The rate at which the landing transitional flare is executed depends on the airplane's
height above the ground, the rate of descent, and the pitch attitude. A transition
started excessively high must be executed more slowly than one from a lower height
to allow the airplane to descend to the ground while the proper landing attitude is
being established. The rate of flaring must also be proportional to the rate of closure
with the ground; that is, when the airplane appears to be descending very slowly, the
increase in pitch attitude must be made at a correspondingly slow rate.
The rate of upward movement of the nose depends on the conditions of flight, the
height of the aircraft above the ground, and the rate of descent at the moment the
landing transition is initiated. A high transition must be executed more slowly than
one from a lower height so that the altitude may be dissipated. Apply backstick
pressure proportionately to the apparent upward movement of the ground. When the
ground appears to be coming up very slowly, raise the nose slowly.
If you misjudge the apparent upward movement of the ground and think it is coming
faster than it is, you may raise the nose too rapidly, causing the aircraft not only to
stop descending, but actually to start climbing. This sudden climb during the
transition is known as "ballooning." Ballooning presents a dangerous situation,
because your height above the ground is being increased and your aircraft may be
approaching a stalled condition. Any time you balloon excessively, apply full power
smoothly and execute a waveoff.
When the ground stops coming up towards you, the rate at which you have raised the
nose has been too rapid, and you will be too high above the runway. To compensate
for this, stop the nose movement and maintain a constant nose attitude until the
aircraft again starts descending, and then continue with the transition. This technique
should be used, however, only when you have adequate flying speed. If you have
reached the landing attitude and are still well above the ground, do not wait for the
aircraft to start descending again. Execute a waveoff. Remember that when a landing
attitude is attained, the aircraft is rapidly approaching a stall (because the airspeed is
decreasing and the critical angle of attack is being approached), even though you are
no longer raising the nose.
If the nose of an aircraft is lowered, the lift is decreased momentarily as the nose
attitude is changed. If you lower the nose of the aircraft in the landing transition
when fairly close to the runway to increase the rate of descent, the momentary
decrease in positive lift may be so great that the aircraft will land hard on the
nosewheel, which may collapse. You should execute a waveoff instead of lowering
the nose in the landing transition; this is an indication that you may be too high above
the ground and approaching an immediate stall.
If at any time during the landing approach you experience rudder
shakers, execute a waveoff.
7-18 LANDING PROCEDURES