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The Rabbit

High-intensity flasher system installed at many
large airports. The flashers consist of a series of brilliant
blue-white bursts of light flashing in sequence along the
approach lights, giving the effect of a ball of light traveling
toward the runway.



. A system that uses electromagnetic waves to identify
the range, altitude, direction, or speed of both moving and
fixed objects such as aircraft, weather formations, and terrain.
The term RADAR was coined in 1941 as an acronym for
Radio Detection and Ranging. The term has since entered
the English language as a standard word, radar, losing the
capitalization in the process.


Radar approach

The controller provides vectors while
monitoring the progress of the flight with radar, guiding
the pilot through the descent to the airport/heliport or to a
specific runway


Radar services

Radar is a method whereby radio waves are
transmitted into the air and are then received when they have
been reflected by an object in the path of the beam. Range
is determined by measuring the time it takes (at the speed
of light) for the radio wave to go out to the object and then
return to the receiving antenna. The direction of a detected
object from a radar site is determined by the position of the
rotating antenna when the reflected portion of the radio wave
is received.


Radar summary chart

t. A weather product derived from the
national radar network that graphically displays a summary
of radar weather reports.


Radar weather report (SD)

A report issued by radar
stations at 35 minutes after the hour, and special reports
as needed. Provides information on the type, intensity, and
location of the echo tops of the precipitation.



The courses oriented from a station.


Radio or radar altimeter

An electronic altimeter that
determines the height of an aircraft above the terrain by
measuring the time needed for a pulse of radio-frequency
energy to travel from the aircraft to the ground and return.


Radio frequency (RF)

A term that refers to alternating
current (AC) having characteristics such that, if the current is
input to antenna, an electromagnetic (EM) field is generated
suitable for wireless broadcasting and/or communications.


Radio Magnetic Indicator (RMI)

An electronic navigation
instrument that combines a magnetic compass with an ADF
or VOR. The card of the RMI acts as a gyro-stabilized
magnetic compass, and shows the magnetic heading the
aircraft is flying.



A weather instrument that observes and reports
meteorological conditions from the upper atmosphere. This
instrument is typically carried into the atmosphere by some
form of weather balloon.


Radio wave

An electromagnetic (EM ) wave with frequency
characteristics useful for radio transmission.


RAM recovery

The increase in thrust as a result of ram air
pressures and density on the front of the engine caused by
air velocity.


Random RNAV routes

Direct routes, based on area
navigation capability, between waypoints defined in terms
of latitude/longitude coordinates, degree-distance fixes, or
offsets from established routes/airways at a specified distance
and direction.


Ranging signals

Transmitted from the GPS satellite, signals
allowing the aircraft’s receiver to determine range (distance)
from each satellite.


Rapid decompression

The almost instantaneous loss of
cabin pressure in aircraft with a pressurized cockpit or


Receiver autonomous integrity monitoring (RAIM)

A system used to verify the usability of the received GPS
signals and warns the pilot of any malfunction in the
navigation system. This system is required for IFR-certified
GPS units.


Recommended altitude

An altitude depicted on an
instrument approach chart with the altitude value neither
underscored nor overscored. The depicted value is an
advisory value.


Receiver-transmitter (RT)

A system that receives and transmits a signal and an indicator.


Reduced vertical separation minimum (RVSM)

the vertical separation between flight levels (FL) 290 and 410
from 2,000 feet to 1,000 feet, and makes six additional FLs
available for operation. Also see DRVSM.


Reference circle (aka distance circle)

The circle depicted
in the plan view of an IAP chart that typically has a 10 NM
radius, within which chart the elements are drawn to scale.


Regions of command

. The “regions of normal and reversed
command” refers to the relationship between speed and the
power required to maintain or change that speed in flight.


Region of reverse command

. Flight regime in which flight
at a higher airspeed requires a lower power setting and a
lower airspeed requires a higher power setting in order to
maintain altitude.


Relative bearing (RB)

The angular difference between the
aircraft heading and the direction to the station, measured
clockwise from the nose of the aircraft


Relative bearing indicator (RBI)

The angular difference between the
aircraft heading and the direction to the station, measured
clockwise from the nose of the aircraft


Relative humidity

The ratio of the existing amount of
water vapor in the air at a given temperature to the maximum
amount that could exist at that temperature; usually expressed
in percent.


Relative wind

Direction of the airflow produced by an object
moving through the air. The relative wind for an airplane in
flight flows in a direction parallel with and opposite to the
direction of flight; therefore, the actual flight path of the
airplane determines the direction of the relative wind.


Remote communications outlet (RCO)

An unmanned
communications facility that is remotely controlled by air
traffic personnel.


Required navigation performance (RNP)

A specified level
of accuracy defined by a lateral area of confined airspace in
which an RNP-certified aircraft operates.


Restricted area

Airspace designated under 14 CFR part
73 within which the flight of aircraft, while not wholly
prohibited, is subject to restriction.