August 3, 2022
Don't mess with the Falco
and telling you how
Any Pilot can a address to himself as a test pilot. And I really mean it. Any pilot that actually tests something aboard his airplane is a Test Pilot. A newly installed radio, the new GPS navigator, the new navigation software installed on your Ipad. Guys who built their own experimental plane are all test pilots, as they test the functionality of their beloved new toys.
The main issue with all those test is the result. How you debrief the results of your testing? How do you tell to your friend, who wants to buy the same software that you have, that it’s good. It’s good for you, or also for him? What kind of flying is he doing? What’s his experience. And what aircraft is he flying?
Context is foundamental for testing results. I’ve never thought that something in aviation was good or bad, without a context behind. There is not such a thing like good or bad in aerospace. Ther are things that are good or bad in a context, fo a certain use, or for what we call the Mission. No need to be involved in aerial combat to be on a Mission.
Flying to have dinner with your friend at the airfield on the nearby lake is already a mission. You might call it Cross country, VFR navigation, but be sure that what your plane is doing good on that mission, is going to be pretty poor for the mission of Advanced aerobatic competition, for example. If your plane is stable in pitch it will bring you softly and steady on the ride to your weekend on the beach, but on the contrary will get you lots of Zeroes from the judges of an aerobatic competition. And the plane that won the National Aerobatic Championship, will stress the hell out of you trying to trim it out on level flight for more than 10 seconds, on your sunday flight to eat a burger at the club house of the neraby municipal airport.
Mission is the key to evaluate and especially to develop an airplane. Don’t think airplanes are good or bad, it’s their use that gets things going well or not, depending on how far from it’s intended use you are using it.
In this blog I will test planes and describe my testing results, always referring to a specific mission, the intended use of that aircraft.
I really hope you will enjoy the experience and get something useful out of it!
A day with Commander Giacomo Iannelli
Listen to my interview!