Toilet Sewage Mechanism On Commercial Airplanes

Tue Sep 11, 2001 2:20 am

I know that the following question sounds stupid and maybe not "technical" enough for this forum, but I think it deserves a serious answer. The question is: who knows how the toilet waste mechanisms operates on commercial airplanes ? Does the system accumulates the waste in an on-board container that emptied after the flight, or it just thrown out at 36,000 feet ? Or, perhaps, some chemical mechanism is used to disintegrate it instead of storing it ?
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RE: Toilet Sewage Mechanism On Commercial Airplanes

Tue Sep 11, 2001 2:34 am

Two configs:
Lavs with their own seperate toilet tanks
Lavs with a common toilet tank.

The older lavs used degerm fluid (the blue stuff) during the fluch cycle to disintegrate "the stuff."
Newer vaccum lavs suck "the stuff" into the tank, where it is broken down by a small amt degerm...not nearly as much as used in older aircraft. The degerm is not even used during the fluch cycle on these vacuum lavs.

The lavs are only serviceable on the ground by personnel
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RE: Toilet Sewage Mechanism On Commercial Airplanes

Tue Sep 11, 2001 5:18 am

Dear Cool777,
The "other method", which you mention, would not be easy. And I'm not at all thinking about the people on the ground.  Big thumbs up

But releasing that sort of stuff from a pressurized cabin, and into the temperature at cruising level, that would certainly be a technically very demanding job.

And over anything but a desert summer the frozen "stones" would be potential killers when hitting the ground.

In fact there has been incidents when stones from leaking lavatory service valves hit the ground.

At lot of things have changed since the old days when wing walkers discovered that sitting on the trailing edge was better - or at at least more economical when talking about soap for shirt washing.

But glider planes actually often have a tube to the outside for the light jobs only. When flying really high (in mountain waves), then the tube may freeze, and your only choise is to land in your "bath tub". And until then pray for not too much turbulence and negative G force.

Cheers, Preben Norholm
Always keep your number of landings equal to your number of take-offs
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RE: Toilet Sewage Mechanism On Commercial Airplanes

Fri Sep 14, 2001 12:47 pm

Yeah, everything is contained and on the newer planes they use vacuum lavs mostly.
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