A corkscrew landing (also spiral landing) is a method of landing an aircraft that is intended to minimize the risk of the aircraft being hit by anti-aircraft fire from the ground on its way to a destination airport. Instead of slow descent towards the airport, in a corkscrew landing the aircraft is positioned at high altitude above the airport, then descends rapidly in a spiral. The maneuver is typically performed by pilots of military aircraft to avoid surface-to-air missiles.
It has also become the standard method of landing by airlines flying into Baghdad International Airport after a DHL cargo aircraft was struck and nearly destroyed by a surface-to-air missile during takeoff in November 2003.
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- Torchia, Christopher (July 14, 2008). "A gentle descent to Baghdad's airport". USA Today. Retrieved 25 November 2012.
- Margaret Warner (August 17, 2010). "Security in Baghdad a Deadly Serious Business". PBS NewsHour. PBS. Retrieved 25 November 2012.
- Wright, Tony (24 November 2012). "In praise of flying beasts of burden". The Age. Fairfax Media. Retrieved 25 November 2012.
- Duffin, Allan T. (November 2006). "Landing in Baghdad". Air & Space magazine. Smithsonian Institution. Retrieved 23 December 2012.
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