Much of the training for pilots for major airlines is conducted on sophisticated flight simulators, like this Boeing 787 simulator operated by an All Nippon Airways captain. Pilots are also trained to communicate clearly about problems they may encounter in flight.
Credit Yoshikazu Tsuno / AFP/Getty Images
Simulators mimic the full movement of a plane during takeoff, flight and landing. They're also used to prepare pilots for problems like engine fires and aborted takeoffs.
Investigators are continuing to examine the training and experience of the cockpit crew of the Asiana flight that crashed Saturday in San Francisco. The pilot at the controls had nearly 10,000 hours of experience flying large jets, but only 43 hours in that particular plane, a Boeing 777. Saturday was also the pilot's first 777 landing at San Francisco International.
Pilots transition from flying one airplane model to another all the time; it's a regular part of the job as airlines add new aircraft and pilots fly new routes or get promotions to piloting bigger jets.
The Senate is planning to vote Wednesday on a plan to bring interest rates on subsidized federal student loans back down to 3.4 percent for one more year. The rate doubled on July 1 when the chamber failed to agree on a plan.
While the Senate prepares to take the issue back up, college students are left staring at several competing proposals.
One gray spring afternoon last year, thousands of people descended on Manhattan's Union Square for a rally to call for the arrest of George Zimmerman, the man who shot and killed Trayvon Martin. It had been several weeks since Martin, an unarmed black 17-year-old, was killed by Zimmerman, then 28, who identifies himself as Hispanic, after a confrontation one Sunday night in a gated housing community where both Zimmerman and Martin's father resided.
The police in Sanford, Fla., held Zimmerman for a night and released him after deciding he'd acted in self-defense.
James Comey, the president's choice for FBI director, had a relatively easy time fielding questions Tuesday at his confirmation hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee. Lawmakers wanted to know about surveillance, waterboarding and other controversial issues, but they posed their questions gently.
From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.
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And I'm Robert Siegel. President Obama has not yet decided how many troops to keep in Afghanistan after the NATO mission ends in 2014. The Pentagon and the White House both confirmed that today. Their comments follow a New York Times report that the president is seriously considering withdrawing all troops by the end of next year.
Scientists in the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration are still trying to understand what exactly caused a tsunami to strike the East Coast in June. There was no seismic record of the incident. But a team of scientists came together to analyze tidal and weather data. They believe the tsunami may have been caused by a weather phenomenon known as a "derecho."
A former judge for the secret Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court raised questions about the court's approval of government data collection programs on Tuesday. He was testifying before the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board, an independent agency considering recently uncovered surveillance efforts.