Questions tagged [angle-of-attack]

Usually refers to the angle between the oncoming air and the wing.

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75
votes
5answers
24k views

Why does the B-52 take off without rotating?

In the answer to this question it is noted that the B-52 takes off without rotating and climbs out in a nose-down attitude. Why was it designed this way?
29
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2answers
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How does an alpha (AoA) vane work?

The alpha vane (also called AoA vane) is an external probe used to measure the angle of attack. I have been trying to understand how exactly it works, but I can't find any clear explanation or ...
21
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2answers
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What does it mean when pitch numbers move all over the HUD screen?

In this video from an F-16: You can see pitch angle move out of screen or be on the side at the end.
14
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1answer
739 views

What were the advantages of the L-1011 AoA sensor design?

The Lockheed L-1011 had an unusual type of AoA sensor. Instead of the usual vanes it used a tube with two rows of holes in it about 90° apart. A diaphragm sensed the pressure differential between the ...
13
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4answers
5k views

Why is angle of attack information not displayed in the cockpit?

Would not it be useful to have the angle of attack information displayed on the flight display? I know that we have shakers that alert pilot when the critical AOA is exceeded, but still we have cases ...
12
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2answers
3k views

Why are the angle-of-attack sensors on most airplanes mounted on the forward fuselage rather than at the wing roots?

A source of reliable angle-of-attack information is important for airplanes, as flight at an excessively-high angle of attack can cause the airplane to stall, which is generally considered to be an ...
12
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2answers
6k views

Why does stall speed decrease when flaps are deployed?

I've been told that deploying the flaps on approach enables the following: Potentially steeper approach Slows down the plane Lower stall speed It's the last one that confuses me. Given the equation ...
12
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2answers
1k views

How does flight control surface authority change with AOA?

I am working on semi-realistic (let's just call it "believable") flight simulation component set for a game engine. One of the topics that I tried to research but could not find reliable information ...
12
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3answers
9k views

What is the wing angle of attack of a Boeing 737 in cruise?

I would like to know the angle of attack that a 737 flies at during cruise. I am specifically interested in the wing angle of attack (if you know the cruise nose-up attitude and the wing incidence ...
10
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1answer
16k views

How to calculate the Lift Coefficient for the A320?

I'm trying to figure out the lift coefficient of an A320. What I'm doing is the following: during cruise, the lift is equal to the weight of the aircraft ($mg$) so that I used the cruise table taken ...
9
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3answers
3k views

Can a taildragger land tail first?

Inspired by this question... How does a taildragger take off? Does it rotate? I imagine if a taildragger has to land front wheels first it has a very limited range of Angle of Attack (if the pilot ...
9
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3answers
976 views

Can variable incidence wings replace ailerons?

If a wing can change its incidence angle, can aileron be omitted in the design? Since aileron are used to increase lift and decrease it. so is the incidence angle. How would the two solutions ...
9
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1answer
9k views

How many AOA sensors does the 737 MAX have?

How many AOA sensors does the 737 MAX have? Given that it's reported in the media, that one faulty AOA probe activated the MCAS on the Lion Air flight, I was wondering if anybody also knows how an ...
9
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1answer
7k views

Does lift coefficient vary with the wind velocity for a given angle of attack?

I have this question in my mind. I have been trying to look for this in different books about aerodynamics and I couldn't find the answer. I know I could check the answer experimentally, if I had a ...
8
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1answer
804 views

How does increasing the RPM result in a higher AOA for the blades?

I know that an increase in velocity (TAS) reduces the AOA and that makes sense. But how just simply increasing the blade rotation (RPM) results in higher AOA?
7
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2answers
966 views

Why do airliners on autopilot climb during cruise?

Several years ago I was a passenger on a near cross-country flight when the pilot came on the PA and announced that we were climbing towards our cruise altitude, on autopilot, and as our fuel load was ...
7
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2answers
2k views

Why Air France 447 could not reduce angle of attack?

I just finished reading this article and couldn't understand why in 3 minutes and 30 seconds even though there was no reliable speed data, pilot could not level the plane? Isn't the angle of attack ...
7
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2answers
855 views

Does airspeed affect the critical angle of attack on an airfoil?

I understand that the critical angle of attack is mostly affected by the shape of the airfoil. However does the airspeed of the airfoil or the density of the air affect the critical angle of attack? ...
7
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3answers
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Is induced drag caused because of the tilt of the wing backwards?

In this question: Why is induced drag less on a high span wing? In the answer it was stated that wing tip vortices do not cause induced drag. If this is the case then what causes the induced drag. ...
6
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8answers
515 views

Could the stick position be used as a Angle of Attack indicator?

True or False: The stick determines elevator position and elevator position determines angle of attack. When the critical angle of attack is exceeded, the wing stalls. So, given a design with enough ...
6
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3answers
1k views

Why does RPM for a fixed-pitch propeller change with an aircraft's pitch?

Talking bout a C-152 - If I pitch the aircraft down, and without adjusting the throttle, the RPM would show an increase. Pitch up, and without adjusting the throttle, the RPM shows a decrease. I've ...
6
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2answers
4k views

Do negative angles-of-attack create lift?

(wikimedia.org) A typical curve showing section lift coefficient versus angle of attack for a cambered airfoil. Based on the graph above, do negative angle-of-attack values create lift? How?
6
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3answers
377 views

Can airplane performance be increased by cruising “on step”?

Old timers swear aircraft performance can be increased by getting an aircraft "on step" similar to how boats are operated. They claimed a couple extra miles per hour (airspeed was in MPH then) were ...
6
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1answer
1k views

Is drag coefficient lowest at zero angle of attack?

The drag coefficient of a symmetric airfoil is lowest when its angle of attack is zero. I'm not sure if this is true in general.
6
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5answers
2k views

What happens during a powered descent?

I was having a discussion with my friend about equilibrium condition in flight: Scenario: While going in straight and level flight, say I reduced my airspeed by 30 mph. At the same time keeping the ...
6
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4answers
206 views

Does flying an airplane upside down imply negative AoA? Why?

I saw the statement below in this answer: Note that for normal level unaccelerated flight $C_L$ is always > 0. The minimum $C_L$ is a negative value for negative AoA, and would mean that the ...
6
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1answer
338 views

Why are the positions of an aircraft's angle-of-attack vanes dependent on airspeed?

According to this answer to an earlier question of mine, the positions of the angle-of-attack sensor vanes on the A330/A340 are dependent not only on AoA, but also on airspeed (and, according to @ymb1'...
5
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4answers
642 views

Why are the AOA sensors placed outside the aircraft?

Why should the AOA sensors be placed outside the aircraft? Is it not the angle between the chord line of a wing and a vector representing the relative motion between the aircraft and the surrounding ...
5
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2answers
1k views

What's the pattern of airflow over the airfoil at high angle of attack?

When at high angle of attack the boundary layer tends to: A. stagnate and stop B. loop around the upper camber line C. decrease air pressure along the chord The answer is A, but as I see ...
5
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1answer
1k views

Will an Airbus A320 plane go into an unrecoverable nosedive and crash if a single angle of attack sensor fails, like on Lion Air JT610?

For example, has an Airbus gone from cruise flight into an automated unrecoverable nose dive until it hit the ground because an AOA sensor failed in flight? Moreso, are there any cases of an AOA ...
5
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3answers
4k views

How does the angle of attack vary in turns?

I read somewhere that when the aircraft banks to turn, its angle of attack increases.Since angle of attack is the angle between the relative wind and chord line, how does turning increase it? Is it ...
5
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1answer
246 views

Is it possible to get into a spin situation while coordinated?

Is there any possibility of spinning while coordinated? Of course, any CFI would tell you no, but I wonder if the the following situation could result in a spin while coordinated: Slow level flight ...
5
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2answers
2k views

Is it possible to fly horizontally with zero angle of attack?

If an aircraft has a zero angle of attack and the wing doesn't, is it possible to fly horizontally? Because as the book says, there is no lift in this condition, Is this zero angle of attack of the ...
5
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2answers
685 views

Do airliners adjust altitude for latitude?

According to this NASA article, the troposphere extends from about 5 miles at the poles to about 9 miles at the equator. Though the height of the troposphere is defined by the height of the tropopause ...
5
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2answers
576 views

Angle of attack difference between outer wing and inner wing during a descending turn and climbing turn

I understand that during an ascending or descending turn the angles of attack of the inner wing and outer wing are different. However, I don't understand why then ascending and turning, the outer ...
5
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1answer
955 views

What are the definitions of elevator angle of attack and critical angle of attack?

Angle of attack is the angle between the chord line of the wing to the direction of relative wind. So angle of attack helps the aircraft climb. Then what is the angle between the chord line of the ...
4
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3answers
17k views

What is the typical angle of attack aircraft fly at and at what angle of attack do they stall?

At what angles of attack do aircraft typically fly at? How much of a margin is there before aircraft stall due to an increase of an angle attack due to factors such as gusts or rotation of the wing ...
4
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2answers
670 views

Which of these is true for a glider flying with constant angle of attack?

I'm trying to answer the following question, but I'm not sure of which one is correct. A glider is gliding with constant angle of attack along its path. We can assume the hypothesis of small angles....
4
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2answers
492 views

Why doesn't the flight path angle increase beyond a certain angle even if the angle of attack is increased?

From level flight, when the angle of attack is increased the flight path angle increases (the aircraft starts to climb). What causes the aircraft to stop to increase its angle of climb (angle between ...
4
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2answers
2k views

What exactly happened with the Flight Computers on XL Airways Germany Flight 888T?

I recently saw a documentation about XL Airways Germany Flight 888T. This made some questions rising in my mind: Two AOA-Sensors failed (freezed) simultaneously. From Wikipedia: Two out of three ...
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4answers
2k views

How is a sideslip maintained (aerodynamically)?

(Public domain image that I've modified.) The initial rudder deflection to the left creates a side force that points right and yaws the plane to the left. NASA puts it this way: For the vertical ...
4
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3answers
2k views

How does the relative wind on a propeller, strike the blade from behind (the non camber side)?

This may be a stupid or simple question, although any help is appreciated! :) If possible, please answer without mathematical terminology. So I understand the concept of the blade increasing air ...
4
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1answer
177 views

Why does the rotor thrust decrease at smaller tip clearance for shrouded rotor?

Consider this system, rotor with shroud: From this research, we see that: at the same rpm, the rotor thrust decreases,the shroud thrust increases as tip clearance decreases. But why does the rotor ...
4
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1answer
981 views

In an Airbus A320, when alpha protection is active, is pitch protection no longer available?

The A320 FCOM chapter 27 flight controls, normal law, protections, shows a diagram how the sidestick input is used when protections are active. When high angle of attack protection is active the side ...
4
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2answers
279 views

Does wing sweep affect the direction of lift?

Given both a straight and swept wing (identical otherwise), exposed to the same airflow, would the direction of lift be the same? Please see below a crudely drawn example of my thinking. Additionally,...
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2answers
622 views

Why is the critical AoA of most flaps 40° when most airfoils stall at 15°?

A plain flap deflected 40 degrees is largely stalled (...) Flaps stall at 40° according to an answer on Quora, why is this so when typical airfoils stall at 15°?
3
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4answers
378 views

How much can falling down due to a stall influence the angle of attack?

I am trying to understand the af447 incident, more precisely, how a professional pilot having an attitude indicator available failed to understand that the angle of attack was too high. Was it that ...
3
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3answers
320 views

Why aren't angle-of-attack data sanity-checked before being fed to other aircraft systems?

For most fixed-wing aircraft, accurate angle-of-attack information is utterly essential for safe flight, due primarily to the risk of stalling the aircraft if the AoA of one or both of its wings ...
3
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3answers
932 views

Is there a simple relationship between angle of attack and lift coefficient?

Is there an equation relating AoA to lift coefficient? I have been searching for a while: there are plenty of discussions about the relation between AoA and Lift, but few of them give an equation ...
3
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2answers
118 views

Is the lift produced by a wing with a 10° flap equal to the lift created by a wing with 10° AOA but with no flap?

After reading this article I would like to know if the lift produced by a wing with a 10° flap is equal to the lift created by a wing with 10° AOA but with no flap?