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Discussion in 'The Pub' at netrider.net.au started by smee, May 23, 2011.
Always knew that you pilots were full of it
Lol the only thing I could relate operating a form of transport as easy would be for those on rail such as tram or trains. Planes otoh are probably one of the most complex machinery to operate.
Couldn't stop laughing for a while when I first saw this, smee !
Sure, there's lots (and I mean lots!) of gauges and systems for a crew member to be thoroughly familiar with, but it's the reason why a training course is so complex in itself
'Back then', there were many many more gauges and switches than what there is today on modern passengers aircraft.
This is some info I found on the net you might find interesting:
The 747-400 flight deck provides flexibility that is being incorporated in more models across the Boeing fleet. The 747-300 three-crew analog cockpit was transformed into a fully digital, two-crew flight deck with cathode ray tube (CRT) displays. Six 8- by 8-inch (200 by 200 mm) CRTs are used to display airplane flight control, navigation, engine and crew-alerting functions. They allow more information to be displayed with fewer instruments. The number of flight deck lights, gauges and switches was reduced to 365 from the 971 on the 747-300. Flight crew workload is designed to be one-half to one-third that of former 747 models
Mate, I would have LOVED to have flown these earlier models... though a lot of my earlier flying days resemble this type of cockpit arrangement, on a much lower scale.
In the words of one of our esteemed members above 'Gold', indeed
What model is that? Don't recognise it but it's pre-MFD and there's a HELL of a lot of fuses...
EDIT: This isn't as good as the one I was looking for (which shows the crew reading the paper while it's happening...), but still fairly interesting:
Hey Nick, I know you fly an A330 but have you ever flown a B747/777? If so which do you prefer and why? This sounds like an exam question. If you answer correctly I will give you 15 points..haha
Remember years ago before Ansett bit the dust, had the priviledge to have a go in two simulators near the airport..
One was for an airbus with a joystick fly-by-wire and the other a 757 with a wheel..
Found the fly-by much easier to control
The wheel on the 757 sim felt really heavy but very sensitive...
That was my view at the time but I KNO NUTTIIIIING........
NK : This would appear to be an earlier model 747 Classic, possibly a -100 or -200 series aircraft. A sight to behold !
I occasionally discuss the aspects of flying these with colleagues at work (we used to operate these types only until recently-freight) and everyone who flew the Classic LOVES them.
The aft switchboard/panel was operated by a Flight Engineer.
Most airlines nowadays require you to sit not only a skills/aptitude test, but a series of tests at the 'interview' stage. Apart from the interview itself (lots of technical/meteorological/operational etc questions in front of a 'good cop/bad-cop' panel of interviewers) the most significant of tests stems on one's ability to fly...let's not forget, a pilot who is A+ in his tech/operational theory but is an average pilot can be easily 'chopped'.
Currently on A330 for over 1yr now. Loving it ! Due to base location, there's a chance I may be converted onto the A340 also (4 engine version), which doesn't involve much of a conversion thanks to Airbus' cockpit/operating philosophy similarities.
Prior to joining current outfit, I had to undergo a 747 Classic (as pictured above) Simulator Check Ride, about 45min of manual flight, takeoff/landing/approaches/go-arounds.... Naturally, having never flown one, it was paramount to try and get some 'time' in this beast before fronting up for the interview, in Hong Kong.
At the time, a bloke in Sydney (Qantas Jet Base) offered 'training packages' at AUD $900/hr. I know of some who booked in for anywhere between 2-6hrs of 'practice'. I was so glad I squeezed in a session 2 days before being flown out of Melbourne, albeit for only 50min. It proved its weight in gold. Flying a Dash 8 vs a 747 Classic is a HUGE difference.
I started on the 747-400 (Glass 'EFIS' Cockpit) and stayed on that for around 4years. I then converted onto the B777-200/300/300ER and flew some of my best days all around Hong Kong on that machine..beautiful to fly !
Over 1.5yrs ago, I commenced conversion training (3 solid months of study/training/testing) onto the A330 as I decided to move back to Melbourne on a base - the B777 doesn't fly to Australia, otherwise I would have stayed on that.
My favourite ?
Soft spot for the B777 - you won't find anyone who says a single nasty word/dislikes this aircraft. Sizeable, its presence, enormous engines and abilities impress both pilots/passengers alike.
The A330 is a magnificent machine and not having completed 4yrs on it yet (as was the case with the B777) I am starting to really enjoy operating it.
The crux of this thread is about the 747 Classic however, and on this note, one can never stop marvelling the beauty, complexity and 'rawness' of older generation aircraft. They rock !
Hope this was enough for at least 10 points, Res
Oh yeah - used to love crawling around C-130s, and pulling the RADAR Altimeter apart was fun: chock-full of solid gold waveguides and glowing valves...
Nickers on that autopilot landing vid, can you confirm for me that planes don't land via auto pilot because the satnav was so accurate runways were getting excessive wear at the landing point?
Nick thanks for insight and it's interesting to know the intricate ins and outs of the impact it has on your day to day operations. It would make it easier for you guys if A & B plane makers made the operations a bit more universal but they aren't. What's the top speed you've hit, can you get fined for exceeding a speed limit in the sky or as they say is the sky the limit?
Today is triple points day so you have scored 15 X 3 = 45 netrider points.
Thanks ResmeN - too kind on the points, mate. Can't recall exactly how fast I've ever been but with around 130kt tailwinds on descent into Tokyo Narita some time ago, I'm sure we would have had the aircraft impounded and the 2 of us sent to Jail
Lilley, which autopilot vid are you referring to?
Lol that's what I wanted to hear. So I'm thinking somewhere around 1400km/h
What is the top speed the plane could hit?
You reckon vicroads would impound under the hoon laws lol and send it to the essendon hangers haha
That would have been awesome mate
The OP had a slight error: the industry standard is
Pull stick back: cows get smaller.
Push stick forward: cows get bigger.
FWIW, when I was flying from Bombay we used to maintain instrument currency in the Air India 747 Classic sim. If you ignored all those superfluous gauges it was all quite simple, just fly the approach with the normal instruments and push/pull as in a normal aircraft with whirling wings. Although I did see the Indian sim instructor turn white when I flew an abbreviated NDB approach with some low level corrections
The exact top speed a subsonic aircraft can hit is dependent on a number of things, and there is no single correct answer. A subsonic aircraft is not braced for or stressed for transonic or supersonic flight, so the pilot should not let the aircraft get beyond the mach number it's rated to - say about 0.92. There is a real possibility that if you go (much) beyond this figure, the changing forces of transonic flight will be strong enough to rip the wings off. That isn't guaranteed to happen, there have been a number of cases of airliners going supersonic in a dive due to loss of control or such, and surviving it, but it isn't something you aim for. I'm looking for a good analogy here... If you can find the right hill top and crest, you might be able to ride your sports bike over it at 160k and get 4m of air under the wheels, and land the thing without breaking anything or killing yourself. That doesn't mean you could get to that height over every crest and get away with it. If the circumstances are just right, you should be able to get away with it, but most circumstances are not, and you wouldn't.
So if you accept the limit really is 0.92, how fast is that really? Depends on air density - which depends on altitude and temperature. The higher you get, the slower 0.92 is.
Then there's the headwind / tailwind situation.
As general rule, the top speed of a commercial airliner over the surface of the ground is about 605 knots, which is about 1,115 km/h.
A point that one should remember when looking at 'classic' analogue cockpits, is that there are an awful lot of things you might want to know about your aircraft, some more often than others, some more critical than others... Anything really essential needs to be triple redundant. If a gauge breaks and the needle drops to zero, you know it's bung, but if you have two speedos (let's say) and one shows 70km / h and one shows 80 km / h, which one's right? So you have three speedos, and you check for which one disagrees with the others. Not every instrument you see in that cockpit is one of a set of three, but a great many are.
In a modern glass cockpit, the 3 way redundant thing is still there, but the flight computer does the checking for you and displays a single value. If there is a failure of one of your instruments / sensors, the flight computer will advise you of it, but generally you just continue flying the aircraft as before.
The one in nitekreepers post. I didn't watch it, it just reminded me of an off-hand comment made in an aviation subject I did.
Okay - I couldn't see NiteKreeper's Vid earlier on however I just viewed it (NiteKreeper - it's an A340..shhh )
As shown in the vid (and I can fully confirm as I have been operating an aircraft during an autoland) aircraft do land very accurately with full automatics. Usually, we (well, nearly most if not all companies) don't use Autoland unless in anger...ie, the weather conditions at that airport have reduced below normal landing minimums (usually a height of 200ft above aerodrome level, and visibility below ~800m) etc.
Keeping it simple, if weather conditions fall below these values, the pilots will not have sufficient visual cues to land manually. The aircraft will have to be flown using full automatics (the amount of redundancy determines the landing category available, with Cat 3B ILS approach meaning NO visual references (approach lighting, runway theshold etc) can be seen during approach, flare and touchdown...have seen this in real life - VERY impressive). Of course, each airport has different Categories of ILS 'Low Weather Minima' or 'Low Visibility Procedures' minima for landing, ranging from Cat II, Cat III A and finally Cat III B (as described above).
The ideal landing 'spot' on an 'ICAO' runway is at the 1500 foot (big white) markers, about 1/3 in from the runway threshold, again, depending on the physical length of the runway. THIS is where we aim to touch down, and is rather achievable if an accurate approach, flare and touchdown is carried out. This spot is generally where all the black tyre marks are shown. Regardless of whether the aircraft is landed manually or with automatics, that's where we'll land.
Check out this (manual) landing into Hong Kong...you'll see the main touchdown zone markers disappear under the aircraft nose and a smooth (if I may say so ) touchdown ~ 1-2 seconds later. https://netrider.net.au/forums/showthread.php?t=121056
The incredible landing charges each carrier pays during each landing (I'm talking MEGA bucks per landing!) is where the runway surface/condition is maintained from
We will fly manual landings 99.9% of the time as we need to stay current and again an autoland will only be flown in marginal weather conditions or to relieve stress/task during a return from an emergency scenario - again, we conduct all emergency scenarios very regularly where my job is 'literally' on the line each time I'm examined.
I was doing the Safety/Rescue for a Motor Mag Performance Car of the Year several years ago when they used to do the high speed runs on the runway at Avalon, pre Jetstar taking over the place and stopping that sort of runway use, and was amazed at the "divits" in the runway around the "Piano Keys" caused by the planes hitting the runway on landing.
Was doing a similar thing at a small country strip and while doing a FOD walk along the runway with some local pilots and council people and noticed that the spray seal around the "Piano Keys" was a lot thicker than the rest of the strip.
I got talking to one of the locals during the walk and got talking about landing so far down at one end while the hangers were at the other and he said he landed around the halfway mark which was where we were at the time and I pointed out the damage to the strip to him and said his mid strip landings might be the cause. I think he might've started landing properly after that.......
I was also amazed that we found several metal council sweeper bristles that would do nasty damage to the plane tyres. The look on the council guys face when we pointed this out was gold and I reckon they might've been looking for nylon brushes for the sweeper the next week........