As an aircraft travels through the atmosphere, it is important for its pilot to be able to gauge its speed and estimated time of arrival, in addition to other factors, for the benefit and safety of passengers and crew alike. Among the many monitoring systems present aboard aircraft, an airspeed indicator (ASI) takes advantage of the plane’s pitot-static system to provide the pilot with a real-time measurement of the speed of an aircraft. To learn how ASIs function, be sure to read on ahead.
A common consideration for individuals when selecting a rotary screw compressor is whether to go with an air-cooled or a water-cooled model. While both variations have their advantages and disadvantages, the majority of rotary screw compressors are air-cooled. Air-cooled versions are generally more readily available and require less installation costs. Nonetheless, there are some applications that benefit from water-cooled compressors.
Electric motors are a common element of countless industries, serving to transform electrical energy into harnessable mechanical energy. Motors are crucial for the operation of many devices, finding use in anything from coffee grinders to large industrial machinery. Over the years, electrical motors have become quite advanced, capable of operating with efficiency ratings around 90% or higher. The remaining percentage is lost in the form of heat, and thus it is important that proper thermal management is upheld to prevent any issues that could detract from performance or part health. In this blog, we will discuss electric motor cooling systems, those of which are used to control the buildup of heat through proper removal.
The oxygen you breathe in the cabin during commercial flights doesn’t come from hulking oxygen tanks, but rather is a pressurized version of the air outside the plane. However, in the case of emergencies, oxygen masks will often drop down that are either filled by way of oxygen canisters or chemical oxygen generators. The design and regulations for these systems can depend on the altitude in which an airplane regularly flies, along with its particular pressurization system or lack thereof. As an essential part of aircraft equipment during emergencies, and even during regular flight on some vessels, it can be vital for aircraft operators and passengers alike to have a general understanding of the various oxygen systems they might encounter.
While licensed drivers deal with pesky potholes in the streets, experienced pilots are also tasked with avoiding similar bumps in the sky. These bumps are known as turbulence, of which there are different types, causes, and severities. As turbulence impacts aircraft in a variety of ways, this blog will outline what you can do to ensure a smooth flight.
Float charging is a way of charging a battery which keeps it continually powered at full capacity. As such, this method of charging is often used for emergency power supplies to keep a battery from losing its charge while it sits idle. In the airline industry, this can be important for maintaining a reliable back-up power supply in case of electrical failure or for keeping batteries stored for future installation. Float charging is also commonly used as a backup for telecommunication equipment which may need to be used in an emergency. Float charging is a valuable process and having a basic understanding of it can help you use the method effectively while avoiding possible issues.
Compressed air is a vital element of many aircraft engine systems like turbojets and turboprops. By altering air density, systems can generate increased power, either through compression or combustion, but if this air is not used immediately, it must be stored in proper conditions. When any system that requires compressed air operates, air receiver tanks function to balance the supply of air from the compressor with the demand from the system by functioning as a reservoir. These tanks can also remove water and minimize pulsations in the system, so it is beneficial to understand how they work.
Chokes and inductors play a critical role in aircraft, and they are used in the electrical system to protect the power supply from short circuits and voltage spikes. Without them, the electrical system would be subject to damage from these spikes, which could cause a loss of power or even a fire. In addition, chokes and inductors help ensure that the electrical system operates at peak efficiency by regulating current flow. As a result, they play a significant role in ensuring an aircraft's safe and effective operation.
For many small, single-engine aircraft, propellers are assemblies that are driven through fuel combustion to create the thrust necessary for forward movement and flight. Depending on the aircraft’s design and intended application, there are a number of propeller types that a pilot can take advantage of, each of which vary in their ability to adjust positioning and feather. For an aircraft such as the Piper Seminole, a constant speed propeller is used, that of which is a more advanced propeller assembly that automatically adjusts blade pitch to maintain a constant RPM across varying airspeeds or altitudes. As a very common, modern version of the propeller assembly and aircraft model, it can be useful to understand the functionality of the constant speed propeller based on its operations on a Piper Seminole.
Since the advent of powered flight, aircraft design has been immensely expanded as various forms of aircraft engines have come about. Varying in design, complexity, and operation, different aircraft engines can provide for unique styles of operations. To help you understand the differences in flying with various engine types, we will discuss each and the operations they provide for.
Everyday, a multitude of aircraft traverse thousands of miles across the globe, ensuring that passengers and cargo efficiently and safely reach their destinations. For an aircraft to accurately reach its destination while maintaining peak efficiency in terms of time and fuel, it relies on a number of navigation systems. Aerial navigation has consistently evolved over the past decades, with new and improved technology constantly bolstering the resources that are at a pilot’s fingertips. In this blog, we will discuss the three primary types of commercial navigation systems that are used by most pilots, allowing you to better understand how airplane navigation is conducted.
As aviation technology continues to advance alongside a growing push for climate-friendly air travel, more aircraft manufacturers and engineers are seeking ways in which flying can be made “greener.” A major way in which the industry is seeking to combat climate change is through the adoption and improvement of electric aircraft, those of which have been in development for some time. In this blog, we will discuss the future of greener air travel and the efforts being made by the aviation industry, allowing you to keep up with an ever-changing market.
Since the Wright brothers first took flight in 1903, aerospace engineers have worked diligently to find which materials best compose an aircraft's body. Throughout the years, numerous metals were tested and proven ineffective. However, aluminum was eventually recognized as the best performing metal and was widely adopted as the material of choice to construct new planes. Today, 80% of aircraft in use are made primarily of aluminum. In this blog, we will discuss the history of how aluminum came to be the optimal choice in aviation and what makes it such an attractive material.
While fires pose a dangerous threat in any given situation, they can be especially alarming aboard an aircraft. In fact, cabin and engine fires are some of the most dangerous situations a flight crew can face. Beyond an aircraft being equipped with smoke detection devices, fire blankets, portable fire extinguishers, an aircraft firewall to protect internal engine components, and other various fire prevention/mitigation instruments, one of the most important is an engine fire extinguishing system. As such, this blog will provide an overview of the engine fire extinguishing system, its distinguishing features, and importance within an aircraft.
Aircraft engines are paramount for standard flight operations, burning fuel and air mixtures for the means of generating propulsion and thrust. The number of engines on a particular aircraft may vary based on its type, role, and other factors. While small, piston-powered aircraft may feature a single reciprocating engine for flight, a commercial airliner may feature upwards of four aircraft jet engines. While four engines may seem like a lot, there are very good reasons for this configuration. In this blog, we will discuss the four engine design that is often found on commercial aircraft, allowing you to better understand why such configurations are found on various models.
Landing gear enables aircraft to safely take off and land, also allowing the vehicle to traverse a taxiway or runway surface with ease. Landing gear may vary in design depending upon the aircraft model, its intended application, and other various factors. Tailwheel-type landing gear, also known as conventional landing gear, is a common undercarriage configuration that is commonly found on numerous light aircraft models. In this blog, we will discuss the tailwheel-type landing gear design, allowing you to better understand how it affects the flight operations of various aircraft.
Flight control surfaces are standard aerodynamic devices found on countless aircraft, allowing for a pilot to govern flight attitude with ease. Main and secondary control surfaces are used for most management, coming in the form of ailerons, rudders, elevators, flaps, slats, and other devices that deflect the air stream. Control trimming surfaces, or trim tabs, meanwhile, are surfaces that counteract the aerodynamic forces exerted on control surfaces.. With their use, pilots may carry out changes while exerting less force on controls.
Helicopters are a form of rotary-wing aircraft or rotorcraft, featuring horizontally-spinning rotors that generate the lift and thrust needed for flight. With the common design and configurations of such vehicles, helicopters are capable of conducting vertical take off and landing operations, hovering, and flying forward, backward, and laterally. For a pilot to harness such abilities, helicopters feature various flight controls that enable management over various systems and flight surfaces. In this blog, we will discuss the controls of helicopters, allowing you to better understand how such rotary-wing aircraft types are flown.
On fixed-wing aircraft, flight control surfaces are needed to regulate attitude and direction. Without these controls, the vehicle would not be capable of directional change or stable flight while in the air. Consisting of the ailerons, elevator, and rudder, these components make up what are known as the primary flight control surfaces. Though these components may differ depending on the model of aircraft, such aerodynamic devices can always be found regardless of the vehicle size. Within this blog, we will discuss the primary components making up the control surfaces of aircraft and how they individually function to provide control over pitch, roll, and yaw.
The various flight instruments present in an aircraft are paramount for its safe and efficient operation, allowing for pilots to monitor various flight conditions. From the altitude of the aircraft to its airspeed, there are many numerous data types that the primary flight instruments record and display for the pilot on various gauges or screens situated within the cockpit flight deck. In the possible case of a system failure, it is important that there is some sort of backup system to ensure that pilots can continue to operate safely with the information they need for controlling the aircraft. As the primary backup system for flight instruments, many aircraft feature what are known as standby flight instruments.
A backshell accessory is a component that is mounted onto the rear threads of a connector to both house and protect contacts and other sensitive elements. Backshell connectors can also provide a cable clamping mechanism, ensuring that strain relief is provided to the cables or wires to mitigate mechanical stress. Coming in the form of a piece that is either screwed or locked onto the shell of a connector, backshell accessories are very important for the performance and safety of electrical connections.
When operating aircraft, pilots will typically rely upon a number of instruments and systems that function with the use of electrical power. In the instance that electrical power is lost, there must be some form of backup system so that pilots can continue to utilize flight controls, the aircraft communication system, aircraft navigation control, and other such devices. With a deployable wind turbine known as a ram air turbine, power can be generated from the airstream with the use of ram pressure.
A valve is a mechanical component that is often used to regulate, control, and direct the flow of fluids through adjustable orifices and passageways. For reciprocating aircraft engines in particular, valves are crucial for safe and efficient operations as aircraft valves will dictate the flow and pressure of air, fuel, coolants, and more. To ensure that aircraft valves operate as intended and are not held-back by mishaps or improper timing, various valve operating mechanisms are implemented to manage their proper functionality.
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