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Vmca, a recent point of view

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Vmca, a recent point of view

Old 2nd Nov 2019, 17:21
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Vmca, a recent point of view

The current definition of Minimum Control Speed (Vmca), and the engine failure emergency procedures as published in Aircraft Flight Manuals might lead to unsafe events and accidents.

This was a finding from the 2019 Eurocontrol Safety Forum.
What is the basis for this finding ?

https://www.skybrary.aero/bookshelf/books/4688.pdf

The presentation below might be the initiator - is this an accurate appraisal, or relevant to operations as taught or as flown - https://www.skybrary.aero/bookshelf/books/4665.pdf
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Old 2nd Nov 2019, 17:46
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Slide 47
The author of this preseantation warns against relying on Wikepedia. This is what he says:-
  • I wrote the article Minimum Control Speeds on Wikipedia using academic and Test Pilot School knowledge.
  • Completely ruined by incompetent editors within a few years. Don’t use Wikipedia as source of knowledge
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Old 4th Nov 2019, 15:37
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Bergerie1, noting the warning and the ‘red’ caveat against the original comment, the finding of a major safety forum still stands, and could trigger action.
Is there any real risk stemming from this interpretation of Vmca, or does the finding represent a disjoint between certification and operations.

If a disjoint, why; what has changed to invalidate a well established requirement.
Modern aircraft designs have improved; some have automatic compensating controls, requiring less training and handling skill. Thus aircraft without such systems could be deemed difficult to fly or that the requirement is no longer aligned with the reality of modern operations.

There are calls by operators to be more involved with certification, to work closely with manufacturers. Although a good objective, such involvement may be no-more useful or practical than today’s processes.

Also this approach might lead to a change in meaning of certification requirement; a historical view was a measure of aircraft acceptability - a benchmark, where types could be compared and thus achieve some standardisation which initiated piloting standards.
Some operators wish to reverse this process, line pilots defining what an aircraft design should be according to the need for training - piloting skills as currently exist !
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Old 4th Nov 2019, 17:03
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safetypee,

I read those slides with great interest, having in the past done much asymmetric training on 707s (the aircraft not the simulator). The only reason for my comment above was to remind people to be very wary of trusting Wikipedia and should always look for authoritative sources of information. The discussion on the caveats regarding Vmca are a timely reminder of how careful one has to be when manouvering with an engine out.
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Old 5th Nov 2019, 20:51
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The whole report is a collection of vague and meaningless statements, but I guess all those delegates have got to justify their expenses somehow particularly the 29 from the UK and 23 from Belgium.
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