Fabian R Lischka bio photo

Fabian R Lischka

Buenos Aires, Moers, Karlsruhe, Warwick, London, Palo Alto, Hong Kong; Goldman, Credit Suisse, HackerSchool, metric system, The Economist.

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In 2013, I went to the largest aviation gathering on earth, Airventure in Oshkosh, Wisconsin. My friend Felix (also a pilot) and I flew in with a Cessna 172 we had rented in Chicago, Illinois.

Felix and Fab in a plane.
Felix and Fab on the way to Oshkosh.

We camped in a tent under the aircraft wing for a few days to attend the show.

Our plane and tent from a distance.
Our spot in the General Aviation camping area.

The show was amazing, and it continued into the night.

A plane flying through the air with a person standing on top of the wing.
A plane walker.
Three planes flying in formation through the night with bright light sources on the wings.
Night aerobatics in formation.

On the way back, we filed a VFR flight plan and decided to land in Chicago O’Hare (KORD), one of the largest airports in the world. Initially, ATC passed us around from one frequency to the other and did not clear us into Class B airspace (so that we had to stay clear), but after a few frequency changes a controller cleared us into Class B and vectored us towards runway 27 R. Ordinarily, on approach to landing, one aims to be fairly slow, at, say, 65 knots (around 120 km/h). But here, at busy O’Hare, with a small business jet behind me, I barreled down towards the runway pretty much as fast as possible, at 130 knots - faster than the little Cessna 172 can fly during level flight :-)

approach end of runway 27 right in Chicago O'Hare
Final approach to runway 27 R, Chicago O'Hare (KORD).

Going twice as fast leads to quadruple the energy, and (assuming the same constant deacceleration) four times the landing distance – that’s why one (generally) tries to land slow.

E = 1/2 m v^2, s = v^2 / 2a
Energy and landing distance as a function of velocity.

However, with runways designed for jumbo jets, there was plenty of space for our cozy Cessna to slow down. Ground control was very helpful to get us to our parking spot (“see the United 707 in front of you? Follow them, then turn left at Foxtrot”).

Felix and Fab in front of the Cessna parked at Signature aviation in Chicago O'Hare.
We have reached our final parking position.