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Questions tagged [jet]

*Jet* is a generic, informal term for an aircraft with jet propulsion. In a civilian context it may refer to an airliner or small private jet.

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126 votes
9 answers
42k views

How do jet fighters get to war?

Currently Australia is deploying F/A-18E/F Super Hornets to the UAE to fight in Iraq. Obviously the UAE (and Iraq) is a very long way from Australia and well beyond the typical range of one of these ...
thexacre's user avatar
  • 1,260
95 votes
11 answers
61k views

Why do fighter jets still have guns/cannons?

I noticed that the "new" F-35 still has a GAU-22/A cannon installed in it -- albeit with only 182 rounds (more with ammo pods). Why do fighters still have cannons? The day of dogfighting is long ...
RoboKaren's user avatar
  • 8,071
72 votes
12 answers
17k views

Why don't commercial jet aircraft have a break-apart, parachute escape system?

Imagine that the pilots on a jet aircraft determine that it will crash. Consider what would happen if the design of the craft allowed it to: Break into four pieces Each piece is pressurized ...
Corey's user avatar
  • 777
64 votes
11 answers
26k views

Are the guns on a fighter jet fixed or can they be aimed?

Are the (built-in) guns on fighter jets fixed, or can they be elevated up and down or panned right and left for aiming? In other words are fighter jet guns aimed by pointing the whole aircraft at the ...
MemphisGuru's user avatar
63 votes
6 answers
107k views

How do fighter pilots manage food, drink & toilet?

There doesn't seem to be any place to bring food or drink. And what about WC? And for single seat combat planes?
carbalona's user avatar
  • 631
62 votes
5 answers
50k views

How is a missile lock detected?

How can a fighter aircraft involved in a face-off detect a missile lock from a trailing aircraft so that it can make evasive maneuvers?
Amod's user avatar
  • 1,417
53 votes
7 answers
15k views

Why do fighter aircraft manufacturers still focus on making their planes more dogfight-worthy?

In today's age, when dogfights are simply a relic from the past, why do manufacturers keep on increasing their aircraft maneuverability, in order to make them better dogfighters. It is more ...
Madhav Sudarshan's user avatar
53 votes
5 answers
19k views

Locked out of private jet - how do you get in?

Ok I'm not a jet owner, I'm a novel writer. I wanted to get my airplane facts right for the story. Say my character has a mid-size (can go overseas) private jet. Has a door lock on the outside door ...
Angela's user avatar
  • 351
52 votes
9 answers
22k views

Why don't aircraft use nuclear propulsion?

Nuclear propulsion research for aircraft was abandoned during the 50's. Why wasn't it revived ever?
user avatar
49 votes
2 answers
39k views

What are these wavy lines on fighters' canopy?

As shown in the images below, what are these wavy lines on the canopy of the aircraft? Do these lines have any utility? These are mostly captured in videos of cockpit views of carrier-based aircraft.
Raj's user avatar
  • 2,088
45 votes
3 answers
39k views

Why do many fighter jets have double vertical stabilizers?

Many fighter jets have double vertical stabilizers, e.g. F-14, F-15, F/A-18, F-22: On the contrary, most general aviation planes and commercial airliners do not. While there are certainly exceptions ...
kevin's user avatar
  • 39.8k
42 votes
3 answers
41k views

Do jet fighters have air conditioning systems?

In most jet fighters, the cockpit is a glass dome and the pilots are exposed directly to the sun. In addition, they are wearing flight suits and full face helmets (most of the time). I can only ...
Burhan Khalid's user avatar
41 votes
4 answers
87k views

Why does an aircraft leave a white smoke trail?

Why does an aircraft leave a white smoke trail?
Tom's user avatar
  • 513
39 votes
5 answers
48k views

On the F15-E, can the WSO take over if the pilot is incapacitated?

The F15-E Strike Eagle features a two-man cockpit. The pilot in the front seat and the WSO (Weapons System Officer) in the back seat. If the jet is cruising straight and level is mechanically sound ...
user1352057's user avatar
  • 1,445
36 votes
14 answers
13k views

Why do passenger jets accept input that will cause the aircraft to perform dangerous maneuvers it was not designed for?

Examples: A bank angle > 45 degrees is considered an “upset,” putting the plane in a position that can lead to a loss of control. A pitch > 20 degrees can possibly be dangerous and cause the ...
user1151923's user avatar
35 votes
4 answers
22k views

Do fighter jet pilots ever use autopilot?

I know that military jets have autopilot, but do the pilots actually prefer to use it? I ask this question because, unlike civilian airplanes, military jets are more likely to come in a situation ...
Registered User's user avatar
35 votes
2 answers
96k views

Which engine is more efficient between turboprop vs jet?

Are turboprops really more efficient than jets? If yes, does that mean that airlines who use jets sacrifice fuel for faster flights?
Taher Elhouderi's user avatar
35 votes
3 answers
5k views

When might a pilot hand-fly a jet at cruise altitudes, and is it difficult?

How difficult is it to hand-fly a jet at cruise altitudes? Other than autopilot failure and just doing it for the fun of it, when might you want to hand-fly at those altitudes? I suspect the answer ...
Terry's user avatar
  • 39.2k
33 votes
8 answers
8k views

Can someone/something other than the pilot trigger the ejection seat?

Let's say there was a two-person jet (take the F-15 for example) that was involved in some sort of accident in the air that incapacitated the pilot (unconscious but still alive) and left the aircraft ...
codedude's user avatar
  • 986
32 votes
9 answers
14k views

Is it correct that a jet fighter can be used as a non-lethal (sonic) weapon?

Imagine you have a crowd of people, who want to go to a certain territory (e. g. close to the border). An airplane flies over them such that when it reaches supersonic speed, there is a loud bang. ...
user avatar
32 votes
3 answers
20k views

Why do turbine engines take so long to spool up?

Piston engines reach full rpm within a second or two, but turbines take much longer. Why is that?
ptgflyer's user avatar
  • 2,156
31 votes
5 answers
8k views

How do aircraft refueling in-air deal with wake turbulence?

Many fighter planes have the capability to refuel in air. When a plane moves in air, turbulence is generated at its back. To refuel, the fighter plane must come near to the parent plane (which has ...
Santhi Kabir's user avatar
30 votes
12 answers
14k views

Why does flight training usually start with (unsafe?) propeller planes and not with (safer?) jets?

I live in the UK and would like to learn flying jets, but most courses seem to start with propeller planes. Not sure if this might be a misconception about the safety of different aircraft types, but ...
PropellerHater's user avatar
29 votes
9 answers
166k views

Why do some fighter jets have two pilots while others have only one?

Why do some fighter jets have two pilots, while some have only one? For example the newer fighter jets such as Dassault Rafale, Eurofighter typhoon etc. are mostly with single-seat, but two-seat ...
anshabhi's user avatar
  • 11.5k
29 votes
6 answers
6k views

Can a fighter jet land on a modified airliner?

Imagine this scenario: A modified military 747 is flying at a constant speed and altitude. On the top of the fuselage there is a device like a helipad but with three holes to accommodate the fighter ...
user60684's user avatar
  • 847
28 votes
1 answer
11k views

What does this hand gesture of fighter jet pilots mean?

I am trying to understand more of the gestures fighter jet pilot use. I have seen this gesture many times: Does anyone know what this gesture mean? Are there any good resources about the gestures ...
Quinten's user avatar
  • 1,158
26 votes
2 answers
8k views

Why does NASA have F/A-18s?

I always remember playing FSX as a kid and using the NASA F/A-18, and never thought much about it. And then I saw the picture of the Space Shuttle on top of the 747 being escorted by these planes. ...
Keegan's user avatar
  • 6,897
26 votes
2 answers
8k views

What is the rescue arrow decal on a military jet pointing to?

I've noticed that a lot of military jets often have an arrow decal with the wording "RESCUE" pointing to a rectangle of some sort. I tried looking around for information about it but I could not find ...
Dalva's user avatar
  • 362
25 votes
6 answers
69k views

What is an afterburner and how long can a jet fly on afterburner?

I heard this word so many time in military documentary about jets, especially fighter jets, but I don't fully understand what it is or how it works. In a documentary from the Discovery Channel, all ...
TBBT's user avatar
  • 1,862
25 votes
2 answers
6k views

Slanted Brown Rectangles on Aircraft Carriers?

What are the rectangles adjacent to the arresting gear on Aircraft Carriers? Are they service hatches? https://www.kastalon.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/10/ford-emals-3.jpg
aerojetman62's user avatar
24 votes
10 answers
10k views

Would it be feasible to build a jet fighter plane based on a wooden construction?

I read about the de Havilland Mosquito recently and that it was a quite successful British bomber in WW2 due its lightweight wooden construction. As far as I understand it, usual planes at that time ...
Bruder Lustig's user avatar
22 votes
2 answers
10k views

How do fighter jets communicate with an intercepted plane that's lost comms?

RAF Typhoons were scrambled today to intercept an Antonov 26 that lost comms, triggering a sonic boom over London. The flight was escorted to Stansted airport, and the answer at What's the point ...
Danny Beckett's user avatar
21 votes
4 answers
6k views

What kind of jet plane is this?

The cockpit can hold one person, is smaller than a compact car and as narrow as a motorcycle. What kind of plane is this and how hard would it be to fly?
Muze's user avatar
  • 1
21 votes
2 answers
40k views

Why don't big commercial planes have full aircraft parachutes?

On smaller aircraft, like some Cirruses for example, they have parachutes attached to the body of the aircraft that can help the plane get to the ground safely in an emergency. I'm wondering why ...
Jae Carr's user avatar
  • 24.2k
20 votes
4 answers
10k views

Is it possible to fly around the world to stay in daylight with a fighter jet?

I was wondering if it is possible for a fighter jet to fly around the world and stay in daylight? For the Southern and Northern Hemisphere, the time and speed of daylight is different during seasons. ...
Quinten's user avatar
  • 1,158
20 votes
3 answers
5k views

Which fighter jet is this, based on the silhouette?

6 to 8 of these planes flew through the Ogwen Valley in North Wales, UK, this morning (2nd of June). Hawks and other training jets are common sights, but I’ve not seen these before and can’t identify ...
Darren's user avatar
  • 605
20 votes
7 answers
22k views

How does a fighter jet perform good and quick maneuvers with such small wings?

Fighter jets like the F-16, F-15, etc. have wings smaller than the length of the fuselage and can perform great maneuvers very quickly while an airliner with a long wingspan takes a lot of time to ...
Ethan's user avatar
  • 9,359
20 votes
5 answers
8k views

Why don't most fighters have thrust reversers?

With the exception of the Panavia Tornado, fighters do not have thrust reversers. Why is this? Why does the Panavia Tornado have them?
Madhav Sudarshan's user avatar
20 votes
3 answers
11k views

How do combat jets know when to launch flares to counter IR missiles?

From my related question, it seems fighter jets do not usually track missiles by radar. Instead, they have a system that warns of radar lock. So what about infrared missiles (heat-seeking missiles)? ...
DrZ214's user avatar
  • 17.8k
19 votes
1 answer
2k views

What is this jetliner seen in the Falcon Crest TV series?

I'm trying to identify this jetliner from the "Falcon Crest" TV series filmed in 1984 It's from episode # 068 <3.28> "Ashes to Ashes". This is the only scene featuring the ...
TJP's user avatar
  • 251
19 votes
4 answers
6k views

What is the smallest manned jet aircraft?

In the movie Spy Kids (2001), there is a scene where the characters board a small jet aircraft "built for one passenger". The aircraft is about 2 meters tall with a 3 meters wingspan, and features a ...
kevin's user avatar
  • 39.8k
19 votes
2 answers
2k views

When does the use of afterburners save fuel?

An afterburner uses a lot more fuel for a little more thrust (rule of thumb: 50% more thrust for 5 times the fuel flow with full dry power). Is a flight maneuver possible where using the afterburner ...
Peter Kämpf's user avatar
19 votes
2 answers
6k views

Why are HUDs usually green instead of red?

Every HUD I've seen, whether photographs or in video games, uses green light to draw the lines and text. Why green? I thought red was a better color for pilots' eyes so they can stay adjusted for ...
DrZ214's user avatar
  • 17.8k
18 votes
3 answers
5k views

Can a missile be fired when a fighter jet is inverted?

Is there an attitude limit for firing a missile from a fighter jet? Can the pilots fire them when they're pulling Gs, or inverted?
kevin's user avatar
  • 39.8k
18 votes
2 answers
10k views

Why is the de-icing fluid sprayed on jets coloured orange?

On a cold night or if it's been snowing, jets are sprayed with orange de-icing fluid: But why is it orange? If it's to see where's been sprayed and where you've missed a bit, black would be the most ...
Danny Beckett's user avatar
18 votes
3 answers
5k views

Why don't airplanes have smoking cabins?

Is there any airplane model that has a small lavatory-like cabin just for smoking? I have never seen any such planes and that made me wonder why this is? It would not take much more room than a normal ...
user1151923's user avatar
17 votes
5 answers
6k views

Why does the speed of commercial airliners fluctuate, sometimes as high as 1,060 km/h or as low as 800 km/h?

I've noticed that (long-haul) airliners sometimes travel at as high as 1000 km/h (I believe I've even seen 1040 km/h), but usually they fly closer to 800 km/h, for most of the trip. This seems odd ...
user541686's user avatar
17 votes
1 answer
6k views

Why do wings of passenger jet go dark during a flight?

Why do certain areas on passenger jet wings go dark during a flight? This effect is observed on high altitude where temperature is low. When airplane descends, wings return to their initial color. ...
ayampolsky's user avatar
16 votes
3 answers
10k views

Why is it called "Dry Thrust"?

When reading the specifications of a jet aircraft anywhere on the Internet, it usually states that its engine produces X pounds of "dry thrust". Why is it called "Dry" Thrust? As opposed to what?
Taher Elhouderi's user avatar
16 votes
1 answer
4k views

Can a jet stream make a subsonic plane fly at a supersonic speed relative to the ground?

If a plane flies with a jet stream, its speed relative to the ground is the sum of the speed of the jet stream and the speed of the plane relative to the air in the jet stream. If the speeds that are ...
Aspro's user avatar
  • 171

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