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Aviation Glossary :: Dead Reckoning  Aviation Glossary :: Dead Reckoning 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.).

Dead Reckoning
Dead Reckoning
In pioneer flight before radio, beacons, and accurate maps, flying distances much by instinct and guesswork, and referring to whatever landmarks were below, was quite routine. The "dead" part simply meant "straight," as in the nautical "dead ahead," and pilots often relied heavily on the IRON COMPASS for cross-country flights over unfamiliar territory.
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source: FAA Aerosense Glossary

Finding ones position by means of a compass and calculations based on speed, time elapsed, effect of wind, and direction from a known position.
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source: FAA Flight Navigator's Handbook (FAA-H-8083-18)

Navigation by computing a heading from true airspeed and wind, then estimating time needed to fly to a destination.
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source: FAA Glider Flying Handbook (FAA-H-8083-13A)

Dead reckoning, as applied to flying, is the navigation of an airplane solely by means of computations based on airspeed, course, heading, wind direction, and speed, groundspeed, and elapsed time.
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source: FAA Pilot/Controller Glossary

Navigation of an airplane solely by means of computations based on airspeed, course, heading, wind direction and speed, groundspeed, and elapsed time.
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source: FAA Risk Management Handbook (FAA-H-8083-2)


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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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