FLyingRev
Posts: 29
Joined: Wed Jan 18, 2006 3:40 am

How Is An Aircraft's Safety Tested?

Wed Jan 18, 2006 9:57 pm

I am band new to the site and this is my first post. I am a pastor, flying is my hobby; my goal is to someday be a missionary pilot. Excuse me if I am not as knowledgeable as you, the experts. I am just honored to be a part of the site! I have searched the topics and have not found this question.

Here it is: I fly quite a bit. I love aircraft, commercial history and the like. I have read forums in the past as a guest about how old NW DC-9s are. B/C of that I try to avoid NW like a plague! Is the fleet safe? We have seen other A/C of that age retired from commercial service. As planes ages, what about the stress and possibility of fatigue to the aircraft itself? How much more life can be left in the good Ol’ work horses? Thanks, I am honored to be here with you!
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KaiGywer
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How Is An Aircraft's Safety Tested?

Wed Jan 18, 2006 10:13 pm

If you'd read the countless DC9 threads, you'd see that they are perfectly safe. They go thru strict maintenance procedures, and thus are just as safe as any newer plane.
“Once you have tasted flight, you will forever walk the earth with your eyes turned skyward, for there you have been, an
 
FLyingRev
Posts: 29
Joined: Wed Jan 18, 2006 3:40 am

How Is An Aircraft's Safety Tested?

Wed Jan 18, 2006 10:24 pm

KaiGywer:

Ah Yes...But How do we go about testing things like:

Metal fatigue...cracks in the wings...These planes have been in the air for over 30 years in some cases. I used to fly TW every month when she was still in the air. The date on one of her -30s was over 28 years of age and that was 10 years ago! When does the point in time come when someone says enough is enough, its time to move on?

ARE THERE ANY OTHER US LEGACY STILL USING THESE OLD DC-9s?

[Edited 2006-01-18 14:34:51]
 
KaiGywer
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How Is An Aircraft's Safety Tested?

Wed Jan 18, 2006 10:56 pm

Quoting FlyingRev (Reply 2):
Ah Yes...But How do we go about testing things like:

Metal fatigue...cracks in the wings...These planes have been in the air for over 30 years in some cases. I used to fly TW every month when she was still in the air. The date on one of her -30s was over 28 years of age and that was 10 years ago! When does the point in time come when someone says enough is enough, its time to move on?

ARE THERE ANY OTHER US LEGACY STILL USING THESE OLD DC-9s?

Several ways. X-ray, Eddy Current, ultrasound, and other NDT methods.

No, nobody else uses DC9s in the US.
“Once you have tasted flight, you will forever walk the earth with your eyes turned skyward, for there you have been, an
 
goaliemn
Posts: 320
Joined: Fri Sep 02, 2005 9:46 pm

How Is An Aircraft's Safety Tested?

Wed Jan 18, 2006 10:57 pm

Quoting FlyingRev (Reply 2):
Metal fatigue...cracks in the wings...These planes have been in the air for over 30 years in some cases.

They get taken apart and inspected on a regular basis. They remove the interiors and parts of the exterior to do inspections of the airframe itself.

Quoting FlyingRev (Reply 2):
When does the point in time come when someone says enough is enough, its time to move on?

Planes are rated for X number of compression/decompression cycles. The DC-9s in service haven't hit this number, and they do get their regular inspections.
 
Boeing757/767
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How Is An Aircraft's Safety Tested?

Wed Jan 18, 2006 11:05 pm

Also please keep in mind that more than half of its domestic fleet is comprised of A320s, A319s, 752s and 753s -- much newer.
Free-thinking, left-leaning secularist
 
bennett123
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How Is An Aircraft's Safety Tested?

Wed Jan 18, 2006 11:52 pm

 
FLyingRev
Posts: 29
Joined: Wed Jan 18, 2006 3:40 am

How Is An Aircraft's Safety Tested?

Thu Jan 19, 2006 7:37 am

Thank you all very much! I have a lot to learn. You have been a big help! Honored to be with you! Happy flying!

FlyingRev....
 
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HAWK21M
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RE: How Is An Aircraft's Safety Tested?

Thu Jan 19, 2006 12:41 pm

Quoting FlyingRev (Thread starter):
what about the stress and possibility of fatigue to the aircraft itself

Maintenance checks Hard Time,On Condition,Condition Monitoring are carried out on Aircraft.
regds
MEL
I may not win often, but I damn well never lose!!! ;)
 
PurdueAv2003
Posts: 243
Joined: Tue Dec 06, 2005 11:43 am

RE: How Is An Aircraft's Safety Tested?

Thu Jan 19, 2006 2:21 pm

Another thing to remember is that the older birds were built with a more robust airframe than modern jetliners. In turn, they are rated for more cycles and have a longer life span. The down side was that these older planes weigh more. Over the years, engineers have worked to strike an economic balance between a/c life limits vs strength of the airframe. Saving money now with a lighter airframe balances out the cost of having to scrap the airframe at an earlier age. The older planes, though, are still very viable and I would not hesitate to fly on one. I know a lot of mechanics that wish we had the old DC-9's back due to their reliability!
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