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PAN: When repeated three times it is the official international declaration of an emergency that does not involve imminent loss of life or the aircraft. Strictly speaking it should be "pan pan" repeated three times.

PANEL: Abbreviation of "instrument panel"

PANEL.CFG: The file found in the "Panel" subfolder of an "aircraft container" that determines the background appearance of an instrument panel and the placement and size of the "gauges" that comprise the panel.

PANEL KNOCKER: A feature of the 727 that, in effect, automatically tapped on the instruments to prevent their indicator needles from "sticking".

PARTIAL PANEL: The failure-induced reduction of flight instruments to the essential "needle, ball and airspeed" indicators. Usually the result of total electrical failure.

PAYWARE: Software available to the user for a price, as opposed to "freeware", for which no charge is made.

PAPI: Precision Approach Path Indicator, similar to a VASI but using four lights to more accurately indicate the glideslope

PAX: Jargon for "passengers".

PERSPEX: British name equivalent of "Lucite", a clear plastic material sometimes used in making aircraft canopies. It is not the same thing as polycarbonate/Lexan.

PF: Pilot flying. The pilot flying flies the aircraft. The PNF, pilot not flying, handles the radios, operates the flaps, and so on.

PHUGOID OSCILLATION: A cyclic pitch excursion inherent in the design of an airframe. This may be damped (most aircraft) or undamped (modern military fighters).

PIC: Pilot In Command, the person actually responsible for the operation of the aircraft in flight

PIREP: Pilot Weather Report, a report of weather conditions encountered during flight

PITCHOUT: A USAF expression similar to the USN expression "break", in this case meaning a sharp break from downwind leg to base leg, whether landing or on a bombing/strafing run.

PITOT: Jargon for "pitot tube", a device for measuring ram air pressure in order that "indicated" airspeed may be measured.

PITOT HEAT: Electrical heating of a pitot tube to ward off icing of the pitot.

POD: An engine nacelle.

POLYCARBONATE: A clear plastic material used in making aircraft canopies. Also known as "Lexan", it is not the same thing as Lucite/Perspex.

POP THE FLAPS: Sudden application of flaps either during the takeoff roll (short field takeoff or water takeoff) or on approach (to clear an obstacle while "low and slow").

PNF: Pilot not flying. See PF above.

POSITION AND HOLD: Taxi onto the runway, into takeoff position, but do not take off until clearance from ATC is received

POWER CURVE: A plot of airspeed (X-axis) versus power required to fly at that airspeed (Y-axis). The curve is U-shaped, open at the top.

POWER EGG: A quickly-removable turboprop engine-and-nacelle combination.

PRECISION APPROACH: An instrument approach where electronic glideslope guidance is provided (e.g., an ILS approach)

PRESSURE ALTITUDE: The altitude of an aircraft above Mean Sea Level when its altimeter has been set to the standard barometric pressure reading of 29.92 inches of mercury.

PROCEDURE TURN: A maneuver used on instrument approaches to reverse direction and establish an aircraft on the intermediate approach segment or final course



PROP: Abbreviation of "propeller". Also means to start a piston engine by turning its propeller manually.

PUSH: Abbreviation of "pushback".


A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

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