Aircraft Black Box
Aircraft Black Box

Aircraft Black Box



Here's a riddle: It is orange, and it is called "black". When it is seen, it is said that this "box", but in fact it has a round shape. What is this? "Black Box ..." - makes uncertain inference someone from the readers. And he was right! How did all these paradoxes with color and form? It is necessary to find out ...


Aircraft Black Box


The black box in narrower circles is called the “flight recorder”. That's right, the name is closely related to the aircraft industry. Absolutely all aircraft have this recorder on board. The function of the black box is to record all sorts of data during the flight. First of all, these are flight data that are read from the instruments. Also recorded and talk pilots. A black box in a modern airplane is capable of fixing about 500 of various parameters. If a catastrophe happens, thanks to all this data, it is possible to restore the picture of the flight, and to identify the causes of the ship’s malfunction. 


What is the black box of the aircraft?


Indeed, the "black box" is painted in a bright orange color. This is to some extent makes it easier to search for him among the wreckage. Inside the box is electronic filling, as well as the memory module - which is the main element (it stores all the information).

The black box of the aircraft 2

About 10 years ago, the memory module was bulky. The reason for this is the peculiarities of data recording. At that time, recording was made on punched tapes, magnetic tape and even on a special magnetic wire. The optimal form of the body for such records was a cylinder. 
Nowadays, the principle of writing is identical to the principle of the most ordinary flash drive. The parallelepiped has replaced the cylindrical form. Imagine a flash drive that is not stored in your pants pocket, but in an armored box, and everything will become clear. 

The black box of the aircraft 4

Well, if the flash drive is, of course, it can be connected to a computer. Let's see what is written there. And written on it one thousand flights (you knew that record everything flying?). Well, so, on a computer screen in a special program displays various graphs. The top - a height just below - the schedule parameters of the engine, even lower - record the conversation of pilots, and so much more.

Since the box we are considering was not in a plane crash, the computer read all the information without much difficulty. But what will happen if this box is well “shaken”? 
No, we will not break the plane for the sake of experiment, but we will arrange everything for durability. 

The black box of the aircraft 56

In this experiment, we will help Valery. He is a master of sports in classical rally Soviet times. We have the trailer box by a cable to the car Valeria, and he will try to properly dispersed and perform the maneuver, in which the box with all his might hit the metal bucket snowplow. Let's go!


The black box of the aircraft photos


The car accelerates to 100 km / h, and “flies” directly to the snowplow. Sure turn of a wheel to the right, and then to the left, and our box hits a metal barrier, and flies away from it on couple of meters. The blow was so strong that there was a dent on the metal ladle! Visually, the box was not damaged, if you do not take into account rubbing. Now we will try again to connect the recorder to the computer. And what do we see? No changes, everything works as before! All data is preserved, even after such a hard test. 

The black box of the aircraft 77

The experiment continues. This time we will go to the roof of the house, whose height is of the order of 100 meters, and drop the box down. A short flight, and now the box bounces slightly off the hard asphalt. Surprisingly strong device! After the collision, there was a hole on the pavement, and the recorder only slightly bent a cable to connect with the computer. Now read data will be more difficult. This box can no longer be connected to a simple computer, and it is sent to specialists. For the masters of their work a spoiled train is a typical situation. An automated machine removes memory cards from the recorder, which are manually inserted into the reader. 

The black box of the aircraft 654

Now imagine what happens to the black box during a disaster. One of the colossal destructive forces is fire and heat. And then the box changes its orange color to black. According to international standards, the flight recorder must withstand an open flame and a temperature in 1000 degrees for at least an hour. How can you achieve such fire resistance? The whole secret is in the powder, which filled the entire space of the recorder. 

The black box of the aircraft 23

For clarity, we will conduct another experiment. Take an ordinary chicken egg, place it in a container, and fill the whole space with the same powder that is in the black box. Now we send the container to the furnace on open fire. Temperature 1100 degrees (by the way, this is the combustion temperature of aviation kerosene). In 20 minutes we get our container. And what do you think happened to the egg? Nothing! It remains raw. 

The main principle of black box - "at any cost to save the recorded data!". When disaster struck, experts from these data restore every moment of the flight. Thus, it will be clear what caused the failure of the work other vessel, as well as find out whether the crew acted in this situation. In any event, conclusions will be drawn that will help in the future to avoid such disasters, and save thousands of lives.

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