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How Can Airplanes Avoid A Bird Strike  
User currently offlineAMS From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 1691 posts, RR: 11
Posted (5 years 8 months 1 week 2 days 21 hours ago) and read 11900 times:

In Regards to the US-Air A320 Crash; which most likely encountered a double Bird strike today, I am wondering what kind of technology exist to avoid a bird strike. Surely major Airports use different kind of methods to keep birds away from runways. When a plane takes off, what can pilots do to avoid Birds?

Best Regards,

AMS

33 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineDL767captain From United States of America, joined Mar 2007, 2539 posts, RR: 0
Reply 1, posted (5 years 8 months 1 week 2 days 21 hours ago) and read 11904 times:

I've always wondered if there would be a way to cover the engines with some kind of mesh or something but i guess hitting an 8 pound bird at 200 mph would just destroy that as well. Could the engine blades maybe be made of something stronger?

btw what I want to now about the US AIrways crash is how did the pilot manage to keep the plane flat in the water without it flipping when the engines caught the water.


User currently offlineF9Animal From United States of America, joined Dec 2004, 5054 posts, RR: 28
Reply 2, posted (5 years 8 months 1 week 2 days 20 hours ago) and read 11857 times:



Quoting AMS (Thread starter):
When a plane takes off, what can pilots do to avoid Birds?

Pilots can keep their eyes peeled out the window, and swerve out of the birds way.  Big grin

Quoting DL767captain (Reply 1):
I've always wondered if there would be a way to cover the engines with some kind of mesh or something but i guess hitting an 8 pound bird at 200 mph would just destroy that as well. Could the engine blades maybe be made of something stronger?

The blades are not the issue really. When the bird gets ingested into the actual engine, it is all over. I too thought about some type of mesh, but your 200 mph scenario would certainly be a miserable outcome. And the blades by the way are pretty darned strong. I think bird strikes on takeoff are some of the worst scenarios we can have on takeoff performance. Especially if that bird strike is a straight ingestion into the engine.



I Am A Different Animal!!
User currently offlineJhooper From United States of America, joined Dec 2001, 6204 posts, RR: 12
Reply 3, posted (5 years 8 months 1 week 2 days 19 hours ago) and read 11788 times:

Bird activity is modeled here:

http://www.usahas.com/bam/

Keep an eye on the bird status just like we keep an eye on the weather and other pertinent information. That'd be a good place to start, I think. Risk management.



Last year 1,944 New Yorkers saw something and said something.
User currently offlineLowrider From United States of America, joined Jun 2004, 3220 posts, RR: 10
Reply 4, posted (5 years 8 months 1 week 2 days 19 hours ago) and read 11770 times:



Quoting AMS (Thread starter):
When a plane takes off, what can pilots do to avoid Birds?

Not much. It used to be believed that running the radar at low altitude might make the birds uncomfortable and cause them to fly away from the aircraft's path, but I know of no data support this. What happened to the USAir flight is a bit like being hit by an asteroid. Not much you can do about it, but the odds of you ingesting enough bird material to flame out all engines is incredibly low. All you can do when it does happen is cope the best you can.



Proud OOTSK member
User currently offlineSpeedBirdA380 From United Kingdom, joined Jul 2008, 539 posts, RR: 2
Reply 5, posted (5 years 8 months 1 week 2 days 19 hours ago) and read 11708 times:



Quoting AMS (Thread starter):
In Regards to the US-Air A320 Crash; which most likely encountered a double Bird strike today, I am wondering what kind of technology exist to avoid a bird strike.

Airports do the best they can to keep birds away from the airfield by doing things like playing bird ditstress calls on loudspeakers and sometimes shooting flares.

You can look at this short clip from Heathrow.

http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=o1OnJuRLa1A


However I think I am correct in believing this strike occured quite a distance away from the airport at about 3,000 feet. I think its just "one of those things" we have to accept and cant really do anything about.

Thankfully incidents like this are few and far between.


User currently offlineTonymctigue From Ireland, joined Feb 2006, 1944 posts, RR: 9
Reply 6, posted (5 years 8 months 1 week 2 days 17 hours ago) and read 11587 times:
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Quoting Lowrider (Reply 4):
Not much you can do about it, but the odds of you ingesting enough bird material to flame out all engines is incredibly low.

I know from watching enough documentaries that all new engines are tested for their ability to cope with birds being ingested into them and there are certain requirements that they must comply with in order to be certified as being safe for use. Engines need to ingest alot of birds before flaming out. I don't think fan blades breaking is the issue it is more that if the engine cannot pass the the pupled up bird material through quickly enough then it blocks vital air and fuel flow channels, causing the engine to be starved of air or fuel resulting in a flame out.

You are right though that ingesting enough birds to flame out one engine is very unlikely. Ingesting enough birds to flame out both engines is dam near impossible. Well done to the pilot though.



Next Flights: 27/06/14 CX 178 MEL-HKG; 28/06/14 CX 830 HKG-JFK; 04/07/14 EI 134 BOS-SNN
User currently offlineElite From Hong Kong, joined Jun 2006, 2803 posts, RR: 10
Reply 7, posted (5 years 8 months 1 week 2 days 16 hours ago) and read 11537 times:

1 in every 10,000 flights experience a bird strike, apparently. I don't think there are any things a pilot can do to avoid a bird strike, but there are things that you can do on the ground. Some airports use "mirrors" to reflect the light and annoy the birds, while some just shoot them.

User currently offline747m8te From Australia, joined Aug 2008, 441 posts, RR: 0
Reply 8, posted (5 years 8 months 1 week 2 days 16 hours ago) and read 11501 times:



Quoting F9Animal (Reply 2):
Quoting AMS (Thread starter):
When a plane takes off, what can pilots do to avoid Birds?

Pilots can keep their eyes peeled out the window, and swerve out of the birds way. Big grin

Or they can beep the horn and flash the head lights Big grin

Different airports have different methods, some will shoot blanks to scare the birds away...while others will actually shoot them if necessary, or even do regular patrols up and down, or around the ends of the runways to clear any birds away. But still this isn't going to help the aircraft after it leaves the airfield. The engines are actually designed to take certain level of impact, so this must have been one hell of a bird strike. Anyone heard what type of birds the aircraft hit, I heard geese???



Flown on:DHC8Q200,DHC8Q400,EMB145,E170,E190,A320,A332,A333,A343,A380,MD80,B733,B734,B737,B738,B743,B744,B744ER,B762,B763
User currently offlinePlanesailing From United Kingdom, joined Jul 2005, 816 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (5 years 8 months 1 week 2 days 16 hours ago) and read 11500 times:



Quoting Elite (Reply 7):
1 in every 10,000 flights experience a bird strike, apparently.

I saw news reports saying that between 1990 and 2007 there were 79,000 bird strikes, which roughly equates to around 13 a day!

Not sure how true that is, I suspect it is the old addage of new media and incorrect aviation facts.

I saw the US news say birdstrikes cost airlines $620 million per year in damage, yet a UK newspaper said $800,000 per year!


User currently offlineAlessandro From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 10, posted (5 years 8 months 1 week 2 days 16 hours ago) and read 11476 times:



Quoting DL767captain (Reply 1):

I've always wondered if there would be a way to cover the engines with some kind of mesh or something but i guess hitting an 8 pound bird at 200 mph would just destroy that as well. Could the engine blades maybe be made of something stronger?

btw what I want to now about the US AIrways crash is how did the pilot manage to keep the plane flat in the water without it flipping when the engines caught the water.

Sukhoi fighter got it I think, icing is a problem I guess for a commercial airliner?
I think a horn would be the only way, not aware of how well birds hear?


User currently offlineLTBEWR From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 13115 posts, RR: 12
Reply 11, posted (5 years 8 months 1 week 2 days 15 hours ago) and read 11404 times:

A piece on cable news channel MSNBC discussed how to reduce bird strikes and the difficulty in dealing with them, some of the points made I discuss below.

Already noise and other scare/annoy devices are used to keep birds away from the permimiters of airports. You have limits as you don't want to annoy nearby residents or cause other enviromental problems. You also can't have them much beyond the permitier of an airport for the same reasons and for effectiveness.

Aircraft, like the A320 are much quietier than older aircraft so birds are less likely to stay away from aircraft paths. Aircraft are limited as to devices that could be used to keep birds away from their path.

Mesh screens in front of engines would present problems if icing conditions or if they become disloged; they would also be sucked into the engine with problems just as bad as the birds.

Many airports are near costal or marshy areas that are attractive to bird life, often protected or sanctuaries that also increase the risks of birds in the area of aircraft ops. Other protective laws as to bird life, especially currently and once endangered specicies have increased the amount of bird life that can be in areas of high risk for aircraft ops.

While methods of evasion can be used, they are very limited during take off and landing due to the physics of flying, requirements to use specific flight paths for safe or the only routes in and out of airports or to reduce noise to nearby residents under certain paths. Often that means flight paths over water, thus more risk for bird strikes.

More research must continue to reduce the risks of bird strikes and ingestion as they do happen and may not end up with no loss of life when they occur.


User currently offlineCrimsonNL From Netherlands, joined Dec 2007, 1872 posts, RR: 41
Reply 12, posted (5 years 8 months 1 week 2 days 14 hours ago) and read 11312 times:
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I had the privilege to spent 2 days at the AMS bird control. At ams there are a lot of birds, and all travellers feeding them isnt helping. Sure that big seagull is nice, untill he gets sucked into a jet engine running at take off power.

Ams Bird Control uses multiple types of flares, gas cannons which make a loud boom, bird sounds played from a megaphone, and powerfull lasers to shine at the birds. For birds of prey there are large cages with hare/rabbit cadavers in them, or mice. It works like a bee trap, the bird can get in, but wont get out on its own. Most birds of prey are caged and then transported to bird habitats elsewhere in the country.

It works pretty well but it is a 24/7 job, as those birds just keep on coming! AMS also has a hunter, and they are allowed to shoot an X amount of bird each year.



Nothing's worse then flying the same registration twice, except flying it 4 times..
User currently offlineSEPilot From United States of America, joined Dec 2006, 6910 posts, RR: 46
Reply 13, posted (5 years 8 months 1 week 2 days 14 hours ago) and read 11257 times:

Aircraft engines are tested for bird ingestion, and are capable of swallowing small birds without a problem. But when you get to birds the size of geese, there is nothing that will help. Hitting a goose at 200mph will create a large amount of damage to whatever hits it, unless it is a tank. It just is not feasible to make an aircraft capable of withstanding it. Large numbers of small birds ingested into an engine will have a similar effect; not from the impact but just from the volume.


The problem with making things foolproof is that fools are so doggone ingenious...Dan Keebler
User currently offlineVhqpa From Australia, joined Jul 2005, 1471 posts, RR: 1
Reply 14, posted (5 years 8 months 1 week 2 days 13 hours ago) and read 11195 times:

A few years ago back in school I went on a field trip to BNE and an Airport spokeswomen told us that one thing they do to keep birds under control was that they plant certain species of trees which repel birds.






Vhq



"There you go ladies and gentleman we're through Mach 1 the speed of sound no bumps no bangs... CONCORDE"
User currently offlineNWADC9 From United States of America, joined May 2004, 4897 posts, RR: 9
Reply 15, posted (5 years 8 months 1 week 2 days 12 hours ago) and read 11081 times:

Here's the thing, though: anything you do to repel those nasty varmints will work for a certain period of time, then the flying stupids would get used to them and go about their business.


Flying an aeroplane with only a single propeller to keep you in the air. Can you imagine that? -Capt. Picard
User currently offlineDALMD88 From United States of America, joined Jul 2000, 2555 posts, RR: 14
Reply 16, posted (5 years 8 months 1 week 2 days 7 hours ago) and read 10949 times:



Quoting Planesailing (Reply 9):
I saw news reports saying that between 1990 and 2007 there were 79,000 bird strikes, which roughly equates to around 13 a day!

Most of those are very small birds. I see the remains every once in a while. There is a red splatter on the nose or a wing leading edge. Normally the damage is minimal, a small dent that is in acceptable limits. Other times the radome needs repair or there is a crack in the dent. In the engines it is much the same. A small nick on a blade and we do a quick internal boroscope. Sometimes a blade or two needs to be replaced.

Now the geese are a different story. I once saw a C130 fly through a flock of geese on short final. They bent two or three props, which required engine changes. The wing leading edges were badly damaged and windows were cracked. There was even a goose stuck in the apu inlet. The pilot said it sounded like bowling balls hitting the plane. Not much could have been done to avoid them.


User currently offlineYWG From Canada, joined Feb 2001, 1146 posts, RR: 2
Reply 17, posted (5 years 8 months 1 week 2 days 5 hours ago) and read 10919 times:



Quoting DL767captain (Reply 1):
Could the engine blades maybe be made of something stronger?

The issue really isn't in the intake fan blades. The problem comes when the parts of bird go through the compressor and into the burner, which causes a flame out. Assuming larger parts of the bird have made it this far, it will no doubt do terrible things to the turbines thus totally shutting down the engine.

Quoting Lowrider (Reply 4):
It used to be believed that running the radar at low altitude might make the birds uncomfortable and cause them to fly away from the aircraft's path, but I know of no data support this

I'm not biologist, but I've heard the Wx radar fry's the birds brain, and makes them unpredictable and kind of crazy.
I mean the radar waves can sterilize you, so this wouldn't be a far off guess?



Contact Winnipeg center now on 134.4, good day.
User currently offlineJoeCanuck From Canada, joined Dec 2005, 5471 posts, RR: 30
Reply 18, posted (5 years 8 months 1 week 2 days 4 hours ago) and read 10877 times:

A friend of mine works the field at a major Canadian airport and he says he gets to use a 12 gauge shotgun on the birds.


What the...?
User currently offlineEMBQA From United States of America, joined Oct 2003, 9364 posts, RR: 11
Reply 19, posted (5 years 8 months 1 week 2 days 1 hour ago) and read 10818 times:

There is very litle you can do. Airports try noise markers, but the bird become accustom to them and over time don't pay any attention. Bird strikes are just a part of air travel. In my years at an airline I've done dozens of inspections....some with very severe damage.
http://www.foxnews.com/photoessay/0,4644,6296,00.html#1_0

The Mesaba Saab 340 pictured here hit a flock of Snow Geese and they casued extensive damage to the aircraft. One bird hit just forward of the cockpit window, took off the Capt. wiper , the carcus of the bird was thrown into the prop and then thrown into the fuselage. The wiper blade was also thrown into the prop and shot like an arrow threw the fuselage striking a passenger in the leg.

I talked today with the mechanics that fixed the ACA CRJ and they told me it had extensive damage to the window frame structure that needed extensive repairs.



"It's not the size of the dog in the fight, but the size of the fight in the dog"
User currently offlinePilotpip From United States of America, joined Sep 2003, 3150 posts, RR: 10
Reply 20, posted (5 years 8 months 1 week 1 day 22 hours ago) and read 10778 times:

I've been flying for 8 years. 2 have been 121. I can count at least 7 occasions where I know I've hit birds by watching the impact or seeing the feathers and blood postflight and a number of times where I closed my eyes and wondered if I was about to eat a little fowl.

I know a couple of pilots that flew a lear 23 through a flock of geese which resulted in the left engine failing completely and the right only producing about 30% max power which resulted in a crash right after takeoff.

It happens more often than you think.



DMI
User currently offlineTdscanuck From Canada, joined Jan 2006, 12709 posts, RR: 79
Reply 21, posted (5 years 8 months 1 week 1 day 22 hours ago) and read 10764 times:



Quoting DL767captain (Reply 1):
I've always wondered if there would be a way to cover the engines with some kind of mesh or something but i guess hitting an 8 pound bird at 200 mph would just destroy that as well.

Helicopters do it all the time (more for general FOD), but they don't have the same aero issues with the screen. Something like the original 737 with the JT8D's with inlet guide vanes might get some protection, but if the bird doesn't go through then you've got a bird sucked up against the screen, and that's going to badly screw up the engine airflow anyway.

Quoting DL767captain (Reply 1):
Could the engine blades maybe be made of something stronger?

Not really. The material is about as strong as we know how to build. You could make the blade stronger but, for the benenfit, there's no way you'd justify the weight or cost. As noted above, the fan blades aren't the real problem. Plus, the fan blade is nearly supersonic during climb...the kinetic energy of a large bird at Mach 1 is so high that there may be no practical solution.

Quoting DL767captain (Reply 1):
btw what I want to now about the US AIrways crash is how did the pilot manage to keep the plane flat in the water without it flipping when the engines caught the water.

The engines should have sheared off. The pylons are designed to release the engines before the wing box is torn open. I suspect this is why they still haven't found either engine.

Tom.


User currently offlineHAWK21M From India, joined Jan 2001, 31684 posts, RR: 56
Reply 22, posted (5 years 8 months 1 week 1 day 18 hours ago) and read 10725 times:



Quoting DL767captain (Reply 1):
btw what I want to now about the US AIrways crash is how did the pilot manage to keep the plane flat in the water without it flipping when the engines caught the water.

Experience with a lot of luck.

About Bird strikes,only way is to keep the area around airports free of birds,by restricting the airport surroundings to have no residential areas,but if not possible avoid bird accumulation to waste strewn around the areas & usage of bird scaring equipment.

regds
MEL



Think of the brighter side!
User currently offlineShhpanked From United States of America, joined Dec 2008, 69 posts, RR: 0
Reply 23, posted (5 years 8 months 1 week 1 day 17 hours ago) and read 10714 times:



Quoting Tdscanuck (Reply 21):
Helicopters do it all the time (more for general FOD), but they don't have the same aero issues with the screen.

None of the AS350s I've flown have screens covering the engine inlet but then again that doesn't mean it doesn't exist on some helicopters. Also, keep in mind that it's a lot harder for a helicopter to ingest a bird simply because the inlets themselves are far smaller than any turbine hanging under an A320s wing.



People fly airplanes and pilots fly helicopters.
User currently offlineTdscanuck From Canada, joined Jan 2006, 12709 posts, RR: 79
Reply 24, posted (5 years 8 months 1 week 1 day 10 hours ago) and read 10637 times:



Quoting Shhpanked (Reply 23):
None of the AS350s I've flown have screens covering the engine inlet but then again that doesn't mean it doesn't exist on some helicopters.

As far as I can tell, the AS350 doesn't do it. The C-47 does, but I haven't found a really good picture to show it yet. There's also a really funny looking British helicopter that does it (the inlets are in the nose, but I can't remember what it's called). It seems much more common on military than on civilian helicopters.

Tom.


25 PGNCS : I am a biologist, and I have never heard anything like this, vis-à-vis brain frying. Having said that, my degree is about two decades old, and there
26 Lowrider : Maybe on some of the older radars, but modern ones use so little wattage that I doubt it would be enough to have a meaningful effect. Of course, I am
27 Shhpanked : I'd be interested in seeing what the FOD screen looks like if you have a link, even if it's on a C-47. ...maybe you're thinking of the Lynx? Come to
28 IAirAllie : Sounds about right I've seen several in my career. A large gull hit a CRJ I was supposed to work out on. All that was left of the gull was a large re
29 Post contains links Tdscanuck : Typo on my part! I meant CH-47. This shows it pretty well: http://www.wallpaper.net.au/wallpape...viation/CH-47-Chinook-1024x768.jpg Nope, not the Ly
30 KevinL1011 : Good point. I drove a G.M. "EV-1" electric car for a few days. Birds did not hear or sense it coming until the last moment. I had several near misses
31 Post contains links and images Shhpanked : Only thing that comes to mind is the S-58. View Large View MediumPhoto © Danny Fritsche The Super Stallion's seem to have a FOD screen as well.
32 Post contains links Tdscanuck : That's it! I was actually thinking of the Westland Wessex, but it turns out the Wessex is just an RAF version of the S-58. Thank you! You can see the
33 Post contains links Jambrain : Have you seen the damage a bird can do to a titanium fan blade travelling at 450 m/s? http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=rSafRuLB0c0 or http://uk.youtube.
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