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Southwest B737 Blinking Lights...  
User currently offlineBoeing727 From United States of America, joined May 1999, 950 posts, RR: 0
Posted (13 years 11 months 2 weeks 3 days 11 hours ago) and read 1462 times:

I have noticed that the landings lights on the front of the wings next to the fuselage on Southwest Jets appear to be blinking in intensity, on..off, on..off, etc. Does anybody have an answer to why?

Boeing727

12 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineCoex From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 1, posted (13 years 11 months 2 weeks 3 days 8 hours ago) and read 1207 times:

YES..I know why!!!!!!!..... I'm a former Southwest employee and they had begun installing these lights on their planes when I had quit.... Basically, mainly in the evening, aircraft collision lights, as well as landing lights, just blend in with the surroundings. Since many near accidents occure in the air space around an airport, Southwest but the strobe lights on their planes increasing the chances of their lights being seen. Flashing lights I quess don't blend in with the surroundings making their planes easier to see.... Hope that helps... Its all done for safety

User currently offlineBoeing727 From United States of America, joined May 1999, 950 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (13 years 11 months 2 weeks 3 days 8 hours ago) and read 1190 times:

Thanks for that info COEX, it makes only sense what you said. Do you happen to know if this feature is installed on all their aircraft (including the new -NGs)? Does anybody else have this on their airplanes?

Thanks,
Boeing727


User currently offlineCoex From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 3, posted (13 years 11 months 2 weeks 2 days 20 hours ago) and read 1157 times:

I'll be honest with you. I believe all their NG's are recieving these lights. It would be my guest that their older 37's, such as the -200's wouldn't since they are all set to be retired. This is the only airline that I know of that uses these lights.
FYI..... the lights that are used to illuminate an aircrafts tail, such as TWA, SWA (on the -NG's), Alaska, etc, etc.... TWA was the first airline to install these lights on their planes to light up their aircrafts tails. TWA owns the patent on this "system." Iguess you can call it a system. Anyway, TWA said that these lights would help in preventing an accident in the air by making planes more visable. Therefore TWA allowed these lights to be sold to other airlines since TWA considered it a safety issue. My point is this..... 1) to share abit of info with you 2) Even though Southwest doesn't own these lighting systems of have the lights strobe, I do believe that with airports becoming more and more congested, you will see more airlines turn to these lights. Hope this helps...


User currently offlinePlanefreak From United States of America, joined Jan 2000, 202 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (13 years 11 months 2 weeks 2 days 8 hours ago) and read 1126 times:

Hello all, most aircraft have these "tail lights" which were used first by TWA has a safety issue and also to advertise the name. Thus these lights became know as "billboard lights" to sell the airline name. Many lights on a/c work, however you the guy in the left seat has to flip them on.

This feature is an awesome sight when you are plane spotting at night, or close up to the planes on the ramp.

To all flight crews, light up your tails please!!

planefreak


User currently offlineFlyBoy From United States of America, joined May 1999, 85 posts, RR: 1
Reply 5, posted (13 years 11 months 2 weeks 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 1098 times:

Boeing727, I just got off of 4 SW flights, 2 NG and 2 -200, the NGs had a wide variance in age (the first one in SW fleet N700GS and N761RR, one delivered in March) neither of them had the strobe lights, however both -200s I flew on (N68SW and N59SW) did. I don't know how feasible it is to do with the -700s as they have Airbus style lights.

FlyBoy


User currently offlineOPNLguy From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 6, posted (13 years 11 months 1 week 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 1077 times:

The only SWA 737-200s that are equipped with white wingtip/tail strobes are N130SW, N721ML, and N722ML. All three were sister ships originally delivered to Air Florida, and N130SW (nee N83AF) got repossessed before Air Florida went under and thus never made it into Midway's fleet. They were some of the last -200s made, since Boeing quit making them in the mid-1980s.

The blinking lights in question are notthe strobes, but the landing lights (inboard and outboard) on the 737s, 4 in all. Those are the ones that are able to be switched into the "pulsate" mode.


User currently offlineCitation From Sweden, joined Nov 2005, 0 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (13 years 11 months 1 week 3 days 10 hours ago) and read 1069 times:

Cessna is putting the pulsating landing lights on some of their business jet aircraft.

BTW, the tail lights that were described on the TWA tails are not blinking.


User currently offlineHP-873 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 8, posted (13 years 11 months 1 week 2 days 5 hours ago) and read 1048 times:

yes i have spotted several different types of aircraft with those blinking landing lights. But, (a question for people who actually fly the stuff), is it annoying on flare to have this lights blinking down the runway ? just doing it in the car for a few times(4 blinks) makes me mad.

User currently offlineBoeing727 From United States of America, joined May 1999, 950 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (13 years 11 months 1 week 1 day 16 hours ago) and read 1038 times:

Thanks for the info felllows, I thought those lights were blinking.

Boeing727


User currently offlineSCXmechanic From United States of America, joined Dec 1999, 534 posts, RR: 1
Reply 10, posted (13 years 11 months 3 days 9 hours ago) and read 1030 times:

Hi All,

This topic was brought up several months ago. Just to clear things up. The new light systems were NOT designed to be see easily at dawn or dusk. But due to the expensive costs associated with the light bulbs themselves.

The reason they flash off and on is to reduce the heat produced by the lamp which in turn makes them last longer. A typical landing light for a B727/MD80/DC-9/737 will run about $100 each. Now thats a lot of cash thrown away when you have to replace dozens and dozens a day at a typical major airline.


User currently offlineHP-873 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 11, posted (13 years 11 months 3 days 4 hours ago) and read 1023 times:

I read somewhere, and i hope i could remember where, but what sticked more in my mind from the stuff is that General Electric was making test on light bulbs and results said that a light bulb that remained lit would last more than one which is being cycled on/off constantly. Maybe that's why when I was smaller my parents told me to not play with the light switch. My hypothesis of this would because of the cycling of the light bulb, rising and drop of temperature across the filament will make it harder and will make it more fragile if exposed to vibrations. But then, all this endurance may dependent on the temperatures at which the filament works.

User currently offlineOPNLguy From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 12, posted (13 years 11 months 2 days 13 hours ago) and read 1017 times:

SCXmechanic wrote:
-----------------------------
The new light systems were NOT designed to be see easily at dawn or dusk. But due to the expensive costs associated with the light bulbs themselves.
-----------------------------

From the manual:

Alternating Landing Light System (ALLS) (As installed)
The ALLS is designed to increase aircraft visibility by alternately illuminating (pulsating) the landing lights. With the inboard landing lights switch in the PULSE position: the inboard landing lights pulsate; the outboard landing lights pulsate if the outboard landing light switch is in the EXTEND position; and the runway turnoff lights pulsate if the runway turnoff light switch is in the OFF position.
---
Obviously, there are savings from reduced bulb usage, but given SWA's daily flight counts (2600 daily), the primary purpose of the lights was to increase aircraft viz on climbs/descents below 18,000'.

Hope you folks enjouy the 800s...  




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