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83 votes
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What are the advantages of towbarless pushback tugs?

Advantages of towbarless pushback. You don't have to store different tow-bars for different a/c types. This is especially good for ground handlers who handle different airlines with different ...
Anilv's user avatar
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80 votes
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Why don’t airplanes use turn signals?

At uncontrolled airports, there is rarely enough traffic for signals to be needed, and pilots should (though are not required to) communicate with each other on CTAF—an option that cars do not have. ...
StephenS's user avatar
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75 votes
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Can a human get sucked into a jet engine?

Yes. Human beings can get sucked into jet engines if they are close enough- this has happened multiple times in a number of aircraft ranging from A319 to A6E intruder. However, it happens only in ...
aeroalias's user avatar
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66 votes
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Why do airliners park with the nose facing the terminal?

To park a passenger plane with its tail towards the terminal has several disadvantages: it would require a pushback tractor (plus personnel) to do that. Thrust reversers in general are not meant for ...
Jpe61's user avatar
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63 votes
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Are there any drawbacks to requesting progressive taxi every time?

Apart from appearing really unprofessional, the obvious drawback is a significantly higher workload, both for the pilot but especially for ATC. You're not the only aircraft moving around at the ...
60levelchange's user avatar
53 votes

Can a human get sucked into a jet engine?

what is the minimum or maximum weight that these engines can suck? Quite a lot, considering they can ingest ramp equipment... This is a JAL 747 ingesting a baggage container. Delta L-1011 doing the ...
Moo's user avatar
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53 votes
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Why does the headset man not get on the tractor?

The "headset man" is a wing walker, and he is there for a reason - he is not just someone who needs a ride to where the aircraft is being pushed to. Essentially, he is an extra pair of eyes for the ...
60levelchange's user avatar
53 votes
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Do I need explicit clearance to taxi on an inactive runway?

Yes, you need an explicit instruction (not clearance) to taxi on any runway - and you got one! The controller told you to "taxi on [runway] 10" which is about as explicit as it gets. If he did not ...
60levelchange's user avatar
51 votes

Why don’t airplanes use turn signals?

I think the points raised in other answers are good, but they miss the essential difference. Cars choose from a discrete set of options, but planes do not. When you indicate left when driving you are ...
Jack Aidley's user avatar
47 votes
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How can two planes be on the same taxiway facing opposite to each other?

The taxiway is being used for parking. Specifically, parking of two MD-80s that have attracted press attention—The Australian: Clive Palmer’s $10m in tax-haven jets sitting idle: TWO 155-seat jets ...
Zach Lipton's user avatar
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45 votes
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Why are the aircraft in this image parked this way?

This is what happens when there are more planes to park than can fit on the apron. They are parked asymmetrically to fit as many aircraft as possible into the smallest area. The Parking Airports have ...
Bullfrog's user avatar
  • 1,355
44 votes

Why are the aircraft in this image parked this way?

If your photo had only one aircraft pinned behind or between two others, there would be another possibility: it's a repair shop, and the owner of the pinned aircraft hasn't paid their bill. I've known ...
Steve V.'s user avatar
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39 votes
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How could the B-29 bomber back up under its own power?

Some B-29s had reversible pitch propellers. All the B-29s used for the Atomic bomb missions had reversible pitch propellers. Wikipedia B-29 Variants Moreover, engine packages changed; including ...
Mike Sowsun's user avatar
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36 votes

Can a human get sucked into a jet engine?

It's happened before, both with civilian and military aircraft. This video was shot in 1991. Crews ready an A-6E attack aircraft for launch aboard Theodore Roosevelt (CVN-71) for a night sortie over ...
Romeo_4808N's user avatar
33 votes

Why are the aircraft in this image parked this way?

They did this to deal with an overflow of traffic at Anguilla (Clayton J. Lloyd ) International Airport during the 2013 holiday season. It is very fortunate that you properly cited your image. This ...
Nosajimiki's user avatar
31 votes
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How do tugs push back the Antonov 225?

Quite simple ― use a (special) towbar! Aircraft with such unique front wheels (like the Antonov An-225 Mriya and Lockheed C-5 Galaxy) carry their own towbar around, which is then attached to the tugs ...
aeroalias's user avatar
  • 100k
30 votes
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Can a completely drained battery be recharged via ground power on an airliner like the B737?

My one experience with this was in a 737-300 that had the battery charger die, and the battery depleted while in flight. The Battery Bus was still powered by TR3, but the Hot Battery Bus died (...
Ralph J's user avatar
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29 votes
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Why aren't there brake lights on aircraft?

They simply aren't necessary. Brake lights are on road vehicles because often they travel at relatively high speeds, and follow relatively close to one another. If a driver suddenly slows, the brake ...
SnakeDoc's user avatar
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28 votes
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How long does it take to refuel a big jumbo jet?

It depends on a number of factors like: the aircraft size and variant the range required the aircraft load equipment available Ground crew proficiency ...among others things. This figure from the ...
aeroalias's user avatar
  • 100k
28 votes
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Which (if any) is the "most major" airport / field / strip on Antarctica?

You can find a full list of airports on the continent here, the majority are ice/snow runways with two gravel runways at Rothera Air Facility and TNM. Supported is a loose term down there, however ...
Dave's user avatar
  • 101k
25 votes

Can a human get sucked into a jet engine?

Yes. Here's an incident that happened at Mumbai (India) Airport in December 2015. A technician was sucked into the engine and killed. A news report of the incident and AvHeald report for completeness
Vivek's user avatar
  • 359
24 votes

Are there any models for planning aircraft placement in hangars?

I’ve not heard of software programs to do this, but the Navy has made use of a relatively low tech solution to address this problem for decades aboard their aircraft carriers. Known simply as the ...
Romeo_4808N's user avatar
23 votes
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How are airliners secured on the ground during hurricanes?

Looking at the hurricane manuals for a few airports, evacuating flyable aircraft to a safer location tends to be the most common choice. From the Boca Raton Airport: Effective with the issuance of a ...
Timpanus's user avatar
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23 votes
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How much does the landing gear compress on a fully loaded airliner on the ground?

The value will obviously vary for different aircraft models (and also with the loading, c.g. location etc), but the usual range can be found in the airport planning document for the particular ...
aeroalias's user avatar
  • 100k
22 votes
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How much force is needed to tow an airliner?

Tugs do not need that much horsepower, even the biggest tugs only have around 400bhp. What they do need is lots of torque for push/pull power, lots of weight to give it plenty of inertia, and big ...
GdD's user avatar
  • 54k
22 votes

Why are airplanes sometimes led by a vehicle?

"Follow-me cars", as they are known, make it easier for pilots to get to the correct spot by the correct route. This could be the runway before take-off, or the final stand after landing. They're ...
Daniele Procida's user avatar
22 votes
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Why are airplanes sometimes led by a vehicle?

In addition to the reasons given by @Daniele, there are two others that I can think of: security and lack of visibility. At Amsterdam Schipol for a time at least in the 1990s there were two airlines, ...
Terry's user avatar
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21 votes
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What is the process to disconnect ground electric power before pushback?

When is the GPU disconnected? Airports have rules regarding APU use, to reduce noise and pollutants near airport gates. Airline operating procedures usually specify when to start APU and engines. The ...
mins's user avatar
  • 74.5k

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