Questions tagged [electrical-system]

The parts of an aircraft that produce electrical power (such as generators/alternators, batteries, and ram air turbines) and distribute it to the aircraft's systems.

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7
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2answers
3k views

Why do airliners still have a switch for the non-smoking sign?

I've wondered why airliners have a switch in the cockpit to turn off the non-smoking sign. Why isn't it illuminated all the time, or a better question: Why is it still there, now that everybody should ...
2
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1answer
634 views

What is the power generating capacity for an airport GPU?

What is the normal current for GPU power supply for commercial aircraft and how much power do they need while on ground (in kWh)? I have read that aircraft need need 28V DC and 115V AC - what would ...
7
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1answer
4k views

What does BUS mean in the startup procedure?

I noticed the term BUS in the startup procedure of a 737. What do BUS on, off and transfer mean and what is their significance?
4
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1answer
1k views

How much electrical power is available in a Gulfstream G550 and from which power sources?

I'd like to understand what electrical power sources are available (engines? APU? GPU? Other?) on a larger jet like the G550, and how much power they can provide, depending on whether the airplane is ...
11
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3answers
3k views

What lights does the Cessna 172 light rheostat control?

I am part of a team developing a Cessna 172 P model for FlightGear, an open source free flight simulator. We are now programming how the panel and radio lightning rheostat should work, but we found a ...
5
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1answer
961 views

What are hydraulically powered and electrically controlled actuators?

I thought that the actuators are hydraulically controlled when the hydraulic fluid changes their position, but some aircraft (Bombardier, for example) has hydraulically powered and electrically ...
7
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3answers
1k views

What are the pros/cons of ram air turbines?

Commercial aircraft are equipped with ram air turbines that can be deploy to provide power in case all other sources of power are lost. Ram air turbines have the benefit of providing power as long as ...
23
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3answers
6k views

Does electrical usage contribute to fuel consumption?

I know that while in-flight the electricity is produced by the engines. What happens if every possible system requiring electricity is in the on state? This ...
5
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1answer
657 views

How do airplanes regulate the output frequency of AC generators?

AC electrical buses are common in airplanes from light piston twins all the way up to the largest airliners. I usually see both a 115v and 36v AC bus with a 400 Hz output frequency. How do most ...
21
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3answers
51k views

Why is Hydrazine used to power the F-16's EPU?

Why does the military use hydrazine to power the F-16's Emergency Power Unit (EPU)? What is so unique about Hydrazine fuel that it's needed to power the EPU? Why not use a less volatile and less ...
3
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1answer
1k views

How is the battery power on the Airbus A340's electric system switched?

On the electric panel of the Airbus A340 there are three battery buttons (BAT 1, BAT 2 and APU BAT, indicated by (3) and (4) in the diagram) controlling battery charge limiters. When the aircraft is ...
24
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2answers
14k views

How are fly-by-wire airliners controlled in case of complete electrical failure?

In this comment, it is postulated that even fly-by-wire aircraft (Airbus) are demonstrated to fly without any electrical systems. All Airbus aircraft are demonstrated controllable with complete ...
8
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1answer
811 views

Were cabin lights really consuming that much power back in 2006?

Even though it is nine years since then, I can still clearly recall my return flight from London Luton to Katowice (Poland), that I took on July 31, 2006 evening. There were a huge, strong storm front ...
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4answers
1k views

What are the hurdles to overcome before purely electric commercial aircraft can fly?

What are currently the largest issues with purely electric commercial aircraft (large scale ones like the size of a Boeing 737)? Are there any organizations right now that are trying to solve those ...
3
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1answer
2k views

How to interpret the electrical information on a G1000 T206H?

I have a T206H and The POH says: Current indication (AMPS) for both the main and standby batteries is provided at the bottom of the EIS bar (along the left margin of the MFD or PFD), labeled M ...
5
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2answers
1k views

Do small airplanes have AC power?

I know that DC power is essential for avionics and that in medium and big airplanes AC (28 V, 400 Hz) is used with DC (28 V). Small airplanes have a starter-generator that provides DC, but do they ...
5
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1answer
4k views

How much power is generated by a Ram Air Turbine (RAT)?

For long range, wide body planes A380 and B777, what is the power generated by RAT (Ram Air Turbine)? And which all are the systems which the RAT drives?
7
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1answer
420 views

What is the time before an alarm is given after a fire sensor perceives a fire?

I've got a very specific question: When a fire sensor perceives a fire, does it wait 20 or 60 seconds before giving the alarm?
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3answers
1k views

How much power is used by cabin lighting systems during flight?

How much power is used by cabin lighting systems during flight when all the lights are ON?
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2answers
120 views

Do regulations permit an airliner be equipped with a radio transmitter which cannot be controlled by the crew? [duplicate]

In response to the case of MH370, an idea which has been floated is that of a device to transmit an aircraft's GPS position. Not specified is whether such a device would be operable by the flight crew....
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2answers
3k views

Are there commercial airplanes that are still flyable without any electricity? [duplicate]

I have seen the first episode of Revolution yesterday and there are all kinds of airplanes just falling from the sky because of complete loss of electricity. I know most if not all modern planes use ...
4
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3answers
7k views

How do I interpret electrical system indications in a G1000 C-182?

I recently switched to a G1000 equipped aircraft C182 and trying to figure out the specifics of the G1000 and how it works in the 182. One that I can't really figure out with the manual and the POH ...
8
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1answer
3k views

What could cause the APU on a Boeing 777 to fail and also trip the GPU?

I am a cargo aircraft loader at Heathrow and while we were offloading cargo, pallets and baggage containers from a Pakistan Airlines B777, the aircraft's Auxiliary Power Unit (APU) failed. It made ...
16
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9answers
18k views

Can rotorcraft pick up a dangerous electric charge?

So, I was re-watching The Hunt For Red October, (in light of current Russian shenanigans with Sweden), and there was a scene in which a crew-member on the ground was electrocuted by making contact (...
10
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2answers
2k views

How common are 400Hz supplies in aircraft?

I understand that 400Hz, 26Vrms power is found in a lot of aviation equipment. But how common is it? Is it in every plane and every instrument or is it restricted to certain sectors, like military, ...
9
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3answers
4k views

Is there any electrical component on an aircraft which can never be turned off by a pilot?

Am I correct to assume that every electrical system on an aircraft can be manually switched OFF/ON by the Pilot OR is there indeed any system, on which the Pilot does not have the ability to switch ...
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3answers
2k views

Is it technically feasible to make a solar hang glider?

Is there any hang glider with solar sheets on top that can charge the e-trike or the e-Lift's battery in flight ? Just like the Sunseeker...
12
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1answer
1k views

What is the low resistance design path in an aircraft to withstand a lightning strike?

I know in a building we have lightning rods that conduct a lightning strike into the earth, but for an aircarft there is no ground to 'ground' so I assume the lightning enters and passes through the ...
2
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1answer
2k views

Why do jet generators produce a higher frequency power then household electricity? [duplicate]

I know in most homes your local transformer provides a 50Hz or 60Hz power source. So all your hairdryers, dishwashers etc. are built to consume 50Hz or 60Hz power at 110 volts or 220 volts, ...
12
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6answers
10k views

Do commercial aircraft have electrical outlets?

As we see trains nowadays with sockets for you to plug your laptop into, as well as Wi-Fi on-board both trains and planes, I'm wondering why you don't see electrical outlets on planes? Do any ...
31
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7answers
31k views

Why do airplanes use AC electric power?

Primary electric power on larger airplanes is provided as AC. What aspects of aircraft make AC a better choice than DC?
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7answers
6k views

Will the landing gear work mechanically in case of total power loss?

In case of a total power failure in all the aircraft systems like engine failure and APU failure, would it be possible to use mechanical means (manually) to open the landing gear bay door and deploy ...

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