HOME
TheInfoList



A conventional
fixed-wing A fixed-wing aircraft is a heavier-than-air flying machine, such as an airplane, which is capable of flight using wings that generate lift caused by the aircraft's forward airspeed and the shape of the wings. Fixed-wing aircraft are distinct f ...
aircraft flight control system consists of
flight control surfaces Aircraft flight control surfaces are aerodynamic devices allowing a pilot to adjust and control the aircraft's flight attitude. Development of an effective set of flight control surfaces was a critical advance in the development of aircraft. Earl ...
, the respective cockpit controls, connecting linkages, and the necessary operating mechanisms to control an aircraft's direction in flight.
Aircraft engine controls Aircraft engine controls provide a means for the pilot to control and monitor the operation of the aircraft's powerplant. This article describes controls used with a basic internal-combustion engine driving a propeller. Some optional or more adva ...
are also considered as flight controls as they change speed. The fundamentals of aircraft controls are explained in
flight dynamics Flight dynamics is the study of the performance, stability, and control of vehicles flying through the air or in outer space. It is concerned with how forces acting on the vehicle determine its velocity and attitude with respect to time. For a fi ...
. This article centers on the operating mechanisms of the flight controls. The basic system in use on aircraft first appeared in a readily recognizable form as early as April 1908, on
Louis Blériot Louis Charles Joseph Blériot ( , also , ; 1 July 1872 – 1 August 1936) was a French aviator, inventor, and engineer. He developed the first practical headlamp for cars and established a profitable business manufacturing them, using much of the ...
's
Blériot VIII__NOTOC__ The Blériot VIII was a French pioneer era aeroplane built by Louis Blériot, significant for its adoption of both a configuration and a control system that were to set a standard for decades to come. The previous year, Blériot had exp ...
pioneer-era monoplane design.


Cockpit controls


Primary controls

Generally, the primary cockpit flight controls are arranged as follows:Langewiesche, Wolfgang
Stick and Rudder: An Explanation of the Art of Flying
McGraw-Hill Professional, 1990, , .
* a control yoke (also known as a control column),
centre stick A centre stick (or center stick in the United States), or simply control stick is an aircraft cockpit arrangement where the control column (or joystick) is located in the center of the cockpit between the pilot's legs. Since the throttle controls ...
or
side-stick __NOTOC__ A side-stick or sidestick controller is an aircraft control column (or joystick) that is located on the side console of the pilot, usually on the righthand side, or outboard on a two-seat flightdeck. Typically this is found in aircraft t ...
(the latter two also colloquially known as a control or
joystick : 1. stick, 2. base, 3. trigger, 4. extra buttons, 5. autofire switch, 6. throttle, 7. hat switch (POV hat), 8. suction cups. A joystick is an input device consisting of a stick that pivots on a base and r ...
), governs the aircraft's
roll Roll or Rolls may refer to: Arts, entertainment and media * ''Roll'' (Anne McCue album), 2004 * ''Roll'' (Emerson Drive album), 2012 * "Roll", a song by Flo Rida from the 2008 album ''Mail on Sunday (album)'' * Roll (''Mega Man''), a character in ...
and
pitch Pitch may refer to: Acoustic frequency * Pitch (music), the perceived frequency of sound including "definite pitch" and "indefinite pitch" ** Absolute pitch or "perfect pitch" ** Pitch class, a set of all pitches that are a whole number of octaves ...
by moving the
ailerons An aileron (French for "little wing" or "fin") is a hinged flight control surface usually forming part of the trailing edge of each wing of a fixed-wing aircraft. Ailerons are used in pairs to control the aircraft in roll (or movement around th ...
(or activating
wing warping Wright brothers' first aircraft, which utilized warping wings. Wing warping was an early system for lateral (roll) control of a fixed-wing aircraft. The technique, used and patented by the Wright brothers, consisted of a system of pulleys and cables ...
on some very early aircraft designs) when turned or deflected left and right, and moves the
elevators An elevator (North American English) or lift (Commonwealth English) is a type of cable-assisted, roller-track assisted, or hydraulic cylinder-assisted machine that vertically transports people or freight between floors, levels, or decks of a ...
when moved backwards or forwards * rudder pedals, or the earlier, pre-1919 "rudder bar", to control yaw, which move the
rudder A rudder is a primary control surface used to steer a ship, boat, submarine, hovercraft, aircraft, or other conveyance that moves through a fluid medium (generally air or water). On an aircraft the rudder is used primarily to counter adverse yaw ...
; left foot forward will move the rudder left for instance. * throttle controls to control engine speed or
thrust Thrust is a reaction force described quantitatively by Newton's third law. When a system expels or accelerates mass in one direction, the accelerated mass will cause a force of equal magnitude but opposite direction, to be applied to that syste ...
for powered aircraft. The control yokes also vary greatly amongst aircraft. There are yokes where roll is controlled by rotating the yoke clockwise/counterclockwise (like steering a car) and pitch is controlled by moving the control column towards or away from the pilot, but in others the pitch is controlled by sliding the yoke into and out of the instrument panel (like most Cessnas, such as the 152 and 172), and in some the roll is controlled by sliding the whole yoke to the left and right (like the Cessna 162). Centre sticks also vary between aircraft. Some are directly connected to the control surfaces using cables, others (fly-by-wire airplanes) have a computer in between which then controls the electrical actuators. Even when an aircraft uses variant flight control surfaces such as a V-tail ruddervator,
flaperon A flaperon (a portmanteau of flap and aileron) on an aircraft's wing is a type of control surface that combines the functions of both flaps and ailerons. Some smaller kitplanes have flaperons for reasons of simplicity of manufacture, while som ...
s, or
elevon Elevons or tailerons are aircraft control surfaces that combine the functions of the elevator (used for pitch control) and the aileron (used for roll control), hence the name. They are frequently used on tailless aircraft such as flying wings. An ...
s, to avoid pilot confusion the aircraft's flight control system will still be designed so that the stick or yoke controls pitch and roll conventionally, as will the rudder pedals for yaw. The basic pattern for modern flight controls was pioneered by French aviation figure
Robert Esnault-PelterieRobert Albert Charles Esnault-Pelterie (November 8, 1881 – December 6, 1957) was a French aircraft designer and spaceflight theorist. He is referred to as being one of the founders of modern rocketry and astronautics, along with the Russian Kon ...
, with fellow French aviator
Louis Blériot Louis Charles Joseph Blériot ( , also , ; 1 July 1872 – 1 August 1936) was a French aviator, inventor, and engineer. He developed the first practical headlamp for cars and established a profitable business manufacturing them, using much of the ...
popularizing Esnault-Pelterie's control format initially on Louis'
Blériot VIII__NOTOC__ The Blériot VIII was a French pioneer era aeroplane built by Louis Blériot, significant for its adoption of both a configuration and a control system that were to set a standard for decades to come. The previous year, Blériot had exp ...
monoplane in April 1908, and standardizing the format on the July 1909 Channel-crossing
Blériot XI The Blériot XI is a French aircraft of the pioneer era of aviation. The first example was used by Louis Blériot to make the first flight across the English Channel in a heavier-than-air aircraft, on 25 July 1909. This is one of the most famous ...

Blériot XI
. Flight control has long been taught in such fashion for many decades, as popularized in
ab initio ''Ab initio'' ( ) is a Latin term meaning "from the beginning" and is derived from the Latin ''ab'' ("from") + ''initio'', ablative singular of ''initium'' ("beginning"). Etymology , from Latin, , from ablative case of ''initium'' "entrance, begin ...
instructional books such as the 1944 work
Stick and Rudder ''Stick and Rudder: An Explanation of the Art of Flying'' () is a book written in 1944 by Wolfgang Langewiesche, describing how airplanes fly and how they should be flown by pilots. It has become a standard reference text for aviators. Written w ...
. In some aircraft, the control surfaces are not manipulated with a linkage. In ultralight aircraft and motorized hang gliders, for example, there is no mechanism at all. Instead, the pilot just grabs the lifting surface by hand (using a rigid frame that hangs from its underside) and moves it.


Secondary controls

In addition to the primary flight controls for roll, pitch, and yaw, there are often secondary controls available to give the pilot finer control over flight or to ease the workload. The most commonly available control is a wheel or other device to control elevator trim, so that the pilot does not have to maintain constant backward or forward pressure to hold a specific pitch
attitude Attitude may refer to: Philosophy and psychology * Attitude (psychology), an individual's predisposed state of mind regarding a value * Metaphysics of presence * Propositional attitude, a relational mental state connecting a person to a propos ...
(other types of trim, for
rudder A rudder is a primary control surface used to steer a ship, boat, submarine, hovercraft, aircraft, or other conveyance that moves through a fluid medium (generally air or water). On an aircraft the rudder is used primarily to counter adverse yaw ...
and
ailerons An aileron (French for "little wing" or "fin") is a hinged flight control surface usually forming part of the trailing edge of each wing of a fixed-wing aircraft. Ailerons are used in pairs to control the aircraft in roll (or movement around th ...
, are common on larger aircraft but may also appear on smaller ones). Many aircraft have wing flaps, controlled by a switch or a mechanical lever or in some cases are fully automatic by computer control, which alter the shape of the wing for improved control at the slower speeds used for take-off and landing. Other secondary flight control systems may include slats, spoilers, air brakes and
variable-sweep wing A variable-sweep wing, colloquially known as a "swing wing", is an airplane wing, or set of wings, that may be swept back and then returned to its original straight position during flight. It allows the aircraft's shape to be modified in flight ...
s.


Flight control systems


Mechanical

Mechanical or manually operated flight control systems are the most basic method of controlling an aircraft. They were used in early aircraft and are currently used in small aircraft where the aerodynamic forces are not excessive. Very early aircraft, such as the Wright Flyer I,
Blériot XI The Blériot XI is a French aircraft of the pioneer era of aviation. The first example was used by Louis Blériot to make the first flight across the English Channel in a heavier-than-air aircraft, on 25 July 1909. This is one of the most famous ...

Blériot XI
and
Fokker Eindecker The Fokker ''Eindecker'' fighters were a series of German World War I monoplane single-seat fighter aircraft designed by Dutch engineer Anthony Fokker.Boyne 1988 Developed in April 1915, the first ''Eindecker'' ("Monoplane") was the first purpose-b ...
used a system of
wing warping Wright brothers' first aircraft, which utilized warping wings. Wing warping was an early system for lateral (roll) control of a fixed-wing aircraft. The technique, used and patented by the Wright brothers, consisted of a system of pulleys and cables ...
where no conventionally hinged control surfaces were used on the wing, and sometimes not even for pitch control as on the Wright Flyer I and original versions of the 1909
Etrich Taube The Etrich ''Taube'', also known by the names of the various later manufacturers who built versions of the type, such as the Rumpler ''Taube'', was a pre-World War I monoplane aircraft. It was the first military aeroplane to be mass-produced in G ...
, which only had a hinged/pivoting rudder in addition to the warping-operated pitch and roll controls. A manual flight control system uses a collection of mechanical parts such as pushrods, tension cables, pulleys, counterweights, and sometimes chains to transmit the forces applied to the cockpit controls directly to the control surfaces.
Turnbuckle 300px, Small turnbuckle () A turnbuckle, stretching screw or bottlescrew is a device for adjusting the tension or length of ropes, cables, tie rods, and other tensioning systems. It normally consists of two threaded eye bolts, one screwed into each ...
s are often used to adjust control cable tension. The Cessna Skyhawk is a typical example of an aircraft that uses this type of system.
Gust lock A gust lock on an aircraft is a mechanism that locks control surfaces and keeps open aircraft doors in place while the aircraft is parked on the ground and non-operational. Gust locks prevent wind from causing unexpected movements of the control su ...
s are often used on parked aircraft with mechanical systems to protect the control surfaces and linkages from damage from wind. Some aircraft have gust locks fitted as part of the control system. Increases in the control surface area required by large aircraft or higher loads caused by high
airspeed Aircraft have pitot tubes for measuring airspeed. Airspeed is the speed of an aircraft relative to the air. Among the common conventions for qualifying airspeed are indicated airspeed ("IAS"), calibrated airspeed ("CAS"), equivalent airspeed ("EAS ...
s in small aircraft lead to a large increase in the forces needed to move them, consequently complicated mechanical
gear mortise wheel with wooden cogs (powered by an external water wheel) meshing with a cast iron gear wheel, connected to a pulley with drive belt. Oil mill in Storkensohn (Haut-Rhin), France. A gear is a rotating circular machine part having ...
ing arrangements were developed to extract maximum
mechanical advantage Mechanical may refer to: Machine * Mechanical system, a system that manages the power of forces and movements to accomplish a task * Machine (mechanical), a system of mechanisms that shape the actuator input to achieve a specific application of ou ...
in order to reduce the forces required from the pilots.Taylor, 1990. p. 118. This arrangement can be found on bigger or higher performance
propeller . A propeller is a device with a rotating hub and radiating blades that are set at a pitch to form a helical spiral, that, when rotated, performs an action which is similar to Archimedes' screw. It transforms rotational power into linear thrust by ...
aircraft such as the
Fokker 50 The Fokker 50 is a turboprop-powered airliner, designed as an improved version of the successful Fokker F27 Friendship. The Fokker 60 is a stretched freighter version of the Fokker 50. Both aircraft were manufactured and supported by Dutch aircr ...
. Some mechanical flight control systems use
servo tab__NOTOC__ A servo tab is a small hinged device installed on an aircraft control surface to assist the movement of the control surfaces. Introduced by the German firm Flettner, servo tabs were formerly known as Flettner tabs. Servo tabs are not tru ...
s that provide aerodynamic assistance. Servo tabs are small surfaces hinged to the control surfaces. The flight control mechanisms move these tabs, aerodynamic forces in turn move, or assist the movement of the control surfaces reducing the amount of mechanical forces needed. This arrangement was used in early piston-engined transport aircraft and in early jet transports. The Boeing 737 incorporates a system, whereby in the unlikely event of total hydraulic system failure, it automatically and seamlessly reverts to being controlled via servo-tab.


Hydro-mechanical

The complexity and weight of mechanical flight control systems increase considerably with the size and performance of the aircraft. Hydraulically powered control surfaces help to overcome these limitations. With hydraulic flight control systems, the aircraft's size and performance are limited by economics rather than a pilot's muscular strength. At first, only-partially boosted systems were used in which the pilot could still feel some of the aerodynamic loads on the control surfaces (feedback). A hydro-mechanical flight control system has two parts: *The ''mechanical circuit'', which links the cockpit controls with the hydraulic circuits. Like the mechanical flight control system, it consists of rods, cables, pulleys, and sometimes chains. *The ''hydraulic circuit'', which has hydraulic pumps, reservoirs, filters, pipes, valves and actuators. The actuators are powered by the hydraulic pressure generated by the pumps in the hydraulic circuit. The actuators convert hydraulic pressure into control surface movements. The electro-hydraulic servo valves control the movement of the actuators. The pilot's movement of a control causes the mechanical circuit to open the matching servo valve in the hydraulic circuit. The hydraulic circuit powers the actuators which then move the control surfaces. As the actuator moves, the
servo valveAn electrohydraulic servo valve (EHSV) is an electrically-operated valve that controls how hydraulic fluid is sent to an actuator.https://www.moog.com/literature/ICD/Valves-Introduction.pdf Servo valves are often used to control powerful hydraulic cy ...
is closed by a mechanical
feedback Feedback occurs when outputs of a system are routed back as inputs as part of a chain of cause-and-effect that forms a circuit or loop. The system can then be said to ''feed back'' into itself. The notion of cause-and-effect has to be handled ca ...
linkage - one that stops movement of the control surface at the desired position. This arrangement was found in the older-designed jet transports and in some high-performance aircraft. Examples include the
Antonov An-225 The Antonov An-225 Mriya ( uk, Антонов Ан-225 Мрія, lit=dream' or 'inspiration; NATO reporting name: Cossack) is a strategic airlift cargo aircraft that was designed by the Antonov Design Bureau in the Ukrainian SSR within the Soviet ...

Antonov An-225
and the
Lockheed SR-71 The Lockheed SR-71 "Blackbird" is a long-range, high-altitude, Mach 3+ strategic reconnaissance aircraft developed and manufactured by the American aerospace company Lockheed Corporation. It was operated by both the United States Air Forc ...

Lockheed SR-71
.


Artificial feel devices

With purely mechanical flight control systems, the aerodynamic forces on the control surfaces are transmitted through the mechanisms and are felt directly by the pilot, allowing tactile feedback of airspeed. With hydromechanical flight control systems, however, the load on the surfaces cannot be felt and there is a risk of overstressing the aircraft through excessive control surface movement. To overcome this problem, artificial feel systems can be used. For example, for the controls of the RAF's
Avro Vulcan The Avro Vulcan (later Hawker Siddeley Vulcan from July 1963) is a jet-powered tailless delta wing high-altitude strategic bomber, which was operated by the Royal Air Force (RAF) from 1956 until 1984. Aircraft manufacturer A.V. Roe and Company ( ...
jet
bomber A bomber is a combat aircraft designed to attack ground and naval targets by dropping air-to-ground weaponry (such as bombs), launching torpedoes, or deploying air-launched cruise missiles. The first use of bombs dropped from an aircraft occurred ...
and the
RCAF , image = Royal Canadian Air Force Badge.svg , image_size = 250px , caption = Badge of the Royal Canadian Air Force , start_date = , country ...
's
Avro Canada CF-105 Arrow The Avro Canada CF-105 Arrow was a delta-winged interceptor aircraft designed and built by Avro Canada. The CF-105 held the promise of Mach 2 speeds at altitudes exceeding and was intended to serve as the Royal Canadian Air Force's (RCAF) prim ...
supersonic interceptor (both 1950s-era designs), the required force feedback was achieved by a spring device. The
fulcrum A fulcrum is the support about which a lever pivots. Fulcrum may also refer to: Companies and organizations * Fulcrum (Anglican think tank), a Church of England think tank * Fulcrum Press, a British publisher of poetry * Fulcrum Wheels, a bicycle ...
of this device was moved in proportion to the square of the air speed (for the elevators) to give increased resistance at higher speeds. For the controls of the American
Vought Vought was the name of several related American aerospace firms. These have included, in the past, Lewis and Vought Corporation, Chance Vought, Vought-Sikorsky, LTV Aerospace (part of Ling-Temco-Vought), Vought Aircraft Companies, and Vought Aircr ...
F-8 Crusader The Vought F-8 Crusader (originally F8U) is a single-engine, supersonic, carrier-based air superiority jet aircraft built by Vought for the United States Navy and United States Marine Corps (replacing the Vought F7U Cutlass), and for the French ...
and the LTV
A-7 Corsair II The LTV A-7 Corsair II is an American carrier-capable subsonic light attack aircraft designed and manufactured by Ling-Temco-Vought (LTV). The A-7 was developed during the early 1960s as replacement for the Douglas A-4 Skyhawk. Its design is de ...
warplanes, a 'bob-weight' was used in the pitch axis of the control stick, giving force feedback that was proportional to the airplane's normal acceleration.


Stick shaker

A
stick shaker A stick shaker is a mechanical device designed to rapidly and noisily vibrate the control yoke (the "stick") of an aircraft, warning the flight crew that an imminent aerodynamic stall has been detected. It is typically present on the majority of l ...
is a device that is attached to the control column in some hydraulic aircraft. It shakes the control column when the aircraft is approaching stall conditions. Some aircraft such as the
McDonnell Douglas DC-10 The McDonnell Douglas DC-10 is an American tri-jet wide-body airliner manufactured by McDonnell Douglas. The DC-10 was intended to succeed the DC-8 for long-range flights. It first flew on August 29, 1970; it was introduced on August 5, 1971, ...
are equipped with a back-up electrical power supply that can be activated to enable the stick shaker in case of hydraulic failure.


Power-by-wire

In most current systems the power is provided to the control actuators by high-pressure hydraulic systems. In fly-by-wire systems the valves, which control these systems, are activated by electrical signals. In power-by-wire systems, the power is carried to the actuators by electrical cables. These are lighter than hydraulic pipes, easier to install and maintain, and more reliable. Elements of the
F-35 The Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II is an American family of single-seat, single-engine, all-weather stealth multirole combat aircraft that is intended to perform both air superiority and strike missions. It is also able to provide electro ...
flight control system are power-by-wire. The actuators in such an electro-hydrostatic actuation (EHA) system are self-contained hydraulic devices, small closed-circuit hydraulic systems. The overall aim is towards more- or all-electric aircraft and an early example of the approach was the
Avro Vulcan The Avro Vulcan (later Hawker Siddeley Vulcan from July 1963) is a jet-powered tailless delta wing high-altitude strategic bomber, which was operated by the Royal Air Force (RAF) from 1956 until 1984. Aircraft manufacturer A.V. Roe and Company ( ...
. Serious consideration was given to using the approach on the Airbus A380.


Fly-by-wire control systems

A fly-by-wire (FBW) system replaces manual flight control of an aircraft with an electronic interface. The movements of flight controls are converted to electronic signals transmitted by wires (hence the term ''fly-by-wire''), and flight control computers determine how to move the
actuatorsAn actuator is a component of a machine that is responsible for moving and controlling a mechanism or system, for example by opening a valve. In simple terms, it is a "mover". An actuator requires a control signal and a source of energy. The control ...
at each control surface to provide the expected response. Commands from the computers are also input without the pilot's knowledge to stabilize the aircraft and perform other tasks. Electronics for aircraft flight control systems are part of the field known as
avionics Avionics are the electronic systems used on aircraft, artificial satellites, and spacecraft. Avionic systems include communications, navigation, the display and management of multiple systems, and the hundreds of systems that are fitted to aircr ...
. Fly-by-optics, also known as ''fly-by-light'', is a further development using
fiber optic cable optical fiber cable with a clear jacket. These cables are used mainly for digital audio connections between devices. A fiber-optic cable, also known as an optical-fiber cable, is an assembly similar to an electrical cable, but containing one or ...
s.


Research

Several technology research and development efforts exist to integrate the functions of flight control systems such as
aileron An aileron (French for "little wing" or "fin") is a hinged flight control surface usually forming part of the trailing edge of each wing of a fixed-wing aircraft. Ailerons are used in pairs to control the aircraft in roll (or movement around th ...
s,
elevators An elevator (North American English) or lift (Commonwealth English) is a type of cable-assisted, roller-track assisted, or hydraulic cylinder-assisted machine that vertically transports people or freight between floors, levels, or decks of a ...
,
elevon Elevons or tailerons are aircraft control surfaces that combine the functions of the elevator (used for pitch control) and the aileron (used for roll control), hence the name. They are frequently used on tailless aircraft such as flying wings. An ...
s,
flap Flap may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media * ''Flap'' (film), a 1970 American film * Flap, a boss character in the arcade game ''Gaiapolis'' * Flap, a minor character in the film ''Little Nemo: Adventures in Slumberland'' Biology and healt ...
s, and
flaperon A flaperon (a portmanteau of flap and aileron) on an aircraft's wing is a type of control surface that combines the functions of both flaps and ailerons. Some smaller kitplanes have flaperons for reasons of simplicity of manufacture, while som ...
s into wings to perform the aerodynamic purpose with the advantages of less: mass, cost, drag,
inertia Inertia is the resistance of any physical object to any change in its velocity. This includes changes to the object's speed, or direction of motion. An aspect of this property is the tendency of objects to keep moving in a straight line at a c ...

inertia
(for faster, stronger control response), complexity (mechanically simpler, fewer moving parts or surfaces, less maintenance), and
radar cross section ) Radar cross-section (RCS) is a measure of how detectable an object is by radar. Therefore, it is called electromagnetic signature of the object. A larger RCS indicates that an object is more easily detected. An object reflects a limited amount o ...
for
stealth Stealth may refer to: Military *Stealth technology, technology used to conceal ships, aircraft, and missiles **Stealth aircraft, aircraft which use stealth technology **Stealth ground vehicle, ground vehicles which use stealth technology **Stealt ...
. These may be used in many
unmanned aerial vehicle being tested in California. , a hunter-killer surveillance UAV An unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) or uncrewed aerial vehicle, also known as unmanned aircraft or uncrewed aircraft (UA), commonly known as a drone, is an aircraft without a human ...

unmanned aerial vehicle
s (UAVs) and 6th generation
fighter aircraft Fighter aircraft are fixed-wing military aircraft designed primarily for air-to-air combat. In military conflict, the role of fighter aircraft is to establish air superiority of the battlespace. Domination of the airspace above a battlefield p ...
. Two promising approaches are flexible wings, and fluidics.


Flexible wings

In flexible wings, much or all of a wing surface can change shape in flight to deflect air flow much like an
ornithopter An ornithopter (from Greek ''ornithos'' "bird" and ''pteron'' "wing") is an aircraft that flies by flapping its wings. Designers seek to imitate the flapping-wing flight of birds, bats, and insects. Though machines may differ in form, they are usu ...
.
Adaptive compliant wingAn adaptive compliant wing is a wing which is flexible enough for aspects of its shape to be changed in flight. FlexSys An adaptive compliant wing designed by FlexSys Inc. features a variable-camber trailing edge which can be deflected up to ±10° ...
s are a military and commercial effort. The
X-53 Active Aeroelastic Wing The X-53 Active Aeroelastic Wing (AAW) development program is a completed American research project that was undertaken jointly by the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL), Boeing Phantom Works and NASA's Dryden Flight Research Center, where the ...
was a US Air Force,
NASA The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA; ) is an independent agency of the U.S. federal government responsible for the civilian space program, as well as aeronautics and space research. NASA was established in 1958, succeedi ...
, and
Boeing The Boeing Company () is an American multinational corporation that designs, manufactures, and sells airplanes, rotorcraft, rockets, satellites, telecommunications equipment, and missiles worldwide. The company also provides leasing and product ...
effort.


Active Flow Control

In
active flow control Active may refer to: Music * ''Active'' (album), a 1992 album by Casiopea * Active Records, a record label Ships * ''Active'' (ship), several commercial ships by that name * HMS ''Active'', the name of various ships of the British Royal Navy ...
, forces in vehicles occur via circulation control, in which larger more complex mechanical parts are replaced by smaller simpler fluidic systems (slots which emit air flows) where larger forces in fluids are diverted by smaller jets or flows of fluid intermittently, to change the direction of vehicles. In this use, active flow control promises simplicity and lower mass, costs (up to half less), and
inertia Inertia is the resistance of any physical object to any change in its velocity. This includes changes to the object's speed, or direction of motion. An aspect of this property is the tendency of objects to keep moving in a straight line at a c ...

inertia
and response times. This was demonstrated in the Demon UAV, which flew for the first time, in the UK, in September 2010.


See also

*
Flight envelope protection Flight envelope protection is a human machine interface extension of an aircraft's control system that prevents the pilot of an aircraft from making control commands that would force the aircraft to exceed its structural and aerodynamic operating l ...
*
Flight with disabled controlsSeveral aviation incidents and accidents have occurred in which the control surfaces of the aircraft became disabled, often due to failure of hydraulic systems or the flight control system. Other incidents have occurred where controls were not functi ...
*
Helicopter flight controls A helicopter pilot manipulates the helicopter flight controls to achieve and maintain controlled aerodynamic flight. Changes to the aircraft flight control system transmit mechanically to the rotor, producing aerodynamic effects on the rotor blade ...
*
HOTAS HOTAS, an acronym of hands on throttle-and-stick, is the concept of placing buttons and switches on the throttle lever and flight control stick in an aircraft's cockpit. By adopting such an arrangement, pilots are capable of performing all vital f ...
*
Kite control systems Kite types, kite mooring, and kite applications result in a wide variety of kite control systems. Contemporary manufacturers, kite athletes, kite pilots, scientists, and engineers are expanding the possibilities. Single-line kite control systems ...
*
List of airliner crashes involving loss of control In aeronautics, loss of control (LOC) is the unintended departure of an aircraft from controlled flight, and is a significant factor in several aviation accidents worldwide and the leading cause of jet fatalities worldwide. Loss of control may be ...
*
Matthew Piers Watt Boulton Matthew Piers Watt Boulton (22 September 1820 – 30 June 1894), also published under the pseudonym M. P. W. Bolton, was a British classicist, elected member of the UK's Metaphysical Society, an amateur scientist and an inventor, best k ...
, inventor of the
aileron An aileron (French for "little wing" or "fin") is a hinged flight control surface usually forming part of the trailing edge of each wing of a fixed-wing aircraft. Ailerons are used in pairs to control the aircraft in roll (or movement around th ...
(1868) *
Thrust vectoring Thrust vectoring, also known as thrust vector control (TVC), is the ability of an aircraft, rocket, or other vehicle to manipulate the direction of the thrust from its engine(s) or motor(s) to control the attitude or angular velocity of the vehicl ...
* Variable-Response Research Aircraft *
Weight-shift control Weight-shift control as a means of aircraft flight control is widely used in hang gliders, powered hang gliders, and ultralight trikes. Control is usually by the pilot using their weight against a triangular control bar that is rigidly attached to ...
*
Wing warping Wright brothers' first aircraft, which utilized warping wings. Wing warping was an early system for lateral (roll) control of a fixed-wing aircraft. The technique, used and patented by the Wright brothers, consisted of a system of pulleys and cables ...
: an early method for controlling roll


References


Notes


Bibliography

* Spitzer, Cary R. ''The Avionics Handbook'',
CRC Press The CRC Press, LLC is an American publishing group that specializes in producing technical books. Many of their books relate to engineering, science and mathematics. Their scope also includes books on business, forensics and information technology ...
, * Stengel, R. F. ''Toward Intelligent Flight Control'', ''IEEE Trans. Systems, Man, and Cybernetics'', Vol. 23, No. 6, November–December 1993, pp. 1699–1717. * Taylor, John W.R. ''The Lore of Flight'', London: Universal Books Ltd., 1990. . * The Arrowheads (Richard Organ, Ron Page, Don Watson, Les Wilkinson). ''Avro Arrow: the story of the Avro Arrow from its evolution to its extinction'', Erin, Ontario, Canada: Boston Mills Press 1980 (revised edition 2004). . * Thom, Trevor. ''The Air Pilot's Manual 4-The Aeroplane-Technical''. 1988. Shrewsbury, Shropshire, England. Airlife Publishing Ltd. * USAF & NATO Report RTO-TR-015 AC/323/(HFM-015)/TP-1 (2001).


External links


Airbus A380 cockpit

Airbus A380 cockpit - a 360-degree Panorama

''Touchdown: the Development of Propulsion Controlled Aircraft at NASA-Dryden'' by Tom Tucker
{{Authority control Applications of control engineering
Flight control A conventional fixed-wing aircraft flight control system consists of flight control surfaces, the respective cockpit controls, connecting linkages, and the necessary operating mechanisms to control an aircraft's direction in flight. Aircraft en ...
ja:フライ・バイ・ワイヤ tr:Elektronik kumandalı uçuş vi:Các hệ thống kiểm soát bay