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on 16 April 2015

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Landing is the act when a plane, helicopter or another aircraft returns to the ground. It is the last part of flight.

When the plane or aircraft performs the landing maneuver, the plane has to go descending and slowing down for can returns to the ground safely.
The aircraft slows by means of two forms:
When the plane is in the air, it uses wind friction and force, and it also uses flaps and spoilers.
When the plane is on the landing strip, it utilizes: landing gear, and the speed brakes.

Different aircrafts
Light plane:
The landing is easier due to the reduction of aircraft weights, which facilitates the maneuver.
When the weather is not good enough, the landing is more dangerous.

Large aircraft:
Its landing is more difficult than the previous
because of its wingspan. Therefore the maneuver must be prepared in advance.

These aircrafts need less space. Moreover, they effect the landing descending uprightly.

The hydroplane is an aircarft which is capable of landing on water.

Checklist consists of a sequence of steps which the pilots must follow in order to the landing. The list is different for each type aircraft and it must in a seeable place.

In the first place, the pilot has to observe the checklist. Then he must enter in the runway and do the following to do a good landing:

-Base leg: The flyer has to decide when he starts the decline and turn.
-Final approach: This is the most important phase. The layer aligns the aircraft with the runway.
- After landing roll.

Risks of landing aircraft
Failures in aircraft
Humans failures

The principal climatological factors that are a risk in the landing :
Wind and redirection
Extreme temperature
Heavy rains

The fog is a dangerous risk in the landing because it reduces the visibility.

ILS (Instrumental Landing System) is used in order to do possible the landing when the visibility is bad.

Wind and redirection
The landing is dangerous when there is crosswind, which is perpendicular to the direction of runway.

If the crosswind is too strong, it can damage in the airframe and landing gear. The landing is aborted if the wind can cause damage to the plane.

The turbulence is a natural effect, which is caused by the redirection wind and the changes in speed of drafts.

The cumulonimbus is a type of turbulence that the pilot always must avoid.

This climatological factor affects in the engine performance and penalizes the commercial freight of the plane.
The temperature also hurts the wheel and the speed brakes.
When there is ice on the runaway, the braking distance has to be longer.
Microburst is a small-scale downburst, this is a very localized column of sinking air caused by a small and intense downdraft (the air does not spin as it does in the case of a cyclone or tornado) within a thunderstorm.
Heavy rain and snowfall
Heavy rain and snowfall cause a deterioration on the surface of runways, which generate risk in the landing.

Nowadays, there are some kinds of planes than land by themselves, taking out the human failure. However, the pilot is very important, because he must be constantly supervising the automatic landing.

First able ILS was created, a system that guide the pilot during the approach and the landing.
This control system allows the plane to be guide with precision during the approach to the stripway.
Furthermore this system is used when the weather produces a low visibility.

Afterwards Autoland was developed, a system by which the plane lines up, positions, descends, stabilizes and slow down himself. Not all planes have this, and those who do, have three, in case one fails. This is a good system for landings with a certain risk due to low visibility.
Pulse-Doppler radar
They are used to avoid microbursts.
A Pulse-Doppler radar is a radar system not only able to measure the course, distance and altitude of an object, but also determines his velocity. Determines the range to a target using pulse-timing techniques, and uses the Doppler shift of the returned signal to determine the target object´s velocity. These kind of radars are useless in location´s tasks.

The most dangerous airports in the world. Top Ten:
International Airport of Madeira
Madeira´s International Airport (Portugal)
His runway is one of the most difficult due to high turbulences, produced when the wind is higher than fifteen knots.
Furthermore, we have to highlight that the airstrip has been extended thanks to the construction of a viaduct over the sea.

Gibraltar´s Airport
This airport is located in the isthmus that connects Gibraltar with Spain and is the only one in the world whose airstrip crosses an avenue traveled by car.

Pincess Juliana´s Airport, Saint Martin
This airport serves the Dutch part of the island of Saint Martin.
Is a dangerous Airport best known for very low-altitude flyover landing approaches due to one end of its runways being extremely close to the shore and Maho Beach. This fact produces that tourists go to see those incredible landings.
But is very dangerous standing too close during take-offs and landings because it can cause injuries and even death due to the forces of the turbines.

Groenlandia´s Airport, Narsarsuaq
Is very dangerous because of the size, the bad visibility and the dangerous of the land (surrounded by plateaus and mountains).
Also, to arrive the airport you need to go through a sea full of icebergs and polar crosswinds.

Airport of Courchevel (The Alps)
This airport have one of the smallest runways in the world. Measures 535 meters long.
It only can be used by specialized drivers and private helicopters.
This airport is also inclined and sloping.

Airport of Juancho E. Yrausquin
The airport has the shortest commercial runway in the world, only 396 meters.
Is the only airport on the Caribbean island of Saba.
Although this airport is one of the most dangerous in the world, it has never been an accident.
Jet aircraft are unable to land at the airport, because the runway is too short.
However, smaller airplanes are common sights there.

Paro´s Airport, Butan
Paro Airport is located deep in a valley 2,235 m above mean sea level and is surrounded by mountains as high as 5,500 m.
Flights at Paro are allowed under visual meteorological conditions only and are restricted to daylight hours from sunrise to sunset.
It is considered one of the world's most challenging airports. Only eight pilots in the world were certified to land at the airport.

International Airport of Kai Tak, Hong Kong
Kai Tak was located on the west side of Kowloon Bay in Kowloon, Hong Kong. The area is surrounded by rugged mountains.
With numerous skyscrapers and mountains located to the north and its only runway jutting out into Victoria Harbour, landings at the airport were dramatic to experience and technically demanding for pilots.
It was closed in 1998 and replaced by the new Hong Kong International Airport at Chek Lap Kok.

Barra Airport (Scotland)
The airport is unique, being the only one in the world where scheduled flights use a beach as the runway. The airport has three runway, it is separated by posts of wood.

At night, the cars iluminate the beach to the aeroplanes.
Antartida's Track of ice
Aeroplanes landing in the ice, it is really dangerous because if the weight of the plane is very big, the aircraft can break the ice.

In December, the "airport" isn't operative due to the release of the ice.
Failures in an aircraft
This occurs due to the mistake of any aircraft component, especially it is really usual in the landing gear or in the motors.

If the aircraft have other technical failure, the pilots are prepared to struggle the problems.
Problems with the landing gear
Landing with foam is denominated belly landing.
Failures in helicopters
When the motors of the airscrews fails, the helicopter activate the autorotation system.
Humans failures
The pilots can cause accidents or emergency landing. Now, we will speak about an event, usually, the accidents by humans failures are due to:

Person that calculate the fuel.

Bad check of the aircraft.
Heroic landing and accidents
In 1991, a fighter plane did an emergency landing because the second pilot was with the body out of the aircraft. This was an aircraft mistake due to the safety system.
One of the biggest aeroplane of the world, the C-17 Globemaster III landed in Peter O. Knight aerodrome because of the pilots were wrong with the airport.
In the past June, the crosswind caused an terrible accident in the Valencia's airport with a microlight aircraft, two persons died in this accident.
A dangerous landing of a flying boat.
On September 21, 2005, an Airbus A320-200 operating this flight executed an emergency landing at Los Angeles International Airport after the nose gear jammed in an abnormal position. No one was injured.
On January 15, 2009, US Airways Flight 1549, an Airbus A320 made an unpowered emergency water landing in the Hudson River after multiple bird strikes caused both jet engines to fail. All 155 occupants, the passengers and crew, successfully evacuated from the partially submerged airframe as it sank into the river; they were rescued by nearby watercraft. Several occupants suffered injuries, a few of them serious, but only one required hospitalization overnight.


Aircraft: aeronave
Slow down: reducir velocidad
Landing gear: Tren de aterrizaje
Brakes: sistema de frenado
Wingspan: envergadura de alas
Runway: Pista de aterrizaje
Airframe: estructura del avión
Drafts: Corrientes de aire
Crosswind: Viento cruzado
Airscrews: Hélices
Aerodrome: Aeródromo
Belly landing: aterrizaje de vientre.

Autor: Antonio Creus Sole; Titulo: Iniciación a la Aeronaútica
Autor: Thomas A. Wind; Título: Aerospace Propulsion Systems
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