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Aircraft Lights.  
User currently offlineJustplanecrazy From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2003, 536 posts, RR: 2
Posted (9 years 3 months 2 weeks 6 days 1 hour ago) and read 3526 times:

How many different sets of lights do aircraft have and when are they switched on and off,also do airliners and GA aircraft have the same lights.?Is it correct that landing lights are switched on at 10,000 feet?


your pilots today on this 747 flight are captain oliver hardy and assisting will be FO stan laurel.Have a safe flight
37 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineSlamClick From United States of America, joined exactly 11 years ago today! , 10062 posts, RR: 68
Reply 1, posted (9 years 3 months 2 weeks 6 days ago) and read 3517 times:

Just off the top of my head and without reference to regulations:

  • To fly at night "nav" or "position" lights, red at the left wingtip, green at the right and white astern.


  • Anti-collision light which is normally a red rotating beacon but may simulate the flash of a rotating beacon without any moving parts. On when the engines are going to be operating.


  • Strobe lights more or less colocated with the nav lights. On when taking the runway, off in instrument conditions SCD.


  • Landing lights. On below ten thousand feet is the rule of the day.


  • Separate taxi lights because landing lights are to bright for this and may burn out quickly without enough airflow over them.


  • Possibly runway exit or turnoff lights, angled out about 45 degrees or so to either side of the nose.


  • Ice detection lights in the fuselage or pylon, illuminating the leading edge of the wings.


  • Possible logo light, from wingtips to vertical fin to illuminate company tail. These are great for spotting another plane over a sea of lights like Los Angeles.


  • Seaplanes might have a white 360o anchor light, lit when at anchor. This might have gone away over the years but I recall seeing them on older amphibs.


  • If anyone would like to jump in and sharpshoot me on any of these feel free.



    Happiness is not seeing another trite Ste. Maarten photo all week long.
    User currently offlineCALPilot From United States of America, joined Oct 1999, 999 posts, RR: 13
    Reply 2, posted (9 years 3 months 2 weeks 5 days 16 hours ago) and read 3452 times:

    Slam you got them. A few things that I seem to do different than my peers.

    I use the taxi light when I have the aircraft moving on the ground day, or night.

    I use the logo and Ice FL180 and below, only night.

    And I use the outbord land lights B737 classic only night, or reduced vis daytime.


    User currently offlineBri2k1 From United States of America, joined Dec 2004, 988 posts, RR: 4
    Reply 3, posted (9 years 3 months 2 weeks 5 days 15 hours ago) and read 3439 times:

    GA aircraft may have fewer lights. The Cessnas I fly don't have separate land/taxi lights, and no tail or "logo" lights. The only ice detection light I have is my flashlight. There is an interior panel light, and airliners have those and other cockpit lighting as well.

    I generally operate my landing light as part of the pre-flight check, and then (during the day) as soon as I'm cleared to enter the runway for takeoff, and continue to operate it within the Class D airspace of the controlled airfield (or about 10 minutes at a non-controlled field.) The before takeoff and after takeoff checklists generally include a note about landing lights, and are executed at approximately those phases of flight. At night, of course, it's on before I roll.

    As SlamClick mentioned, the beacon lights are on any time an aircraft's engines are operating. Strobe lights are used at night as soon as I'm cleared to enter the runway for takeoff, and extinguished as I exit the runway after landing. They are switched off in clouds so as not to blind the pilots or damage their accumulated night vision. They are switched off for taxi and parking so as not to blind pilots of other aircraft. This is generally true for airliner operation as well.

    The Nav lights are always red on the pilot's left and green on his right, another similarity to oceangoing vessels.



    Position and hold
    User currently offline57AZ From United States of America, joined Nov 2004, 2556 posts, RR: 2
    Reply 4, posted (9 years 3 months 2 weeks 5 days 10 hours ago) and read 3398 times:

    Quoting SlamClick (Reply 1):


    # Seaplanes might have a white 360o anchor light, lit when at anchor. This might have gone away over the years but I recall seeing them on older amphibs.

    When a seaplane is anchored, it must display a white anchor light visable through 360 degrees. From the moment it splashes down til the moment it takes off it is a vessel operating under the jurisdiction of the United States Coast Guard if in US Territorial Waters.

    As for GA aircraft, the number of lights may vary even between ships of the same design. Cessna's 340 and 400 series aircraft came with one single lamp retractible landing light on the pilot's side and a single nosewheel taxi light. However, as an add-on a second retractible landing light was available on the co-pilot's side. Also, the RAM modified C414s with the water cooled engines have flush mounted landing lights mounted on the outside position of each engine nacelle in place of one of the air intakes. Our 414 has separate wingtip housings for the anticollision strobes due to the winglets it has.

    As far as operations are concerned, we operate much like the Part 121 carriers. Nav lights come on as soon as the electrical does and landing lights extended and illuminated during the final stage of taxi. These landing lights take approximately five seconds to fully deploy. The taxi light is illuminated for all takeoffs and landings but generally left off during daylight taxi operations. Strobes come on when the landing lights do for takeoff and are switched on during initial descent. During night ops they may be left on enroute unless IMC are encountered.

    As for the landing lights, we usually inspect them for smooth operation in the hangar due to their complex design. Unlike most other aircraft, they extend forward and are completely unusable in the stowed position. Their control switch has three positions-retract, extend and on. To operate them, the pilot selects extend and then returns the switch to the on position (middle position). To extinguish them, you return the switch to the retract position.



    "When a man runs on railroads over half of his lifetime he is fit for nothing else-and at times he don't know that."
    User currently offlineJustplanecrazy From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2003, 536 posts, RR: 2
    Reply 5, posted (9 years 3 months 2 weeks 5 days 10 hours ago) and read 3395 times:

    Thanks everyone for the answers.Now i know.
    Its something ive wanted to know it helps me with my MS9 flight sim flights also because ive just started studying for the NPPL UK and also ends my confusion when i watch ITVV flight videos and wonder why the pilots seem to turn ldifferent sets of lights on at different times.  thumbsup 



    your pilots today on this 747 flight are captain oliver hardy and assisting will be FO stan laurel.Have a safe flight
    User currently offlineHAWK21M From India, joined Jan 2001, 31702 posts, RR: 56
    Reply 6, posted (9 years 3 months 2 weeks 5 days 10 hours ago) and read 3391 times:

    Slamclick Got them all ie External lights  bigthumbsup 

    Quoting SlamClick (Reply 1):
    Possible logo light, from wingtips to vertical fin to illuminate company tail

    Can be mounted on the Horizontal Stablizer Surface too.

    Quoting SlamClick (Reply 1):
    Seaplanes might have a white 360o anchor light, lit when at anchor

    Interesting.Any more Info on this.What about when power off.Any why was this Anchor light needed for exactly.If an Aircraft is on anchor what will the other Aircraft do manuvere around it.
    regds
    MEL



    Think of the brighter side!
    User currently offlineOzLAME From Australia, joined Feb 2005, 338 posts, RR: 0
    Reply 7, posted (9 years 3 months 2 weeks 5 days 9 hours ago) and read 3388 times:

    There are also white Recognition Lights, standard fit on Metro IIIs and 23s (where they are mounted with the landing lights just outboard of the wing fences) and optional on many lighties. There are also white lights on the trailing edges of the wingtips on many airline a/c types, are these part of the Nav lights system?

    Quoting 57AZ (Reply 4):
    As for GA aircraft, the number of lights may vary even between ships of the same design.

    I used to work on a bunch of MU-2B-30s; S/No. 528 had strobe lights mounted on the tip tanks, S/No. 527 did not.

    Quoting 57AZ (Reply 4):
    From the moment it splashes down til the moment it takes off it is a vessel operating under the jurisdiction of the United States Coast Guard if in US Territorial Waters.

    I don't know about the rest of Australia, but seaplanes and amphibs based in the state of NSW have two registrations displayed on them, the VH- reg for a/c and their boat registration.

    Quoting 57AZ (Reply 4):
    Their control switch has three positions-retract, extend and on. To operate them, the pilot selects extend and then returns the switch to the on position (middle position). To extinguish them, you return the switch to the retract position.

    That doesn't sound right to me. It's over two years since I've worked on a Cessna twin, but IIRC the middle position is light OFF and the top position is extend/light ON, i.e. the lights could be extended and lit but could be switched off without retracting them.

    Quoting HAWK21M (Reply 6):
    If an Aircraft is on anchor what will the other Aircraft do manuvere around it.

    It's so that other boats can manoeuvre around it. I have never seen an aircraft operate on the water at night and would be very surprised if it was legal to do so.



    Monty Python's Flying Circus has nothing to do with aviation, except perhaps for Management personnel.
    User currently offline57AZ From United States of America, joined Nov 2004, 2556 posts, RR: 2
    Reply 8, posted (9 years 3 months 2 weeks 4 days 18 hours ago) and read 3338 times:

    Quoting 57AZ (Reply 4):
    Their control switch has three positions-retract, extend and on. To operate them, the pilot selects extend and then returns the switch to the on position (middle position). To extinguish them, you return the switch to the retract position.

    That doesn't sound right to me. It's over two years since I've worked on a Cessna twin, but IIRC the middle position is light OFF and the top position is extend/light ON, i.e. the lights could be extended and lit but could be switched off without retracting them.

    Now that I think about it, I believe you're correct. Middel position is off and the top position is on. Here boat registration is a state function, so whether a seaplane or amphib has a boat reg depends on its home port. Some states such as Arizona also require aircraft based in state to register with the state aeronautics department.

    As for the anchor light, that is required by maritime law. Once a seaplane or amphib splashes down, it is subject to maritime law and rules of the road. Vessels at anchor must display a 360o light between the hours of sunset and sunrise and may not anchor within a channel or anywhere that they might obscure or obstruct an Aid to Navigation (buoy, daymark, or navigation beacon).



    "When a man runs on railroads over half of his lifetime he is fit for nothing else-and at times he don't know that."
    User currently offline777WT From United States of America, joined Jan 2005, 877 posts, RR: 1
    Reply 9, posted (9 years 3 months 2 weeks 4 days 15 hours ago) and read 3297 times:

    Quoting 57AZ (Reply 8):
    As for the anchor light, that is required by maritime law. Once a seaplane or amphib splashes down, it is subject to maritime law and rules of the road. Vessels at anchor must display a 360o light between the hours of sunset and sunrise and may not anchor within a channel or anywhere that they might obscure or obstruct an Aid to Navigation (buoy, daymark, or navigation beacon).

    How would electrical supply be used if if was for a camping trip or a a few nights stay? A/c batteries is mainly used for starting and for running minimum equipment for a limited time.


    User currently offlineHAWK21M From India, joined Jan 2001, 31702 posts, RR: 56
    Reply 10, posted (9 years 3 months 2 weeks 4 days 13 hours ago) and read 3277 times:

    Quoting 777WT (Reply 9):

    Do SeaPlanes use GPUs.Any pics.
    regds
    MEL



    Think of the brighter side!
    User currently offlineSpeedracer1407 From United States of America, joined Dec 2004, 333 posts, RR: 0
    Reply 11, posted (9 years 3 months 2 weeks 4 days 13 hours ago) and read 3275 times:

    Quoting SlamClick (Reply 1):
    Ice detection lights in the fuselage or pylon, illuminating the leading edge of the wings.

    Ahh, so that's why some flights have the wings illuminated for the whole duration. But, who checks for ice? Seems like they're too far away and at too awkward an angle for the flight crew. Does the cabin crew do a check before landing? Seems like if they didn't, it'd be too late by the time they really needed those lights.

    O



    Dassault Mercure: the plane that has Boeing and Airbus shaking in their boots.
    User currently offlineOzLAME From Australia, joined Feb 2005, 338 posts, RR: 0
    Reply 12, posted (9 years 3 months 2 weeks 3 days 16 hours ago) and read 3216 times:

    Quoting Speedracer1407 (Reply 11):
    But, who checks for ice? Seems like they're too far away and at too awkward an angle for the flight crew.

    Ice inspection lights are something of a throwback to earlier days. Most modern jet a/c have anti-ice, not de-ice, where bleed air is used to heat the leading edges so that ice can't form in the first place. In those a/c the crew don't really need to see the wings. On a/c with rubber de-icing boots, the crew have to monitor the ice build-up and operate the boots at a rate to remove the ice satisfactorily. These a/c tend to be the ones with straight wings that can be seen from the cockpit. There is also alcohol anti-icing, which pumps alcohol through a myriad of tiny holes in the leading edge; one of the Citation models (IIRC the S-II) has this system.



    Monty Python's Flying Circus has nothing to do with aviation, except perhaps for Management personnel.
    User currently offlineCgagn From Canada, joined Sep 2003, 345 posts, RR: 0
    Reply 13, posted (9 years 3 months 2 weeks ago) and read 3089 times:

    I was flying in an Air Canada A319, and as we approached Saskatoon at night, I could see the strobes flashing as we descended through the clouds. As soon as we touched down on the runway, the strobes turned off. Is this a feature that can be used? Other A319s/A320s I've flown on, the strobes stay on till we clear the runway.

    C-GAGN



    Widebodies flown on: A330-300,A340-300,A380-800,747-400,767-200ER,767-300ER,777-200A,777-200ER,777-200LR,777-300ER
    User currently offlineB744F From Germany, joined Jan 2006, 0 posts, RR: 0
    Reply 14, posted (9 years 3 months 1 week 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 3084 times:

    They probably hit the wrong switch

    User currently offline320tech From Turks and Caicos Islands, joined May 2004, 491 posts, RR: 5
    Reply 15, posted (9 years 3 months 1 week 6 days 14 hours ago) and read 3035 times:

    As soon as we touched down on the runway, the strobes turned off. Is this a feature that can be used? Other A319s/A320s I've flown on, the strobes stay on till we clear the runway.

    This is a feature on AC A320 series aircraft (I had assumed it was standard on Airbuses generally, but maybe not). When the airplane lands, it automatically switches off the strobes and turns on the beacon (through the weight on wheels sensors, but can't remember if it's the mains or the nose).

    Typically airliners will (should) turn on the taxi light before they start moving - this is an indication to the ground crew that the airplane is in motion.

    It's common in Canada to fly with landing lights on during bird migration season, to make the airplane more visible. By the way, if you're about to hit a bird, it's best to climb - birds tend to dive to avoid trouble.



    The primary function of the design engineer is to make things difficult for the manufacturer and impossible for the AME.
    User currently offline2H4 From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 8956 posts, RR: 60
    Reply 16, posted (9 years 3 months 1 week 6 days 14 hours ago) and read 3032 times:
    AIRLINERS.NET CREW
    DATABASE EDITOR




    Quoting 320tech (Reply 15):
    It's common in Canada to fly with landing lights on during bird migration season, to make the airplane more visible.



    I recommend using the taxi light for daytime visibility, rather than the landing light.

    A few years ago, I had the landing light on for increased visibility in a congested area. All was well until I smelled something burning, and shortly thereafter discovered smoke rising from underneath the panel. Turned back, hauled ass toward the nearest airport, and rolled the trucks. While running the emergency checklists, I burned my fingertip while turning the landing light off.

    By the time I got stopped on the ground, there was a great deal of smoke pouring out of the panel. Later, it was found that the landing light switch (which supposedly has a built-in circuit-breaker) failed, and melted itself to surrounding wires and connectors.

    Now I only use the lower-powered taxi light for daytime visibility.



    2H4





    Intentionally Left Blank
    User currently offlineHAWK21M From India, joined Jan 2001, 31702 posts, RR: 56
    Reply 17, posted (9 years 3 months 1 week 6 days 10 hours ago) and read 3014 times:

    Quoting 320tech (Reply 15):
    By the way, if you're about to hit a bird, it's best to climb - birds tend to dive to avoid trouble.

    Interesting.I guess its easier to go with gravity than against it.

    Quoting 2H4 (Reply 16):
    few years ago, I had the landing light on for increased visibility in a congested area. All was well until I smelled something burning, and shortly thereafter discovered smoke rising from underneath the panel. Turned back, hauled ass toward the nearest airport, and rolled the trucks. While running the emergency checklists, I burned my fingertip while turning the landing light off.

    Which Type Aircraft.

    Quoting 2H4 (Reply 16):
    By the time I got stopped on the ground, there was a great deal of smoke pouring out of the panel. Later, it was found that the landing light switch (which supposedly has a built-in circuit-breaker) failed, and melted itself to surrounding wires and connectors.

    Surprisingly the CB did not trip.
    regds
    MEL



    Think of the brighter side!
    User currently offlineTinPusher007 From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 981 posts, RR: 1
    Reply 18, posted (9 years 3 months 1 week 6 days 9 hours ago) and read 3013 times:

    Quoting 320tech (Reply 15):
    As soon as we touched down on the runway, the strobes turned off. Is this a feature that can be used? Other A319s/A320s I've flown on, the strobes stay on till we clear the runway.

    This is a feature on AC A320 series aircraft (I had assumed it was standard on Airbuses generally, but maybe not). When the airplane lands, it automatically switches off the strobes and turns on the beacon (through the weight on wheels sensors, but can't remember if it's the mains or the nose).

    Im not at all familiar with airbuses, but wouldn't the beacon be on before touchdown? Beacons are required in most cases to be on any time the engines are running.

    Also, with respect to the strobes, I have noticed the same feature on MD-80's. Even on take-off, the strobes don't begin flashing until what appears to be V1 (just before rotation). They also seem to shut off right after touchdown during landing. Perhaps, I should ask some mad-dog drivers today.



    "Flying isn't inherently dangerous...but very unforgiving of carelessness, incapacity or neglect."
    User currently offline2H4 From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 8956 posts, RR: 60
    Reply 19, posted (9 years 3 months 1 week 6 days 6 hours ago) and read 2991 times:
    AIRLINERS.NET CREW
    DATABASE EDITOR




    Quoting HAWK21M (Reply 17):
    Which Type Aircraft




    Sorry....Cessna 172R




    2H4





    Intentionally Left Blank
    User currently offlineCgagn From Canada, joined Sep 2003, 345 posts, RR: 0
    Reply 20, posted (9 years 3 months 1 week 6 days 2 hours ago) and read 2958 times:

    Thanx 320tech. I didn't know such a feature was available.

    Quoting TinPusher007 (Reply 18):
    Also, with respect to the strobes, I have noticed the same feature on MD-80's. Even on take-off, the strobes don't begin flashing until what appears to be V1 (just before rotation). They also seem to shut off right after touchdown during landing.

    Yes, I noticed that too on the A319. I should have mentioned that in my earlier post, but yes, the strobes first came on when we rotated.

    C-GAGN



    Widebodies flown on: A330-300,A340-300,A380-800,747-400,767-200ER,767-300ER,777-200A,777-200ER,777-200LR,777-300ER
    User currently offlineJustplanecrazy From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2003, 536 posts, RR: 2
    Reply 21, posted (9 years 3 months 1 week 5 days 22 hours ago) and read 2931 times:

    Quoting 320tech (Reply 15):

    "Birds usually go down so the aircraft should go up"
    isnt that standard TCAS procedure.



    your pilots today on this 747 flight are captain oliver hardy and assisting will be FO stan laurel.Have a safe flight
    User currently offlineJustplanecrazy From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2003, 536 posts, RR: 2
    Reply 22, posted (9 years 3 months 1 week 5 days 10 hours ago) and read 2877 times:

    i dont see how birds could rely on TCAS,they would need sqawks.


    your pilots today on this 747 flight are captain oliver hardy and assisting will be FO stan laurel.Have a safe flight
    User currently offlineHAWK21M From India, joined Jan 2001, 31702 posts, RR: 56
    Reply 23, posted (9 years 3 months 1 week 5 days 1 hour ago) and read 2845 times:

    Quoting Cgagn (Reply 20):

    Hows it on the A318.Is the Air-grd sense connected to the Strobe lights.
    regds
    MEL



    Think of the brighter side!
    User currently offlineHighFlyer9790 From United States of America, joined Jul 2005, 1241 posts, RR: 0
    Reply 24, posted (9 years 3 months 2 days 20 hours ago) and read 2638 times:

    C152=

    Nav lights
    Beacon
    Landing Light



    121
    25 MD11Engineer : This is also true for the A300-600. As MX we also use the anti-collision light (rotating beacon) to warn people to stay away from the plane when we e
    26 HAWK21M : We do that too but also place a Mx personnel down for clearence as most ppl from other depts arn't very alert. regds MEL
    27 Post contains images Electech6299 : Not sure if that was sarcastic, Hawk, so I'll ramble on...slap me if I'm being obvious Even if no intentional wrangling, or unintentional neglect of
    28 HAWK21M : On the B737s I've come accross snags involving Loose CBs that never hold. regds MEL
    29 Ameregote : A good airmanship is to turn all exterior light when crossing any runway,,, and use taxi lights on daytime when aircraft is moving on ground.
    30 Post contains images 2H4 : I remember it being a hot, muggy summer day. I think the vent was aimed either at my forehead or my chest. I like to keep it away from the mike so th
    31 HighFlyer9790 : As far as I know, the beacon light is required to remain on from engine start-up to shut-down.
    32 HAWK21M : Agreed.Anti Cols are on From prior to Engine Start up till Shutdown. regds MEL
    33 CX flyboy : Our landing lights are turned on whenever we climb and descend....10,000ft means nothing to us. Also at night when not in the cruise, our logo lights
    34 ZB330 : In europe it is recommended to switch on the landing lights at 10.000 (FL100) descending. And to switch them off when climbing through FL100. However
    35 CX flyboy : Trust me when you are in some dodgy airports crossing a runway, you want to be lit up like a Christmas tree and be seen for miles! I personally switc
    36 HAWK21M : Our Aircraft too Switch on all Lights while Taxing out irrespective Day or Night at BOM. regds MEL
    37 ZB330 : Having flown to quite some dodgy airfields but still only use the strobe lights when we are crossing a runway. Cant see any advantage in switching on
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