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Can you land an airliner?

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If you answered, yes, then read this article............."With commercial aviation as rich as it is with mysteries and misconceptions, it's perhaps no surprise that plane-related topics are among the show's most frequent. Most recently, hosts Adam Savage and Jamie Hyneman attempted to find out if people with no flight training, namely themselves, could safely land an airliner. Their answer turned out to be yes, probably.""The correct answer, of course, is no, absolutely not. But who am I to quibble?"http://www.salon.com/tech/col/smith/2007/1...askthepilot258/Although, if you can manage a CATIII Autoland in FS world you might stand a better chance than most. IMHODave FisherCYYZP4 Prescott 3.2e 478p 800mhz 1mg CPUP4P800SE Asus Motherboard2.5 gig PC3200 DDR RAM 400MHZGeForce 7600GT/512 OC'dMaxtor 80 Gig ATA 133 HD x2WDC WD800 80 Gig HDAntec 500watt true powerSharp 19 inch LCD MonitorSaitek AV8R-01 Joystickhttp://www.jdtllc.com/images/rcv4bannersupporter.jpg

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Sorry Jim, after reading the article I couldn't resist. I know this topic has been kicked around before. What the h*ll, once more for old time's sake. :)Have a Merry Christmas everyone!Jim, do you work as a controler at CYWG?Dave FisherCYYZP4 Prescott 3.2e 478p 800mhz 1mg CPUP4P800SE Asus Motherboard2.5 gig PC3200 DDR RAM 400MHZGeForce 7600GT/512 OC'dMaxtor 80 Gig ATA 133 HD x2WDC WD800 80 Gig HDAntec 500watt true powerSharp 19 inch LCD MonitorSaitek AV8R-01 Joystickhttp://fs2crew.com/linepilot.jpg

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The question is not 'could you land an airliner in an emergency' but, how you or anyone else, would gain access to the flight deck to do it?

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Don't apologize Dave. I was laughing when I wrote this. No, not a controller. I did tour the Winnipeg FIR once. Both the tower and thecentre. I even seen the position of the controller who sees Santa on his trek south. That was neat.I like G7USL's question though.JimCYWG

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Hi everyone.It simply amazes me that every time this subject comes up, there are some people that seem to think they can do some things, that they have no idea what they are talking about. There are a lot of people that can talk a big game, on solid ground, and they turn into complete morons, when their own life was at stake. Take these two Buster guys, give them a plane put them up in the air and talk them down. That is the test. What do you think the outcome will be? If you think they are going to make it, I will sell you some land on the Moon that you can visit on a daily basis.I've seen people with an IQ of over 200 on the ground, give them the responsibility to do two new tasks, when their well being was at stake, and they could not do the +2-2 conversion in the air. Why is it, you think, that the Solo time is one of the most indelible experiences in someone's / pilots life? When your behind is on the sling I will guarantee you that most of you will need an oversize dipper, just to keep the seats clean, even with an experienced pilot that takes over in those cases, and may not be Type rated. I would like to hear how many Real life pilots, that may not be Type rated, have the same confidence, being sure of the outcome, as some of the simmers are? I will tell you, Not many, because they know what it takes to get the job done.STOP DREAMING. TV

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Hi Jim, a freind of mines brother works as a controller in Winterpeg who's name is also Jim. I thought you might be him. Hope Santa was good to you. See you later.Dave

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I'll agree with you based on personal experience.I had to give up my pursuit of a flying career because I could NOT get past my knees knocking together (literally) in tight situations. And that was in a C152 and C172 with very few buttons and switches.My solo was almost a disaster as I couldn't push the rudder pedals in the last 1/4 mile of the approach.Back with the instructor, no problems. Back solo again, knee knocks.15 more hours of duel - no problem. Solo - knee knocks.Now at home of course, I can wiz through the PMDG 747 from Cold and Dark to takeoff without missing a switch. And I can even handle re-routes, runway changes and handfly it to a -100ft min or better landing.I had the luxury of some simulator time via a friend at the FedEx hub.What a pro I was in the A300/A310 after a few years flying the SSW.In fact, I did so well, I went back out flying with an instructor again. During the flight we did some tight turns on a bumpy day.... then got into the pattern (a very busy one) and once again ...knock knock knock go the knees.I can run up a ladder, walk across high pitch roofs and fly the devil out of a simulator, but one never knows how your mind will react when there's nothing between you and fireball but your own hands and feet.99.99% of plane crashes happen with a pilot flying the plane.

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I don't know if I could or not. :) Probably not me, because I don't own one of the complex airliners for FS.Probably the biggest hurdle would be the "feel" of things. If one had, say, the Level-D 767, they might be able to set up an autoland on the systems side.For sure some of you guys probably know A LOT more than the average joe does.RhettAMD 3700+ (@2585 mhz), eVGA 7800GT 256 (Guru3D 93.71), ASUS A8N-E, PC Power 510 SLI, 2gb Corsair XMS 3-3-3-8 (1T), WD 150 gig 10000rpm Raptor, WD 250gig 7200rpm SATA2, Seagate 120gb 5400 rpm external HD, CoolerMaster Praetorian

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I've been reading the comments regarding this subject with some amusement. Here's a true account that may shed some light on this.Back in my flight instructing days at an FBO, I had a furloughed Eastern Airlines 727 captain with over 15000 hrs PIC time and a decorated US Navy F4 Phantom driver from the Vietnam war, come in to get checked out in a Cessna 182. He wanted to rent it so he could fly himself and his wife to Hilton Head SC for the weekend. He had not flown any type of aircraft in 9 months and had not flown a single engined aircraft in over 10 years. Everything on the check ride went fine, as you would expect with a seasoned veteran like that, until it was time to land. His first approach was a typical B-727, 2.5 mile final, nose high, drag it in approach. He made a fair landing, however we touched down with about 1800rpm whiched caused us to stay in ground effect for ever. I told him to fly a higher and tighter final because it would be awfully embarrasing to lose an engine in the pattern and wind up landing in the surrounding community because he was 2.5 miles out unnecessarily. After two more drag 'em in approaches and me telling him he was too far out and too low on final, I took the 182 from him, set it up on a proper final approach where he could basically glide to the runway. What followed next was one of the worst landings I've ever been through. So bad in fact that I felt the need take control from him as we porpoised down the runway because he was on the verge of losing complete control of the aircraft. After I intitiated a go around and let him calm down a bit, we spent an entire hour doing landings. He finally got his single engine skills back and I endorsed his logbook. He sincerely thanked me and told me I was the first "co-pilot" (although I was PIC)that he had ever had take an airplane from him........but he admitted that if I hadn't done so we probably wouldn't be sitting there laughing about it.Moral of the story is, flying and airplane is very easy.....however it is much harder than most people realize.

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You have a good point. Flying a real aircraft and flying a sim aircraft are very different animals. I have flown real aircraft (Cessna and Piper) and the tactile feedback, weight, mass, wind and gravity are things that are very much lacking in simulation flying. They can either help or hinder your control of the aircraft if you are not used to it.However, with an airliner, if you have gained proficient knowledge of the flight control systems from a simulator experience, especially a PMDG or Level-D product, I think that such a person could land an airliner using the autopilot and autoland features of the aircraft and succeed. But it would only work if the 'pilot' was very familiar with the autoflight systems.Kim

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Hah!If I ever found myself in that situation then for obvious reasons I and everyone else on the 'plane would probably be going to die anyway, so what the #### ... I'd give it a go 'cos there'd be nothing to lose ...

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As pointed out earlier, the discussion is pretty much academic since there is no practical way into the cockpit before it is too late.Since all passenger jets are flown by the autopilot it will take a fairly long time before anyone realizes that something has happened and by then the chance of doing something about the situation is heavily diminished, especially if the aircraft is out of radio range on the set channels.If it is something in the cockpit environment that disabled both the pilot and co-pilot it is likely that whatever it is has also affected the passenger cabin as well, rendering you similarly incapacitated like in the case of the Greek airliner. Alternatively it's something that will make it either impossible to access or remain in the cockpit to fly the plane.If it's a hi-jack situation where the bad guys have gotten to the cockpit by using the passengers for leverage, you are unlikely to get to the cockpit since you don't have any leverage over the hi-jackers. And even if you could, how would you you disable the hi-jackers?Maybe if it was something like food poisoning affecting both the pilot and co-pilot and the crew was able to request some sort of assistance before being completely incapacitated, but then I somehow doubt they'd leave the plane in the hands of "some guy with FlightSim experience."And as brought up earlier, I haven't heard of any documented instances where a passenger with no training safely landed an airliner...

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I'd say it is a possibility that one could land an airliner safely, but it all depends on their circumstances, there are just too many influential factors. For argument sake, we'll take a 737ng that is serviceable i.e. not suffering total hydraulic failure, and the destination aerodrome is CAVOK and LV winds. If the PIC had no experience using flightsim or flying a real plane,he/she would most likely crash it due handling errors and lack of basic theoretical knowledge i.e. stalls. But I think if some one who had quite a bit of knowledge of the aircraft systems from the PMDG model, and maybe some real flying experience may fare a better chance. I've heard of flightsimmers going into Level D simulators and perfectly landing an a340 or 757. But in reality the stress of the situation could be an overwhelming factor for the pilot. So it really depends on the PIC, whether he could stay cool, has knowledge of the systems, and fly the plane.

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Several points have been made - but the most important still is:Anyone can land an airlner, question is can everyone walk away from the landing . . .:DJoe Lorenc

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NO ONE can land an airliner based on FS knowledge alone. This comes up all the time. The answer is always NO, ok. Too many things FS does NOT simulate - turbulence, wind effects, control responsiveness, throttle responsiveness, fear, apprehension, workload, emotion... People still somehow believe this pipe dream - that cause they've flown many hours in the PMDG they could land a Boeing, but I tell you it's just that. A dream.

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Is an 'auto-landing a dream too then? Why is it that crews are forced to use it when conditions absolutely demand it eh?Let me tell you, if your neck is on the line and death faces you in the eye, you WILL do what is necessary, like it or not! IT'S THAT OR KISS YOUR BUTT GOODBYE.Assuming as I mentioned before, access to the flight deck is permitted.

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>NO ONE can land an airliner based on FS knowledge alone. This>comes up all the time. The answer is always NO, ok.This is your own opinion only. Did you watch the Mythbuster program on the Discovery?. People with zero prior experience with some coaching over the radio were in fact able to land in a commercial sim. I am not saying anyone could do it, it would take a real 'cool' individual to do it but some individual with many hours on a PMDG simulator with a help from the ground and in favorable weather in my opinion could do it. There were many nay-sayers like you who claimed that something was impossible only to be ultimately proven wrong.Michael J.http://img142.imageshack.us/img142/9320/apollo17vf7.jpg

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They did this in a SIMULATOR!!!!!When they screw up, the motion stops, thats all.So there is no pressure at all.Imagine this situation in a real plane where you know that this is your ONLY chance to survive. You KNOW that even the slightest initial error might end in killing yourself, all passengers and maybe even people on the ground.I don't think that a 'flightsim only' pilot would be able to 'hand fly' a jet airliner.However, I do believe that if you are able to establish radio communications, and you are a serious flightsimmer, your chance to setup and execute a successful autoland are very realistic.Regards BerntCapt 767

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>They did this in a SIMULATOR!!!!!>When they screw up, the motion stops, thats all.>So there is no pressure at all.>>Imagine this situation in a real plane where you know that>this is your ONLY chance to survive. You KNOW that even the>slightest initial error might end in killing yourself, all>passengers and maybe even people on the ground.>I don't think that a 'flightsim only' pilot would be able to>'hand fly' a jet airliner.>>However, I do believe that if you are able to establish radio>communications, and you are a serious flightsimmer, your>chance to setup and execute a successful autoland are very>realistic.>>Regards> >Bernt>>Capt 767I'm assuming with just 83 post's that you have not got the 'Level-D 767 or the PMDG 747's and 737NG's? Did you know also that Boeing actually use PMDG's offering in their training?Maybe if you do, or are planning to, you will agree that an ardent and keen, enthusiastic PMDG simmer MIGHT be able to save lives by taking over if that need should ever arise?But, as I keep repeating, the door to the flightdeck is locked permanantly now so, I think it would be just a 'kiss your butt' goodbye, don't you?

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>I'm assuming with just 83 post's that you have not got the 'Level-D 767 or the PMDG 747's and 737NG's?Wrong assumption.>you will agree that an ardent and keen, enthusiastic PMDG simmer MIGHT be able to save lives by taking over...No, I definitly don't agree.>the door to the flightdeck is locked permanantly now soIf the door is locked from the inside, the flight attendants of course know the emergency code to gain access to the flightdeck. As I said before, an 'enthusiastic PMDG simmer' might be able to set up and execute an autoland, but he will not be able to hand fly a 737.RegardsBerntCapt 767

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I believe the question was 'could you land an airliner' not whether it could be done by hand, and as long as you had help setting up the autopilot (ie you knew which channel to tune to on the radio to start with to get that help) then yes, if the AP was out, then not a chance, though I'd rather try than do nothing if my backside was on the line. Survival instinct and all that. It's not likely though, as very often there will be some kind of qualified pilot on the aircraft. You may find yourself helping him/her though.

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>They did this in a SIMULATOR!!!!!>When they screw up, the motion stops, thats all.>So there is no pressure at all.So what that it was in a simulator? They did not have to stop the simulator - they landed OK. I said this before - I understand your point about people being more nervous in real aircraft than in a simulator but I reject the notion that there will NOT be a single individual who will manage regardless.Michael J.http://img142.imageshack.us/img142/9320/apollo17vf7.jpg

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I agree, I think somebody with enough hours on a simulator such as the PMDG or LvlD and who can keep their head in any situation may stand a chance, besides, if the crew are out and nobody else can do it what have you got to lose by trying? If you were going to die anyway you may as well give it a shot, a snowflake's chance in hades is better than no chance at all...

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