Come fly with me/Glossary K-6

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the vaporization of an outer covering (as of a spacecraft) to keep the inner part cool


to cut short (an action or operation of an aircraft, guided missile, etc.), because of some failure in the equipment


performance of stunts in an airplane or glider


the science that treats the motion of air and other gaseous fluids, and of the forces acting on bodies when the bodies move through such fluids, or when such fluids move against or around the bodies


the science, art, or work of designing, making and operating aircraft


the earth's atmosphere and the space beyond


a movable hinged section in or near the trailing edge of an airplane wing for controlling the rolling movements and turns of the airplane


a weight-carrying machine for navigation of the air that is supported either by its own buoyancy or by the action of the air against its surface


a part with a flat or curved surface, as a wing, rudder, etc., designed to keep an aircraft up or control its movements by reacting in certain specific ways to the air through which it moves


any self-propelled aircraft that is lighter than air and can be steered; dirigible


the speed of an aircraft relative to the air through which it moves rather than to the ground


an instrument for indicating the relative altitude of an airplane by measuring atmospheric pressure


height; esp., the height of a thing above the earth's surface


a device for measuring the velocity of the wind, in common use at airports


the point farthest from the earth in the orbit of the moon or of a man-made satellite


United States program with the objective of earth-orbiting a space laboratory, launching astronauts to the vicinity of the moon, and landing a man on the moon, then returning him to earth


a prefix meaning "star" or "stars" and, by extension, sometimes used as the equivalent of "celestial," as in astronautics


the earth‘s blanket of air, dust and water vapor extending from the earth's surface to possibly as far as 50,000 miles


the initial angle or direction between true North and a great circle course


an airtight bag filled with heated air or with a gas lighter than air so as to rise and float above the ground


to incline an airplane laterally when turning

barometric pressure:

the pressure of the atmosphere as indicated by a barometer


a signal light or radio transmitter emitting signals for guidance of airplanes

Bernoulli's principle:

as the speed of a confined fluid increases the fluid pressure decreases


aeronautics considered for its effect upon animal or plant life


an airplane with two main supporting surfaces usually placed one above the other


a small balloon-shaped airship


the first stage of a multi stage rocket providing thrust for the launching and the initial part of the flight


a small pressurized compartment for an aviator or astronaut for flight or emergency escape


the greatest height at which an airplane can maintain level flight or operate efficiently


centigrade; on this thermometer scale, water boils at 100 and freezes at O degrees

center of gravity:

the point through which the resultant forces of gravity acts no matter how the body is oriented

centrifugal force

the force that tends to impel a thing or parts of a thing outward from a center

cloud types:

See page 113


a space in the fuselage of an airplane for the pilot or the pilot and passengers or in a large passenger plane, the pilot's crew


any of 88 groups of stars forming patterns (as the Big Dipper) or an area of the heavens covering one of these groups


direct visual observation of the earth's surface made from an airplane,esp.,as an aid to navigation


the retarding force acting on a body (as an airplane) moving through a fluid (as air) parallel and opposite to the direction of motion


a moveable airfoil usually attached to the tail plane of an airplane for producing motion up or down

escape velocity:

the minimum velocity that a moving body (as a rocket) must have to escape from the gravitational field of the earth or of a celestial body and move outward into space


the outer fringe region of the atmosphere


Federal Aeronautics Administration


relating or conforming to a thermometric scale on which under standard atmospheric pressure, the boiling point of water is at 212 degrees above the zero of the scale and the freezing point is at 32 degrees above zero


moveable sections of the plane's wing that allow the plane

flight line:

to show a parking and servicing area for airplanes

flight path:

the path of the center of gravity of an airplane in flight

flight plan:

specified information relating to the intended flight of an aircraft that is filed orally or in writing with an air traffic control facility

front (weather):

the boundary between two different air masses


the main structure or central section of an airplane which houses or contains the crew, passengers, cargo, etc.


sustained forward flight in which speed is maintained only by the loss of altitude


a heavier-than-air aircraft, the free-flight of which does not depend upon a power-generating unit


the force of attraction between two bodies; the force that makes a body, if free to move, accelerate toward the center of the earth

ground speed:

the speed of the aircraft relative to the ground

ground visibility:

prevailing horizontal visibility near the earth's surface as reported by the National Weather Service or an accredited observer


fine dust or salt particles scattered through a portion of the atmosphere


the direction in which the nose of the airplane points during flight


a type of rotorcraft, the support of which in the air, is normally derived from airfoils mechanically rotated about an approximately vertical axis

horizontal stabilizer:

the level surface of the rear part of the fuselage used to balance the plane


the measure of water vapor content in the air


oxygen deficiency in blood cells or tissue


the tendency of a body to remain as it is, either at rest or in motion, until acted upon by some outside force


instrument flight rules


the force on an airfoil, perpendicular to the relative wind, exerted normally upward, opposing the pull of gravity

magnetic deviation:

see Variation


an airplane having one lifting surface


National Aeronautics and Space Administration


to send up and make revolve in an orbit (orbit a satellite)


the blade angle of a propeller


a rotating blade on the wing or fuselage of a plane


the action of reentering the earth's atmosphere after travel in space


the movement of a plane on an axis running from the the front to the rear of the plane


the moveable, vertical section of the tail which controls lateral, left/right movement


a strip, either paved or improved, on which takeoffs and landings are effected


a person-made object or vehicle intended to orbit the earth, the moon, or another celestial body

solar system:

the sun and the planets, asteroids, comets and meteors that revolve around it

sonic boom:

a noise caused by a shock wave that emanates from an aircraft or other object traveling at or above the speed of sound

Sounding balloon:

a free, unmanned balloon instrumented and/or observed for obtaining a sounding of the atmosphere


a prolonged stall in which an airplane rotates about its center of gravity while it descends


a prolonged gliding or climbing turn during which at least 360° change of direction is effected


the tendency of an airplane in flight to remain in straight, level, upright flight


the fixed airfoil of an airplane used to increase stability


the flight maneuver or condition in which the air passes over and under the wings stops providing lift to hold the aircraft's attitude

standard temperature

a temperature decrease of approximately 2° Celsius for each 1,000 feet increase in altitude; also called the adiabatic rate

statute mile:

5,280 feet or 0.867 nautical miles


an atmospheric layer at heights of approximately 20 to 30 miles characterized by high ozone content


a pump or compressor for forcing more air or fuel-air mixture into an internal combustion, reciprocating engine than it would normally induct at the prevailing density altitude


the forward force on an airplane in the air, provided by the engine


any turning or twisting force


the flight path made good over the ground by an aircraft

traffic pattern:

the traffic flow that is prescribed for aircraft landing at, taxiing on, and taking off from an airport


the layer of the atmosphere nearest to the earth; contains 75% of the gases of the atmosphere as well as dust and water; layer where weather occurs; extends upwards approximately 20 miles

true altitude:

the altitude above mean sea level


irregular motion of the atmosphere produced when air flows over a comparatively uneven surface


the angle difference at a given point between true north and magnetic north


sensory confusion, usually associated with dizziness and inability to tell which way is up


in weather observing practice, the greatest distance in a given direction at which it is possible to see and identify with the unaided eye

visual flight rules (VFR)

when weather conditions are above the minimums prescribed for visual meteorological conditions, pilots may fly with visual reference to the ground

wake turbulence:

the turbulence caused by a moving aircraft

wind sock:

a cloth sleeve, mounted aloft at an airport to use for estimating wind direction and velocity

wind tee:

an indicator of wind direction for take-off and landing


an airfoil whose major function is to provide lift

wing flap:

a movable section of an airfoil used to change the effect of air flow over the airfoil


to turn about the vertical axis

Zulu time:

Universal time: local civil time in Greenwich, England; used throughout the world in navigation

---taken, in part, from: "High Flight" Aerospace Activities, Oklahoma State Dept of Education