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Jun. 14, 2007

## Interactive 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.

INSTRUCTIONS: Answer the questions as best you can, then click on the "Score my quiz answers" button to see your score and read the explanations. If you don't like your score the first time around, you can change some of your answers and resubmit. To get the most out of this quiz, we suggest you keep trying until you get a perfect score.

NOTE: When more than one answer is true, only the most complete, correct answer will be scored as correct. The answers are assumed to apply within the United States unless otherwise noted.

1. New pilots live in fear of saying something silly in the Pilot's Lounge. They'll avoid potential stress by quietly listening to the more experienced flyers who seem to know everything. They don't. No one does. But you can sound experienced by filling the blanks on this statement: Wing loading is obtained by dividing the (_____) of the airplane by the (_____)?
a. aspect ratio, camber
b. weight, wing area
c. camber, chord
d. empty weight, wing span
e. fractional, ownership
2. Power loading is a significant factor in the airplane's takeoff and climb capabilities and is expressed in:
a. pounds per horsepower
b. brake horsepower
c. shaft horsepower
d. torque (pounds per foot)
3. Stress can be added to an aircraft by the pilot's input. Bank, for instance, increases load factor. The actual weight of the aircraft multiplied by the load factor, or the increase in weight caused by acceleration, is called:
b. static stability
d. dynamic stability
4. Every student pilot learns to perform steep turns, in which the airplane displays "overbanking" tendencies. More than a ritual for achieving a pilot certificate, understanding overbanking is critical to safe flight. Imagine entering an overbanking attitude at night or in the clouds. Now, combine it with a low pitch-attitude. If you aren't stressed yet, you will be if you don't correct the situation. To recover from a potentially stressful, overbanking, low-pitch attitude, your first step should be:
a. Shallow the bank
b. Increase pitch
5. Fill in the blanks: A normal category airplane must be strong enough to sustain a load factor of (_____) times its weight. Utility category must sustain a load factor of (_____), and acrobatic category aircraft must be able to withstand (_____) times their weight. (All positive loads.)
a. 1.4, 5.8, 6.3
b. 2.7, 3.8, 4.4
c. 3.8, 4.4, 6.0
d. 4.4, 6.0, 7.2
6. Time for a breather. Imagine that you're in the clouds, the TKS ran out of fluid and you're iced up like a cheap wedding cake. Your vacuum pump warranty just expired, and the attitude indicator is rolling like a coon dog in a hog lot .(This quiz was outsourced to Iowa, hence the barnyard metaphors.) The radio is loaded with static. You have to pee and, frankly, you're getting a little stressed out. So, relax, breathe, breathe ... that's it. Uh-oh, you're breathing too fast, you can't control it -- Stress! Stress! What is the aeromedical term for your panicky rapid breathing?
a. Hypoventilation
b. Hyperventilation
c. Hydroventilation
d. Autokenisis
e. Autopanicisis
7. You think only pilots get stressed? Ha! Air traffic controllers have to keep track of a slug of aircraft while vectoring, separating, assisting and clearing them approaches plus deal with management. Stress comes with the job, which may be why the FAA is cutting controller salaries and reducing staffing. Cheeky NATCA promo aside, when a controller or an ATC sector gets saturated with traffic, pilots are tossed into holds. As the pilot stresses over teardrop versus parallel entry, the controller should inform the pilot of the anticipated delay. If ATC is so backed up that no one knows when the doors will open or how long the delay will be, the controller should say (pick the best phraseology):
a. Cleared to HALLO (fix), hold west, as published, delay indefinite, thunderstorm in progress, expect further clearance one one three zero.
b. Cleared to HALLO (fix), hold west, as published, delay unknown, thunderstorm in progress, expect approach clearance one one three zero.
c. Cleared to HALLO (fix), hold west, as published, delay expected, thunderstorm in progress.
d. Cleared to HALLO (fix), hold west, as published, delay anticipated, thunderstorm in progress.
8. Let's say you were piloting the last airplane to attempt an approach through the developing thunderstorm in the previous question. Prior to punching into the cumulus nightmare, you were calmly using your autopilot to fly headings. You're 10 miles from the FAF on a vector level at your assigned altitude. As your IFR world shakes, you should (choose the best answer):
a. Use the autopilot to make a 180-degree turn and get out
b. Use the autopilot to make a 360-degree turn and get out
c. Disengage altitude-hold mode and speed-hold mode on the autopilot
d. Engage altitude-hold mode and speed-hold mode on the autopilot
e. Complain to ATC
9. We flatlander pilots get all stressed out when facing the Rockies. Some of us sweat looking at the Catskills in New York, but face it, some New Yorkers panic when surrounded by corn. High-speed wind across mountains causes mountain waves and severe turbulence that can stress out the heartiest airframes. So to minimize exposure to mountain wave activity, it's recommended (by the AIM) that when approaching a mountain ridge from the downwind side, the pilot should:
a. Be one with the mountain
b. Cross the ridge at a 90-degree angle
c. Cross as fast as possible (although below VNE)
d. Cross the ridge at a 45-degree angle
10. As in life, so too in aviation: Small irritants can cause great stress if left unattended. Take your propeller, for instance. (Tip: Make sure it's not turning first.) Every pilot knows to inspect the blades during preflight. Should any nicks be detected, they should be dressed or filed out. Easy enough. And using the "preventive maintenance" authority of FAR 43, Appendix A, the private pilot/owner (who is not also a licensed mechanic) may file out nicks in a fixed-pitch propeller. (Think type-certificated aircraft, not experimentals.)
a. True
b. False
11. Bonus Stress Points: Refer to the accompanying photos and identify the Thorp T-18 that so humbled the author, who for over 30 years thought he knew how to fly. (Click photos for larger versions.)
a.
b.
c.
d.

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