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Aviation Glossary :: Autorotation  Aviation Glossary :: Autorotation FAA Written Test Preparation
Aviation Glossary Welcome to the Dauntless Aviation Glossary!

At Dauntless, our editorial staff maintains the web's largest unified glossary of aviation terms. This glossary is built from a combination of official, quasi-official, and proprietary sources (including original material that we develop oursselves). Uniquely, we often provide multiple definitions of a given term so that you can find that which best applies to you. In order to maximize your learning efficiency, this glossary (and similar ones for our international users) is incresingly fully integrated into our aviation learning apps, including our FAA written test prep and FAA practical test prep software and apps. If you like this glossary, you'll love them with their polished learning environments and world's best and clearest content (please do give them a try.).

Autorotation: Automatic rotation of rotary blades from a helicopter in an unpowered glide or the forward movement of an autogyro.
source: FAA Aerosense Glossary
Autorotation means a rotorcraft flight condition in which the lifting rotor is driven entirely by action of the air when the rotorcraft is in motion.
source: FAA Federal Aviation Regulations (CFR 14 Part 1)
The condition of flight during which the main rotor is driven only by aerodynamic forces with no power from the engine.
source: FAA Helicopter Flying Handbook (FAA-H-8083-21A)
Autorotation: A rotorcraft flight condition in which the lifting rotor is driven entirely by action of the air when the rotorcraft is in motion.
  1. Autorotative Landing/Touchdown Autorotation. Used by a pilot to indicate that the landing will be made without applying power to the rotor.
  2. Low Level Autorotation. Commences at an altitude well below the traffic pattern, usually below 100 feet AGL and is used primarily for tactical military training.
  3. 180 degrees Autorotation. Initiated from a downwind heading and is commenced well inside the normal traffic pattern. "Go around" may not be possible during the latter part of this maneuver.
source: FAA Pilot/Controller Glossary
A self sustaining rotational mode of a rotor wherein flight RPM is sustained from the air passing up though the rotor disk. For autorotation, the AOA of the rotor blades are reduced to near zero so that an unstalled condition exists on most of the rotor blade length. An inner portion of each rotor blade produces lift in a direction that tends to drive the rotor forward, and portions nearer the tips produce lift in a direction that tends to retard the rotor. The “driving” and “driven” forces exactly match at the operating RRPM and sustain rotation. Autorotation requires no power to the rotor and is the mode employed in gyroplane rotors to provide lift. Autorotation is utilized in helicopters when power to the rotor is lost.
source: Glossary of Gyroplane Terms

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Disclaimer: While this glossary in most cases is likely to be highly accurate and useful, sometimes, for any number of editorial, transcription, technical, and other reasons, it might not be. Additionally, as somtimes you may have found yourself brought to this page through an automated term matching system, you may find definitions here that do not match the cotext or application in which you saw the original term. Please use your good judgement when using this resource.

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