New answers tagged

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I've always known the saying as "The three most useless things to a pilot are the altitude above you, runway behind you, and the fuel you had" What the saying is really talking about, is give up your margin grudgingly, especially when you don't need to. This works for all aspects of life.


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Emphatically yes, it is absolutely safe. Before the advent of noise canceling headsets, all of my Air Force flying was with foam earplugs. I never heard a single caution of any adverse risk, whatsoever. ("Don't eat them," maybe.) This was in both pressurized & unpressurized aircraft, including missions where we'd depressurize the cabin from 8,000' to ...


17

I wear earplugs all the time flying in both pressurized and unpressurized environments, and have done it for many years. Air pressure changes have no noticeable effect when wearing foam earplugs as the interface between the foam and ear canal is not totally air tight. The silicone flanged ones made for airline flying have a tiny bleed hole in them (...


7

Early research on post-crash fires focused on their causes and development, but soon it became obvious that the best way of reducing fatalities from post-crash fires lay in speedy evacuation of crew and passengers. Quoted from DOT/FAA/AR-95/84: In April of 1964, the FAA crash-tested a Douglas DC7 transport aircraft to examine the postcrash causes of ...


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In case of engine failure during the takeoff run, it might be possible to land immediately and stop if there's enough runway. But if the run was started partway down the runway, there will be less room to do that, possibly resulting in a more severe result. The point of all three "useless" items is that, by using them before a problem arises, the results of ...


7

It comes from previous accidents and improvements in auto-deploying/inflating slides. One airline wanted the FAA to impose a 90-second limit in the 60s, but the FAA opted for a two-minute limit based on previous accidents. But in 1966 the limit was changed to 90 seconds with improvements in auto-deploying slides. Two-minute limit One air carrier ...


28

It refers to takeoff from an intersection rather than using the full runway length. The part of the runway behind you is now useless. It is part of the saying because the TODA (takeoff distance available) is now reduced and this needs to be taken into account when doing performance calculations. It is e.g. discussed in this thread on pprune.org. One could ...


120

The runway ahead of you is useful to accelerate and - if needed - to decelerate. If you enter (or touch down) the runway in the middle, you will not be able to benefit from the part of the runway behind your entering point. It is the same as if that part would not exist. Therefore it is useless.


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While not technically an answer: I just want to point out that (most) LCCs do not have the financial means and public image credit to survive even a single minor incident or crash. A simple runway overrun or engine fire might be enough to literally bankrupt the company within days, and (most) LCC managers are painfully aware of that. The incentive is ...


0

What prevents low-cost carriers from cutting corners that might compromise the safety of their passengers? Airlines are required by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) to implement formal aviation safety management systems (SMS). This mandate came from November 2006. It is up to each member state's civil aviation authority (FAA, Transport ...


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I feel it is important to state my credentials before answering this question to establish credibility. We develop aviation safety software which includes an auditing suite. The audit suite contains IATA's IOSA and ISAGO auditing checklists that airlines use as pre-audit checklists. Secondly, we work with both IATA certified operators and airlines that ...


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No, there are no civil aviation authorities that require QMS implementation. ICAO documentation (Document 9859) discusses the integration of other systems, such as quality and environmental management systems. There are advantages of integrations, such as facilitating data management and reducing redundancies. For example, a QMS has many of the same ...


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I openend a flight sim (X Plane 10) to check for similarities and differences between the turn and slip indicator and the attitude indicator. If the airplane is horizontal then the airplane symbol on both instruments: turn and slip indicator and attitude indicator display similar data. In a soft turn to the left, the airplane symbol on turn and slip ...


13

You asked about commercial aircraft in general, so I will give an answer from that point of view. Is there any obvious warning when auto-pilot is disengaged? Yes, both visually as flashing lights, and aurally. Furthermore, the lights and tone does not go away until a second confirmation is received from the pilot. For example, pushing the button on the ...


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Most autopilots feature both an aural warning siren or similar aural cue as well as visual cues on both autopilot units as well as cockpit displays, so there is a means to alert a flight crew of an autopilot disengagement. As to changing autopilot modes, there a visual cues for this on autopilot units, flight displays and separate autopilot mode displays to ...


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The Boeing 737 allows a mode called control wheel steering (CWS). The A320 doesn't. For what is CWS, see: Is it possible to disengage only one axis of a two-axis autopilot? The wording on Wikipedia doesn't emphasize this point; however, the final report does. The pilots may also manually control the aircraft in a normal manner with the control wheel and ...


4

It's called "partial panel" flying and if you ever advance to a commercial license, you will have to demonstrate proficiency at partial panel during training and on the commercial check ride. On my commercial check flight in the late 70s I even had to demonstrate recovery from an unusual attitude (diving spiral) on partial panel under the hood because my ...


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The most common killer of inadequately trained pilots who fly into clouds is a spiral dive, caused by the aircraft entering a steep bank without the pilot realizing it or understanding the direction of turn. Eventually the aircraft is destroyed due overspeed or excess G-load. A magnetic compass is generally useless whenever an aircraft is banked and ...


4

Is it true that a Turn and slip indicator is a valid back-up for the attitude indicator? Partially, but it would need to be used in conjunction with one or more other instruments if the Artificial Horizon is inoperable. Change in the DI and/or compass will indicate a turn. Change in altitude on an altimeter will indicate a climb or descent. Usefulness of ...


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The most obvious reason is that the ITU allocated the VHF and UHF bands for aviation purposes generally, and then aviation authorities had to split those limited bands into adjacent comm and nav sub-bands. If aviation had gotten separate ranges for nav and comm, then that would double the risk of interference from adjacent non-aviation users, plus it would ...


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This when I got to give “the lawyers answer“ to: Well, it depends... It depends on the kind of gun that you use, where are you hit the airplane, and how much energy the bullet has at impact. My basic answer would be that it’s very unlikely you could do this. Some basics: handguns are notoriously inaccurate and under powered - some firearms instructors ...


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If you have a high powered rifle or something like a 500 magnum, and you manage to hit the wing spar, you could weaken the structural integrity of the wing, and possibly cause part of the wing distal to where the spar was hit to break off (which could range from a minor flight control problem, All the way to an uncontrollable spiral dive akin to the final ...


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The highest peak in Saudi Arabia is Jabal Ferwa at 9,856 feet above sea level. Add some padding for safe terrain clearance, instrument error and human error, and 15,000 feet looks like a reasonable transition altitude. The highest peak in the contiguous United States is Mt. Whitney at 14,505 feet, so 18,000 feet for the transition altitude looks similarly ...


1

If you're talking about flex thrust, then NO - it is not at all a problem. It is basically a FAKE temperature which the pilots provide the FADEC with so that the FADEC purposely reduces the amount of thrust generated by the engine. This can improve engine lift by reducing wear. But remember, PILOT'S ARE NOT SUPPOSED TO USE FLEX THRUST DURING ROUGH WEATHER. ...


1

No it's not dangerous. Flex thrust simply exploits all of the runway available, taking advantage of any length that is surplus to the minimum required at max thrust, to allow takeoff with less than maximum thrust to save wear and tear and fuel (wear and tear is a big deal taking off in a sandy/dusty environment and use of flex has a significant effect on ...


2

A direct flight from Toronto to Manila is about 16 hours. It is classified as a "Polar" flight and very little of it would be over the open ocean. Depending on the weather and upper wind conditions, you would be initially flying either North East, or North West, from Toronto. Most of the flight will be over land, with some of it over the frozen Arctic ...


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