VANGUARD737 From United States of America, joined Aug 2001, 688 posts, RR: 4 Posted (10 years 4 months 5 days 18 hours ago) and read 1559 times:
My question is whether is would be feasible, not necessarily practical however, to fit aircraft with JATO systems to assist in TOGA (Take Off/Go Around) situations and events such as microbursts. This idea came to me after reading the story of Delta 191, which i summarized below, as well as after reading the post in the general aviation forum in regards to Mexicana 727 rockets for hot and heavy take-offs.
(Before reading, if unaware...a microburst is an invisible phenomenon in which extremley powerful down-drafts strike the ground, causing stong upward drafts to bounce off the ground and surround the column of downward air.
I just spent some time reading the accident report for Delta Flight 191 which crashed on approach to DFW from FLL in August of 1985. For anyone unfamiliar with this crash, the basics are that the aircraft, an L1011-300 encountered a microburst at 800ft while roughly 2 miles out on approach to runway 17L @ DFW . After fighting the microburst which fluctuated the airspeed between 119kts (near stall speed) and 233kts (far above the 173kts recommended), the aircraft finally was pushed to the ground at a sink rate of -43ft/sec thanks to the overwhelming force of the microburst's downdraft combined with the negative angle of attack the pilots had entered to counteract the threat of stalling. The pilots fought to avoid the ground with full thrust and full upward elevator/horizontal stabalizer movement, but the winds were just to strong. GIVEN THAT....could this or similar incidents be avoided if aircraft were fitted with corresponding JATO systems to give extra lift and thrust during those few crucial monents?
Of course the biggest problem would probably be the added weight for a system which would probably never be used, so again I am not concerned with whether it is an economical idea...rather a technically possible one.
CosmicCruiser From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 2265 posts, RR: 15
Reply 1, posted (10 years 4 months 5 days 10 hours ago) and read 1518 times:
Quoting VANGUARD737 (Thread starter): The pilots fought to avoid the ground with full thrust and full upward elevator/horizontal stabalizer movement, but the winds were just to strong.
Pardon me if I don't address your real question though I don't see it as feasible for a number of reasons. Regarding the DL 1011 at DFW though, I believe there was a little CRM problem and if I'm remembering correctly they never disengaged the auto throttles so everytime they got back on speed the throttles retarded. They never had continuous firewall power. They were also led down the path because a corp. jet just ahead reported no problems on the app. Sad ending.
Woodreau From United States of America, joined Sep 2001, 1116 posts, RR: 6
Reply 2, posted (10 years 4 months 5 days 10 hours ago) and read 1515 times:
Also back then in the 1980's windshear and microbursts were not well understood and the technology for detecting them did not exist.
Once the problem was understood after a loss of a few airliners (Pan Am in New Orleans, the Delta in Dallas), techniques were developed to counter windshear and there is extensive training today on "windshear escape."
Bonus animus sit, ab experientia. Quod salvatum fuerit de malis usu venit judicium.
Fly727 From Mexico, joined Jul 2003, 1791 posts, RR: 17
Reply 4, posted (10 years 4 months 2 days 16 hours ago) and read 1394 times:
Quoting VANGUARD737 (Thread starter): Of course the biggest problem would probably be the added weight for a system which would probably never be used, so again I am not concerned with whether it is an economical idea...rather a technically possible one
Most of the emergency equipment on board also most likely will never be used, nevertheless is requiered.
Good you are not concerned about the economical idea, because there is not much the operator can do to the point it lacks relevance. Once the law dictates the mandatory installation of any device it WILL cost lots of money no matter what. Either you install it or you won't fly at all.
Techincally possible? You bet. As you implied it has been around for many years now.
There are no stupid questions... just stupid people!