airboeingbus
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Crashworthiness of modern airliners vs old

Tue Sep 10, 2019 1:22 pm

How has the Crashworthiness and structural integrity changed in airliners over the past decade. I'm talking simply jet aircraft here so probably from the Comet and 707 onwards. We often hear that these older planes where built like a tank but are they really? Modern airframes have shown they can withstand great impacts and accidents and still remain in one piece protecting passengers inside examples I can think of include US1549 Asiana 214 and the recent cornfield landing incident.
 
kalvado
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Re: Crashworthiness of modern airliners vs old

Tue Sep 10, 2019 1:36 pm

I wouldn't expect too much difference in terms of the frame itself. Withstanding high-g loads without disintegrating is one thing, but the human body can take only that much without serious injury. I suspect improved fire control is the biggest thing in terms of survivability, though.
Looking at the 707 crash history, control integrity is another area of big progress (737MAX, hello!). Nosedive is pretty much unsurvivable, no matter what; but those seem rare these days.
 
Ziyulu
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Re: Crashworthiness of modern airliners vs old

Tue Sep 10, 2019 2:37 pm

What about the 787? Can it withstand collisions as good since it is composite material?
 
frmrCapCadet
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Re: Crashworthiness of modern airliners vs old

Tue Sep 10, 2019 2:43 pm

Reduced fire hazard throughout the plane, better emergency evacuation, seats/belts withstanding failure, and some hull integrity improvements. I am not remembering just what decade, but it seemed sudden that landing and even takeoff crashes became survivable. In the 50s and 60s a lot weren't.
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ACCS300
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Re: Crashworthiness of modern airliners vs old

Tue Sep 10, 2019 2:47 pm

A320s ( and 321s ) have proved extremely resilient in two very high profile incidents, US Airways miracle on the Hudson and the recent Ural Airways birdstrike landing. Both frames stayed intact. The 738's seem to have a lot of incidents of fuselage breaks just after the wings in numerous landing incidents.
 
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zeke
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Re: Crashworthiness of modern airliners vs old

Tue Sep 10, 2019 2:47 pm

“Built like a tank” I think is a fallacy, bit like saying what is better in a crash a 1960s F1 car to today’s.

Today’s aircraft are designed and certified with crashworthiness and passengers occupancy protection, those rules have come in place as lessons were learned from fatal crashes from the past.

If I’m going to have an accident, the newer the car, boats, helicopter, aircraft the better.
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lightsaber
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Re: Crashworthiness of modern airliners vs old

Tue Sep 10, 2019 2:48 pm

Modern aircraft are designed to flex and withstand a 9-G load. Older aircraft being more rigid put more stress in people earlier. The Asians 777 crash was the only crash I know if where people in bulk survived where I speculate they would have died old school.

Crash rates plummeted with time. That matters more than survivability as there is a small window of survivable crashes.

Fuel tanks are safer too. Nitrogen innerting is a huge safety plus. It isn't perfect, but it definitively gives more time in an evacuation.

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mxaxai
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Re: Crashworthiness of modern airliners vs old

Tue Sep 10, 2019 3:28 pm

Other examples would be the EK 773 that crashlanded in DXB, the Air Niugini 738 that crashlanded in the ocean, the Lionair 738 that crashlanded in the ocean or the Aeromexico E190 that didn't become airborne.

However, there have been so few serious incidents of modern aircraft that crash safety is difficult to determine from statistics. We don't know how a A380, A350 or 787 would fare in such a situation; you would need to consult a computer simulation.
 
kalvado
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Re: Crashworthiness of modern airliners vs old

Tue Sep 10, 2019 3:43 pm

lightsaber wrote:
The Asians 777 crash was the only crash I know if where people in bulk survived where I speculate they would have died old school.

Do you think China Airlines 642 - MD-11 - is on a same page as 214? Not exactly the same, of course, but still an upside down plane landing in pieces - and few casualties?
Not a very old school as 707, though.
 
tommy1808
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Re: Crashworthiness of modern airliners vs old

Tue Sep 10, 2019 6:23 pm

kalvado wrote:
lightsaber wrote:
The Asians 777 crash was the only crash I know if where people in bulk survived where I speculate they would have died old school.

Do you think China Airlines 642 - MD-11 - is on a same page as 214? Not exactly the same, of course, but still an upside down plane landing in pieces - and few casualties? .


I think that one had the plain luck of coming down in Noah level rainfall.

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Thomas
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WIederling
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Re: Crashworthiness of modern airliners vs old

Tue Sep 10, 2019 6:53 pm

ACCS300 wrote:
A320s ( and 321s ) have proved extremely resilient in two very high profile incidents, US Airways miracle on the Hudson and the recent Ural Airways birdstrike landing. Both frames stayed intact. The 738's seem to have a lot of incidents of fuselage breaks just after the wings in numerous landing incidents.


Better higher rated structure and pax seating or(and?) sinkrate excursions limited by FBW?
The 738 AMS Polderbaan crash had excess sinkrate ( for landing ) severing the fuselage.
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Starlionblue
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Re: Crashworthiness of modern airliners vs old

Tue Sep 10, 2019 11:18 pm

WIederling wrote:
ACCS300 wrote:
A320s ( and 321s ) have proved extremely resilient in two very high profile incidents, US Airways miracle on the Hudson and the recent Ural Airways birdstrike landing. Both frames stayed intact. The 738's seem to have a lot of incidents of fuselage breaks just after the wings in numerous landing incidents.


Better higher rated structure and pax seating or(and?) sinkrate excursions limited by FBW?
The 738 AMS Polderbaan crash had excess sinkrate ( for landing ) severing the fuselage.


Descent rate, or excursions of same, isn't limited by Airbus FBW.

What is relevant in these cases is AoA protection, preventing a stall. The famous video of the A320 crash at Mulhouse-Habsheim illustrates it well.
"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots." - John Ringo
 
extender
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Re: Crashworthiness of modern airliners vs old

Wed Sep 11, 2019 8:14 am

The fuselage hasn't changed much. The interiors are safer(reasonably) with 16G seats, the flammability reduction of the components. Some forward facing seats now have shoulder harnesses and airbags.
 
Armadillo1
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Re: Crashworthiness of modern airliners vs old

Wed Sep 11, 2019 10:05 am

 
extender
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Re: Crashworthiness of modern airliners vs old

Wed Sep 11, 2019 10:55 am

Armadillo1 wrote:
https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/BOAC_Flight_911

Some changes indeed was applied


What changes are you referring to?
 
Armadillo1
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Re: Crashworthiness of modern airliners vs old

Wed Sep 11, 2019 11:20 am

for this one example -
Although some stress cracking was found in the vertical stabiliser bolt holes, it was determined by subsequent testing that it did not contribute to the structural failure. Still, it was potentially a significant flight safety issue. Subsequent inspections on Boeing 707 and similar Boeing 720 aircraft as a result of this discovery did reveal this was a common problem, and corrective maintenance actions on the fleet eventually followed

http://content.time.com/time/magazine/a ... 13,00.html

may be this is a wrong example.


but i mean in general, many rules has been implemented since 707 first flight.
From CAR 4b.270 fail-safe (1956) to FAR 25.571 damage tolerande (1978) , etc

nay be right example will be
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1977_Dan- ... _707_crash
which lead to change in rules
 
WIederling
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Re: Crashworthiness of modern airliners vs old

Wed Sep 11, 2019 11:41 am

extender wrote:
The fuselage hasn't changed much. The interiors are safer(reasonably) with 16G seats, the flammability reduction of the components. Some forward facing seats now have shoulder harnesses and airbags.


9g versus 16g ( or is it 14g?) fuselage for newer ( than grandfathered 737 ) designs.
( IMU this and some other cert. changes were "created" for the A320 during the development time frame :-)
Murphy is an optimist
 
1989worstyear
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Re: Crashworthiness of modern airliners vs old

Wed Sep 11, 2019 12:08 pm

WIederling wrote:
extender wrote:
The fuselage hasn't changed much. The interiors are safer(reasonably) with 16G seats, the flammability reduction of the components. Some forward facing seats now have shoulder harnesses and airbags.


9g versus 16g ( or is it 14g?) fuselage for newer ( than grandfathered 737 ) designs.
( IMU this and some other cert. changes were "created" for the A320 during the development time frame :-)


Interior flammability requirements have changed a bit since 1988, same with seat crashworthiness. However, similar to the 737, some requirements on A320's rolling off the line today are still grandfathered to the 1988 amendment levels (much changed between 1968 and '88 though).

No idea about the fuselage itself.
Last edited by 1989worstyear on Wed Sep 11, 2019 12:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Stuck at age 15 thanks to the certification date of the A320-200 and my parents' decision to postpone having a kid by 3 years. At least there's Dignitas...
 
1989worstyear
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Re: Crashworthiness of modern airliners vs old

Wed Sep 11, 2019 12:14 pm

I'm assuming the 757 and 767 would fall in the "old" category with the 727 and 747 classics, with the dividing line being 1988 when the A320 entered service?

However, I seem to remember seeing a camcorder video of a 767 runway overrun shot inside by passenger - the plane remained intact and everyone evacuated fine. I think it was a South American airline but I can't remember the name.
Stuck at age 15 thanks to the certification date of the A320-200 and my parents' decision to postpone having a kid by 3 years. At least there's Dignitas...
 
tommy1808
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Re: Crashworthiness of modern airliners vs old

Wed Sep 11, 2019 12:33 pm

1989worstyear wrote:
I'm assuming the 757 and 767 would fall in the "old" category with the 727 and 747 classics, with the dividing line being 1988 when the A320 entered service?


That would seem right... I can vaguely recall that EASA (or some other) required changes with the 744 due to one cable raceway being considered a single point of failure if the floor between upper and lower deck gave in, and that was too mich for grandfathering. But again, that is blurry pre-internet memory.....

Best regards
Thomas
This Singature is a safe space......
 
extender
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Re: Crashworthiness of modern airliners vs old

Wed Sep 11, 2019 12:53 pm

1989worstyear wrote:
However, I seem to remember seeing a camcorder video of a 767 runway overrun shot inside by passenger - the plane remained intact and everyone evacuated fine. I think it was a South American airline but I can't remember the name.


TACA 767 at GUA.
 
extender
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Re: Crashworthiness of modern airliners vs old

Wed Sep 11, 2019 12:58 pm

Armadillo1 wrote:
but i mean in general, many rules has been implemented since 707 first flight.
From CAR 4b.270 fail-safe (1956) to FAR 25.571 damage tolerande (1978) , etc


14 CFR § 25.571 has been amended many times since.

I know the inspection for the Vertical Lugs was still being accomplished. Can't find my SB index for the 707, but the 707 SB's were different, they had a four digit number with no order as to the ATA.
 
1989worstyear
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Re: Crashworthiness of modern airliners vs old

Wed Sep 11, 2019 2:27 pm

tommy1808 wrote:
1989worstyear wrote:
I'm assuming the 757 and 767 would fall in the "old" category with the 727 and 747 classics, with the dividing line being 1988 when the A320 entered service?


That would seem right... I can vaguely recall that EASA (or some other) required changes with the 744 due to one cable raceway being considered a single point of failure if the floor between upper and lower deck gave in, and that was too mich for grandfathering. But again, that is blurry pre-internet memory.....

Best regards
Thomas


It still makes me wonder about the 757and 767 - they aren't that much older than the A320 and 744, and aside from the composite horizontal stab on the 320, are not that much different technologically in terms of airframe structure.
Stuck at age 15 thanks to the certification date of the A320-200 and my parents' decision to postpone having a kid by 3 years. At least there's Dignitas...
 
tommy1808
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Re: Crashworthiness of modern airliners vs old

Wed Sep 11, 2019 2:40 pm

1989worstyear wrote:
tommy1808 wrote:
1989worstyear wrote:
I'm assuming the 757 and 767 would fall in the "old" category with the 727 and 747 classics, with the dividing line being 1988 when the A320 entered service?


That would seem right... I can vaguely recall that EASA (or some other) required changes with the 744 due to one cable raceway being considered a single point of failure if the floor between upper and lower deck gave in, and that was too mich for grandfathering. But again, that is blurry pre-internet memory.....

Best regards
Thomas


It still makes me wonder about the 757and 767 - they aren't that much older than the A320 and 744, and aside from the composite horizontal stab on the 320, are not that much different technologically in terms of airframe structure.


FIESTA came out in 1977, and very likely made FEM much more accessible to engineers alongside the computing power to make use of it. Just in time to be used during the 757/767 development, PROBE, as aviation oriented FEM, became available too late for those in the early 80´s, but in time for Airbus. Once you can start crashing whole frames digitally, crashworthiness should start going up ...

best regards
Thomas
This Singature is a safe space......
 
extender
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Re: Crashworthiness of modern airliners vs old

Wed Sep 11, 2019 5:30 pm

1989worstyear wrote:
It still makes me wonder about the 757and 767 - they aren't that much older than the A320 and 744, and aside from the composite horizontal stab on the 320, are not that much different technologically in terms of airframe structure.


I can point out a couple of differences, the A320 uses solid ply layups for the horizontal stabilizer leading edge segments. Each side has three segments, and each has a stainless steel protective plate. The 737 has bonded metal skins and ribs. What the entire 737 leading edge weighs is equivalent to one A320 segment. All 737/757/767/777 leading edge slats have an aluminum nose skin, and honeycomb trailing edges. The A320/A330/A340 slats are heavier due to their trailing edges being heavier.

Not crazy about how the Airbus rudders are assembled; they all have water ingress issues.
 
WIederling
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Re: Crashworthiness of modern airliners vs old

Wed Sep 11, 2019 6:19 pm

tommy1808 wrote:
I can vaguely recall that EASA (or some other) required changes with the 744 due to one cable raceway being considered a single point of failure if the floor between upper and lower deck gave in, and that was too much for grandfathering. But again, that is blurry pre-internet memory.....

Best regards
Thomas

Wasn't that triggered by DC10 freight door failures and
indispensable infrastructure damaged from the floors deforming?

Solution was adding blow out panels afair.
Murphy is an optimist
 
Lukas757
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Re: Crashworthiness of modern airliners vs old

Thu Sep 12, 2019 8:48 am

WIederling wrote:
tommy1808 wrote:
I can vaguely recall that EASA (or some other) required changes with the 744 due to one cable raceway being considered a single point of failure if the floor between upper and lower deck gave in, and that was too much for grandfathering. But again, that is blurry pre-internet memory.....

Best regards
Thomas

Wasn't that triggered by DC10 freight door failures and
indispensable infrastructure damaged from the floors deforming?

Solution was adding blow out panels afair.



The thing tommy is talking about was during certification of the -400 variant and the solution was not adding blow out panels. It had something to do with all (or most) of the cables between the cockpit and the electronics bay being next to each other.
 
snasteve
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Re: Crashworthiness of modern airliners vs old

Thu Sep 12, 2019 10:52 am

I believe the BA 777 crash in London did well from a stronger floor and passenger seats. An older jet might’ve broken in pieces where the 777 held together.

I’m vaguely going by memory when I read somewhere and I just can’t recall it sorry.
 
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litz
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Re: Crashworthiness of modern airliners vs old

Fri Sep 13, 2019 7:19 pm

snasteve wrote:
I believe the BA 777 crash in London did well from a stronger floor and passenger seats. An older jet might’ve broken in pieces where the 777 held together.

I’m vaguely going by memory when I read somewhere and I just can’t recall it sorry.


The same largely could be said for the Asiana 777, which was (without a doubt) a much harder, more destructive, impact.
 
WIederling
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Re: Crashworthiness of modern airliners vs old

Sat Sep 14, 2019 10:19 am

litz wrote:
snasteve wrote:
I believe the BA 777 crash in London did well from a stronger floor and passenger seats. An older jet might’ve broken in pieces where the 777 held together.

I’m vaguely going by memory when I read somewhere and I just can’t recall it sorry.


The same largely could be said for the Asiana 777, which was (without a doubt) a much harder, more destructive, impact.


That went cartwheeling, didn't it? Quite the stress on the airframe.
Murphy is an optimist
 
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litz
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Re: Crashworthiness of modern airliners vs old

Mon Sep 16, 2019 7:12 pm

WIederling wrote:
litz wrote:
snasteve wrote:
I believe the BA 777 crash in London did well from a stronger floor and passenger seats. An older jet might’ve broken in pieces where the 777 held together.

I’m vaguely going by memory when I read somewhere and I just can’t recall it sorry.


The same largely could be said for the Asiana 777, which was (without a doubt) a much harder, more destructive, impact.


That went cartwheeling, didn't it? Quite the stress on the airframe.


Not only cartwheeled, but the initial impact with the seawall sheared off the entire tail assembly, the gear, the engines, and most of the underside of the fuselage aft of the wingbox.

Then it did a full airborne cartwheel, spinning 180-degrees, coming down pointing the direction from which it came.

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