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Radical Inventions For Airliners!  
User currently offlinejumbojim747 From Australia, joined Oct 2004, 2464 posts, RR: 45
Posted (1 year 3 months 4 weeks 2 hours ago) and read 4492 times:
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I was thinking about this when i was trying to think of a solution to a perfect ditching of an airliner.
I thought of something that may help in the situation its a bit far fetched and it may sound silly to most but what about having skids on the bottom like sea planes on airliners or you may have a better idea to improve an aircraft not much has changed in the overall design for a while.
Whats your thoughts.


On a wing and a prayer
16 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineDavid L From United Kingdom, joined May 1999, 9483 posts, RR: 42
Reply 1, posted (1 year 3 months 3 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 4434 times:

Perhaps it would help during a ditching. However, what would the aerodynamics be like for the 99.99999...% of the time that the aircraft wasn't being ditched? In the grand scheme of things, the ditching of airliners hardly ever happens.

User currently offlinejumbojim747 From Australia, joined Oct 2004, 2464 posts, RR: 45
Reply 2, posted (1 year 3 months 3 weeks 6 days 22 hours ago) and read 4396 times:
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Hi david
I agree with you it hardly happens but it does happen.
Also agree that the it would throw the aerodynamics out.
But its a thought maybe not a very good one  



On a wing and a prayer
User currently offlineSKC From United States of America, joined Oct 2012, 78 posts, RR: 0
Reply 3, posted (1 year 3 months 3 weeks 6 days 21 hours ago) and read 4358 times:

The cost/weight to carry them for the 99.99% of the time would far outweigh the miniscule benefit they may possibly provide.

You'd never see airlines opt for them as they'd have to restrict the number of paying passengers just because of the weight of them.


User currently offlinetdscanuck From Canada, joined Jan 2006, 12709 posts, RR: 80
Reply 4, posted (1 year 3 months 3 weeks 6 days 9 hours ago) and read 4094 times:

Quoting jumbojim747 (Thread starter):
what about having skids on the bottom like sea planes on airliners

What would they do? Are we talking about big pontoons that keep the engines from hitting the water or just something to take the water impact? If the former, that would require too much weight and drag to ever be viable. If the latter, what exactly are we trying to prevent?

Quoting jumbojim747 (Thread starter):
not much has changed in the overall design for a while.

Not much has changed in *configuration* for a while. Overall design has undergone radical changes about every decade.

Tom.


User currently offlinemandala499 From Indonesia, joined Aug 2001, 6590 posts, RR: 75
Reply 5, posted (1 year 3 months 3 weeks 6 days 5 hours ago) and read 3998 times:

Just get an engine jettison switch...   
As you're about to ditch, if engines are still on and still got fuel.. power up the APU, as you get lower, press the jettison switch, all electrics and bleed switches to APU (why you want bleed air for ditching I dunno    ) cut fuel and isolate it from the piping to the engines, after a few secs... jettisons the engine...

Voila, you now have a streamline glider to ditch with...   

Nah, it's just my Christmas prank... though better than the skids idea.... I think... (OK, I better stop drinking!)



When losing situational awareness, pray Cumulus Granitus isn't nearby !
User currently offlinebristolflyer From United Kingdom, joined May 2004, 2270 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (1 year 3 months 3 weeks 5 days 7 hours ago) and read 3737 times:

I only remember one airliner being landed on water (ditching of US Airways flight on Hudson River). How much more control would skis afford exactly? That landing was near perfect.


Fortune favours the brave
User currently offlineTWA772LR From United States of America, joined Nov 2011, 1161 posts, RR: 1
Reply 7, posted (1 year 3 months 3 weeks 3 hours ago) and read 3201 times:

How about this one, inflatable floats that pop out and inflate from strategic parts of the aircraft that help the plane float after it is in the water? Sounds like it could save lives and not weigh too much.

Just thinkin' here.  



Я говорю по-русский. :)
User currently offlineStarlionblue From Greenland, joined Feb 2004, 16908 posts, RR: 67
Reply 8, posted (1 year 3 months 3 weeks ago) and read 3142 times:

Quoting TWA772LR (Reply 7):

How about this one, inflatable floats that pop out and inflate from strategic parts of the aircraft that help the plane float after it is in the water? Sounds like it could save lives and not weigh too much.

Save lives? Yes, in very very rare cases.
Weight too much? Also yes. It would weight a lot. You have to factor in the weight of the gas to inflate the floats, plus the containers for the gas, and the gas lines...

Don't get me wrong. I love ideas. I think ideas are great. Weird, left-field ideas have sometimes been the clever thing to do. However you always have to figure out if there is something better you can do with the money.



"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots."
User currently offlinebond007 From United States of America, joined Mar 2005, 5343 posts, RR: 8
Reply 9, posted (1 year 3 months 2 weeks 6 days 20 hours ago) and read 3080 times:

Quoting jumbojim747 (Thread starter):
what about having skids on the bottom like sea planes on airliners

The first question - do you have a real-life example where this would have helped?
If so, how many times? How many lives would it have saved?

If you cannot think of an example, or only one or two, then it's obviously not worth implementing this idea....sorry to say  

We could make airliners almost indestructible if we wanted to... you just simply couldn't afford the ticket though  

Same with automobiles ... but nobody would buy them.


Jimbo



I'd rather be on the ground wishing I was in the air, than in the air wishing I was on the ground!
User currently offlinejumbojim747 From Australia, joined Oct 2004, 2464 posts, RR: 45
Reply 10, posted (1 year 3 months 2 weeks 6 days 18 hours ago) and read 3034 times:
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Hey jimbo.
I guess its all about money and a life doesn't factor to the bean counters in the board room of airline companies .
Its sad we come to this.



On a wing and a prayer
User currently offlinetdscanuck From Canada, joined Jan 2006, 12709 posts, RR: 80
Reply 11, posted (1 year 3 months 2 weeks 6 days 17 hours ago) and read 3008 times:

Quoting TWA772LR (Reply 7):
How about this one, inflatable floats that pop out and inflate from strategic parts of the aircraft that help the plane float after it is in the water? Sounds like it could save lives and not weigh too much.

I think it's a cool idea but I think it would only work in a very narrow range of crashes...you need a ditching where the aircraft is intact enough to be floated (and to have passengers survive), but damaged enough that a normal ditching wouldn't have stayed floating for long enough. That's a pretty small set of possible accidents.

Quoting jumbojim747 (Reply 10):
I guess its all about money and a life doesn't factor to the bean counters in the board room of airline companies .

It's all about trades. It's *not* all about money. It's about keeping people safe while still providing them economical transportation. Even if you want to take the purely cynical view, lives are expensive (crashes even more so) and airlines take it into account from that direction.

The counter argument that usually gets screwed up is that a life isn't worth infinite money...we will not spend any arbitrarily large amount just to save one person. If we did that, there would be no commercial aviation industry (or auto industry or space program or woodshop or ...). The whole point of engineering is to apply technology *safely* to the benefit of mankind; engineers spend a lot of time trying to figure out how to be safe enough while still being practical. Aviation engineers, in particular, are very very good at this.

Quoting jumbojim747 (Reply 10):
Its sad we come to this.

Come to? It's better today than it's ever been. Air travel was, relatively speaking, horrifically dangerous for about the first 80% of its life. It got better than virtually all other modes of transportation (including walking and driving) and now is orders of magnitude safer, all while being cheaper (in real dollars), more ubiquitous, and more convenient than ever before.

Tom.


User currently offlinelonghauler From Canada, joined Mar 2004, 4760 posts, RR: 43
Reply 12, posted (1 year 3 months 2 weeks 6 days 16 hours ago) and read 2964 times:

Quoting bristolflyer (Reply 6):
I only remember one airliner being landed on water (ditching of US Airways flight on Hudson River).
http://www.airdisaster.com/reports/ntsb/AAR71-08.pdf

Other than the Ethiopian hi-jacking, this is the only other ditching I can think of since jet transport aircraft started crossing water. It is very rare.

Quoting jumbojim747 (Reply 10):
Hey jimbo.
I guess its all about money and a life doesn't factor to the bean counters in the board room of airline companies .
Its sad we come to this.

I can understand your sentiment, but with flying so incredibly safe today, would passengers be willing to pay 4 or 5 times the fare to increase safety from say 1 in a Billion to 1 in 1.5 Billion? Remember more or less, passengers dictate the fare, not the Board Room.



Never gonna grow up, never gonna slow down .... Barefoot Blue Jean Night
User currently offlineViscount724 From Switzerland, joined Oct 2006, 24080 posts, RR: 22
Reply 13, posted (1 year 3 months 2 weeks 6 days 8 hours ago) and read 2862 times:

Quoting longhauler (Reply 12):
Quoting bristolflyer (Reply 6):
I only remember one airliner being landed on water (ditching of US Airways flight on Hudson River).
http://www.airdisaster.com/reports/ntsb/AAR71-08.pdf

Other than the Ethiopian hi-jacking, this is the only other ditching I can think of since jet transport aircraft started crossing water. It is very rare.

There have been others although not all were planned ditchings. A few other water landings that come to mind.

DC-9-33 that ran out of fuel en route JFK-SXM and ditched in 1970. Operated for ALM Antillean Airlines by US charter carrier Overseas National Airways. 23 fatalities, 40 survivors.
http://aviation-safety.net/database/record.php?id=19700502-0

National 727-200 near Pensacola, Florida in 1978. 3 fatalities of 58 aboard.
http://aviation-safety.net/database/record.php?id=19780508-1

http://www.warman.demon.co.uk/anna/national.jpg

JAL DC-8-62 that landed in San Francisco Bay a couple of miles short of the runway in 1968. No fatalities and not even any injuries to the 107 aboard. The aircraft was repaired by UA and returned to service about 3 months later.
http://aviation-safety.net/database/record.php?id=19681122-0
http://fly.historicwings.com/2012/11/shiga-into-the-bay/

http://www.dc-8jet.com/Images/jal-dc862-in-sf-bay1.jpg

[Edited 2012-12-30 18:32:09]

User currently offlinelonghauler From Canada, joined Mar 2004, 4760 posts, RR: 43
Reply 14, posted (1 year 3 months 2 weeks 6 days 8 hours ago) and read 2853 times:

Quoting Viscount724 (Reply 13):
DC-9-33 that ran out of fuel en route JFK-SXM and ditched in 1970.

Yes, that is the one I mentioned, and I cringe every time I read the book about it. It is a great read if anyone is interested, entitled "35 Miles From Shore".

But I understand what you mean about a "ditching" vs, simply ending up in the water. There have been dozens of incidents of an aircraft ending up in the water, usually near the runway for which they were aiming, shoot USAir/USAirways put three in the water in the vicinity of LGA alone!

Then there was the DC-8-43 of CP at HND, skipped across the water, activated the spoilers and ended up just on shore!

But really with regard to a "ditching", I was really referring to intentionally landing the aircraft on water for various reasons, that the pilots though continuing was not a better idea. As opposed to ending up in the water, because it happened to be near the airport.



Never gonna grow up, never gonna slow down .... Barefoot Blue Jean Night
User currently offlineairportugal310 From United States of America, joined Apr 2004, 3451 posts, RR: 2
Reply 15, posted (1 year 3 months 2 weeks 4 days 16 hours ago) and read 2639 times:

Quoting jumbojim747 (Reply 10):


What is it with people on this board and hating "bean counters"?
Everyone loves a profitable airline but no one cares about how it got to be that way...

Signed,
A bean counter  



hit it and quit it
User currently offlineBoeingGuy From United States of America, joined Dec 2010, 2882 posts, RR: 7
Reply 16, posted (1 year 3 months 2 weeks 3 days 14 hours ago) and read 2457 times:

Quoting mandala499 (Reply 5):
Just get an engine jettison switch...
As you're about to ditch, if engines are still on and still got fuel.. power up the APU, as you get lower, press the jettison switch, all electrics and bleed switches to APU (why you want bleed air for ditching I dunno ) cut fuel and isolate it from the piping to the engines, after a few secs... jettisons the engine...

Actually Boeing recommends that if you have to ditch, try to do so when the engines are still running to improve controllablity of the airplane when setting it down in the water.


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