jfktpa119
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Open Panel On Side Of A320 During Taxi?

Fri Aug 13, 2010 1:45 pm

Once I was waiting for my flight at KTPA and watched a B6 A320 push back with open panel on the right rear side on the aircraft. I figured one of the ramp agents would see it and close it. When the aircraft the taxied away I thought maybe I should even say something to the gate agent. In fear I might embarass myself I didn't, and I forgot about it till I saw this picture today with the same panel door open.
Can someone explain to me what it is. Thanks!


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[Edited 2010-08-13 08:47:16 by ManuCH]
 
speedmarque
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RE: Open Panel On Side Of A320 During Taxi?

Fri Aug 13, 2010 1:47 pm

I think that's an outflow valve for a/c and pressurisation.
 
etarsa
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RE: Open Panel On Side Of A320 During Taxi?

Fri Aug 13, 2010 1:55 pm

This is an outflow valve to regulate the cabin pressurization. All modern a/c have the cabin under pressure to make it possible to fly like 30.000ft and have the same comfort as at a maximum of 8 or 9.000 ft but not higher.
Flying with a cabin altitude higher than 9.000 ft does not feel comfortable and makes people sick.
L1011,B707/E3A,DC10,KDC10,DC9,YS11,F27,70,100,B737,747-2/3/400,757,767,777-200/300,A319/320/330/380,MD11,CRJ,DHC8
 
aogdesk
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RE: Open Panel On Side Of A320 During Taxi?

Fri Aug 13, 2010 2:03 pm

Glad you asked your question.

Just to add my two cents, the pressure in the aircraft is controlled and regulated not by how much air is pumped in, but how much is allowed to escape via the outflow valve(s). I haven't worked the A320 myself, but I'm assuming that like most other aircraft, there exists another, secondary outflow valve that you weren't able to see. Except for during maintenance, these two valves will always be open on the ground. The valves disprove the myth that if there is a "hole" in the airplane, everyone onboard will be violently sucked thru the small opening. Hollywood is certainly more exciting than reality.  
 
jfktpa119
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RE: Open Panel On Side Of A320 During Taxi?

Fri Aug 13, 2010 3:43 pm

Quoting etarsa (Reply 2):
This is an outflow valve to regulate the cabin pressurization.

It looks like a door thats open that doesn't seem aerodynamic (if you look at it largely). Does it close before take off?
 
Maverick623
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RE: Open Panel On Side Of A320 During Taxi?

Fri Aug 13, 2010 4:12 pm

Quoting jfktpa119 (Thread starter):
When the aircraft the taxied away I thought maybe I should even say something to the gate agent. In fear I might embarass myself I didn't

I've gotten more than a couple of calls on the radio about a gate agent reporting an open panel, only for it to be that. I've also gotten one where the potable water door was left often. Granted, it's not a huge deal, as anything left open that would compromise the safety of flight would set off bells and whistles in the flight deck, but it never hurts to let someone know.
"PHX is Phoenix, PDX is the other city" -777Way
 
bri2k1
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RE: Open Panel On Side Of A320 During Taxi?

Fri Aug 13, 2010 4:38 pm

Quoting jfktpa119 (Reply 4):
Does it close before take off?

Not necessarily before, but shortly after as the plane climbs and the cabin begins to be pressurized. Lots of other threads nearby about how pressurization and outflow valves work.
Position and hold
 
PGNCS
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RE: Open Panel On Side Of A320 During Taxi?

Fri Aug 13, 2010 7:46 pm

Quoting aogdesk (Reply 3):
I haven't worked the A320 myself, but I'm assuming that like most other aircraft, there exists another, secondary outflow valve that you weren't able to see.

There is no secondary outflow valve on the A-320. It has underpressure and overpressure relief valves on the aft pressure bulkhead (which is, of course, invisible outside the aircraft.)

Quoting jfktpa119 (Reply 4):
It looks like a door thats open that doesn't seem aerodynamic (if you look at it largely). Does it close before take off?

It's open on the ground until the thrust levers are advanced for takeoff, at which point it starts to drive closed pressurizing the cabin at -500FPM until a PSID of 0.1 is reached. This eliminates the big pressure bump on liftoff like on some older aircraft.

It may look like it's not aerodynamic, but like every other piece of the aircraft it is optimized with great thought.
 
wn700driver
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RE: Open Panel On Side Of A320 During Taxi?

Sat Aug 14, 2010 4:07 am

Quoting jfktpa119 (Reply 4):

It looks like a door thats open that doesn't seem aerodynamic (if you look at it largely). Does it close before take off?

Can't say for the 320, but on many types, such valves (like the Super 80's "dinner plate"), don't close all the way until the AC literally passes through the alt. the cabin is pressurized to...
Base not your happiness on the deeds of others, for what is given can be taken away. No Hope = No Fear
 
soon7x7
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RE: Open Panel On Side Of A320 During Taxi?

Sat Aug 14, 2010 2:12 pm

Now this is an open panel...this is the rampers communications panel, their is probably a nickname for it...I'm sure the entire flight was conducted with this open as a week before when I was shooting Pix @ JFK, the tower contact our Port Authority vehicle about a CRJ crew complaining of an exterior noise outside their cockpit. they were in a CRJ exactly like the one in the photo...They were positioned behind an Air China 747/400. The same access door was open and flapping in the 747's exhaust stream. My driver would not take the responsibility to get out and close it, (as he shouldn't) the crew of the CRJ emphatically agreed to allow me to get out and close it for them, as we communicated to (ground/tower) that was talking to the CRJ crew that I was also a pilot and mechanic and that I would take on the enormous responsibility to go over to the aircraft and close it. Both crew gave the enthusiastic, thumbs up...and the two Hartwell latches were successfully closed! A week later I was going through some of my images and saw this shot w/ the same access panel open. I have noticed that on Gulfstreams they actually have an aerodynamic vane on the inside of the same access panel in case it is left open, it will stay in one position and not flap around in flight.
open access door
 
zanl188
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RE: Open Panel On Side Of A320 During Taxi?

Sat Aug 14, 2010 2:38 pm

May seem trivial but an open panel can be one of the links in the accident chain.... take a look at this...

Galaxy Airlines L-188 at Reno.

http://www.ntsb.gov/ntsb/GenPDF.asp?id=DCA85AA010&rpt=fi
Legal considerations provided by: Dewey, Cheatum, and Howe
 
soon7x7
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RE: Open Panel On Side Of A320 During Taxi?

Sat Aug 14, 2010 3:00 pm

Quoting ZANL188 (Reply 10):

Apparently so...What is an L-188, an Electra?...I once remembered watching a Delta L-1011 pushing back at JFK one day when I was young. The fueler never closed the underwing refueling door which was quite large. I was pounding on the 1" thick glass in the terminal window to get the rampers attention but to avail. As he later was walking back to his post I started to jump up and down to get his attention...he saw me and I pointed to the plane, he did see the open door and they ran him up a baggage conveyer to close the cover. Makes you wonder how many times you have flown when something was not right...   
 
zanl188
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RE: Open Panel On Side Of A320 During Taxi?

Sat Aug 14, 2010 5:05 pm

Quoting soon7x7 (Reply 11):
Apparently so...What is an L-188, an Electra?...

Yes sir, this one as a matter of fact....


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I was handling L-188s from a number of companies (Zantop, Interstate, Cam Air, and Galaxy among others) at the time. We always double checked the doors after the Reno accident. Galaxy lost it's certificate not long after - odd company, one of the flight engineers was the CEO. Capts were routinely getting their judgement questioned by the guy at the FE panel...
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soon7x7
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RE: Open Panel On Side Of A320 During Taxi?

Sun Aug 15, 2010 11:47 am

Quoting ZANL188 (Reply 12):

Conni Kalitta used to have a ramp full of them, whatever did he do with them?.I remember in the begining it did not take much to bring one down as the angle of incidence of the wing was off some 2 degrees or something like that. They had a habit of breaking up. Fast aircraft though. For a prop driven aircraft they look pretty good as well...g
 
zanl188
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RE: Open Panel On Side Of A320 During Taxi?

Sun Aug 15, 2010 12:22 pm

Quoting soon7x7 (Reply 13):
I remember in the begining it did not take much to bring one down as the angle of incidence of the wing was off some 2 degrees or something like that. They had a habit of breaking up.

This sounds like the "whirl mode" problem Electras had early on. At certain airspeeds the props would excite the wing structure to flutter and eventually self destruct. Braniff & Northwest both lost Electras this way IIRC. Beefed up structure changed the frequency, problem solved.
Legal considerations provided by: Dewey, Cheatum, and Howe
 
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HAWK21M
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RE: Open Panel On Side Of A320 During Taxi?

Mon Aug 16, 2010 8:13 am

Quoting soon7x7 (Reply 9):

The B737 Communication access panel can get forgotten to be closed but is Hinged to aling in the slipstream to reduce drag.
regds
MEL.
I may not win often, but I damn well never lose!!! ;)
 
soon7x7
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RE: Open Panel On Side Of A320 During Taxi?

Mon Aug 16, 2010 3:12 pm

Quoting HAWK21M (Reply 15):

Roger that...Same MD-80, I have a shot of one of them open as well.
 
AA737-823
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RE: Open Panel On Side Of A320 During Taxi?

Wed Aug 18, 2010 11:10 am

Quoting soon7x7 (Reply 9):
Now this is an open panel...this is the rampers communications panel, their is probably a nickname for it...I'm sure the entire flight was conducted with this open as a week before when I was shooting Pix @ JFK, the tower contact our Port Authority vehicle about a CRJ crew complaining of an exterior noise outside their cockpit. they were in a CRJ exactly like the one in the photo...They were positioned behind an Air China 747/400. The same access door was open and flapping in the 747's exhaust stream. My driver would not take the responsibility to get out and close it, (as he shouldn't) the crew of the CRJ emphatically agreed to allow me to get out and close it for them, as we communicated to (ground/tower) that was talking to the CRJ crew that I was also a pilot and mechanic and that I would take on the enormous responsibility to go over to the aircraft and close it. Both crew gave the enthusiastic, thumbs up...and the two Hartwell latches were successfully closed! A week later I was going through some of my images and saw this shot w/ the same access panel open. I have noticed that on Gulfstreams they actually have an aerodynamic vane on the inside of the same access panel in case it is left open, it will stay in one position and not flap around in flight.

Quite lame of Canadair to design it hinged at the bottom... what were they thinking?
On our 737s, every panel I can think of (on classics, this includes forward lav access, com box, aft lav access, potable water service, and hell-hole door) are either forward hinged, or such a location as to where the wind will blow them shut. Not an ideal situation, mind you, but better than having it flap up and down until it flaps itself into an engine inlet.
Come to think of it, the 737-NGs are the same way...

Anyhow, as far as the aerodynamics of outflow valves go, they have been redesigned in recent years to have this panel protruding down at the forward edge of the cutout. This design creates a localized area of low pressure behind the forward panel, which helps ensure reliable flow rate, should the aircraft enter unusual flight modes.
Previously, Boeing simply used a rotating, rectangular plate that disappeared into the fuselage cavity.
I realize that's a lame explanation, but I can't do much better without drawing a picture!!
 
soon7x7
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RE: Open Panel On Side Of A320 During Taxi?

Wed Aug 18, 2010 2:10 pm

Quoting AA737-823 (Reply 17):
but better than having it flap up and down until it flaps itself into an engine inlet.

My thoughts exactly...one of these would chew up a fan real badly...My guess is the axis of the hinge has a least been positioned so that during flight a positive load is on the panel at all times...just a hypothesis...
 
musang
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RE: Open Panel On Side Of A320 During Taxi?

Mon Aug 23, 2010 10:02 pm

I was once sitting in the United terminal at ORD and a 733 taxied in and parked in front of me. The comms panel was not only open, but had the headset cable still attached, now dragging along the ground. There was a junction box or connector on the end of it, presumably what the ground crew plugged the headset into.

Attention soon turned to the wing root, which the junction box had been impacting. I could see the dents from the gate lounge.

Regards - musang
 
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HAWK21M
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RE: Open Panel On Side Of A320 During Taxi?

Wed Aug 25, 2010 2:50 pm

Quoting musang (Reply 19):
I was once sitting in the United terminal at ORD and a 733 taxied in and parked in front of me. The comms panel was not only open, but had the headset cable still attached,

With the Cable attached is really rare.Unless the person wa using those detachable plug in Head sets which add up as Ear defenders.

Why don't people just double check their work.

regds
MEL.
I may not win often, but I damn well never lose!!! ;)
 
FLY2TUS
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RE: Open Panel On Side Of A320 During Taxi?

Wed Aug 25, 2010 8:09 pm

This is another example of what can happen if panels are left open. These were found on my walk-around after an arrival from MCI. We think they were left open by MX in MCI...



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