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Latest news and updates about the aviation industry

How Do Pilots Turn On an Airplane?

Photo Credit: pixabay.com If you’re like many people, you may wonder: “Does an aircraft have a key?” Or more specifically, do aircraft have keys for ignition? For large planes, the answer is no. In the case of smaller private jets, some of them may use keys for ignition and doors but not all.   When pilots start the engines of an aircraft, specifically most passenger jets, they do not insert a key into the ignition. To provide power to the aircraft, they need to perform a specific startup procedure.   Powering the plane engine To power a commercial jet, the pilot must operate a series of buttons, switches, and knobs successively. This turns on the Auxiliary Power Unit (APU) or the Ground Power Unit (GPU) —  devices that are used to provide electrical power to the plane while also generating essential air pressure to the engines.   When you’re in the cabin, you may notice the air-conditioning system turning off and the lights dimming or flickering. This happens because the APU is directing air from the plane into the engines. The cabin lights get dimmer also because the APU must use electricity to power all vital systems of the aircraft.   Once the APU bleeds enough air to the starter, the engines will start spinning. The RPM of the engines must be monitored and when they reach a required frequency, fuel will be introduced. After that, the RPM will be monitored once again and when it reaches another set frequency, then the aircraft engine has successfully been turned on.   Conclusion Basically, commercial airplanes do not have ignition keys...

Why There are Few Female Airline Pilots?

Photo Credit: pixabay.com The aviation industry has a long and rich history. It has numerous breakthroughs and accomplishments, but why do we always associate these great things with men? In general, the roles of women in this field aren’t as recognized as they should be.   In this age, women are achieving great things. There are a lot of successful and acclaimed accountants, doctors, designers, etc. But when it comes to female pilots, there is very little that we hear about. We need to address this issue to further inspire females not just to become pilots, but to pursue whatever career that they wish to excel on.   Issues to overcome Aviation is a highly male-dominant field. According to a 2006 study called Gender issues in aviation: pilot perceptions and employment relations, women are put off by the “masculine beliefs, values, and perceptions [that] appear to continue to dominate the industry.” The research also stated reports of assault, concupiscent dialogue, and sexism toward women.   Airlines around the world are addressing and providing solutions for such issues. For example, United Airlines spokesperson stated that the airline has no tolerance for such situations and would be very quick to inflict penalty or sanction to anyone who performs any type of harassment toward its crew, especially female pilots.   Destroying barriers Due to the global shortage of active commercial pilots, airlines are striving to make the position a lot more appealing to both men and women. Qantas, for example, is aiming to ‘up the ante’ by hiring more female pilots into their company. Just recently, Air India has operated an all-female...

Does an Aircraft Have a Key?

Photo Credit: pixabay.com When we think of vehicles, we immediately associate them with keys for ignition, doors, and compartments. The key provides security and safety of the vehicle along with everything contained inside of it. Thus, it’s reasonable for airplanes to have a key considering how large and valuable they are. But is that really the case? You’d be surprised to learn that when it comes to aircraft, bigger commercial jets like the Boeing 747 do not have keys. Accessing the boarding door and the ignition can be accessed and turned on respectively without the need for a key. However, there are some private jets that actually do have keys, but not all. These smaller aircraft are owned and used by individuals. Does This Make the Keyless Aircraft More Prone to Theft? The short answer is no. When not in use, passenger jets are housed in airport hangars which are heavily guarded by surveillance cameras and security personnel. Moreover, airline staff and passengers can only gain access to the aircraft via moveable stairs or a jet bridge. These things, like the aircraft, are also protected by airport security and cannot be used by unauthorized persons. The ignition for most large aircraft also does not require a key. But what if some random person somehow managed to get inside the cockpit without getting caught? Can they simply push the “Start” button and successfully take the plane for themselves? Well, not really. First of all, there is no simple “Start” button. Starting an aircraft engine is complex and requires training. A lot of buttons, knobs, and levers need to be manipulated...

Female Pilots

Photo Credit: pixabay.com There are many industries that are characterized by their complexity, importance, and meaningfulness. Medicine, finance, and technology are three examples, and in those three, women have been playing such crucial roles. Aviation is also an important field, but the roles of women in this field seem to be more obscure despite their decisive contributions. It is time to change that. As aviation continues to progress, women must be recognized as much as their male colleagues for all the great things they’ve done for the industry. Notable Women in Aviation History was made when Emily Howell Warner, an American airline pilot, became the first woman to regularly fly a commercial jetliner back in 1973. This was a monumental time for women who initially only dreamt of being able to enter the aviation industry as a pilot. Prior to that, women have already been breaking stereotypes in the flight industry with their skills, intelligence, and perseverance. Bessie Coleman is well-known for being the first African-American to ever receive her license in 1921. In March 1927, Millicent Bryant became the first woman to receive her pilot’s license to fly a private jet in Australia. Katherine Sui Fun Cheung also made a memorable achievement when she received her private pilot’s license in 1932. Cheung is the first woman of Chinese descent to ever receive a pilot’s license in the US. Diversification Between the years 2010 and 2014, there has been an increase of 800 women with the license to pilot an airliner, but overall, females only make up for 3-4% of airline pilots. Airline companies, along with the entire aviation...

A Flight Engineer’s Career

Photo Credit: pixabay.com A flight engineer also called an air engineer, is the member of an aircraft’s flight crew who monitors and operates complex aircraft systems. In most modern aircraft, their complex systems are both monitored and adjusted by electronic microprocessors and computers, resulting in the elimination of the flight engineer’s position. So, what does a Flight Engineer do? A flight engineer is responsible for ensuring that all components of the plane are in proper working order. It is their duty to make any of the repairs if a mechanical issue does arise. Flight engineers are also used to interpret complicated flight-related gauges and instruments, and to help pilots with navigation. However, several of these duties have been diminished due to the emergence of automated computer programs which are capable of performing several of the same duties at a cheaper cost. Regardless, flight engineers are still widely used by the military and by companies with larger aircraft. This is because military aircraft use the most recent technology, operate under different systems than commercial airlines, and are at higher risk of attack or mechanical problems. Certain countries also have laws requiring all three and four engine airplanes to carry a licensed flight engineer. A flight engineer’s career includes an extensive list of roles both on and off the ground. Before takeoff begins, they must inspect the aircraft and ensure that it is safe for use. They often have a pre-flight checklist that has to be completed before a plane is cleared to fly. These include checks for any fluid leaks or improperly inflated tires. Once the plane is airborne, the...

Some Cool Facts About Planes

Photo Credit: pixabay.com You already know that planes fly and they take us to places, but do you know that there are some interesting facts about airplanes don’t know about? Read on for the top cool facts about planes from various sources (i.e., Reader’s Digest, DailyMail Online, Travel and Leisure and Fact Retriever). The long, thin body of an aircraft is called the fuselage, and at the end of the fuselage is where the pilots man the plane, which is called the cockpit. Aircraft wings feature a shape called an airfoil which is designed to create lift as the plane moves through the air. As the airplane flies, the air pressure below and above the wings is different, which keeps the airplane airborne. This difference of pressure is termed as “lift.” The little hole in the airplane window is necessary to regulate cabin pressure. Airplane windows are made up of multiple panels, so the hole helps the middle panel from becoming stressed with pressure during flight. When a plane lands at night, cabin crews will dim the interior lights, since in the event that the landing goes badly and evacuating passengers will have their eyes already be adjusted to the darkness. White lines in the sky that follow the plane’s trail are called vapor trails or contrails, which is the result of fuel being burned; it produces carbon dioxide and water, which condenses into tiny droplets behind a plane in the air. The internet and on-line check-in was first used by Alaska Airlines in 1999. Airplanes are lightning-proof. There are about 200,000 flights airborne every day, across the world. The...

Safety Tips for Air Travel

Photo Credit: pixabay.com Whether it is your first time or your nth time in riding a plane, several air travel safety rules such as the following list of air travel safety tips should always be kept in mind. In case you’ve forgotten, here are the basics. Study the passenger safety card thoroughly so that the information is fresh in your mind. Listen when the flight attendant gives the safety briefing. Know where the emergency exits are. It is best to count the rows between your seat and the exit row, so you could find it if the cabin gets dark or smoke-filled. Immediately locate the flotation device from your seat. In case of fire, bend down close to the floor and move away from the fire and smoke. Also, place a wet handkerchief over your nose and mouth to help you breathe better. Put your luggage in the overhead bin across the aisle from you so that you can see that no one is opening your luggage during the flight. The safest seating is on the exit aisle in the back of the airplane as it is usually farthest from impact and farthest from explosive fuel. Keep your seat belt fastened. Keeping the belt on when you are seated provides that extra protection you might need to help you avoid injuries when the plane experiences turbulence. Don’t bring any hazardous materials. The basic hazardous materials that are not allowed on the plane are gasoline, corrosives and poisonous gases unless they were allowed by the airline and stored in a proper container. Reduce alcohol intake. The atmosphere in an airliner cabin...

What is an Airfoil in Aviation?

Photo Credit: pixabay.com You may or may not have heard what is an airfoil on an airplane. What is an airfoil and how does it work? An airfoil is the shape of the aircraft’s wing, blade (of a propeller, rotor, or turbine). It is the term used to describe the cross-sectional shape of an object that, when moved through a fluid such as air, creates an aerodynamic force. Airfoils are employed on aircraft as wings to produce lift or as propeller blades to produce thrust. Both these forces are produce perpendicular to the air flow. Drag is a consequence of the production of lift/thrust and acts parallel to the airflow. Other airfoil surfaces include tailplanes, fins, winglets, and helicopter rotor blades. Control surfaces are shaped to contribute to the overall aerofoil section of the wing or empennage The basic principle behind an aerofoil is described by Bernoulli’s theorem. Basically, this states that total pressure is equal to static pressure (due to the weight of air above) plus dynamic pressure (due to the motion of air). Air that travels over the top surface of the aerofoil has to travel faster and thus gains dynamic pressure. The subsequent loss of static pressure creates a pressure difference between the upper and lower surfaces that is called the lift and opposes the weight of an aircraft (or thrust that opposes drag). As the angle of attack (the angle between the chord line and relative air flow) is increased, more lift is created. Once the critical angle of attack is reached (generally around 14 degrees) the aerofoil will stall. According to Dynamic Flight (2002), several terms are used to describe what...

Are Solar Planes the Future of Flight?

Photo Credit: pixabay.com Between years 2015 and 2016, Solar Impulse 2, the first flying solar aircraft completed a circumnavigation of the Earth. This may be quite an achievement in aviation since aircrafts are mostly being propelled by fuel-powered engines. This may also be an environmental achievement, as it only uses solar power to make airplanes fly, as opposed to fuel which would bring about a heavy amount of carbon emissions in the atmosphere. Now that Solar Impulse 2 has flown and completed a turn around the Earth, are solar planes the future of flight? How does a solar-powered airplane work anyway? Here’s a preview of how it works, from revolvy.com: a Solar cell converts sunlight into electricity, either for direct power or temporary storage. The power output of solar cells is small, even when many are connected together, which limits their use and is also expensive. However, their use of freely available sunlight makes them attractive for high-altitude, long-endurance applications. For endurance flights, keeping the craft in the air all night typically requires a backup storage system, which supplies power during the hours of darkness and recharges during the day. Now back to the journey of the first flying solar aircraft. Solar Impulse 2’s journey to circumnavigate the Earth took more than a year, 505 days to be exact, to fly 26,000 miles (42,000 km) at an average speed of about 45 mph (70 kph). Despite its relatively slow speed and relatively low altitude, Swiss pilots Bertrand Piccard and Andre Borschberg successfully landed the Solar Impulse 2 aircraft in Abu Dhabi on July 26, 2016, after flying around the world using...

Why the Plane was Invented and Some Historical Tidbits

Photo Credit: pixabay.com You may wonder why the plane was invented? Due to man’s desire to discover new methods of transportation and the desire to travel long distances without the complications of terrain as well as to travel in the shortest time possible, the plane was then created. What was the first flight in history? While many believe that the airplane was invented by the Wright brothers in Kitty Hawk, N.C., it was said that the first man to fly was New Zealander Richard Pearse in 1902, eight months before the Wright brothers first flew. Pearse, according to witnesses, flew a length of 50 to 400 yards in a heavier-than-air machine. Pearse’s aircraft was the first to use proper ailerons, which allowed the wings to warp and turn the aircraft. Though many credit the invention of airplanes to the Wright brothers, Richard Pearse never reported his inventions because he didn’t know there was any interest in flying. However, the Wright brothers were the first flyers to be officially recorded and the first to have also patented their invention. Though the Wright brothers tested many gliders in the early 1900s, none of them counted as an actual aircraft, and the brothers didn’t achieve flight until late 1903 with their first plane, the Flyer I. The craft weighed over 600 pounds, and Orville Wright was the first pilot, which was decided through a toss coin. The craft remained airborne for 12 seconds and traveled a little over 120 feet. To zoom in on the aviation history of the Philippines, here is a timeline of the Philippine Airline Industry: The government created an...

What Makes Airplanes Fly

Photo Credit: pixabay.com Ever wondered what makes airplanes fly or what makes a plane stay in the air or how airplanes work? The airplane, which is one of the greatest inventions in transportation, heavily relies on the laws of physics for it to actually work and take you to your desired destination in a lesser amount of time than traveling on land or on the sea. You may have observed several planes taking off or landing, and the first thing that you’ll have noticed is the engine noise.  You might think that engines responsible for making planes fly, but you’re not entirely correct—to point an example, paper planes and birds can fly without engines, right?. However, a plane’s engine has an important role where it is designed to move it forward at a high speed. Its engine is only one of the things that makes it fly but is not totally responsible for keeping it up in the air. So really, what makes airplanes fly? There are four forces that keep an airplane in the sky—thrust, lift, drag and weight. Thrust is the force that moves the airplane forward, care of the plane’s engine. This high speed from the thrust of the plane makes rapid air flow over the wings, which throw the air down toward the ground, generating an upward force called lift that overcomes the plane’s weight and holds it in the sky. Simply put, the lift pushes the airplane up. Wings make lift by changing the direction and pressure of the air that crashes into them as the engines shoot them through the sky. Remember, it’s the engines that move a plane forward, but...

Introducing the Four Forces of Flight

Photo Credit: pixabay.com Ever wonder what keeps the plane up in the sky? The four forces of flight are thrust, lift, drag and weight. So, what are the four forces of flight and what do they do? Let us enumerate each of this for better understanding. The first force, thrust, is the force that moves the airplane forward, of which the plane’s engine is responsible. The high speed from the airplane’s thrust makes rapid air flow over the wings, which throw the air down toward the ground. From this, an upward force is generated, Called lift which is another force of flight. Lift overcomes the plane’s weight and holds it in the sky. Simply put, the lift pushes the airplane up; wings make lift by changing the direction and pressure of the air that crashes into them as the engines shoot them through the sky. The lift comes when the air below the airplane wing is pushing up harder than the air above it is pushing down; it is this difference in pressure that enables the plane to fly. Pressure can be reduced on a wing’s surface by making the air move over it more quickly. For additional information, the wings of a plane are shaped like a curve so that the air moves more quickly over the top of the wing, resulting in an upward push on the wing. Remember, it’s the engines that move a plane forward (i.e., thrust), but it’s the wings move it upward (i.e., lift). Another force, called drag, slows the airplane. For a relatable picture, drag is what you feel when you walk against a...

Why is it safer to travel by air than by land?

Photo Credit: pexels.com Why is it safer to travel by air than by land? From safe air travel tips to air travel safety briefings during flights, it could be easily deduced that it is indeed a safer mode of transportation, despite being thousands of feet in the air. Still not convinced? Here are some reasons to persuade you to think otherwise. Airplane Design The world’s commercial airliners have accumulated an estimated number of one billion flight hours which provided the airline industry with records and a steady stream of information that is used to constantly improve the design of airplanes and engines. Today, manufacturers know what happens in the real flight scenario, which prompts refinements that may make a genuine difference in safety and design. Airline technology Compared with your car’s latest technology, airline technology makes motor vehicles look like vessels from the Stone Age in comparison as technology on airplanes controls almost the entire flight. For instance, planes can detect turbulence and can predict the general behavior of the turbulence. Also, runway safety technology communicates between planes to warn pilots if there may be another incoming plane. These technological improvements control all aspects of flying and the responsibility of a pilot to steer a plane is almost obsolete. Most planes today feature electronic controls that have replaced outdated mechanical controls. Rigorous pilot training Pilots go through rigorous training and certification processes. Many pilots are retired members of the Air Force plus, one must go to flight school and receive a pilot’s license. Most airline companies also require pilots to attend at least 2 years of college. Air traffic control...

Thoughts to Ponder on How to Become a Pilot in Davao

It is a fact that every school envisions transforming students into competent individuals and these transformed individuals will be sought by Airline companies in the future. In line with your dream, you may consider Davao City as one of the pilot-training hubs in the country.

Soaring has no Limit with the Best Cebu Flying School

Looking for a qualified Philippine Aviation School? Well, Cebu city can be highlighted as a significant “pilot-training hub” which offers a pool of competent instructors and state-of-the-art machines. A Cebu flying school is committed to transform student’s skills in running and operating complex machines and at the same time attune them in manoeuvring sophisticated planes.

Discovering Flying School in Cebu

Are you aspiring to become a pilot someday and have been surfing in the internet about Philippine Flying School for quite some time? Are you dreaming of manoeuvring a computer-generated plane and have an overview of skyscrapers while closely encountering clouds? If you are, it is a must to try the state-of-the-art technology of Flying School in Cebu wherein features include control boards that perfectly mimicked the real one and sets the mode similar with the actual environments and conditions whether daytime or night time.