313 The Vmc demonstration and making multiengine training safer – Seth Lake + GA News

Max talks with Seth Lake about Vmc (Minimum Control Speed with the Critical Engine Inoperative) maneuvers, particularly focusing on their importance in multi-engine training. Seth also talks about the challenges and risks associated with VMC demonstrations and offers constructive suggestions for improving training practices in multi-engine aircraft.

Seth explains that Vmc is the minimum controllable airspeed of a multi-engine aircraft when the critical engine is inoperative, and the operative engine is at full power. The FAA mandates specific criteria for this maneuver, emphasizing the need for multi-engine pilots to understand how to control an aircraft during asymmetrical power events. VMC demonstrations are a crucial aspect of multi-engine training, requiring pilots to recover from a VMC condition during their practical tests.

The critical engine, which has the most adverse effect on the aircraft when inoperative, is typically determined by factors like P-factor, accelerated slipstream, spiraling slipstream, and torque. The interview delves into the intricacies of Vmc, including how manufacturers are allowed up to 150 pounds of rudder force for certification purposes, and highlights the challenges pilots face in maintaining control during a Vmc scenario.

Seth Lake describes an unscientific test he conducted using a force measurement tool in one of his aircraft, revealing the significant rudder forces required to hold coordinated flight in Vmc conditions. He also talks about altitude considerations during Vmc demonstrations.

The discussion then turns to the FAA’s guidelines for the Vmc demonstration during commercial check rides, examining the specific setup and recovery procedures outlined in the ACS. He also mentions a potential contradiction in other FAA publications, such as the Practical Test Standards for multi-engine instructors, and the importance of understanding these nuances.

Seth also raises concerns about the inherent risks associated with Vmc demonstrations and suggests potential improvements to the current practices. He proposes an alternative method that involves holding the ailerons neutral, using full rudder deflection, and avoiding the five degrees of bank specified in the certification criteria. This alternative method aims to increase safety by reducing the likelihood of spins and providing a more realistic experience of loss of directional control.

The interview concludes with a discussion on the impact of passenger weight on the aircraft’s center of gravity during Vmc demonstrations and highlights the need for careful considerations to enhance safety in these maneuvers.

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106 Avoiding Deadly VFR into IMC Accidents – Safety Moment with Rob Mark


106 Avoiding Deadly VFR into IMC Accidents – Safety Moment with Rob Mark

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Summary
106 Max talks with Rob Mark about three recent VFR into IMC fatal accidents. All involved Private pilots, though these kinds of accidents also happen to instrument rated pilots. A common factor was poor preflight decision making, as these pilots shouldn’t have taken off. But pilots can also get into IMC if good weather very slowly deteriorates to bad weather. We also talk about how to avoid getting into these kinds of accidents, and what to do if you accidentally fly into a cloud.

Rob Mark is uniquely qualified to help, as he is the Sr. Editor for Flying magazine and he runs the JetWhine blog. He’s one of the few people in the world who’s worked as both an air traffic controller and as an airline pilot.

Mentioned in the Show
Accident #1 – In flight breakup – Meeker, CO
Accident #2 – Low ceilings in mountains – Sierraville, CA
Accident #3 – Takeoff into 400 foot overcast – Minnesota
Skybrary Article: Inadvertent VFR Flight into IMC
NASA Callback Newsletter – Two Pilots brushes with IMC
PAVE Personal Minimums Checklist

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178 Seconds to Live video – Air Safety Institute

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