For most modern aircraft to achieve flight, they rely on the combustion of fuel and air mixtures and other various engine systems to create and harness power for thrust and lift. While many engines produced today exhibit ample efficiency and safety, they may still generate large amounts of heat as a byproduct of their operations. As this heat can spread across assemblies, presenting danger to numerous parts and surfaces, it is important that there is an effective cooling system implemented. One common solution for engine-generated heat is to use aircraft oil and cooling systems, those of which manage temperatures through the use of lubricating substances.
We often use a wide variety of battery-powered electrical devices that transform electrical energy into mechanical energy on a daily basis, including hairdryers, toy vehicles, small fans, trimmers, and more. Direct Current (DC) motors are the electrical component responsible for converting that energy in order to produce movement. A type of electric machine, DC motors take electrical power through a direct current and transform it into mechanical rotation. These motors are significant in the industrial sector and can be utilized in a number of applications, including electric vehicle propulsion, elevators, cranes, and steel rolling mill drives. Those interested in learning more about DC motors and their working principles are encouraged to read the following blog.
If you have ever sat in view of the wings on a commercial flight, chances are you’ve spotted the ailerons, a crucial type of control surface used on most modern airplanes. Placed on the trailing edge of the wings, the ailerons are adjustable mini airfoils that can be angled to affect airflow. Further back, on the horizontal section of the tail, there is a similar set of horizontal flaps called the elevators. Rather than simply moving forward in a direct path, airplanes need to be able to change directions in the air. To achieve this, they use a variety of moveable control surfaces that control pitch, roll, and yaw, effectively turning the aircraft along three axes. While they may look relatively similar, the ailerons and elevators each take on a distinctive role, both of which will be discussed further in this article.
Jigs and fixtures are devices that help increase the rate of identical parts and reduce the human effort necessitated to produce them. A jig holds and aligns a workpiece while it guides and controls multiple cutting tools at one time. In contrast, a fixture holds and locates a workpiece during an inspection or for a manufacturing operation. To better familiarize yourself with jigs and fixtures, we will outline them in this blog.
While you may have thought leasing was limited to automobiles, homes, and businesses, you may be surprised to find out that aircraft leasing has a long history that dates back to the 1970s. According to Boeing’s 2019 Current Aircraft Finance Market Outlook, aircraft leasing accounts for 40% of in-service commercial aviation ownership. With the rise of more leasing companies, there has been a drive for diversification, leading to innovative solutions that are creating new levels of value for commercial airliners and others.
When dealing with the electrical current traveling through a building, vehicle, or assembly, it is important that ample consideration is made for electrical protection. Electricity is volatile in nature, and while we have harnessed it for powering various systems and components, surges, spikes, and other various undesirable voltage conditions can present the risk of part breakdown, injuries, electrical fires, and much more. As such, components like circuit breakers and fuses are commonly used, both of which are electrical protection devices that perform a similar role with differing parts and characteristics. As either or both types of devices may be present in a given application, it is very important to understand their differences and varying uses.
Aircraft rely on various types of engines to generate the power needed for flight. Technology has come a long way since the 1930s when only piston engines were available, and despite being available in many forms, piston engines are limited in their performance abilities. Therefore, the demand for high-performance aircraft gave birth to modern jet engines. This blog will explore the differences between two types of jet engines commonly used in aircraft today: the turbojet and the turboprop. Although both are jet engines, aircraft that rely on turbojets are considered jet aircraft while aircraft that rely on turboprops are considered propeller aircraft. Reasonably, the main distinguishing factor between the two engines is that a turboprop makes use of a propeller before the inlet leading into the engine, whereas turbojets lack this feature. Given the difference in their design, both jet engines offer their own advantages and drawbacks, those of which we will further explore below.
As aircraft ascend into high altitudes, they pump air into the cabin space to pressurize it. Not only does cabin pressurization create a more comfortable environment for passengers, but it is a critical safety feature. To better understand how cabin pressurization works, this blog will cover its importance and its features.
An actuator is a device that makes something move, allowing for hands-off operations to be possible. Actuators are classified based on where they source their energy from, and actuators used in machinery are typically electric, hydraulic, or pneumatic. An electric actuator runs on electricity and can be found in an electric engine. A hydraulic actuator runs on incompressible oil, or hydraulic fluid, and can be found in the steering gear of a ship. Lastly, a pneumatic actuator compresses air and creates kinetic energy through movement, and such parts can be found across many applications. This blog will explore the diverse functions of pneumatic actuators in particular and the way actuators operate.
While sitting comfortably in the cabin of a commercial aircraft, it is easy to forget the immense altitude at which the plane is flying. Reaching a cruising altitude of 30,000ft with every flight, airplanes are explicitly designed to protect occupants from the low oxygen concentrations found in this extreme environment. In order to accomplish this, all aircraft flying above 10,000ft have pressurized cabins, ensuring a safe and comfortable flight for both passengers and crew members. In this blog, we will discuss everything you need to know about cabin pressurization, including its purpose, design, and implementation.
Lock-nuts have a locking ability to resist loosening caused by pressure, force, and vibration. A free-spinning nut works to prevent vertical movement with the help of force that only serves for holding the fasteners. Unlike ordinary nuts, lock-nuts are distorted elastic and metal materials that are used to tighten components to protect them against vibration and torque. The uses of lock-nuts may vary according to the elements that need to get fastened. In this blog, we will take a brief look at the most common types of lock-nuts.
Piston pumps are widely used components that are found in countless applications. As such, they are available in a variety of types, each of which differs in function and design. In this blog, we will be covering two broad categories of piston pumps which include standard piston and hydraulic piston pumps.
Valve train components are often present within the mechanical systems of a diesel engine or other similar apparatus, serving to manage the operations of intake and exhaust valves. By controlling the intake valves, the fuel-and-air mixture that is being combusted can be governed, while the exhaust valves serve to expel spent gasses from the combustion chamber. Despite being somewhat simplistic in their role, valve train components are essential for the proper functionality of an automobile, aircraft, or other vehicle type harnessing a combustion engine.
When discussing Electronic Flight Bag (EFB) equipment, one is referring to any portable electronic display hardware that is used within the flight deck or cabin of an aircraft. Generally, such devices are used to store and display various data, or may be relied on for executing basic calculations regarding fuel loading and aircraft performance. TopWings is an up-and-coming concept developed by Thales, serving to offer a solution to airlines and operators for their EFB needs. With aircraft TopWings EFB devices, one is provided an end-to-end, connected and customized solution that offers various support and services. In this blog, we will discuss the TopWings concept by Thales, allowing you to better understand its potential use in aircraft operations.
One of the most complex systems found on an aircraft is its fuel delivery system. This apparatus works continuously from takeoff to landing to ensure a continuous flow of fuel to the aircraft's engines. While fuel injection systems vary between aircraft types and individual planes, many of the components remain the same. Therefore, this article will focus on a simple fuel delivery system.
Linear actuators are quite common to various applications, coming in the form of an electro-mechanical component that can create motion in a straight line. Often found in industrial machinery, valves, computer peripherals, and more, linear actuators create the necessary linear motion for different processes through the use of mechanics, hydraulics, or pneumatics. In some instances, feedback controls may be necessary, and such characteristics may be managed with the use of sensors and limit switch features.
A control valve is a specialized valve type that is capable of managing the flow of fluids through their ability to change the size of their passage. With all types of control valves, a control system serves to relay commands for adjusting the size of the opening. The force that enacts these changes is made possible through control valve actuators which act directly on the valve or through the use of a control valve positioner. In this blog, we will discuss the primary types of control valve actuators that are used for flow changes, allowing you to find the best fit for your particular needs.
Electrical components can often be sensitive to overload conditions, quickly breaking down or malfunctioning when voltages exceed intended limits. Faults such as short circuits can also be hazardous to individuals as well, posing the risk of shock or combustion if in the presence of combustible materials. As a result, it is paramount that all electrical system components are provided ample protection from overload conditions, that of which is achievable with a device known as a circuit breaker.
The aircraft piston engine, or reciprocating engine, is a type that has served powered flight since its inception, acting as the most common power plants for general aviation aircraft even to this day. While there are numerous piston engine types that slightly differ in their construction, all operate according to the four-stroke cycle of intake, compression, power, and exhaust. To conduct such operations, piston engines rely on pistons and cylinders that are assembled in various ways to achieve different flight characteristics. In this blog, we will provide a brief overview of the most common piston engine types so that you may be more familiar with their differences and capabilities.
When assembling components with the use of bolt fasteners, it is important to have an accommodating nut component for the means of securing the bolt. Nuts are fasteners that feature a threaded hole, and they are paired with bolts to keep assemblies together through friction, bolt stretching, and compression. Depending on the assembly and its needs, there are a variety of nut types that may be used alongside a bolt. When there is a desire for easy component installation without the need for many tools, the wing nut fastener proves to be a useful choice.
A commonly overlooked part within an aircraft is the engine mount. It may be a simple structure, but it has many essential roles beyond holding the engine on the airframe. For example, the exact placement of the engine mount is important. Designers must consider the thrust line of the engine, how high or low it is in relation to the airframe, as well as gyroscopic precession. In this blog, we will discuss engine mounts in detail.
Pointing devices are important accessories for computer systems, allowing for a user to input spatial data through various means. Coming in the form of computer mice, trackballs, joysticks, pointing sticks, and other such input interfaces, users can achieve increased control over a system for the benefit of varying applications. For industrial and military organizations, pointing devices may be used for the means of controlling machinery, vehicles, defense systems, and more. Although pointing devices may differ in their application and design, all serve to increase productivity and create an ease of control. In this blog, we will discuss pointing devices more in detail, allowing you to understand the various common types and how they may be used for such sectors.
For NASA or any other company within the aerospace industry, the ability to monitor the degradation of an aircraft engine is pivotal. In this blog, we will investigate how to increase a Machine Learning model’s ability to help predict when engine breakdowns will occur and how to estimate the remaining useful life on an aircraft engine. The dataset in this model is simulated for commercial aircraft and, therefore, if an unexpected breakdown occurs, it will likely do so while in the air with customers aboard, causing a significant problem. As such, being able to monitor the condition of an aircraft engine is invaluable. Furthermore, aircraft engines are far from inexpensive, meaning there is an added economic benefit to understanding its useful service life.
From purchasing groceries at a supermarket to attending sport events, barcodes are used in countless areas for conducting transactions and tracking data. While barcodes seem simplistic due to being small lines with spaces between, they have revolutionized the efficiency of countless businesses and organizations for tracking information. By understanding the functionality of barcodes and how to scan them with readers, one can increase the productivity of their operations with ease.
Navigation refers to the process of planning, recording, and controlling the movement of a craft from one location to another. More specifically, air navigation involves piloting an aircraft from one place to another without getting lost, breaking any aviation laws, or endangering the safety of those on the aircraft or on the ground. In older aircraft, the pilot was accompanied by a flight navigator, who was responsible for trip navigation. With the introduction of sophisticated electronic GPS navigation systems, this role was rendered obsolete. Since this, advancements in air navigation technologies have continued. In this blog, we will discuss four new and exciting air navigation systems.
The aerospace industry employs a broad range of different parts and components for many different uses. As such, there are many types of fasteners, such as screws, rivets, nuts, bolts, pins, collars, and more, in use throughout the industry. Despite being small parts, they have a critical role in the operation of an aircraft. For example, there are approximately six million parts used to construct a Boeing 747, more than half of which are fasteners. This blog will explain what aerospace fasteners are, where they are used, and their main manufacturers.
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