81

Right instrument face colors are inverted. Black and white are perfect complementary colors, meaning: When placed next to each other, they create the strongest contrast for those particular two colors. But for instruments if they were inverted, strong daylight shadows will make the numbers and hands harder to read, while at night with the white ...


69

When aircraft fly inside clouds, they fly under "instrument" rules. It doesn't matter whether the visibility is reduced (e.g. at night) or totally blocked (in a thick cloud), this mode of flying simply assumes the crew has no external visual reference, they fly using appropriate indications given by on-board instruments. The following short video shows a ...


68

A couple of things come to mind that enable this: you don't become a fighter pilot if you are not intelligent and highly motivated you are not learning a new skill, just doing what you are already trained to do in an environment that just looks different (this would somewhat exclude Russian helicopters) the list of things to learn is really not that long, ...


66

Nope. In a perfectly flown turn, the ball of liquid would appear to indicate level flight. You might argue that it could replace the "ball" of a turn & bank indicator, but that's about it. It would also be tough to read in turbulence. See also this YouTube video showing Bob Hoover pouring iced tea while flying the plane through a roll, even while ...


51

It's an airspeed indicator for ultralights. The pitot inlet is at the bottom and the pitot air pushes a little red plastic disc up and down on a central rod, with a calibrated clearance between the edge of the disc and the walls of the tube. They are very sensitive and are good down to 10 MPH or less. You'll also see them on hang gliders. See here: ...


49

The light is a tail-strike indicator. Touched Runway system The Touched Runway system provides a warning light in the flight compartment. It illuminates when the aft fuselage makes hard contact with the runway on take off or landing. The system consists of a frangible1 switch located at the bottom of the aft fuselage, activating the ...


44

The speed indicator in the cockpit shows indicated airspeed. Indicated airspeed is usually different than GPS speed, due to wind and aerodynamic effects. GPS speed is your speed with respect to the ground. If you are standing on terra firma it reads 0. If it reads 100 knots you will be 100NM away from where you are now in one hour, so long as you keep ...


41

It's not a head-up display, it's a reflector gunsight. (Follow that link to learn how they work.) It just displays a fixed reticle to aim the cannon, not any flight instrumentation. Some (but not all) Spitfires had a gyroscopic system to compute target leading and move the position of the reticle appropriately, based on the speed of the aircraft; I suspect ...


40

You don't need to speak(1) fluent(2) Russian(3): In fact you don't need to speak at all, just understand. You don't need to be fluent, just understand enough to not crash the plane. It's not about Russian, it is about Russian Aviation Jargon. (Think about English: if you walked up to a random person on the street and started talking about laminar flow, ...


39

There are a number of reasons why pilot don't use autoland all the time, even if the airport and aircraft are equipped with the right equipment. To name the two most important ones: Pilots need to practise their flying technique. If they would always fly autopilot, they would lose the skills to fly. Skills that they need when the autopilot does fail. There ...


39

For night flying the white on black scheme emits probably 1 or 2% of the light that a black on white display does. This will make a very significant difference in cockpit light levels and night vision. While lighting levels could be turned down on the black on white displays the contrast would suffer. With white on black the lighting levels can be left ...


38

N1 and N2 are the rotational speeds of the engine sections expressed as a percentage of a nominal value. It is similar to the revolutions per minute (RPM) of a piston engine, expressed in percentage instead of in the actual rate of rotation. They are different because they are characteristic on two-spool engines (see the figure below). The first spool is ...


38

It's the yaw string: The yaw string dates from the earliest days of aviation, and actually was the first flight instrument. Picture: Source


38

The Wright Flyer, arguably the first controllable aircraft, had three instruments: A stopwatch to measure air time. A crude tachometer to gauge engine speed And an anemometer, to make an estimate of distance traveled by measuring airflow.


36

The other answers seem to make a simple thing way too complicated. Yes there are DMEs or TACANs, that are sometimes used to get a ground speed, but it's only accurate if you're tracking exactly to or away from it. And it certainly wasn't used to calculate speed enroute unless one of your navaids was a VOR/DME or equivalent. Rather than using DME they'd be ...


35

Conceptually, N1 is the fan (or, fan speed) and is most related to your thrust (since the fan produces more thrust than the core on today's big motors). The N2 is the engine core, and the N2 gauge is used mainly during engine start: on initial starter engagement, the N2 starts turning first, and things like adding fuel+ignition and then later disengaging the ...


35

For the panel image that you provided, I should be able to identify all major instruments: A: Magnetic Compass - Pretty self explanatory. Note that in the real aircraft, A and K were switched. B: Vertical Speed Indicator (VSI) - Indicates vertical speed, either up or down, in feet per minute. C: Engine Tachometer - Indicates engine revolutions per minute (...


34

If the static port gets blocked in an aircraft with no alternate static port, you can break the glass of the VSI (Vertical Speed Indicator) to allow air from inside the cockpit in the static system. By doing this you will sacrifice the VSI in favour of the altimeter and airspeed indicator Due to venturi effects, air inside the cockpit has usually a slightly ...


32

Stalls occur based on a wing's angle of attack rather than the aircraft's airspeed. (In fact, one of the basic facts that all pilots learn in their initial training is that an airplane can stall at any airspeed). The A330 measures angle of attack using vanes mounted on the fuselage: However, below 60 knots, these vanes become ineffective. During the ...


32

This is almost definitely the cockpit of a Short Stirling of unknown mark, a 4-engine British heavy bomber from World War II. The RAF Museum's website has an (admittedly low-resolution) photo that matches quite closely, as does this history website. Here's my thought process: the placards (not just the photo's labels) are in english, so it's likely either ...


32

Yes, it is normal. With very rare exceptions, gliders are not allowed to operate in IMC (instrument Meteorological Conditions) and must remain clear of clouds. There are also powered aircraft that do not have attitude indicators, mostly for the same reason (VFR, Visual Flight Rules only).


31

All of the aircraft that I have ever seen have the rudder and braking functions combined into one set of two pedals. To operate the rudder you press on the bottom part of the pedals, so that they slide back and forth on tracks, and to operate the brakes, you press the top part of the pedals so that they rotate towards the floor. The left pedal operates the ...


31

There are several reasons: For departure clearances. An IFR clearance may have a void or release time so that clearance is only valid between certain times. For holding pattern legs. A standard holding pattern is based on a time of one minute at or below 14,000' MSL and 1.5 minutes above 14,000' MSL on the inbound leg. For holding pattern clearances. ...


30

It is a standby display, specifically a DDRMI (Digital Distance Radio Magnetic Indicator). The aircraft can be dispatched with inoperative equipment. The process is controlled by a Minimum Equipment List (MEL). The operator will have an MEL for each type of aircraft in their fleet. The MEL is approved by the regulatory authority (FAA, CAA, etc.) and ...


28

14 CFR Part 25 describes the requirements for an airliner like the 737 to be certified by the FAA. §25.1303 Flight and navigation instruments. (a) The following flight and navigation instruments must be installed so that the instrument is visible from each pilot station: ... (3) A direction indicator (nonstabilized magnetic compass). ...


27

Originally there was no instrument at this place, except for UE series with an electrically driven artificial horizon, where there was a fast erect pushbutton/indicator for the copilot gyro. According to Wikipedia, UD series is for the military model and UE series is for 1900D, so I assume UC series is for 1900C model. Instrument panel for series UA/UB/UC: ...


26

A control stick with a loop at the top was called a "Spade Stick". Generally only Hurricanes and Spitfires had them. The cockpits on these aircraft were small and it was a problem for the control column to get full travel for roll control. This was solved by making the control column rotate at about mid-stick instead of from the the floor. Other ...


26

As fooot has described, the aircraft has a mechanical compass, which will work even if the electrical systems fail. Though unlikely, it is possible to imagine a situation where the crew of an aircraft loses all heading indicators. In such a situation, ATC can still provide radar vectors. ATC will instruct the crew which turn rate to use, and when to start ...


26

The short answer is that we want to warn the pilots about an impending stall well prior to an actual stall condition. From a safety perspective, waiting until the airflow starts to separate, or at the onset of buffeting, it's already too late. By using AOA we can set a very conservative threshold. This AOA threshold can be adjusted by taking into account ...


25

Altimeters are calibrated to a standard atmosphere model (International Standard Atmosphere, ISA). What the altimeter shows you is the vertical distance between the altitude equivalent to your current pressure (pressure altitude) and a reference "pressure altitude". The reference pressure altitude is set in pressure units (hPa or In. Hg) on the altimeter ...


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