skinny
tie, wearing a blue nametag and a benign smile that says "I'm here to
help." In case you were wondering, he's an FAA inspector and his
actions are governed by the FAA's very complex Compliance and Enforcement
Policy. How much do you know the rules that he plays by? Take this quiz and
find out. Bet you'll be surprised at what you learn!
#16 -- Pilot Weather Reports (PIREPs)
- Forecasts are fine and dandy, but the only really reliable information we
have to go on about weather hazards like icing, turbulence and windshear are
the PIREPs we get from pilots who flew there before us. Do you file PIREPs
as often as you should? Do you even know the correct procedures? Take this
quiz and find out.
#15 -- Aeronautical Lighting
- Flying at night is one of the most enjoyable aspects of aviation...but do
you know the meaning of all those colored and flashing lights down there?
Clean the cobwebs off your mouse and find out.
#14 -- FAR Part 61
- On August 4th, 1997, a massive rewrite of Part 61 of the Federal Aviation
Regulations went into effect, governing the certification of pilots, flight
instructors and ground instructors. All U.S. pilots need to be up-to-speed
on these regs, and CFI had better know them by heart. But for you non-CFIs,
this quiz is open-book: we provide links to the text of the new rules. Okay,
class, let's see if you've been paying attention.
#13 -- Maintenance Regulations
- This quiz focuses on FAR Part 43, the rules and regs affecting aircraft
maintenance. Yes, pilots and particularly aircraft owners are supposed to
know this stuff. But do you?
#12 -- Basic Regulations
- Many of our Brainteasers have focused heavily on IFR-related topics, and
we've had many requests for quizzes that would be more appropriate for
non-instrument rated Private and Student pilots. So this time, we'll take a
look at some of the most basic FARs from Part 61 (pilot certification) and
Part 91 (flight rules) that every pilot should know. Let's see how much
you've forgotten since your last BFR oral. (Instrument pilots, ATPs and CFIs
will find this quiz challenging, too.)
#11 -- Terrestrial Navaids
- With all the emphasis on satellite-based navigation these days,
discussions of those 1950's technology groundbound anachronisms -- VOR, DME
and ILS -- may seem passe. But since we're going to be living with them for
at least another decade, let's see how much you remember about these
#10 -- Radio Communications
- When you key up that transmitter to talk to ATC or FSS, do you sound like
a pro...or a "lid"? (That's controllerspeak for a pilot who has
bad radio procedure.) The use of standard phraseology and proper radio
communications techniques is what distinguishes the professional-sounding
pilot. So let's see just how well you know how to "talk the talk."
#9 -- Holding Procedures
- From our Not-So-Useful-Information-But-You-Oughta-Know-This-Anyway file,
here's an interactive quiz about IFR holding procedures. The problem with
holding is that most of us don't do enough of it to stay current on the
procedures. But sooner or later, if yoy fly much real-world IFR, you'll get
a hold or two. This quiz appears in abbreviated form in the August 1996
issue of IFR magazine.
#8 -- METAR
- Starting July 1st, 1996, those old familiar SAs and FTs were replaced by
strange-looking mumbo-jumbo called METARs and TAFs. This quiz will give you
a pretty good idea of whether or not you've mastered the transition to METAR-format
#7 -- Airspeed Indicators
- The February 1996 crash of a 757 off the Dominican coast appreas to have
been caused by a faulty airspeed indicator. In this quiz, which appears in
abbreviated form in the May 1996 issue of IFR
magazine;, we take a look at ASIs and find out how well you understand
these most taken-for-granted of cockpit instruments.
#6 -- Class D Airspace
- In this quiz, which appears in abbreviated form in the April 1996 issue of
IFR magazine, we'll take a look at
Class D airspace, those odd little circles that surround most towered
airports. Let's see how well you understand what they mean.
#5 -- Airport Signs
- One of the most significant changes at U.S. airports in recent years has
been the new system of standardized signs. They can be tremendously helpful
to pilots at unfamiliar airports and in low-visibility conditions...but only
if you have a good understanding of what the new signs mean. Do you?
#4 -- Logging Time
- Whether you're a neophyte student or grizzled old IFR pro, you need to
know how to answer questions concerning logging of flight time. In this
quiz, IFR magazine editor Paul
Bertorelli tests your understanding of some of the basic concepts and
legalities of logging.
#3 -- Transponders
- How well do you know the rules and requirements for transponders? A number
of these rules have changed in recent years...have you kept up? Take a stab
at answering these questions from the November 1995 issue of IFR.
#2 -- Procedures
- IFR flying involves more than just keeping the needles centered. It also
requires judgment tempered by a thorough knowledge of the FARs and accepted
procedures. We dare you to take a whack at this month's questions from IFR
magazine editor Paul Bertorelli.
#1 -- BWI ILS 15R
- Match wits with IFR magazine
editor Paul Bertorelli as he puts your approach plate reading skills to the
test. Paul is infamous for his tough and tricky questions, some of which
just don't have pat answers. Not for the faint of heart. This month's
challenge: the ILS 15R at Baltimore-Washington International.