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Word Power: Test Your Knowledge of Aviation Terms

Take to the skies without leaving your chair by exploring these aviation terms.

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Aviation terms - combiPhoto: Shutterstock/Brett Walther

Aviation Term #1: Combi

A: Able to carry both passengers and cargo
B: Series of connecting flights
C: Cleaning crew.

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Aviation terms - airplane loading cargoPhoto: Shutterstock

Answer: A—Able to carry both passengers and cargo

As in, “A combi plane dropped off mail, two tourists and supplies for the village store.”

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Aviation terms - hobbs meterPhoto: Shutterstock/Brett Walther

Aviation Term #2: Hobbs meter

A device that can measure:
A: How long an aircraft is in use
B: Distance to the ground
C: Sideways drift

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Aviation terms - light aircraft flyingPhoto: Shutterstock

Answer: A—Device that can meas­ure how long an aircraft is in use

As in, “Uri watched the Hobbs meter, not wanting to pay for more than two hours of plane rental.”

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Aviation terms - incerfaPhoto: Shutterstock/Brett Walther

Aviation Term #3: Incerfa

Situation of:
A: Alert
B: Distress
C: Uncertainty

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Aviation terms - pilot speaking on radioPhoto: Shutterstock

Answer: C—Situation of uncertainty

As in, “An incerfa can be declared if a flight loses radio contact with air-traffic control.”

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Aviation terms - what does taxi meanPhoto: Shutterstock/Brett Walther

Aviation Term #4: Taxi

A: Get a last-minute seat
B: Tax imposed on goods crossing borders
C: Move along the ground

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Aviation terms - airplane on runway overheadPhoto: Shutterstock

Answer: C—Move along the ground

As in, “At last, the delayed airliner taxied away from the terminal.”

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Aviation terms - what does avionics meansPhoto: Shutterstock/Brett Walther

Aviation Term #5: Avionics

A: Electronic equipment fitted in an aircraft
B: Air ambulances
C: Airplane stunts done for sport or entertainment

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Aviation terms - flight deck of airplanePhoto: Shutterstock

Answer: A—Electronic equipment fitted in an aircraft

As in, “Zhiyuan was an avionics engineer interested in improving autopilot technology.”

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Aviation terms - what does bird control meanPhoto: Shutterstock/Brett Walther

Aviation Term #6: Bird control

A: Steering a light aircraft
B: Keeping birds away from the airport
C: Checking passports

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Aviation terms - flock of birds at sunsetPhoto: Shutterstock

Answer: B—Keeping birds away from the airport

As in, “Playing recordings of avian distress calls is a proven bird-control strategy.”

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Aviation terms - instrument flight rulesPhoto: Shutterstock/Brett Walther

Aviation Term #7: Instrument flight rules

Regulations for:
A: Maintaining cockpit instruments
B: Relying on instruments instead of visual references
C: Crossing an ocean

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Aviation terms - airplane wing rainy dayPhoto: Shutterstock

Answer: B—Regulations for relying on instruments instead of visual references

As in, “Pilots must fly under instrument flight rules when the weather makes it hard to see.”

Find out why airlines don’t tell you how long flights really are.

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Aviation terms - what does ditch meanPhoto: Shutterstock/Brett Walther

Aviation Term #8: Ditch

A: Accidentally leak sewage
B: Make a forced landing on water
C: Misplace luggage

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Aviation terms - emergency plane landing on waterPhoto: Shutterstock

Answer: B—Make a forced landing on water

As in, “Arthur, a military flying ace, had once survived ditching in the Pacific.”

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Aviation terms - What does overbook meanPhoto: Shutterstock/Brett Walther

Aviation Term #9: Overbook

A: Accept too many reservations
B: Fly too fast
C: Review a pilot logbook

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Airport - airplane passengers waiting in linePhoto: Shutterstock

Answer: A—Accept too many reservations

As in, “Airlines deliberately overbook flights because typically, some passengers don’t show up.”

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Aviation terms - CeilingPhoto: Shutterstock/Brett Walther

Aviation Term #10: Ceiling

A: Overhead controls for air vents and lighting
B: Business-class area
C: Maximum altitude of an aircraft

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Aviation terms - airplane climbing altitudePhoto: Shutterstock

Answer: C—Max­imum altitude of an aircraft

As in, U-2 spy planes have such a high ceiling that their pilots wear pressure suits.

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Aviation terms - what is buzz-saw noisePhoto: Shutterstock/Brett Walther

Aviation Term #11: Buzz-saw noise

Sound of:
A: A helicopter rotor
B: Radio static
C: A supersonic fan

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Aviation terms - baby on a planePhoto: Shutterstock

Answer: C—Sound of a supersonic fan

As in, “Rémy’s baby, asleep when he boarded the jet, was soon awakened by buzz-saw noise.”

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Aviation terms - what does wind shear meanPhoto: Shutterstock/Brett Walther

Aviation Term #12: Wind shear

A: Wind pressure on the tail
B: Wind-related wear and tear
C: Sudden change in wind speed and direction

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Man buckling seatbelt on airplanePhoto: Shutterstock

Answer: C—Sudden change in wind speed and direction

As in, “Wind shear is dangerous for planes.”

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Aviation terms - aeromodellingPhoto: Shutterstock/Brett Walther

Aviation Term #13: Aeromodelling

A: Designing flight-attendant uniforms
B: Building and flying model aircraft
C: Using a flight simulator

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Aviation terms - model airplanePhoto: Shutterstock

Answer: B—Building and flying model aircraft

As in, “Aeromodelling clubs have fields where enthusiasts can try out their creations.”

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Aviation terms - What does stall meanPhoto: Shutterstock/Brett Walther

Aviation Term #14: Stall

A: Airline employee’s locker
B: Loss of lift and consequent fall
C: Interrupted takeoff

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Aviation terms - flying lessons cockpitPhoto: Shutterstock

Answer: B—Loss of lift and consequent fall

As in, “Nabila paid close attention when her flight instructor explained how to recover from a stall.”

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Aviation terms - what does deplane meanPhoto: Shutterstock

Aviation Term #15: Deplane

A: Forego air travel in favour of greener alternatives
B: Face a fear of flying
C: Leave an aircraft

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Aviation terms - passengers deplanePhoto: EQRoy / Shutterstock.com

Answer: C—Leave an aircraft

As in, “After deplaning, Makayla realized she’d left her wallet behind.”

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Originally Published in Reader's Digest Canada