Questions tagged [lightning]

Questions about how the weather phenomenon of lightning affects aircraft

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How far does the lightning detector work at an AWOS station, as reported in a METAR?

I noticed on my local airport's METAR that there was distant lightning to the east. I am near Kansas City. When I looked at radar, the only possible system that could produce lightning was in the St. ...
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1 vote
2 answers
303 views

When airplane pilots begin a 10 minute wait timer when lightning strikes, is there a geometric reason behind it?

Preface This question is taken from a similar one inside the mathematics stack exchange. I followed the suggestion given in the comment by Jyrki Lahtonen and posted said question here. Background ...
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2 answers
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What is the difference between stopbars and Intermediate Holding Position Lights?

I know that stop bars continuously light red and stand at before taxi route joint, holding points, or at the runway entrance, but what about the Intermediate Holding Position Lights? How can we ...
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2 votes
0 answers
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Aeroplane protection against lightning strikes [duplicate]

I would like to know what kind of protection are available on planes against lightning strikes.
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1 vote
2 answers
770 views

What is the best way to navigate a storm?

Let me say I had no choice other than fly through a storm I'm on a one way mission to airdrop a vital cure to an isolated area. I can't turn around, land or go around, I have to go through. Going ...
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3 votes
1 answer
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Can a lightning strike lead to structural damages of the fuselage and eventually cause decompression?

I know that modern aircraft are designed to withstand lightning strikes. Still is there a possibility for aircraft to sustain significant damages of the fuselage due to lightning strikes and ...
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2 votes
0 answers
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How strongly is airband affected by severe thunderstorms in practice?

In light of this question I was very surprised to learn that despite operating on a higher frequency (108 MHz upwards) than the standard FM broadcasting, airband uses amplitude modulation (AM) instead ...
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3 votes
1 answer
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How do small unmanned fixed wing aircraft protect themselves against lightning strikes?

I'm asking this question after doing a small research project to see if a small UAS can fly through thunderstorm and trigger lightning strikes. I've googled a bit, and all I've seen are large aircraft ...
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2 votes
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How HF wire antennas on older aircraft are protected from lightning and static discharge?

For HF antennas installed on some older aircraft with wires running from points on the fuselage to the tail, what precautions are used to prevent lighting strikes or P-static accumulation from ...
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13 votes
2 answers
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Do passengers notice if the aircraft is struck by lightning?

I recently saw a video from Valk Aviation (actual scene) of a KLM B777-300 struck by lightning on departure. It happened a few days ago. I know this looks more frightening than it really is and the ...
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3 votes
1 answer
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Aircraft lightning: What are the requirements for airworthiness?

Can you enlighten me about the airworthiness requirements in the field of lightning, for commercial aviation: Which voltage or intensity is the aircraft required to sustain? How is it demonstrated in ...
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3 votes
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Are carbon fiber/composite aircraft at greater risk from lightning? [duplicate]

Modern jetliners are protected from lightning by their metal skin. When they are struck by lightning, the electricity almost invariably travels through the skin and out the other side without damaging ...
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5 votes
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Is there a checklist for lightning strike?

Is there a specific checklist or procedure to follow, after a confirmed or suspected lightning strike on the aircraft? Or is a basic scan around the cockpit (plane is flying, no warning lights, no ...
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39 votes
7 answers
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How are wooden aircraft protected from lightning strikes?

A wooden aircraft is not conductive and if a lightning hits the wood it will instantaneously ignite. How would you protect a wooden aircraft from this occurrence?
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10 votes
2 answers
5k views

How well does a composite fuselage deal with lightning?

The metal fuselage of an aircraft, being highly conductive, protects occupants, interior components and fuel from the effects of lightning by conducting the electricity around them. Some newer ...
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3 votes
1 answer
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How are aircraft protected from lightning strikes by conductive skin?

I've read this question and this one, but they don't really answer my question. How or why are aircraft protected (from lightning) by a conducting skin, such as aluminum? Conductors allow current to ...
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6 votes
3 answers
449 views

Can static electricity affect navigational instruments?

Is it possible for navigational instruments to get affected by static electricity or electrical discharges like lightning? If so, how does this happen?
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4 votes
2 answers
2k views

What is static discharging noise and what is its effect on radio communications?

What is static electricity discharging noise ? How does this phenomena affect radio communications ? Does the discharging happen through lightning and are static discharger fixed or are they ...
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2 votes
1 answer
507 views

What tests are done on aircraft wings for testing the effects of lightning? [duplicate]

During the testing phase of aircraft wings, there are lot of testing like temperature, pressure, humidity, vibration and load/stress. Apart from these, does any one have idea which other tests are ...
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25 votes
2 answers
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How frequently do aircraft get struck by lightning?

We have several questions here about what happens to an aircraft when it gets struck by lightning (e.g. this question), and at least one answer from a former pilot who knows he was struck once and ...
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1 vote
1 answer
501 views

What happens when lightning strikes an airplane? [duplicate]

What happens to an airplane when hit by lightning?
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15 votes
2 answers
1k views

How is an on ground lightning strike test conducted?

Whenever a design company is obtaining an STC for an aircraft (Supplemental Design Certificate) for an electrical installation, one of the required tests to obtain the STC is a lightning strike test. ...
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12 votes
1 answer
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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 ...
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