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(Russian, pilotirovanie), the control of the movement of an aircraft or spacecraft by a pilot or automatic control system for the purpose of charging or maintaining flight conditions. The piloting of guided unmanned aircraft is accomplished by commands that are issued by an operator at a ground station and are transmitted to the aircraft by means of electromagnetic waves (remote-controlled unmanned aircraft) or by commands issued by an on-board automatic control system in accordance with a program prepared in advance (unmanned aircraft with self-contained control).
Piloting is accomplished from the time of takeoff to the time of landing of an aircraft by means of controls that create the necessary moments of force with respect to the aircraft’s center of mass and that change the thrust of the propulsion system. For example, the task of piloting an aircraft consists primarily in varying lift and thrust and in creating or countering moments of force that rotate the aircraft with respect to the longitudinal, transverse, and vertical axes passing through the aircraft’s center of mass. Piloting and air navigation determine the overall process of the flying of the aircraft. Elevators, rudders, ailerons, spoilers, flaps, and other devices are made use of in the piloting of airplanes and gliders. Control rockets, control jets, or jet vanes are used in piloting vertical takeoff and landing aircraft—in conditions where air vanes are ineffective—and in spacecraft. In helicopters, piloting is accomplished primarily by varying the magnitude and direction of the rotor thrust.
M. M. RAICHEV