Questions tagged [sensors]

Questions about various sensors used in aviation, both on aircraft and ground equipment.

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What may cause a pitot tube and Honeywell pressure sensor calibration inconsistency?

It is possible that my issue is specific to my setup, but I thought I'd try here if someone has experienced a similar issue. I will try to explain this clearly as possible, but it may be slightly ...
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1answer
454 views

How can avionics detect tailwind? [duplicate]

We can see the effect of the tailwind on the plane's flight direction on the modern military fighter jet huds. I wonder about how can the avionic systems detect tailwind and which sensors using in the ...
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How are pitch angle and pitch rate measured in an airplane?

What equipment or method is used to obtain measurements of the pitch angle (θ) and pitch rate (q) during flight? Edit: I am asking about how the aircraft systems sense these quantities
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2answers
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What is the difference between IMU (Inertial Measurement Unit) and AHRS (Attitude and Heading Reference System)?

According to online sources like wikipedia the difference belies on the addition of an on-board processing system (I assume it means a microcontroller) which outputs already processed data and not ...
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2answers
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What is this 'ball' in front of the cockpit of some fighters, e.g., an Su-57?

What is the lump/ball thing visible below and to the left of the canopy in this image of a PAK FA (which became the Sukhoi Su-57), and what is it for? It's also seen on other fighters. Image source
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1answer
126 views

Is there a system of automated sharing of current (experienced) weather between aircraft in flight?

For example, if say - Aircraft 1 is flying a certain route, being followed by Aircraft 2 at an interval of say, 5 minutes (over the same position). Is there a system by which Aircraft 1 can transmit ...
3
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3answers
360 views

Is there a practical use of streaming data received from meteorological sensors installed on aircraft?

I am not the practitioner in the field of aviation, and my knowledge is mainly theoretical. Therefore I would be happy to get a feedback from practitioners on the following topic: I was reading about ...
8
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1answer
1k views

What is the purpose of proximity sensors on hydraulic systems?

One of the planes I worked on had ground spoiler response checked with proximity sensors. The reason mentioned for that was - "The ground spoiler is hydraulic only - hence its response will be checked ...
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2answers
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What is this pod at the wing-tip of a U2?

In this image of a U2S, what it the very unaerodynamic looking pod at the wing-tip? It looks like it holds some sort of sensor package. However, it doesn't seem to appear on all U2s (at least not ...
15
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1answer
3k views

What is this device protruding from the rear of this 787?

While looking at the photos from this question I noticed a small protrusion from the side of the plane. You can see it in the photo: and in the diagram from l@aeroalias answer: In the diagram it ...
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4answers
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What is the ultraviolet signature, if any, of aircraft and jet engines?

The Wikipedia article on the FIM-92 B variant of the Stinger Missile says: In this version, the infrared seeker head was replaced by a combined IR/UV seeker that utilized rosette scanning. This ...
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1answer
315 views

Can a laser Doppler anemometer be used to measure airspeed?

Could this be used in place of or in addition to a pitot-static system?
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2answers
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What are these boxes built into the tails of some fighters?

In looking at European-designed fighters of the 4th and 4.5th generation, I keep seeing a common design feature; a box-like structure built into the tail, often in the top half or third. Some examples:...
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2answers
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How would the Airbus A320 PFD respond to failure of all pitot and AOA sensors?

In theory, if all 3 pitot tubes and all 3 AOA-sensors would fail simultaneously for a period of time, could the PFD still deliver correct roll angle and horizontal displays? How would the plane ...
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2answers
5k views

How does a pilot know if he has headwind, tailwind or crosswind?

While in cruise, without GPS how does a pilot know the wind direction? The airspeed sensors only register forward speed. Is it a matter of reaching waypoints sooner or later? And if flying on a ...
33
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2answers
6k views

What is the smiley face sensor at the stern of the F-4 Phantom?

The F-4 Phantom has an interesting collection of sensors at the extreme rear of the empennage. What are these sensors for? My daughter calls them them smiley sensors but I suspect that is not the ...
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1answer
411 views

Do fuselage rip/crack/damage sensors exist?

Are there sensors that can detect a rip, crack or damage in the fuselage skin by not using air pressure differential on aircraft?
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4answers
2k views

How does the Guardian counter-MANPADS system work?

I came across this picture of a FedEx McDonnell Douglas DC-10 equipped with an anti-missile defense system. (wikimedia.org) According to the picture description: FedEx became the first U.S. ...
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2answers
57k views

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 ...

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