Sunday, March 30, 2014

License To Learn

Happy Sunday, everyone!

I hope that you all are enjoying what is left of the weekend.  (In some parts of the world, it is seconds from being over - so I will wish you all a great week ahead!)

As I am currently heavily reviewing some training material that I am studying for Flight School in order to help prepare for FAA Exams, I wish to let you know that in the up and coming weeks I will be reviewing this material on this blog site.  Some of it will be some of the most basic and elementary skills of flying.  I will say, that even the most elementary stuff could make the difference between life and the other unmentionable option.  Every aspect of flying should be taken seriously at no matter what level - elementary or advanced ATP Theory.



LICENSE TO LEARN



With this in mind, I will share what an ELAL Boeing747 Captain once shared with I and other pilots at a local event out on Long Island a few months ago.  The topic being discussed was automation dependency.  Near the end of the discussion, he relayed that there wasn't a trip that he had done where a new occurrence wouldn't arise which required critical thinking, troubleshooting, and which eventually become a new learning experience.  Even though the autopilot is clicked on shortly after take off, that doesn't mean that every flight wasn't a new learning experience.  When a pilot acquires a new rating, or touches their license from the FAA with their bare hands for the first time, that pilot should consider it as their "license to learn."  

No matter what rank we are, whether we fly general aviation or for the majors, we are and will always be in fact - student pilots.  Ready to go into the plane, the flight deck, to take on what will become a new situation, or opportunity to learn something new about our planes from the single engine Cessna to the quad powerplant Boeing or Airbus, the automation, the tricks Mother Nature may present, or how every law on Earth may not be on our side - even if one is an experienced Senior Check Airman.  






These aspects apply to every single pilot.
No matter how elementary.
History has proven this.

Please stay tuned, keep reviewing, learning, and promote learning!  It will safe your life and those on board.. and make flying fun in the process.

Safe takeoffs, skies, and landings!

Jeremy D. Carlisle
CaptainAboard.com

Friday, March 28, 2014

The Wheels On The Bus

Go round and round..

Friday Foto
For 
March 28th, 2014


Have a great weekend and safe flying/travels!

Jeremy

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Life's Checklist

In aviation, there is a checklist for everything. If left unfollowed, safety is compromised and pilots on board are left with nothing but the risk of crashing the plane. 

There is an expression to be the "Captain of your life" - to make the executive decisions to make life run smooth and to avoid problems.






A couple of days ago, the following link was shared depicting a 30 step checklist to life. What is in this checklist is important and will ensure you the tools to keeping every aspect of it running smooth and the experience enjoyable  



The link:


We all need to stop and think what compromises and makes our lives unhappy. We must be the captain and take control of bad situations that bring our planes down. 

Some of the items in the checklist we refuse to accept but it is up to us to take control, accept them, and do something about them. 

By doing this, we are the Captains and ensure ourselves a positive attitude, rate of climb, and a safe flight through the journey we call life.

You are the Captain Aboard your flight.  

Jeremy D. Carlisle

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

New Logo

Firstly, I hope you like it. If you have any suggestions, please email me at squawk@captainaboard.com

The wave in the logo represents my father who was a sailor and a nautical captain. The wave also resembles both his initials "RC" and mine "JC" combined. (Albeit an awkward "J")

The year 2011 is when my father's memory took off and also when this website took off. 

To re-iterate, even though I am currently a "professional" (as my flight instructor named me) student pilot, I am working towards what my father was - a captain. He on water and I in the skies. 

Thank you to all of you who have supported our website and look forward to serving you with many great posts to come. 

Jeremy D. Carlisle
Publisher
CaptainAboard.com

Friday, March 14, 2014

The Legacy (Featuring Jet Cruise Aviation)

Our
FRIDAY FOTO
for
March 14th, 2014


Photo Compliments of Jet Cruise Aviation Photo



Northwest.  An airline that left us a legacy. To this very day, pilots and crew from this legacy are still flying others continuing this legacy that keeps reflecting the airplane and the airline that made me say to myself once, "I want to become an international airline pilot."

This summer we're planning a special feature for Northwest Airlines.  If you flew for Northwest, were a flight attendant, agent, other crew member, or just a plane frequent WorldPerks flyer, and have any special memories you wish to share, please do not hesitate to reply below or send an e-mail.  Any of your photos or stories that you send over will be credited to you and featured in this tribute.  The more stories we get, the merrier!

In the mean time, head over to Instagram and follow @JetCruise for awesome photos and portraits.

Have a great weekend everyone!

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Understanding Air France 447 by Bill Palmer

SUNDAY SPECIAL
BOOK REVIEW




Cet article est un hommage et de mémoire des passagers à bord Air France vol 447.  Les âmes doivent les ailes d'anges pour nous aider dans la poursuite de rendre le ciel plus sûr .  

This article is in memory of those souls which perished on board Air France 447.  May their souls grow the wings of angels which will help guide us in pursuit to make the skies safer.

Este artigo está na memória daquelas almas que morreram a bordo 447 da Air France. Que suas almas crescer as asas dos anjos que irá ajudar a guiar-nos em busca de fazer os céus mais seguros.




by 
Bill Palmer


"Candid Camera" shot compliments of Natan Hoffmann

RATING:
FIVE STARS
*****


Looking into the eye's of the passenger profile photos of some of those on board after having read this book, I could never begin to understand what was going through their minds during their final thoughts and moments alive on aboard Air France flight 447.

A 26 year old doctor from Ireland, an 11 year old student from the United Kingdom, 29 year old Brazilian Singer who was traveling back to Germany to sing in a production of "Wicked", a 26 year old Brazilian prince, a Brazilian-Italian opera composer and conductor.  One of the flight attendants on board, flew back to Brazil two weeks earlier to bury his father.  One of the parents of a passenger had a "funny feeling" about the flight having had a dream the previous night about a "coffin surrounded by water."  Artists, doctors, professionals, honeymooners, and students alike were on board.  Just as any other flight.

I, along with many other people globe wide were flabbergasted upon hearing the news on June 1st, 2009 that one of the world's most renown international carriers (which I personally admire very much) with one of the most state-of-the-art aircraft went missing.  I was saddened when its discovery came about 300 miles off the Brazilian coast as I had recently taken a trans-Atlantic flight with Air France right before that tragic night.  To cross the thought in my mind, "It could have been my flight" would have been an understatement being that the carrier was the same.  This could have been anyone's flight at any time on any airline going to any destination.  It still could, God forbid, be someone's flight.  That is, if we do not learn the lesson, and learn it and implement it immediately while we still have the chance before it is too late yet once again.  Let's hope and pray that this will never be the case again.

Upon learning that A330 Captain and subject matter expert Captain Bill Palmer wrote "Understanding Air France 447", I immediately put it on my reading list as I had viewed documentaries, read articles, which to my humble understanding, felt were not giving a full and accurate picture of the behind-the-scenes events that unfolded during the critical moments between life and death.






"Just as the ice crystals accumulated in the pitot-static tubes, they spread across my spine."

After having read the well written forward by Rob Mark, ATP rated pilot and fellow blogger at jetwhine.com as well as the introduction, I proceeded to read one of the most chilling chapters of the book, the "Chronology."  Reading through the conversations between First Officers David Robert (pron: Rho-bayr) and Pierre-Cédric Bonin (pron: Boh-nah) and then eventually when 58 year old Captain Marc Dubois (pron: Dew-bwah), many thoughts crossed my mind as Captain Palmer recounted the events step-by-step.  Once they encountered the storm, ice crystals developed in the pitot-static probes which failed to send pertinent data to the aircraft's systems.  Just as the ice crystals accumulated in the pitot-static tubes, they spread across my spine the more I continued to read further the dialogue and events.  Even more so, what the reactions of the pilot's were and their attempt to recover the stalled aircraft at such a high altitude.  What is even more scary, is that I was not watching a scary movie.  This was a real life event that occurred and could happen on any flight no matter what location.  The author truly had me sitting in the jumpseat of this flight witnessing everything that was going on.

Palmer also goes into detail the actions that First Officers Bonin, the pilot in command and Robert took to attempt to rectify the situation.  He goes through the various stages, (flight control laws), or states of protection and how the A330 went from Normal Law to Alternate 2 Law.  The inputs, or "DUAL INPUT" as the audio announces when both FOs were trying to get the airplane under control with their own respective side-stick inputs.
Also, explained in detail are the breakdowns in communications between the flight and various control centers across the Atlantic (Atlantico) and Dakar Control center using HF (shortwave) radio using SELCAL (selective call.)  At 01:34 The crew of AFR447 did make a successful SELCAL check with Atlantico over waypoint TASIL.



St. Elmo's Fire

Traversing through the ITCZ (Inter-tropical Convergence Zone) is also thoroughly explained by Captain Palmer as the flight made it's way through that area of constantly developing weather and thunderstorms which developed by global circulation patterns with warm moist air coming from the equator.  The crew did fly into this system with little deviation from its course as some of the other flights did that night.  Captain Palmer also explains the concept of "St. Elmo's Fire" a "hazy glowing ball" on the ice probe that protrudes forward between the windshields creating quite a light show.  This ice probe is located between the windshields and is used to detect ice being that it's difficult on other parts of the air frame.




"J'ai les commandes"
(zhay lay cohmahnd)
I have the controls..


Captain Palmer explains that due to the marvel of the "fly-by-wire" systems, the automation provides excellent protection from inadvertent stalling and exceeding the flight envelope.  The area that was put to the test was the fact that they entered into a high altitude stall in the ITCZ region in a thunderstorm and the immense inputs that were into the plane which made with thrust and side-stick for this stall recovery.  What you will read as a result, will send your mind wondering for itself.

When automation dependency is in full effect and the automation is lost, not provoked by the pilot in command, then there is only one option left - to fly the plane.  First Officer Bonin was put into this position when this occurred.  Not only were the pilots on board put to this test but also coupled with the fact that their minds put to the test.  It's one thing to state "I have the controls" (in a physical sense) but it is a totally different ballpark to state that same phrase in the mental sense that the pilot's mind is inadequately trained in this new situation and under prepared to troubleshoot - especially on a well rested mindset - despite their intentions and willingness to carry on their duties.  The two thoughts that these pilots were flying long haul international routes and the fact that they were on a layover in an exotic destination were reasons in my mind that their fatigue was pretty substantial despite what investigation reports indicated - not to mention reading their actions throughout the book.





"Faire du ciel le plus bel endoit de la terre."
(Fayhr dyew see-ehl luhr plyew behl ahng-dwah duhr lah tayr)


The credo of Air France which translates as, "Making the sky the best place on Earth."  If we take the French infinitive, "Faire"  - it has a dual translation.  Depending on context, not only does it mean "to make" it also means "to do (something)"

"The Human Factor" played a most critical role in this situation.  Not only were the investigations of this incident thereafter important, but what is even more important are the investigations and into how this will hopefully never happen again.  Investigations into pilot fatigue, investigations on how training programs or the lack thereof will implement additional programs for those instructors who are training line pilots. Specialty in training for CRM (Crew Resource Management) and TEM (Threat & Error Management) are most necessary as well.  After reading this book, I was also thinking in my personal, humble opinion that special training should be  greatly implemented for instructors and pilots alike for special terrain and atmospheric areas of the globe -  (i.e., transport pilots that fly trans-polar and trans-equatorial routes) and how to recover from various scenarios in these regions, specifically high altitude stalls due to loss of data and automation.  It is my hope that these are on their way to be in effect  or well there, already.

I would like to personally thank Captain Bill Palmer for an excellent explanation and education for myself on the Airbus (A330) interface, the events that went on behind the scenes, and for the wealth of information that he has provided not only for this topic but others.  It is my hope that everyone will purchase this work and read it to detail.  (Noting the many creased pages with highlighted statements on many of them.)  This literature should be a required reading for all pilots no matter what rank: student, sport, private, instructor, commercial, transport, or line instructor/check airman.  It is our imperative that we do everything we can to ensure safety for both the industry but also for those souls we carry that we make a vow to carry as if they are our own loved ones and making it enjoyable for all parties in the process.

With these initiatives not only can we "do" something about solving this issue, but also by doing this we can "'Make' the sky the best place on Earth."


Jeremy D. Carlisle
Publisher
CaptainAboard.com