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View Diary: How Airliners Work - Flaps and Slats (77 comments)

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  •  My favorite - window seat at the wing of a 727 (4+ / 0-)

    There's just something amazing about watching that wing expand as everything hangs out on approach and landing.

    Story I ran across many years back. A B-24 on takeoff on a hot day in India - headed right for the Taj Mahal and not gaining altitude fast enough. The crew dropped the flaps, trading the air speed they had for lift. It got them high enough to clear the Taj, and then they cranked them back up to stay in the air while they went back to slowly gaining altitude as their air speed came back up.

    "No special skill, no standard attitude, no technology, and no organization - no matter how valuable - can safely replace thought itself."

    by xaxnar on Fri Apr 19, 2013 at 06:59:07 PM PDT

    •  Stories about Desert Storm I were entertaining (7+ / 0-)

      ... and I heard a few of them. Particularly a few regarding launching very heavily loaded 747s out of Israel. Nice long runways, but with all the landing gear hanging out, adding massive amounts of drag, climb outs were very flat.

      The archetypal story was the co-pilot reaching over for the gear lever and getting his hand slapped by the pilot "DON'T touch that!". "But..." "NO!"

      The reason here being that in the 747, there are fairing panels around the landing gear to minimize drag when the gear are out, but add considerable drag when moved to allow the landing gear to move. So the pilot needs to have either a significantly positive rate of climb or a fair amount of altitude before it's safe to retract the gear.

    •  727 wing (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      xaxnar, RiveroftheWest

      That was my favorite seat, too.  Used to fly St. Louis to Nat'l regularly.  When we were late the pilots used the spoilers to drop altitude without cutting speed to make up time (or that was the explanation I got).  It was a long time ago, so I guess the fuel consumption wasn't a problem.

    •  The 727 wing (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      RiveroftheWest, xaxnar

      was an amazing piece of engineering. It could cruise at .90 mach and slow down enough to land on a 5000 foot runway.

      Today even Boeing won't build a wing that complex.

      If the pilot's good, see, I mean if he's reeeally sharp, he can barrel that baby in so low... oh you oughta see it sometime. It's a sight. A big plane like a '52... varrrooom! Its jet exhaust... frying chickens in the barnyard!

      by Major Kong on Sat Apr 20, 2013 at 09:20:26 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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