The Aviation Thread [Contains Lots of Awesome Pictures]

Heathrow

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BBC News ? The new vehicle set to revolutionise the skies
BBC News said:
4 January 2011 Last updated at 09:53

Imagine this: a flying machine that can cruise in the air for three weeks without landing. It does not need a runway and can land anywhere and on any surface.

It may sound like science fiction, but it's not.

It looks like an airship...but the Hybrid Air Vehicle is much more than that.

Richard Westcott's report features pilot Dave Burns and Gordon Taylor of Hybrid Air Vehicles Ltd.

Don't quite know what to make of this, either it's genius or useless. :lol:
 

KaJuN

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It looks like an airship...but the Hybrid Air Vehicle is much more than that.
Yeah, it's two airships taped together!
 

unbreakable

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Just wanted to share some really smooth landings from our local carrier. So far among all the Airlines I've ridden, only Singapore Airlines could do landings as smooth as these.


 

MrChips

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Just wanted to share some really smooth landings from our local carrier. So far among all the Airlines I've ridden, only Singapore Airlines could do landings as smooth as these.


The smoothness of any given landing is dependent on so many factors that it can't ever boil down to Airline X vs. Airline Y. If you've got a short runway or you need/want to pull off by a certain point on any runway, for example, you're not going to waste a thousand feet of it trying to grease the aircraft on - short, high performance landings tend to be rather abrupt at touchdown. Weather, obviously, plays a huge part in the smoothness of a landing; windshear or random gusts of wind have spoiled many perfect, stabilised approaches with hatchet job touchdowns. Aircraft type is a big factor - the Dash 8-Q400 I fly is notoriously hard to land smoothly while others, like every King Air and the 747 to mention but a few, are very easy to get a nice, smooth touchdown. Even the use of autoland versus manually landing the aircraft plays a big role - the autopilot, as a general rule, tends not to be overly concerned with a graceful arrival. Honestly, I could probably fill the page with the different factors governing the smoothness of a landing.

I always say that as long as the overheads haven't burst open, it's smooth enough!
 

unbreakable

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The smoothness of any given landing is dependent on so many factors that it can't ever boil down to Airline X vs. Airline Y. If you've got a short runway or you need/want to pull off by a certain point on any runway, for example, you're not going to waste a thousand feet of it trying to grease the aircraft on - short, high performance landings tend to be rather abrupt at touchdown. Weather, obviously, plays a huge part in the smoothness of a landing; windshear or random gusts of wind have spoiled many perfect, stabilised approaches with hatchet job touchdowns. Aircraft type is a big factor - the Dash 8-Q400 I fly is notoriously hard to land smoothly while others, like every King Air and the 747 to mention but a few, are very easy to get a nice, smooth touchdown. Even the use of autoland versus manually landing the aircraft plays a big role - the autopilot, as a general rule, tends not to be overly concerned with a graceful arrival. Honestly, I could probably fill the page with the different factors governing the smoothness of a landing.

I always say that as long as the overheads haven't burst open, it's smooth enough!

Good point! :) Is it also true that newest planes and international routes are generally flown by the most experienced pilots? Versus smaller planes and domestic routes? Hence contributing to the smoothness of the landing?
 

MrChips

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Good point! :) Is it also true that newest planes and international routes are generally flown by the most experienced pilots? Versus smaller planes and domestic routes? Hence contributing to the smoothness of the landing?
That depends. At most non low-cost airlines, aircraft type, pilot base and routes flown are all based on seniority - years of service with the company. That doesn't necessarily mean that the highest seniority pilot will be flying the largest aircraft to the most exotic locations; some would choose that lifestyle, others might choose to use their seniority to fly domestically in a smaller aircraft, but have the luxury of evenings and weekends off. New hires and low-seniority pilots tend to crew smaller aircraft and/or work lousy schedules, working several days away from home and often on holidays. That said, at a large airline with a far-flung route network, a new hire will often have a choice between flying as a relief pilot on long routes (with the largest aircraft), or as a first officer in the lowest-payscale aircraft, which is almost universally the smallest aircraft an airline operates. After the initial cadre of management and training pilots are selected for a new type of aircraft, the age of the aircraft has little, if anything to do with who gets chosen to fly it.

In regard to the question of experience, yes, the aircrews on international routes tend to be among the more experienced within a given company, but that experience only takes them so far. Due to flight time restrictions imposed by government and unions alike, a long-haul pilot might only fly once a week, making a similar number of landings. In fact, some long-haul pilots make so few takeoffs and landings every month that they cannot satisfy recency and currency regulations set by government, thus requiring them to make up their requirement in a simulator. A domestic pilot, on the other hand (especially one flying with a regional airline), might complete several flights a day, with a commensurate number of landings. As much as experience is important, I'm of the opinion that I would rather fly with someone who has made a hundred landings in the last month, rather than someone who has made only three or four. Not only that, but long-haul flights (especially those of the east-west variety) are very demanding from a physiological point of view; the irony is that seniority rules often end up with older pilots on the flight deck for these flights...the very pilots who are least able to deal with that kind of physiological stress. I know a couple of old guys who fly or have flown transpacific flights recently; one of them voluntarily returned to domestic flying because it was simply too hard on him, while the other just deals with the three days of recovery he needs after each trip.
 

bone

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and what exactly are we looking at?
 

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What ever happened to the Aerospike?

It was a cool new rocket engine designed for the shuttle replacement X-33 (which got cancelled). From what I remember, it was innovative in that it didn't need a bell housing like other rocket engines, the density of the atmosphere dictated the wide shallow bell pattern at ground level and went up to a narrow long bell pattern at altitude. Think of the various stages of the Saturn V and the shape of the bells on each stage.

Has it survived? Please say yes. I keep hoping one day I will wake up and they will say Orion was a practical joke.
 
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nsx_23

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I thought they killed the engine development when they killed the X-33.
 
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