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Technical Question About Cockpit In General  
User currently offlineFlaps30 From United States of America, joined May 2009, 288 posts, RR: 0
Posted (5 years 4 months 4 weeks 1 day 10 hours ago) and read 3777 times:

I know in the past there have been some airline crashes due to the flaps not being deployed for takeoff. Northwest MD-80 in Detroit, LH 747 in Nairobi, and possibly Spanair in Madrid last year come to mind. My question is, is there any kind of alarm in the cockpit to alert the pilot that the flaps are not deployed before he/she tries to apply full thrust for takeoff. Besides a pre-takeoff checklist, what other measures are there to assure this does not happen.


every day is a good day to fly
19 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineMetroliner From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2007, 1067 posts, RR: 1
Reply 1, posted (5 years 4 months 4 weeks 1 day 10 hours ago) and read 3767 times:

There can be a take-off configuration warning which sounds if certain parameters are insatisfactory for takeoff. Some I've seen include the trim being out of range for take-off and the flaps not being set. But I'm sore someone with more technical knowledge will chime in with specifics to the incidents you mention  Smile

Toni



Set the controls for the heart of the Sun
User currently offlineEMBQA From United States of America, joined Oct 2003, 9364 posts, RR: 11
Reply 2, posted (5 years 4 months 4 weeks 1 day 8 hours ago) and read 3734 times:



Quoting Metroliner (Reply 1):
But I'm sore someone with more technical knowledge will chime in with specifics to the incidents you mention

You are indeed correct. I think teh requirment came from the Northwest MD-80 crash.....



"It's not the size of the dog in the fight, but the size of the fight in the dog"
User currently offlineJoseKMLB From United States of America, joined May 2008, 493 posts, RR: 0
Reply 3, posted (5 years 4 months 4 weeks 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 3651 times:

Her name is Bitching Betty in the MD-88 and I think she says FLAP FLAP or something like that. When you talk about the flaps for takeoff the one that comes to mind is a 727 for DL in DFW that crashed forgot to put the slats/flaps down for T/O. But yes there is an alarm in the cockpit for flap settings.

User currently offlineJetlagged From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2005, 2565 posts, RR: 25
Reply 4, posted (5 years 4 months 4 weeks 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 3626 times:

Most aircraft have a take-off config warning alarm which sounds if the throttles are advanced with one or more item out of configuration. This will include LE and TE devices. The 747 has a horn which warns if, amongst other things, the LE flaps are not deployed or the TE flaps are out of take-off range. The LE warnings were added as a result of the Nairobi crash.


The glass isn't half empty, or half full, it's twice as big as it needs to be.
User currently offlineTb727 From United States of America, joined Jun 2005, 1611 posts, RR: 9
Reply 5, posted (5 years 4 months 4 weeks 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 3626 times:



Quoting EMBQA (Reply 2):

You are indeed correct. I think teh requirment came from the Northwest MD-80 crash.....

The system was there, it was just not working. No warning horn sounded, possibly because the CB had popped for the system, although it was never determined if that was the reason. I would imagine that is what had happened though.

The plane I fly is certified for 0 flap takeoffs so we do not get a horn. All we get a horn for is for out of trim takeoff and a big red light if the airbrakes are extended with flaps extended and power above 88% or so.



Too lazy to work, too scared to steal!
User currently offlineViscount724 From Switzerland, joined Oct 2006, 25626 posts, RR: 22
Reply 6, posted (5 years 4 months 4 weeks 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 3590 times:



Quoting EMBQA (Reply 2):
Quoting Metroliner (Reply 1):
But I'm sore someone with more technical knowledge will chime in with specifics to the incidents you mention

You are indeed correct. I think the requirment came from the Northwest MD-80 crash.....

Although, if memory correct, the MD-80 had a warning system at the time of both the NW and Spanair crashes, but for whatever reasons it didn't work.


User currently offlinePGNCS From United States of America, joined Apr 2007, 2832 posts, RR: 45
Reply 7, posted (5 years 4 months 4 weeks 1 day ago) and read 3557 times:



Quoting EMBQA (Reply 2):
Quoting Metroliner (Reply 1):
But I'm sore someone with more technical knowledge will chime in with specifics to the incidents you mention

You are indeed correct. I think teh requirment came from the Northwest MD-80 crash.....

The system was there prior to the accident in DTW; it did not fucntion correctly for reasons that were never discovered.

Quoting JoseKMLB (Reply 3):
When you talk about the flaps for takeoff the one that comes to mind is a 727 for DL in DFW that crashed forgot to put the slats/flaps down for T/O. But yes there is an alarm in the cockpit for flap settings.

The warning was there was on the 727; the warning failed to work.

Quoting Viscount724 (Reply 6):
Although, if memory correct, the MD-80 had a warning system at the time of both the NW and Spanair crashes, but for whatever reasons it didn't work.

You are correct. Configuration warnings vary in their specifics, but like anything else they can fail. If they fail at the same time the crew has a breakdown in procedural discipline, the setup is in place for an accident.


User currently offlineFlaps30 From United States of America, joined May 2009, 288 posts, RR: 0
Reply 8, posted (5 years 4 months 4 weeks 1 day ago) and read 3548 times:



Quoting Viscount724 (Reply 6):
but for whatever reasons it didn't work.

I will say that is not very comforting. I know they are machines and not perfect, but to know that these critical systems can fail for unknown reasons at the absolute worst time, makes me wonder why there are no back-up systems in place in case the first one fails ( I am speaking only of the warning system for the flap setting).



every day is a good day to fly
User currently offlineFlyASAGuy2005 From United States of America, joined Sep 2007, 7004 posts, RR: 11
Reply 9, posted (5 years 4 months 4 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 3542 times:

I get what you're saying but the warning is the redundant system I believe. The first line of defense is the pilots themselves and their checklists. Now, like you said, if there is a failure of the system just at that unfortunate time when something is forgotten or overlooked then...


What gets measured gets done.
User currently offlineStarlionblue From Greenland, joined Feb 2004, 17068 posts, RR: 66
Reply 10, posted (5 years 4 months 4 weeks 21 hours ago) and read 3489 times:

As FlyASAGuy2005 says, the warning is the redundant system. There is always a small risk, but quite frankly with two pilots, a checklist and a warning system it was only through a very unlikely occurrence that this rather important item slipped past the routine.

Not saying it isn't tragic, just that it's hard to think of every possible possibility.



"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots."
User currently offlinePGNCS From United States of America, joined Apr 2007, 2832 posts, RR: 45
Reply 11, posted (5 years 4 months 4 weeks 10 hours ago) and read 3366 times:



Quoting Flaps30 (Reply 8):
I will say that is not very comforting. I know they are machines and not perfect, but to know that these critical systems can fail for unknown reasons at the absolute worst time, makes me wonder why there are no back-up systems in place in case the first one fails ( I am speaking only of the warning system for the flap setting).

Like others have said, the pilots using a checklist are the primary system to prevent incorrectly configured takeoffs. The CAWS is the redundant system.


User currently offlineStratosphere From United States of America, joined Sep 2007, 1653 posts, RR: 5
Reply 12, posted (5 years 4 months 4 weeks 8 hours ago) and read 3331 times:



Quoting PGNCS (Reply 7):
The warning was there was on the 727; the warning failed to work.

Yep and after that crash the takeoff warning system is checked pretty regularly on the 727 atleast here at FedEx it is and it requires atleast 2 mechanics to test it one in the electronics bay and one in the cockpit.



NWA THE TRUE EVIL EMPIRE
User currently offlinePilotpip From United States of America, joined Sep 2003, 3150 posts, RR: 11
Reply 13, posted (5 years 4 months 3 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 3236 times:

Ok, this only goes for the EMB-145 and ERJ-170.

Specifically the 170. It's been too long for the 145 but I recall it being the same. Both aircraft have a "takeoff config" button on the center pedestal. We push this as part of our before takeoff flow. It will give an aural warning of "Takeoff O/K" if we're good to go. It will say "No takeoff Flaps/Brakes/Trim" for any of the mentioned items. In addition, if the flaps aren't at a takeoff setting (1,2 or 4) and the above criteria isn't met with the brakes and trim it will give the same warning when the thrust lever angle goes above a certain setting. When kids come up to take a look at the cockpit I usually "make the plane talk" for them by doing one of these things or having the kid push the thrust lever up far enough. They either get a kick out of it or it scares the crap out of them.  Smile

In addition to this, in our flow after pushing out is to set flaps and make sure the trim is set. This is SOP at most airlines which is why you see them taxi out with flaps extended. We verify the flap, trim and thrust setting as well as V speeds during our after start checklist.



DMI
User currently offlineStarlionblue From Greenland, joined Feb 2004, 17068 posts, RR: 66
Reply 14, posted (5 years 4 months 3 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 3225 times:



Quoting Pilotpip (Reply 13):
We push this as part of our before takeoff flow. It will give an aural warning of "Takeoff O/K" if we're good to go. It will say "No takeoff Flaps/Brakes/Trim" for any of the mentioned items

That's pretty clever. So I guess if the thing warning system isn't working it will tell you that (or be quiet). Nice way to know that's working. Of course if you don't press it... But as I said before you can't protect against absolutely everything.



"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots."
User currently offlineHAWK21M From India, joined Jan 2001, 31684 posts, RR: 56
Reply 15, posted (5 years 4 months 3 weeks 6 days 19 hours ago) and read 3205 times:



Quoting Flaps30 (Thread starter):
My question is, is there any kind of alarm in the cockpit to alert the pilot that the flaps are not deployed before he/she tries to apply full thrust for takeoff.

The B737/757s have a T/O configuration warning system in place.Which gives an alert if the configuration of the aircraft is not satisfactory for take off.Normally considers the Spoilers retracted,Flaps in T/O range,Stablizer in green band,parking brake released,when thrust levers moved forward,all of the above should be satisfied.

regds
MEL.



Think of the brighter side!
User currently offlineDavid L From United Kingdom, joined May 1999, 9524 posts, RR: 42
Reply 16, posted (5 years 4 months 3 weeks 6 days 17 hours ago) and read 3192 times:



Quoting Starlionblue (Reply 14):
Quoting Pilotpip (Reply 13):
We push this as part of our before takeoff flow. It will give an aural warning of "Takeoff O/K" if we're good to go. It will say "No takeoff Flaps/Brakes/Trim" for any of the mentioned items

That's pretty clever. So I guess if the thing warning system isn't working it will tell you that (or be quiet). Nice way to know that's working.

There's something similar in the FBW Airbuses:


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Photo © Edwin Vanoverschelde



The T.O. CONFIG button is directly below the AIR DATA rotary switch at the top, centre of the pedestal.


User currently offlineJetlagged From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2005, 2565 posts, RR: 25
Reply 17, posted (5 years 4 months 3 weeks 6 days 14 hours ago) and read 3140 times:



Quoting David L (Reply 16):
There's something similar in the FBW Airbuses:

The T.O. CONFIG button is directly below the AIR DATA rotary switch at the top, centre of the pedestal.

Not only that but ECAM shows the Takeoff configuration items and as each item gets set the line goes green. When everything is correctly set it prompts the crew to press the T.O CONFIG button to verify and that line goes green too. The only takeoff check then becomes "all green".

The Fokker 100/70 has a similar T.O. Config test pushbutton. It simulates the advance of the power levers and triggers an aural warning if anything is not correctly set, although in test mode the parking brake is ignored. Very advanced jet for it's time, that Fokker.  Wink



The glass isn't half empty, or half full, it's twice as big as it needs to be.
User currently offlineDavid L From United Kingdom, joined May 1999, 9524 posts, RR: 42
Reply 18, posted (5 years 4 months 3 weeks 6 days 9 hours ago) and read 3090 times:



Quoting Jetlagged (Reply 17):
Not only that but ECAM shows the Takeoff configuration items and as each item gets set the line goes green. When everything is correctly set it prompts the crew to press the T.O CONFIG button to verify and that line goes green too. The only takeoff check then becomes "all green".

Yes but if I'd mentioned it there was the danger that someone might ask which items are checked. All I can remember are:

Flaps - Appropriate for take-off
Spoilers - Armed
Autobrake - Max

I'm sure there's more.

Quoting Jetlagged (Reply 17):
Very advanced jet for it's time, that Fokker.

Rekkof.

Signed,

Airbus fans.  biggrin 


User currently offlinePilotpip From United States of America, joined Sep 2003, 3150 posts, RR: 11
Reply 19, posted (5 years 4 months 3 weeks 6 days 6 hours ago) and read 3028 times:



Quoting Starlionblue (Reply 14):
That's pretty clever. So I guess if the thing warning system isn't working it will tell you that (or be quiet). Nice way to know that's working. Of course if you don't press it... But as I said before you can't protect against absolutely everything.

I don't know if it can be deferred. However it's part of my flow as we cross the hold short line to press it. It's a mentioned item in the before takeoff checklist. That's the third crosscheck of the configuration. The first two being done by the two of us up front on the after start checklist before we even roll away from the gate.



DMI
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