Guest

The Role Of The Pilot In Airbus And Boeing

Sat Aug 28, 1999 1:06 am

In another post, somebody asked my why I was sad to see UAL's B737-200s being phased out in favor of A319s. I thought it would make a good topic for discussion. Here's what I said.


It's not that I hate the Airbus. I've flown 319s and 320s, and they're
nice airplanes. But it's hard to explain. From my point of view, being a
younger pilot who flies state of the art equipment, I'd love to fly a 732
or 722, where there are no computers to look over your shoulder at every
move you make. The fundamental problem with the Airbus is that the people
that design their stuff are trying to change the fundamental method of
collecting data when you're flying an airplane. With, say, a 722, you can
feel what's going on through the yoke. It's really a pilot's airplane,
and I wish I could have flown it, but it would have jeopardized my chance
at the 777. With the 319 or 320, you have a stupid stick on the side. The
flight control computers won't allow the pilot to overstress the
airframe, bank beyond a certain point, pitch too high or too low, or
stall the aircraft. If the pilot tries to do any of these, the computer
takes over contol of the aircraft.

Boeing has an entirely different philosophy. In designing the 777, great
care was taken to preserve the "feel" of a traditional aircraft. As a 777
pilot, I can say that they've done a great job, especially when you
compare it to the Airbus products. As a matter of fact, Boeing originally
wanted the 777 to have a joystick because, with fly-by-wire systems,
there was no longer any need for a traditional yoke, but since UAL, as
launch customer, had a great deal of input, we convinced our
representative to Boeing, Gordon McKinzie, to make a big deal about
keeping that "feel," and keeping the yoke in particular.

So, the way it turned out was that although the 777's electronics are by
far more advanced than anything else flying, they have a lot more
limitations placed on them by the software than the Airbus systems. A 777
pilot can exceed stress limitations, stall the aircraft, overbank, all
with the idea that in an emergency, where it might be necessary to exceed
what the airframe was designed for, the pilot should be in control, not
the computer.

Anyway, that was really long winded, but my point is that a lot of us,
particularly the older guys, are really sentimental about those old 727s
and 737s because those aircraft represent what a lot of us think modern
airliners should try to emulate in their designs and flight deck
ergonomics and flight control software. The people at Airbus seem to
disagree. Boeing, on the other hand, keeps the tradition, and really hit
a home run in that sense on the 777, which is why so many of us love to
fly it. And I, for one, am sad to see those old 732s replaced by flying
robots.

Hope that explains my position.

United946
 
Guest

RE: The Role Of The Pilot In Airbus And Boeing

Sat Aug 28, 1999 1:38 am

I have a story about BA 320's.

A BA 320 takes off out of LHR.

Departure 'Speedbird *** turn right heading 150'

Plane the FO is flying ' Right 150 Speedbird ***'

The planes starts to turn left so the capt. takes over.

Departure coems back in a very kurt voice 'Speedbird *** That was a right turn 150 not left where are you going'

Plane Capt ' Departure speedbird *** this is the captain you want us to go right we want to go right the planes wants to go left we are going left to 150.'

I like the Airbus' thought the cockpit foes not looked at crapped as a MD-80 or 737's. But I heard that on a 777 the plane will not let you turn more then 30 degrees. Is it an option or what?
Dave
 
wingman
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Joined: Thu May 27, 1999 4:25 am

RE: The Role Of The Pilot In Airbus And Boeing

Sat Aug 28, 1999 1:41 am

Nice post. I'm sure many will disagree, but I'm not one. My laptop has crashed too many times to give me 100% confidence in computer systems. And all I really do is Word or Excel, not aircraft recovery from a spin or stall. My uncle flew 722s and L1011s for TWA for 30+ years. He loves the 722, said he could fly that thing blindfolded. This is an interesting debate I mentioned in an earlier post. For more interesting info, look out for TLC's show on the subject. Much of the pro-Boeing commentary came from an LH 747 training Captain, who really dislikes the Airbus philosophy. But he was older, so who knows how the LH pilots feel now after dumping Boeing for Airbus.
 
dash8
Posts: 389
Joined: Sat Aug 27, 2005 8:23 am

I Agree.........

Sat Aug 28, 1999 1:44 am

I agree completely with United 946.

This has always been my point of view. When you compare the ergonomics of Airbus jets compared to Boeing's........well.....there is just no comparison.

I've seen flight manuals and video's from both the A340 and the 777 and the 757/767 wich are a bit older.
Things like what United was talking about, throttles which don't move. A yoke you can't see etc. etc. just make a pilot even more detached from the flight itself.
A pilot who has been removed from the "loop" that is called piloting an airplane, he is less apt to take over when something goes drastically wrong.
And let's face it, when something goes drastically wrong you're left on your own. the computers wont for example try and relight the second engine after both engines flame out in midair. All it does is prevent a stall. it wont turn to the nearest airport. It wont fly itself.
This is why the pilots should always be kept in the "loop". To be one with the plane, to see and feel what it is doing. You don't have that with the Airbus aircraft. You do with the Boeing family of airplanes.

That's my point of view anyways..........

Dash8
 
CX747
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RE: The Role Of The Pilot In Airbus And Boeing

Sat Aug 28, 1999 1:45 am

United946 you hit the nail on the head. I for one believe in Boeing's control surface theology than in the Airbus's.
"History does not long entrust the care of freedom to the weak or timid." D. Eisenhower
 
dash8
Posts: 389
Joined: Sat Aug 27, 2005 8:23 am

Airbus Boy

Sat Aug 28, 1999 2:14 am

it is not that it wont let you pass the 30 degree bank angle. The control wheel force just increases. You can bank it to whatever bank you want. You just have to be strong. The plane will keep the bank until you release the control wheel. Then the airplane will bank the plane to a 30 degree bank.
Maybe United946 can better explain this, but I think this is how it works on the 777.


Dash8
 
mirage
Posts: 3612
Joined: Mon May 31, 1999 4:44 am

RE: The Role Of The Pilot In Airbus And Boeing

Sat Aug 28, 1999 2:28 am

Of course the older planes are more pilots friendly but technology changes as time goes by.

Do you prefer to go to your job every days using your automobile from the 90's or would you like to go using a 60's car?

The fun of this is to see the Boeing fanatics showing up, he he he.

I also like Boeing, I like the "style"

Luis, Faro, Portugal
 
A330
Posts: 688
Joined: Wed May 19, 1999 12:31 am

RE: The Role Of The Pilot In Airbus And Boeing

Sat Aug 28, 1999 2:41 am

On the A320/A340 series, you CAN actually overwrite the computers by a simple button. So it IS possible to stall an Airbus (Of course)and to bank harder than 30 degrees.
The only thing to do in order to keep the "touch" for pilots is to train all new pilots in Aerobatics, like Sabena does.

Tino
Shiek!
 
Guest

RE: Dash 8

Sat Aug 28, 1999 3:39 am

Thanks for the help. Also I saw your airline in a magazine this month. It looks like you have a lot of fun destinations.
UAL946 please can you tell us a bit more about this 30 degree thing on the 777.
Thanks to both of you,
Dave
 
TP343
Posts: 364
Joined: Sun May 23, 1999 9:01 pm

RE: The Role Of The Pilot In Airbus And Boeing

Sat Aug 28, 1999 3:45 am

United946, I can understand your point of view (it's coherent), but I don't agree with it.

First of all, if the system used by Airbus since the A320 appear (since 1988, therefore) were bad, unsafe, uncomfortable, or whatever negative, the new Airbus would not have it. Therefore, if today we have also the A319, A321, A330-200/-300, A340-200/-300 and soon A318 and A340-500/-600 featuring this system, it's because it has been approved worldwide.

Second, as I have told in other post, I know many of TAP-Air Portugal and VARIG pilots, and the majority of them agree in one point: Airbus give more safety and confort sensation to pilots. Coincidence or not, it is what I have been hearing for many years from people that fly A340s (TP) and B767s (RG). And more: those pilots (from VARIG) that have never flown an Airbus, agree that Airbus fame is positive (attention: neither them nor me are saying by this statement that Boeing fame is negative!).

I understand your opinion (I'll take the example Mirage gave, but I'll modify it a bit): It's the same as comparing a car with Manual- and a car with Automatic Gear Box. Each one has its advantages, each one has its disadvantages, and each one gives selected kinds of pleasure/security/trust/etc feeling to the driver. Meanwhile, both are undoubtfully safe and the differences are very subtle and up to each one (there we have the definition: it's a personal question).

And, as also Mirage have pointed, it's one of the "problems" that come with the advent of new technologies. If one is scared now of flying an Airbus and feel unsafe, I can't predict how will one behave if someday we have totally-computerized planes flying on next-space (troposphere) and without pilot! (Or maybe one - especially the American - will like and say it's ok, as it's Boeing and not Airbus who is taking the lead to develop this...).

Regards,

TP343, São Paulo, Brazil.
 
Guest

RE: Mirage And Airbus Boy

Sat Aug 28, 1999 3:52 am

Mirage- yes, I would prefer the modern car, but I don't want the new car's engine control module telling me when I can and can't accelerate, the navigation system telling me where I can and can't go, or the gauges deciding what to show me and what not to show me. I want to make those decisions myself. And, to clarify, I am not a Boeing fanatic. I prefer Boeing aircraft because Boeing engineers have proven that their products are pilot and passenger oriented, rather than computer oriented. I know this because I have flown several different types of Boeing jetliners and I have flown the Airbus 319/320s. I prefer Boeing by far.

Airbus boy- If I exceed maximum bank angle or pitch angle or stall, etc., the yoke will vibrate and place more resistance on my movements of the yoke. But I can still force it to where I want to go. It lets you know you're exceeding design limitations, sounds klaxons, etc., but you are still the one in control. It's as simple as that.

United946
 
mirage
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Joined: Mon May 31, 1999 4:44 am

United946

Sat Aug 28, 1999 5:22 am

The word fanatic was not for you, other people have replied the topic.

I understand your point, it's an old one in this Airbus / Boeing debate.
 
dash8
Posts: 389
Joined: Sat Aug 27, 2005 8:23 am

The A340

Sat Aug 28, 1999 11:48 am

Then the A340 pilot you was talking to wasn't the TAP A340 pilot who experienced inflight fuel jettisoning over the Atlantic ocean.
They even called Toulouse. Nothing could stop it. Until a fellow pilot crossing the Atlantic who also experienced this problem once, told the crew to shut down an engine and relight......."That should do the trick".


Dash8
 
tygue
Posts: 220
Joined: Sun Jul 18, 1999 4:42 pm

Regarding The Original Post.

Sat Aug 28, 1999 1:36 pm

United946,
It seems you have a problem with feeling safe. As a passenger, I honestly don't give a damn whether the aircraft I am flying on is controlled by a human or a computer as long as I am there on time, my seat is comfortable and my >insert any airline mean here< does not taste like a mix of styrofoam and tabasco sauce.

So what if you can feel the yoke moving? It's just another thing that can break on an airplane with over 2 decade old technology. This is why aircraft have instruments on them, isn't it? Wondering what the plane is doing? Look at teh attitude indicator!!! I just began the instrument part of my private training, and I was tought to do something called a radial scan. Back and forth, back and forth on the sacred six to make sure you aren't going to die.

You mentioned that with the Airbus, the airplane itself will not allow you to stall, bank past X number of degrees or stress the airframe. Well let me ask you this: If it needs to be done, aren't you glad that the aircraft is preventing its own wings from snapping? Do you, honestly, think it is stupid that technology enables you to lower your chance of coming home in a series of small ziplock bags by throttling to TOGA if a stall is detected?

The Airbus is a MUCH more comfortable airliner, as a passenger, and a lot more safe, as a pilot, than those 20+ year old 737-200's and 727-200's.

We are in the nineties. People have walked on the moon. Computers fit into single rooms. Airplanes prevent a lot of people from dying. Think about it.

IMHO
Tygue
 
Guest

RE: Regarding The Original Post.Tygue

Sat Aug 28, 1999 2:33 pm

If UAL946 was scared to fly airbus' do you think he would have take 1000's of people up in the plane and take responsibility for them.

And how much instrument training are you doing with your private. All I did was learn to fly in and out of a cloud. And the nav stuff but not the nav. stuff in the cloud.
Dave
 
Guest

RE: Tygue

Sat Aug 28, 1999 2:34 pm

You missed my point completely. I did not say that a 737-200 is a better aircraft than the A319. I said that Airbus has failed to keep the pilot "in the loop," as we say. Airbus is making us read information rather than feel it. That joystick might as well be a keyboard.

I also said that the people who designed the 777, including one of my best friends, Alan Mulally, designed an excellent machine that perfectly combines the benefits of state-of-the-art avionics and also of the most powerful computer in the world: the human brain. I have no inhibitions about saying that the 777 is better than anything Airbus will ever make.

I know what a radial scan is. All the stuff your flight instructor taught you about flying your Cessna is entirely different than the stuff I learned at 777 training in Denver, okay? Please don't try to compare the two. What you do works at 90 knots and 2,000' AGL doesn't work at .84M and FL370.

About computers allowing pilots to stall or overbank aircraft, if the computer was about to fly me into a cliff or another aircraft showed up through the clouds suddenly, I'd rather risk snapping a wing than just collide.

One last thing: I'd be very interested to know when a UAL 727 or 737 crashed. We've had a DC-8 and DC-10 crash, but not much other than that in recent history. UAL mechanics are excellent, and they maintain our aircraft well.

I've flown 319s and 320s, and I know firsthand that they can act up sometimes. I'd rather be in complete control of a 732 than at the mercy of an A319's computers. United Airlines pays me to fly airplanes, not to sit back and watch airplanes fly themselves.

United946
 
TP343
Posts: 364
Joined: Sun May 23, 1999 9:01 pm

RE: To Dash8.

Sat Aug 28, 1999 9:08 pm

Should I understand your very informative and adequate post from 04:48 as a gratuitous provocation, with no link to the original topic subject?

TP343, São Paulo, Brazil.
 
Guest

Tygue & United946

Mon Aug 30, 1999 3:04 am

First, to United946, I agree with you on this issue, but a UA 737-200 crashed in Colorado Springs. I also have a few comments about the things Tygue brought up--and I'm not trying to pick on Tygue.

We're talking about the importance of quality human-engineering in the cockpit; you're correct that as a passenger, you may not be concerned with such things; however, it may be an important factor in whether you arrive at your destination or not.

Tygue mentioned that a yoke is "just another thing that can break on an airplane with over 2 decade old technology." First, a yoke is no more likely to break than a more-complex-than-you-might-think sidestick. Secondly, a 777 has a yoke, but it is far from "2 decade old technology." Finally, it is extremely important to have any additional feedback to the pilot that is possible. A pilot might have his head turned talking to a flight attendant, while the aircraft goes into a 1-g diving bank. If he has his hand on that moving yoke, he'll feel the plane bank and will be alerted to the situation. You also say, "Wondering what the plane is doing? Look at teh attitude indicator!!!"--What if the attitude indicator happens to be broken--sure, you can still fly the plane, but every bit of feedback helps. Anyone who has done some instrument training in a crappy Frasca 142 flight training device should know that without the force-feedback the real airplane gives you, it is much more challenging and fatiguing to fly. The same goes for the Airbus philosophy--without that yoke between your legs providing information through touch, the airplane will demand more of your other senses.

Sure, I love flying on the A320--it is very comfortable, but I sure hope the crew is paying complete attention to what's going on up there.
 
Navion
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RE: Tygue & Flying Magazine

Mon Aug 30, 1999 3:42 am

About 4 years ago, Mac McClellan, editor of Flying magazine, few in the cockpit of a Lufthansa A340 from Neward to Frankfurt. I will forever remember reading the story because it caused me such discomfort. He talked of the takeoff and subsequent FMS control and remarked how turns were being made and engines were throttling down without sticks or throttles moving!!! He discussed how strange that felt and his concern of taking pilots out of the loop. All of us who participate in this forum and are pilots know that all of the information that can be sent to you through as many sources as possible (aural, visual, sensory, olfactory etc.) help you to know what is going on with the aircraft. Many times I felt feedback through rudder pedals (when the autopilot yaw damper was malfunctioning) or noticed the angle of the control wheel was slightly off (aircraft was out of rig) and many times I have taken comfort when I noticed everything was in it's proper place (throttle position, control wheel position etc.) with just a glance. Early in the A320's career (about 10 years ago), they had about 3 crashes all of which were attributed to pilot error but the proximate cause being automation, lack of familiarity with it, and the subsequent helplessness to do anything about it when the situation got desparate. The crashes were the Air France A320, Indian Airlines A320 (crashed short of the runway), and the Air France A320 crash into the side of the mountain during a non-precision approach. What really got my attention was when Airbus great test pilot Nick Warner (I think that's his name) was killed in an A330-300 on takeoff from Toulouse when the computer was apparently programmed to do something differently than he (Warner) intended. I remember thinking "if this guy can kill himself, who's really safe." My idea, as a pilot, of having the final say so can get you out of many situations which may not have been accounted for by the programmers. The example of a wingover to avoid a cliff has happened many times with many pilots including Chuck Yeager (read his biography about flying out of a box canyon after almost slamming into a sheer rock wall). Just a few thoughts.
 
ovelix
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RE: The Role Of The Pilot In Airbus And Boeing

Mon Aug 30, 1999 4:22 am




As a passenger I don’t give a damn of how the pilot feels as far as my trip is safe, comfortable and reliable. I want him capable and alert, not happy. If some people want some aviation action they can buy their own airliner and carry their friends. I want a totally uneventfull trip and I know that the vast majority of the aviation indusrty makes a good job on that. I don’t understand why someone can have problem with a computer manipulating controls. Except if some feel devalueted pilots by the fact that a computer can fly a plane much more accuratelly than a human can. When in emergency the pilot can always override the system with a single button. The technology is here to make things easier, not complex them. A computer can take over certain things such as following the correct flight path and hold altitude etc leaving the pilot’s hands and mind free for more important things.

Another issue is that both Airbus and Boeing use a great deal of input and info by their customers before deciding how every part of the plane will be made. For all that they have a different philosophy and they make their products slightly different but equally efficient. Same market, different solutions.

Thanks

Kostas, Athens, Greece


 
L-188
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RE: The Role Of The Pilot In Airbus And Boeing

Mon Aug 30, 1999 4:43 am

I would like to pipe in the following observation about the "modern" FMGS systems that are used on many airliners including Boeing, Airbus, McDonnell Douglas, DeHavilland Canada, Doiner, ect. ect. ect. The seems to be a lot of negativity toward "20 year old" systems here. I get a good laugh usually from those that talk about these modern systems and how new andgreat they are.

I would like to point out that the FMGS systems generally use the 8088 processor. For those of you who don't know what that computer chip is, it is the one the 286 processor replaced. Anybody bought a Commodore 64 or a Radio Shack TI Tandy computer recently???

Frankly I trust that 20 year old computer chip a lot more then if I walked onto an Airbus or Boeing and saw the Windows 98 logo displayed on the ECAM display!!! Then I would be worried.

Beware of the pengiun Bill.

OBAMA-WORST PRESIDENT EVER....Even SKOORB would be better.
 
Guest

RE: Ovelix

Mon Aug 30, 1999 7:25 am

I don't see this purely as a discussion of automation. Both the Airbus and Boeing 777 use Fly-By-Wire, Flight Management Computers, and the systems are highly automated in both aircraft (hence the two-person flight crew). In this regard, both aircraft use a similar philosophy.

The important difference is the human-interface in the design of the cockpit and the computer software. If you're going to put a human up there who is really the one responsible for flying the plane, he should have as much feedback provided by the aircraft as possible.

You're right in thinking that technology should make the pilot's job easier; my argument is that the design of the Airbus cockpit makes the job more difficult than does the design of the 777 cockpit (see earlier post). Also, I understand that most passengers don't care how comfortable the pilot is, but the pilot's relationship with the airplane is critical to the safety of your flight. Any pilot should understand this.

It's not a matter of ego, either; both aircraft use a high degree of automation. I simply feel that the Airbus philosophy requires extremely vigilant cockpit management and limits the valuable resource of humans in the cockpit. Humans can be aware of unusual situations that the computer cannot interpret--a good example is the crash of the Lufthansa A320 in Warsaw. The pilot wanted to deploy the thrust reversers and spoilers but could not, because the computers did not recognize that both main gear were firmly on the ground. If the pilot had been able to execute his commands, it would have prevented this crash.
 
Guest

RE: The Role Of The Pilot In Airbus And Boeing

Mon Aug 30, 1999 7:54 am


What happens in the avionics of an Airbus system is quite different. The
mainframe computer works as CPU to all the other arrays within the system.
When performing such an action which was entered in the data module, the mainframe basically gives array string of options, which can be performed in virtually a million ways at the pilot's discretion.The computer does not control the pilot, but warns him and does not allow him/her to do something wrong or such an action that will present risk. The pilot is ultimately still in charge in determining the result from the data string given to him.
I must point out that the basic chip used for control options has been the so famous '741'. This is basically an operational amplifier and especifically is in charge of the ailerons adjustement. This chip is still used today for the same automated systems, which was conceived I believe in the sixties, in earlier Boeing models. The thing I do not agree with however is the use of the yoke and similar hyds.. That is a reasonable discussions, and certainly takes away the 'feeling' of the cruise.

. The inegrity of new technology from any company is extremely healthy for
competition and the breed of new ides. I must add that the integrated system used by
Boeing on the 777 is not far from the Airbus philosophy. It also uses an
integrated data loop for its internal system. Automation is just as important.

For me, from some piloting experience think that the pilot should be 100% in charge of the controls . But even with this said, older cockpit design can also prevent a pilot's action or response from feedback given by the plane. An example of this is a F-100 crash in 1996 where thrust reversers were deployed during take-off! When this happens, the throttles lock completely, and the pilot can do absolutely nothing. The best he could do was deviate from a school but eventually hit a heavily populated area. Finally, I presume that the
future designs of airframes will very much contain such automated
systems, but don't be scared because a human brain will always be present,
regardless of what....

Cheers,
Leo-ERJ
______________________________________________________
 
wingman
Posts: 2904
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RE: The Role Of The Pilot In Airbus And Boeing

Mon Aug 30, 1999 8:16 am

A couple of words- again some I posted in a separate thread on the same subject. In all of the cockpit recordings from Airbus crashes involving FBW technology, the same lines are heard over and over again such as: 1. What is IT doing now? 2. Why can't I get IT to do what I want? 3. What do you think IT will do next? These phrases are also heard in incident reports many of us will never know of. One is the same that Dash 8 mentioned about a 340 dumping fuel w/o cause in mid-flight and the pilots calling Toulouse to stop it. I heard this from a KLM pilot as well. The pilot is simply not in charge. He/She might as well be in a sleeper seat with Bill Gates up front. As a passenger I would not want to hear pilot comments such as the ones above. Second point for anyone who thinks FBW is modern technology. The first application of FBW was the Apollo 11 lunar lander in 1969! That's 30 years old. It was later used in military jets in order to maintain flyability in aircraft that favored maneuverability in favor of aerodynamics. Airbus opted for this system as a competitive advantage and because cost was not a concern in its development. If a pilot wants to lay back and vegetate in front of computer screens, give him an Airbus, if a pilot wants to fly, give him a Boeing. This is why Southwest pilots are the most satisfied in the world with their jobs. They take-off and land all day long and spend more time out of autopilot than any other pilot group in the commercial world (jets only). They're pilots, not programmers.
 
TP343
Posts: 364
Joined: Sun May 23, 1999 9:01 pm

RE: The Role Of The Pilot/Wingman.

Mon Aug 30, 1999 9:00 am

Oh yes... let's realise Airbuses are pieces of s**t flying everywhere and putting in risk crews, passengers and commom people' life that live below where Airbuses fly...

The only curious aspect of this is that all common Boeing fans says Airbus control system is unsafe, but the - whole - world says the contrary! Who is right? Oh, Certainly the commom guys!!!...

People, don't you see who ridiculous is to discuss an issue that we barely know about? (Or am I talking with someone here that has projected the systems in Airbus and Boeing a/c?).

Let's ALL realise that we ALL just repeat what we LISTEN, and NOT what we handle/work with.

------------------------------------------------------

Wingman,

Sincerely, telling that a pilot that stays in manual comand all day is more happy than one that just observe what is going on is the same as saying that in an industry worker that handle greasy and oil is more happy than one that just observes what the machines and computers are doing.
More: pilots don't fly to have pleasure; they fly to work, it's their job! They carry lives, compromises and responsabilities. If they what to have pleasure, they fly Aerodrome's Cessnas on rest-days. If I was an airline chairman and a candidate to pilot post tells me he flies to feel happy, I would NEVER contract him.
Finally, about your coment "Airbus pilots vegetate in front of computer screens", just a question: have you ever taken a jump seat on BOTH A340 and B777? I had a jump seat on a TAP A340 for landing, and if there is something I have not seem is pilots talking with me and looking to the stars. And... don't forget that B747-400s and B777s also figure those "vegetative" 6 screens...

Regards,

TP343, São Paulo, Brazil.
 
dash8
Posts: 389
Joined: Sat Aug 27, 2005 8:23 am

RE: TP343 !

Mon Aug 30, 1999 9:48 am

First of all, I'm sorry if I offended you by not putting your name in the topics field.
What I said in my post was just to point out that the A340 is far from the safest plane around. All Airbus aircraft had/have quite a few automation problems in them. But anyway, I'm not gonna repeat myself.

Now for an honest question.
Are you, or do you ever wish to be a pilot?
Someone becomes a pilot for his/her sheer joy of being around planes, to smell the fuel, to grease a plane once in a while. That's what being a pilot is.
The statement you made about pilots being pilots just to work and go home will offend MANY of us on here.
We love what we do so much. Anyone can become a lawyer. Not anyone can become a pilot. You HAVE to love it or you'll die from the stress.
This is why your equation of pilots with industry workers doesn't really equate either. If he's doused in grease and oil all day long and works from 9 to 5 every day, because he LOVES his job. He will also prefer doing that than standing in an air conditioned office all cleaned up looking down.

Please don't offend us like that anymore.


Sincerely,

Dash8

 
william
Posts: 1662
Joined: Thu Jun 10, 1999 1:31 pm

Some Pilots Like It,and Some Don't

Mon Aug 30, 1999 10:07 am

This is beginning to remind me of the argument between the DC10 and L1011. Many pilots stated that Lockheed widebody were far more pleasurable to fly than Micky Ds.

I too read that article in FLYING MAG,and I can understand alot of the old timers missing a yoke that they can lay their fingers on and can tell whether the autopilot is following directions or not. On the other hand,you have alot of young bucks coming out of the military that are used to side stick FBW fighters(say F16),who are completely at home in an Airbus with a sidestick. So that is why you have some pilots who hate it and some who love it.

I must comment on some of the threads that state as a passenger they can care less if the pilot is comfortable. While that may be true,I hope you do not mean that. Whether in an Airbus or Boeing, if a poor pilot is flying into La Guardia with its famed cross winds to a runway thats only 7500 ft long,and he or she is forced to actually fly the aircraft nose first to the runway until about 50ft above threshhold and then (1) lift the nose (2) dip the wing into the crosswind (3)use the rudder to keep the aircraft straight (4) try to put down that at least one main landing gear (5) and...oops you have about 4,000ft of runway to stop this thing. As a passenger you better HOPE,you better PRAY,that he or she knows and is as comfortable with that aircraft as he is with his wife,or she with her husband.

This is a good thread,we have actual pilots participating who know far more about flying aircraft than any enthusiast will. So lets not needlessly provoke arguments.
 
BryanG
Posts: 955
Joined: Tue May 18, 1999 2:59 am

Great Website With Official Info

Mon Aug 30, 1999 10:52 am

A great website that I found which discusses the relative merits and penalties of "computer controlled flight" can be found here:

http://www.rvs.uni-bielefeld.de/publications/Incidents/DOCS/FBW.html

I'd encourage everyone to check it out, becuae it really contains a wealth of information on the subject, as well as detailed reports of computer-related incidents.


One incident which is detailed is the Lufthansa Warsaw A320 crash. From the site's introduction:

"A Lufthansa A320 landed at Warsaw airport in a thunderstorm. The landing appeared to be normal, smooth, even though somewhat fast. The pilots were unable to activate any of the braking mechanisms (spoilers, reverse thrust, wheelbrakes) for 9 seconds after `touchdown', at which point the spoilers and reverse thrust deployed. The wheelbrakes finally became effective 13 seconds after touchdown. The aircraft was by this time way too far along the runway to stop before the runway end. It ran off the end, and over an earth bank near the end of the runway, before stopping. Both pilots were very experienced A320 operators. The captain was returning to duty after illness and the first officer was a senior Airbus captain and training officer, who was monitoring the captain's flying skills on his return to service. The first officer died in the accident, as did a passenger who was overcome by smoke and didn't evacuate the aircraft, which burned."

Apparently the A320 only thinks it's landed when the weels spin up to a certain rpm and the gear hydraulics detect a certain weigh on the struts. In this case, the runway was wet and a gust came up right as the aircraft touched down. The aquaplaning tires didn't spin up quickly, and the gust kept the weight on the gears light. The aircraft concluded it was still in the air, and for several critical seconds wouldn't activate the braking devices. This was despite the pilots frantically pulling all the levers. Clearly the aircraft had the final say in the matter, and a fatal crash resulted.

Would this happen on the 777?
 
BryanG
Posts: 955
Joined: Tue May 18, 1999 2:59 am

Great Website With Official Info

Mon Aug 30, 1999 10:53 am

A great website that I found which discusses the relative merits and penalties of "computer controlled flight" can be found here:

http://www.rvs.uni-bielefeld.de/publications/Incidents/DOCS/FBW.html

I'd encourage everyone to check it out, becuase it really contains a wealth of information on the subject, as well as detailed reports of computer-related incidents.


One incident which is detailed is the Lufthansa Warsaw A320 crash. From the site's introduction:

"A Lufthansa A320 landed at Warsaw airport in a thunderstorm. The landing appeared to be normal, smooth, even though somewhat fast. The pilots were unable to activate any of the braking mechanisms (spoilers, reverse thrust, wheelbrakes) for 9 seconds after `touchdown', at which point the spoilers and reverse thrust deployed. The wheelbrakes finally became effective 13 seconds after touchdown. The aircraft was by this time way too far along the runway to stop before the runway end. It ran off the end, and over an earth bank near the end of the runway, before stopping. Both pilots were very experienced A320 operators. The captain was returning to duty after illness and the first officer was a senior Airbus captain and training officer, who was monitoring the captain's flying skills on his return to service. The first officer died in the accident, as did a passenger who was overcome by smoke and didn't evacuate the aircraft, which burned."

Apparently the A320 only thinks it's landed when the weels spin up to a certain rpm and the gear hydraulics detect a certain weight on the struts. In this case, the runway was wet and a gust came up right as the aircraft touched down. The aquaplaning tires didn't spin up quickly, and the gust kept the weight on the gears light. The aircraft concluded it was still in the air, and for several critical seconds wouldn't activate the braking devices. This was despite the pilots frantically pulling all the levers. Clearly the aircraft had the final say in the matter, and a fatal crash resulted.

Would this happen on the 777?
 
william
Posts: 1662
Joined: Thu Jun 10, 1999 1:31 pm

RE: Great Website With Official Info

Mon Aug 30, 1999 8:46 pm

If I remember correctly,a Piedmont 737 ran off the end of the runway under some of those same conditions. All major aircraft have a safety feature that deploy spoilers upon landing when the aircraft's weight has settled on the struts,but this can be manually overwritten.
 
wingman
Posts: 2904
Joined: Thu May 27, 1999 4:25 am

TP343

Tue Aug 31, 1999 1:39 am

Relax TP, no one said Airbus were sh*t aircraft, where ddi you read that. We're discussing the role of pilots in each aircraft type. Some like FWB, some don't. That is agreed. The fact is that FBW means much less of a role to a pilot that without. I also take issue with your statements regarding the enjoyment of flying. You must have a terrible job that you dislike very much. If I were you, I'd leave it for something more enjoyable. Perhaps you wouldn't mind overhearing a pilot say, "this job sucks, but I have to do it for the money". On Southwest, pilots say, "I love this job and I love flying". I wonder which pilot is paying more attention to the details? Also, someone brought up the fact that younger pilots prefer side sticks from their F-16 days. I think any fighter pilot flying a FBW in commercial jetliners is probably bored to tears every day. F-16 flying is among the most exciting and adrenalin producing flying in the world. There's a big difference between that and FBW on a 12 flight in the cockpit of any commercial jetliner 340, 777, or otherwise. Give any fighter pilot the choice bewteen a Southwest 737 job and any FBW job for the same pay and I bet the majority go with SW 737s.
 
Guest

RE: TP343, Wingman & William

Tue Aug 31, 1999 7:16 am

First off, I feel like TP343 blew off the handle a little. I usually respect your comments, but what was that all about? I hope you don't think I'm calling the Airbus a "piece of s**t" (whatever that word might have been) because nothing could be further from the truth. In fact, I don't think any of the replies have said that. Then, you go on to say this is a ridiculous discussion because nobody here knows anything about it!? Could you throw some more insults around? I never claimed to have designed the damn thing, but I think I know enough to contribute to a healthy discussion. After all, calling any discussion on this forum "ridiculous" is completely uncalled for. About your feelings on pilots: If you were responsible for hiring, your airline would fail. Any wise employer would only hire pilots who loved flying. No one would be a pilot if it weren't pleasurable. I have never spoken to a pilot that didn't love his job.

Now, to Wingman, I agree that Southwest pilots are happy with their jobs. I've heard of international pilots going to Southwest because they never do any real flying in the 747. However, regarding the Airbus, perhaps "lay back and vegetate in front of computer screens" is a bit of a harsh description. During the enroute phase of flight, that is pretty much the case with any modern airliner. I think William was correct in saying that a former F-16 pilot would feel more comfortable with the joystick than would an old-school pilot. On the other hand, flying any airliner would seem tame after flying fighter jets.

Now, I'm straying off the original post somewhat with this, but I have one last comment regarding William's last post. Yes, the Piedmont crash occurred during very similar meteorological conditions as that of the Lufthansa crash in Warsaw. However, very different causes were cited for each accident. In the final report of the Piedmont crash, one of the primary contributing factors in the accident was "the captain's failure to optimally use the airplane decelerative devices." In other words, he could have used them, but he failed to do so effectively--crew error. Now, crew error was also a factor in the Lufthansa crash, however this final report stated "actions of the flight crew were also affected by design features of the aircraft which limited the feasibility of applying available braking systems." In other words, the crew was unable to used braking devices even though they tried--airplane largely to blame. This brings us back to the pilot/aircraft relationship. Boeing seems to give more control to the pilots for those highly unusual situations that the designers of the aircraft could not have predicted.
 
wingman
Posts: 2904
Joined: Thu May 27, 1999 4:25 am

RE: 24291

Tue Aug 31, 1999 11:31 am

You are right. Pilots generally vegetate on long flights no matter what aircraft they're on. And in this case, 777 pilots will be as bored as 340 pilots. The inevitable in near, pilotless aircraft will arrive by 2020 I think. Military will go first, then commercial. If all goes according to plan though, I'll be traveling by sailboat at that point.
 
Guest

RE: 24291

Tue Aug 31, 1999 12:39 pm

Yikes! Now that's a scary thought!
 
777200
Posts: 54
Joined: Mon Aug 30, 1999 10:26 pm

RE: The Role Of The Pilot In Airbus And Boeing

Tue Aug 31, 1999 10:17 pm


I think both boeing 777 and airbus planes are fly-by-wire
so, i saw videos about boeing 777 and airbus 330 and
both have computers controling the plane and in that
videos i saw the pilot of 777 giving a example: he tried
to stall the plane and immediatly the computer took
control of the airplane. That is the same on the airbus
330/340.
 
777200
Posts: 54
Joined: Mon Aug 30, 1999 10:26 pm

RE: 24291

Tue Aug 31, 1999 10:31 pm

I don't agree with you at all.
Human pilot it will be necessary every time.
 
Guest

RE: 777200

Wed Sep 01, 1999 11:29 am

Regarding the video you saw, I can't comment, because I haven't seen it. I think it's a little hasty to say that what you saw the 777 do is "the same" as on the 330/340--While we agree the A320/330/340 & 777 are all FBW, it's widely known that the two manufacturers have very different philosophies about computer vs. human control.

Please read all the posts above. We have been talking at length about the influence of cockpit design (and airplane design) upon the role of the pilot.

As for fully automated (pilotless) flight, I believe it should be Wingman you direct you post to since it was his comment. I agree with Wingman about military aircraft--it is a very real possibility for the near future. Actually it's already been started. As for commercial aircraft, I don't think it will happen in my lifetime, but who knows? Perhaps the modern trend toward two-person crews will continue until we have single-person crews. Perhaps the only pilot on board will be more of a systems manager and not a pilot.

I hope not!
 
TP343
Posts: 364
Joined: Sun May 23, 1999 9:01 pm

RE: The Role Of The Pilot In Airbus And Boeing

Thu Sep 02, 1999 3:09 am

Opening this post today, after 3 days off-line, for my surprise I found some posts addressed to me. I feel I have not used enough words to say what I wanted, which was my fault due to my poor time and English available. Let me try to unmake the confusion I have created here. I will re-write, in a stretched way what I said in the post "The role of the pilot/Wingman" and comment the must important passages:

My comment: "Oh yes, let's realize Airbuses are pieces of s**t flying everywhere and putting in risk crews, passengers and common people's life that live below where Airbuses fly..."

Explanation: I told it in a generic way as I started to feel that the this topic was going to become that stressing and senseless Airbus vs. Boeing debate again as Wingman told "if a pilot wants to lay back and vegetate in front of computer screens, give him an Airbus; if a pilot wants to fly, give him a Boeing!". The word s**t can't be explicit found in posts above and consequently it is not directly linked with any of the posts above, despite "S**t definition" given to Airbus can be found with big frequency in the other topics, as we all have to agree that Airbus and its planes is usually victim of - free - aggression here.

Other comment made by my and that caused confusion:

"People, don't you see how ridiculous is to discuss an issue that you barely know about? (Or am I talking with someone here that has projected the systems in Airbus and Boeing a/c?)"

New comment: Of course I didn't meant that to participate in this forum and to post messages to its topics is ridiculous. If I had meant that, I would be calling, before anyone, myself ridiculous, since I'm a participant in this forum since the beginning of this year and I have previously posted a comment to the this topic ("The role of the pilot in Airbus and Boeing", from 27.08.99 at 20h45min). What I have entitled to be ridiculous are comments made by people that invert verbs: As I have never operated any airplane, always when I want to say something I use the following verb: "I think/ I was told/ I know someone who says/ I read somewhere,... but, many people here that I see that know the same (insufficient) amount of things that I know, they affirm with all conviction things that actually (s)he thinks/ imagine/ /would like things to be/ was told about/ read somewhere. This is what I've called ridiculous (and condemnable as well): one to support as true things that one don't know/ is not sure about/ simply would like to be. And more: once again, it's a very common practice by people in this forum, especially regarding Airbus vs. Boeing questions, EU vs. USA, orders to come, airline's preferences (fleet and models),... Once again, the mention I've made was addressed to condemn a common practice, and not necessarily passages from this current topic. I have just used the space, time and opportunity to say something I'd like to have already said before. We need - facts - to back-up what we affirm with all conviction. Otherwise, we have to recognize our ignorance (in usual sense, and not aggressive sense) face to the subject and say "I think" instead of "It is". This is what is called modesty, which is a very beautiful practice that I myself try to apply in life and texts.

Other comment:

"Pilots don't fly to have pleasure; they fly to work, it's their job. (...) If I was an airline chairman and a candidate to pilot post tells me he flies to feel happy, I would NEVER contract him."

I think it was the one that has caused the most polemic. Of course it's important (in all professions) to love what is done! But (and now you have to agree with me) if an airline selected its air crews according to each candidate level of happiness, satisfaction, proud and pleasure with the profession, one thing is undoubtful: I myself would be already flying a commercial plane!!!
It's very important to a pilot to like what (s)he does, as it's one of the most stressing jobs worldwide, but nothing asserts that the much satisfied a pilot is, the more safe it will be to fly with him! The levels of emotion are not the criteria used on selecting F/As and pilots. The criterion used is technique. This comment was directed to Wingman, as he meant that to fly with computerized systems makes a pilot tired and unmotivated to continue working and to fly safer.
And more: I believe that the real (not the imaginary/fantasy impression, I mean... To carry 100 passengers during 1 hour is different than to carry 400 during 13 hours...) difference between the level of fun that a pilot can have flying a F-100 or a B747-400 is inexistant, as it's very reduced in both cases! Pilots can't make risky/ special maneuvers such touch-and-go, flying-stall, dives, minimum-to-maximum engine power on flight,... as they are carrying passengers/freight; they're working! They are there to work for someone else (an airline, which demands him compromises and responsibilities, and not his/her personal satisfaction! - I've repeated what is the airline view) They must take-off, fly and land on places, times and conditions not up to them!
I'd like to ask for the apologies of people that have understood that I have told that jobs must be boring. The idea was - very - far from that.

To people:

Dash8, yes, I have already and for many years wished to become a pilot, to stay at airports, to cross oceans, to change year season in few hours,... all those powerful sensations and impressions that just the pilot profession gives, which is surely one of the most beautiful on Earth. Therefore, I'll never offend pilots and their profession because first of all, I would be offending myself and my dreams. The example used on "greasy and oil example" is simply understood: everyone tends to prefer and choose the less complex and hard work if there is option (I'm sorry if the impression I passed is that manual work has not value... what would a city be like without men to remove trash from the streets??? Surely a chaos...)! All this discussion makes me remember from the old school buses, those ones with manual opening of the front door. Do you or any here think that drivers became unsatisfied/ less happy with their job as buses with automatic system to open the door arrived? Please, don't tell you think... I'm happy to listen that you like to fly, as I understand that if someday you are the pilot of my flight I'll be in hands of someone that likes and dedicates to his job   . About your ask for me not "offend" you anymore, let's just remember that respect is something reciprocal and things will go as previously...

Wingman, actually I don't work yet! About the response you gave to my "fly and pleasure point", I'm sorry but I have to disagree with you: In theory, fly safer the pilot that has less things to do, and not necessarily the pilot that is the one who is happy and satisfied why job. At this point, I believe that to pilot a 90' plane is safer than to pilot a 70' one. While the old jet pilot has lots of sequences and operations to do, his fellow on the modern plane has a much more simplified job. As the pilot is exposed to more process, the chances of error in an old-jet due to human failure is much bigger than in a modern one featuring FBW and other stuffs like this.

24921, I appreciate that you use to respect what I write. It's important to have some feedback once on while! No, the "let's realize..." comment was not directed to you. I think I have already previously answered the comments you have done (Ridiculous is to assume as true and defends what one is not sure, and not to participate and give opinions/ comments in this forum; of course not I would impeach "my" pilots to be happy! I meant "to be or not to be happy" is not the criteria used to describe safety on-board planes. I just don't agree that the happier a pilot is the safer will be the flight! To be satisfied helps a lot, but it's not a rule. I have not ever told that a pilot, as any other professional, must not love his job (on contrary!), but that an airline don't select its pilots using as criteria "do you love to fly?" If this were the criterion, I myself would be already a pilot! The criteria are others than that. To like to fly is not enough to make someone an (airline) pilot!)

A word to United946:

Despite this "little" incident I've caused here, I'd like to tell you that I - do - think the question you have raised is important and up-to-date although old. It makes me think on the movie "Tempos Modernos" ("Modern Times" in English?) with Charles Chaplin. Automation and its limits is a very interesting social-economic question and it's present in all levels and sectors of our lives, and aviation is just one of them. As we are intelligent beings, it's positive to discuss what we want our future to be.

On the other hand, I promise I will watch out better what I write in order to make it the most comprehensible and easy to understand as possible, as I've realized nobody is obliged to guess what someone else writes and mean.

If someone finds any error/ wants to disagree or has not understand something, just reply/ e-mail me. (Although it's not really needed to say that in this forum, as things get hot sometimes   !)

Regards,

TP343, São Paulo, Brazil.

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