Air International 1994-12
M.Hirst - Anatomy of an Airliner (4)
To reduce drag on climb-out, the undercarriage and flaps are retracted within seconds of take-off. The slats and flaps of this Aeromexpress Boeing 727 are still extended as the undercarriage retracts.
Having descended to around 3,000ft, flaps are extended, as per this Excalibur Airbus A320, and speed control used extensively to ease the task of air traffic control in sequencing aircraft to land.
To steer automatically the aircraft receives information from ground-based navigation aids such as VORs, NDBs and DME systems. Even if ground features were visible, unlike here where a Kuwait Airways Airbus A300-600R is cruising above a featureless cloudscape, navigation without such aids would be hazardous.
Paradoxically, increased navigation accuracy draws aircraft closer to their designated tracks thereby increasing the possibility of a mid-air collision. The apparent closeness of the BAe 125 and BAe 146 is exaggerated by a telephoto lens.
Paradoxically, increased navigation accuracy draws aircraft closer to their designated tracks thereby increasing the possibility of a mid-air collision. The apparent closeness of the BAe 125 and BAe 146 is exaggerated by a telephoto lens.
By the time the aircraft is on final approach it should have its flaps fully-extended, undercarriage lowered and the speed between 120-150kts. America West is operating this Boeing 757 in the colours of the airline's local basketball team, the Phoenix Suns. It was photographed on approach to Las Vegas airport in October 1994.
Decision speeds for take-off are calculated from a knowledge of the aircraft weight, weather conditions, runway height and condition, and surrounding obstacles. For example, water on the runway would increase this Royal Air Maroc Boeing 737's take-off distance.
Whilst automatic-landings facilitate touchdowns in visibility of 50m, with the aircraft travelling at high speed it is important that it should be automatically steered along the runway centreline. This Japan Airlines Boeing 747-400 is decelerating, with spoilers extended.