Glossary - Letter G

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g |symbol| the acceleration due to Earth’s gravity - |abbreviation| gram


G |abbreviation| giga-


GA |abbreviation| general aviation


gain |noun|  1. an increase / There is a gain of heat by the Earth due to solar radiation. / - a gain in altitude > an increase in altitude  2. an increase in signal power, voltage, or current / The amplifier boosts the gain of the incoming signal. /  3. a benefit or advantage - |verb|  1. to increase / He failed the test because the aircraft gained 100 ft in the 360° level turn. /  2. to get or obtain / She gained a pass in her meteorology exam. /


gale |noun| a very strong wind usually blowing from a single direction / Gales are forecast for the area. /

galley |noun| the part of the plane where the cabin attendants store and prepare food and drinks

gallon |noun|  1. - imperial gallon > unit of volume in the British Imperial System, used in liquid measure and sometimes in dry measure, equal to 4.546 liters / The system delivers fuel at the rate of 100 to 2,000 gallons per hour. / Abbreviation: gal  2. a unit of volume in the US Customary System, used in liquid measure, equal to 3.785 liters


GAMA |abbreviation| General Aviation Manufacturers Association


gamma rays |plural noun| electromagnetic radiation given off by some radioactive substances / Gamma rays are given off when radioactive material breaks down. /

gantry |noun| a metal framework shaped like a bridge used for deicing at the airport

gap |noun|  1. a space between objects or points  2. the difference / Micro switches have a very small gap between make and break. /  3. an opening / The pilot could see the airfield through a gap in the clouds. /

garbled |adjective| unclear, inaudible, typically because of a technical problems / Say again, your last transmission was garbled. /

gas |noun| a state of matter other than solid and liquid / Oxygen and nitrogen are gases. / - gas turbine engine > an engine with a turbine which is rotated by expanding hot gases


gaseous |adjective| relating to, or existing as a gas / The atmosphere is the gaseous envelope surrounding the earth. /


gasket |noun| any of a wide variety of seals or packaging used between matched machine parts or around pipe joints to prevent the escape of a gas or fluid / Seals, gaskets and packing make a seal by being squeezed between two surfaces. /


gasoline |noun| US a liquid made from petroleum, used as a fuel in an internal combustion engine


GAT |abbreviation| general air traffic


gate |noun|  1. a device for controlling the passage of water or gas through a pipe / The waste gate may be controlled manually by the pilot. During a descent from altitude, with low power set, the turbocharger waste gate is fully closed. /  2. a circuit with many inputs and one output that works only when a particular input is received / A logic gate is almost the same as a switch. /  3. a device to prevent a lever from being moved to an incorrect setting / It is necessary to move the rpm control lever through a feathering gate to the feathering position.4. a parking stand directly connected to the airport terminal by an airbridge / We are pushing back from Gate 36. Will you have an ambulance standing by at the gate? /


gauge |noun|  1. an instrument for measuring or testing / temperature gauge, pressure gauge /  2. a unit of diameter or width - heavy gauge wire > thick wire - |verb| calculate approximately by using the senses / In fog, it is difficult to gauge horizontal distances. / (NOTE: gauging – gauged)


GCA |abbreviation| ground-control approach


gear |noun|  1. a toothed wheel that turns with another toothed part to transmit motion or change speed or direction  2. - valve gear > the mechanism for opening and closing valves  3. equipment and/or clothing


gearbox |noun| a device to allow changes in the ratio of engine speed to final drive speed / The auxiliary power unit (APU) is a small gas turbine engine which is connected to a gearbox. /


GEM |abbreviation| ground-effect machine


genera |plural| of genus


general |adjective| concerned with or applicable to a whole group of people or things - general description > not a detailed description - general principles > main ideas - general purpose switches > all-purpose switches - general weather situation > the overall weather picture without the detail - as a general rule > usually - in general use > used a lot


general aviation |noun| all aviation other than commercial airlines or the military / The number of GA aircraft stolen is down sharply since the general aviation community has taken steps to enhance security. / Abbreviation: GA

general aviation pilot |noun| a pilot who flies a light aircraft for pleasure and holds a PPL (private pilot’s license)

general aviation terminal |noun| a terminal for private, business and leisure aviation

general flying test |noun| a test of aircraft-handling skills for student pilots. Abbreviation: GFT


generate |verb|  1. to bring into being / In an emergency, it may be necessary for crew to generate a little panic in passengers to motivate them to move. /  2. to produce something such as heat or electricity as a result of a chemical or physical process / The passage of air around the wing generates lift. /


generation |noun|  1. the act or process of creating or making - generation of ideas > the process of producing or getting ideas - generation of electricity > the production of electricity  2. a class of objects derived from an earlier class - a new generation of computers > computers which share a recent development in computer technology which separates them as a class from earlier computers


generator |noun| a power-operated device for making electricity / Starter generators are a combination of a generator and a starter housed in one unit. /

generator overload |noun| a condition which occurs when an excessive amount of electricity is being taken from the generator

genus |noun| a class, group, or family / Various types of cloud are grouped into ten basic cloud genera. / (NOTE: The plural form is genera.)


geographic, geographical |adjective| referring to geography / a specific geographical area, the north geographic pole /


geography |noun| - physical geography > the study of the Earth’s surface and its features


geometric |adjective| referring to geometry / A triangle is a geometric figure. Geometric pitch (US) is the distance which a propeller should move forward in one revolution. /


geometry |noun|  1. the study of the properties, measurement, and relationships of points, lines, angles, surfaces, and solids / An understanding of geometry is essential to the student of navigation. /  2. a configuration or arrangement / the geometry of the engine nacelle /


geostationary |adjective| referring to an object, such as a satellite in space, which rotates round the Earth at the same speed as the Earth and is therefore stationary with reference to a point on the Earth / There are two main types of satellite that are used for collection and transmission of meteorological data, polar and geostationary. /


geostrophic wind |noun| a wind which blows horizontally along the isobars, across the surface of the earth


GFT |abbreviation| general flying test


GHz |abbreviation| gigahertz


giga- |prefix| one thousand million. Symbol: G


gigahertz |noun| a frequency of 1000000000 Hertz. Abbreviation: GHz

give way |verb| to let another aircraft pass first during ground movements / Give way to the 787 passing from right to left. /

given |adjective|  1. particular, specified, fixed / At high altitudes, less fuel is consumed for a given airspeed than for the same airspeed at a lower altitude. /  2. - given (that) > taking into account, considering / Given the condition of the engine, it is surprising that it starts. /


glare |noun| a strong blinding light / Glare can be caused by diffuse reflection of sunlight from the top of a layer of fog. /

glareshield |noun| a cockpit panel above the main instrument panels and below the windshield which protects the instruments from reflection and on which the automatic flight control panel is located

glass fiber reinforced plastic |noun| a composite material made of plastic which is strengthened by glass fibers, used in the manufacture of airframes and other aircraft components. Abbreviation: GRP


glide |verb| to fly without power / In the event of an engine failure, it is important to have enough altitude to be able to glide clear of houses, people, etc. /


glide-path, glide path |noun| a path followed by the aircraft down the glide slope - glide-path coverage > the vertical and horizontal dimensions of the glide slope radio beam


glider |noun| a fixed wing airplane, normally with no power plant propulsion /Nowadays, gliders are often made of composite materials./


glide-slope, glide slope |noun| the part of the ILS which provides a radio beam at an angle of approximately 3° to the point of touchdown from the outer marker thus giving the pilot information about the height of the aircraft on final approach - glide-slope antenna > an ILS aerial connected to a transmitter of a radio beam providing vertical flight path guidance


gliding |noun|  1. flying in a glider - gliding club > association of members who fly gliders as a pastime  2. flying in a powered aircraft with the engine either switched off or idling / The best gliding speed for the aircraft is 75 knots. /


global |adjective| worldwide, referring to something related to the whole Earth - global pressure patterns > the pressure patterns of the whole planet


global positioning system |noun| a satellite-based navigation system. Abbreviation: GPS


globe |noun| an object shaped like a ball / If the Earth were a uniform globe, the average temperature would vary only with latitude. /


GLONASS |noun| a system of satellite navigation operated by Russia. Full form: Global Orbiting Navigation Satellite System


GMT |abbreviation| Greenwich Mean Time


GNSS |abbreviation| global navigation satellite system

go ahead |verb|  1. move forward  2. do what you intended to do

go-around |noun| a climb into the circuit and maneuvering into position for a new approach and landing / Because the plane was too high on the approach, the pilot executed a go-around. /

go-around thrust |noun| Take-off / Go-around thrust (TOGA on Airbus); this is the maximum engine power setting

go visual |verb| to have the runway in sight and no longer be dependent only on instruments

govern |verb| to control or limit the speed, size or amount of something / The size and number of valves required for a particular type of aircraft is governed by the amount of air necessary for pressurization and air conditioning. The type of undercarriage fitted to an aircraft is governed by the operating weight. /


governor |noun| a device for controlling or limiting the speed size or amount of something / Over-speeding of the engine is prevented by a governor in the fuel system. /


gph |abbreviation| gallons per hour


GPS |abbreviation| global positioning system

GPU |abbreviation| ground power unit

GPWS |abbreviation| ground proximity warning system


GR |abbreviation| hail


grade |noun|  1. a position in a scale of size or quality / Kevlar 49 is the grade used in aircraft composites. /  2. a mark indicating a student’s level of accomplishment / Students who scored below a particular grade in the examinations were not allowed to continue the course. /


gradient |noun| the rate at which a quantity such as temperature or pressure changes relative to change in a given variable, especially distance / Because there is a temperature gradient across each front it is possible to draw isotherms which reduce in value from warm to cold air. A pressure gradient occurs aloft from land to sea. /


gradual |adjective| happening slowly but continuously / Loss of cabin pressure may be gradual rather than sudden. / - gradual change > a change which takes place over a period of time


graduate |verb|  1. to be granted an academic degree or diploma / She graduated from Oxford University with a first class honors degree. /  2. to advance to a new level of skill, achievement, or activity / After 50 hours of flying the single engine trainer, the student pilots graduate to flying the twin engine aircraft. /  3. to divide into marked intervals, especially for use in measurement / A thermometer has a scale graduated in degrees Celsius. /


gram |noun| a unit of measurement of weight, equal to one thousandth of a kilogram. Symbol: g


graph |noun| a diagram that shows a relationship between two sets of numbers as a series of points often joined by a line / The graph shows the relationship between lift and drag at various airspeed. /


graphic |adjective|  1. - graphic solution > a technique of using geometric constructions to solve problems / One side of the calculator has a moveable slide which is used for the graphic solution of triangle of velocities problems. /  2. described in vivid detail / The eye witness provided a graphic description of the events leading to the accident. / - |noun| a picture used in a computer application / The instructor’s worksheets were greatly improved by the incorporation of graphics to aid comprehension of the subject matter. /


grasshopper |noun| a light, unarmed military airplane used for reconnaissance


graticule |noun|  1. a series of fine lines in an optical instrument such as a telescope, used for measuring  2. the network of lines formed by the meridians and parallels of longitude and latitude of the Earth on a flat sheet of paper / A graticule of lines of latitude and longitude is imagined to cover the Earth. /


gravity |noun|  1. a natural force of attraction which pulls bodies towards each other and which pulls objects on Earth towards its center / In order for an airplane to fly, lift must overcome the force of gravity. /  2. seriousness / Throughout the crisis caused by the engine failure, the passengers were unaware of the gravity of the situation. /


gravity feed |noun| a feed which uses the force of gravity to move the fuel from the tank to the carburetor


great |adjective|  1. large in size, quantity, number, etc. - great distances > long distances - a great deal of money > a large sum of money - great importance > enormous importance  2. very good, enjoyable or exciting

green system |noun| one of the three hydraulic systems (green, blue, yellow) on Airbus aircraft. Boeing identify their hydraulic systems numerically

Greenwich Mean Time |noun| local time on the Greenwich Meridian. Abbreviation: GMT (NOTE: GMT is now called Coordinated Universal Time (UTC) and is also known as Zulu time. UTC is expressed in 24-hour format; for example, 7:00 P.M. is 1900 hours (say: nineteen hundred hours).)


grid |noun|  1. a pattern of equally spaced vertical and horizontal lines, sometimes used on a map / Grid lines facilitate the quick location of a point of reference. /  2. a metal cylinder in a cathode ray tube  3. a pattern of equally spaced vertical and horizontal metal rods or bars /Lead-antimony alloy grid plates are components in a lead-acid battery./


ground |noun| the solid surface of the earth / Hail being much denser and heavier than snow, falls at a much faster rate and can reach the ground even with the 0° isotherm at 10,000 ft. / - |verb|  1. to prohibit an aircraft or member of an aircrew from flying / The pilot was grounded after failing a medical examination. /  2. US to connect an electrical circuit to a position of zero potential / While refueling a light aircraft it is important to ground the airframe to prevent sparking caused by static electricity. / (NOTE: To earth is preferred in British English.)


ground crew |noun| a team of employees who service and maintain the aircraft while it is on the ground


ground-effect machine |noun| a hovercraft. Abbreviation: GEM


ground elevation |noun| the vertical distance, in feet, of the ground above sea level

ground handler |noun| an airport agent who usually installs and removes wheel chocks and supervises the push-back of the aircraft with a tractor / tow vehicle / tug

ground handling personnel |noun| an airport staff including the dispatcher, the load master, baggage handlers, mechanics or engineers, the tug driver, caterers, water servicing staff, waste water staff, refueling agent, cleaners etc.

ground instructor |noun| a trained person who teaches support subjects such as meteorology in a classroom

ground power unit |noun| an independent electrical generator designed to provide an engine with electrical power during turnaround when the aircraft engines and APU are shut down

Ground Proximity Warning System |noun| an airborne system which alerts the flight crew that they are approaching terrain or that there sink rate is excessive. If the GPWS detects a flightpath deviation ‘pull up’, ‘sink rate’, terrain’ or ‘glide slope’ audio warnings are triggered. Abbreviation: GPWS

groundling |noun| a member of the ground crew at an airport or air force base


ground loop |noun| a sharp unplanned turn made by an aircraft that is taxiing, taking off, or landing, caused by unbalanced drag


ground movement |noun| a maneuver such as taxiing carried out by an aircraft while on the ground, or any movement on an airfield by people or surface vehicles


ground position |noun| the point on the surface of the Earth immediately beneath the aircraft


ground proximity warning system |noun| a system in aircraft which warns pilot, by means of an audible signal, that the aircraft is below a preset height. Abbreviation: GPWS


ground-running operation |noun| a procedure of running the engine while the aircraft is stationary on the ground to check engine performance

Ground Service Equipment |noun| a combination of GPUs, ASUs, tow vehicles, tow-bar etc. Abbreviation: GSE

ground signal |noun| a visual signal displayed on an airfield to give information about local traffic rules to aircraft in the air


ground speed |noun| the speed of the aircraft in relation to the ground over which it is flying. Abbreviation: GS, G/S


ground temperature |noun| the temperature recorded by a thermometer placed at ground level


ground visibility |noun| horizontal visibility near the surface of the earth


group |noun|  1. a number of individual items or people brought together because of similarities  2. a collection of letters, numbers or symbols used in weather forecasting, etc.


growth |noun| an increase in size, number, amount, etc. / the growth of ice crystals, the growth of air travel /


GRP |abbreviation| glass fiber reinforced plastic


GS, G/S |abbreviation| ground speed

GSE |abbreviation| Ground Service Equipment

guard |noun|  1. a device to prevent injury or loss, etc. / The thermocouple probes consist of two wires of dissimilar metal that are joined together inside a metal guard tube. /  2. a person who protects or keeps watch / a security guard  / - |verb| to protect from harm by watching over - to guard against > to take steps to ensure that something does not happen / To guard against the risk of fire, passengers are requested not to smoke in the toilets. /


guidance |noun|  1. helpful advice / Guidance is provided to assist people in filling in the form. The booklet contains guidance on the advisability of flying with a cold. /  2. the action of giving directions to an aircraft


guidance system |noun| a system which provides signals to the flight control system for steering the aircraft


guide |noun| something that directs or indicates - rough guide > a simple explanation to help a person to find his or her own way through more complex information - |verb| to direct or to indicate / If there is smoke in the cabin, clear commands from the crew will help to guide passengers to the emergency exits. /


gust |noun| a strong, sudden rush of wind / On final approach, the pilot must be prepared to counteract the effect of gusts in order to maintain a smooth descent along the extended center-line of the runway. / - gust load > an increased load to the airframe caused by a sudden increase in wind strength - |verb| to increase in strength suddenly / Wind is at 10 knots gusting to 20 knots. /


gyro |noun| same as gyroscope


gyro- |prefix| gyroscopic


gyro-compass |noun| a compass which uses gyroscopic directional stability rather than magnetism to indicate direction / The gyro-compass should be checked against the magnetic compass and reset if necessary. /


gyro-plane |noun| an aircraft fitted with a non-powered rotor for producing lift


gyroscope |noun| a device consisting of a spinning wheel, mounted on a base so that its axis can turn freely in one or more directions and thereby maintain its own direction even when the base is moved / The traditional attitude indicator, heading indicator and turn coordinator contain gyroscopes. / (NOTE: The word is often shortened to gyro. A spinning gyro maintains its position even when an aircraft banks, climbs, or dives. Gyros drive the attitude indicator, direction indicator and turn coordinator to help pilots control an aircraft while flying in cloud or in poor visibility.)


gyroscopic |adjective| referring to a gyroscope or using the properties of a gyroscope


gyroscopic compass |noun| a compass which uses gyroscopic directional stability rather than magnetism to indicate directions. Also called gyro-compass


gyroscopic precession |noun| a characteristic of a gyroscope, that the force applied to a spinning gyroscope will act at a point 90° in the direction of rotation, not at the point where the force is applied / Forces of gyroscopic precession act on the direction indicator to keep it aligned vertically and horizontally. /

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