touch

touch

[tuhch]
touch, tactile sensation received by the skin, enabling the organism to detect objects or substances in contact with the body. End organs (nerve endings) in the skin convey the impression to the brain. Touch sensitivity varies in different parts of the body, depending on the number of end organs present in any one area. The tip of the tongue, lips, and fingertips are three of the most sensitive areas, the back and parts of the limbs the least so. The sense of touch is very closely related to the other four sensations received by the skin: pain, pressure, heat, and cold. There is a specific kind of sensory receptor for each of the five so-called cutaneous senses. For example, light-touch receptors convey only the sensation that an object is in contact with the body, while pressure receptors convey the force, or degree, of contact. The blind learn to read by the Braille system by making use of the sensitivity to touch of the fingertips.
Touch-and-go and/or "circuits" are pilot's terms for a maneuver that is common when learning to fly a fixed-wing aircraft. It involves landing on a runway and taking off again without coming to a full stop. Usually the pilot then circles the airport in a defined pattern known as a circuit and repeats the maneuver. This allows many landings to be practiced in a short time.

It can also describe a maneuver used to test questionable landing surfaces.

In British parlance this maneuver is called "circuits and bumps".

Standard procedure

The standard circuit begins with a roll down the runway until the aircraft rotates, a climb out to 500' AGL (Above Ground Level), a right or left climbing turn (depending on making either right hand or left hand circuits) to 1,000' AGL perpendicular to the runway, followed by another right or left turn for a downwind leg parallel to the runway. During the downwind leg the pilot completes his/her pre-landing checks and contacts the tower advising a full stop landing or a touch-and-go. After seeing the threshold of the runway at 45 degrees behind him/her, the pilot makes another left or right turn descending to 500' AGL. The pilot then turns on the last leg, the final approach where he/she is cleared to land or cleared for a touch-and-go.

In an uncontrolled airport, the pilot announces his/her position and intent over a unicom radio frequency to coordinate the flow of local air traffic between the pilots.

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