Airplanes are equipped with a variety of flight instruments. In the cockpit, most airplanes have a turn and slip indicator. It’s part of the “six pack.” The term “six pack” refers to a collection of a half-dozen flight instruments for fixed-wing airplanes. A turn and slip indicator is an important part of this collection.
A turn and slip indicator is a flight instrument that shows the rate at which an airplane is turning and the skip or slip of the turn. It’s also known as a turn and bank indicator. And like the five other flight instruments included in a typical “six pack,” the turn and slip indicator is located in the cockpit.
By monitoring the turn and slip indicator, pilots will have a better understanding of the rate at which they are turning. A standard turn rate is 3 degrees per second. During flight, pilots will typically strive for a standard turn rate. They can check the turn and slip indicator to determine the rate at which they are turning.
Turn and slip indicators are dual purpose. In addition to revealing the airplane’s turn rate, they reveal the skip or slip of the turn.
You can see an example of a typical turn and slip indicator in the image above. Turn and slip indicators are gyroscopic. As the airplane turns, an inclinometer will turn.
Turn and slip indicators feature a turn indicator in the center, followed by an inclinometer directly below. Pilots can monitor these parts to determine the turn rate and the skip or slid of the turn.
Airplanes are equipped with many other flight instruments. The “six pack,” for instance, also contains an airspeed indicator, altitude indicator, altimeter, vertical speed indicator and heading indicator.
Airspeed indicators live up to their namesake by revealing the speed at which the airplane is flying. Altitude indicators reveal the orientation of the airplane relative to its pitch and roll axes. Altimeters reveal the altitude at which the airplane is flying. Vertical speed indicators reveal the rate at which the airplane is ascending or descending. And heading indicators reveal the direction in which the airplane is flying.
A turn and slip indicator is a flight instrument that reveals the turn rate and the skip or slip of the turn.