Engine falls off aircraft during takeoff

Discussion in 'Current Events' started by Jasonbot, Nov 8, 2007.

  1. Jasonbot macrumors 68020

    Jasonbot

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    #1
    http://www.aviation.com/safety/071107-ap-engine-falls-off-nationwide-737.html

    http://www.24.com/news/?p=tsa&i=743617
     
  2. Queso macrumors G4

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    #2
    They were incredibly lucky to land again. The other engine would have been at maximum thrust at that point. Could have been really nasty.
     
  3. iGav macrumors G3

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    #3
    I thought 2 engined planes had to be capable of taking off on 1 engine in the event of 1 failing?

    I thought they were also designed to drop off as well in certain situations?

    <edit>Thought so...

     
  4. pianos101 macrumors regular

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    #4
    The FAA calls it the "One Engine Inop" or OEI condition; all aircraft with more than one engine (obviously) must be able to clear all obstacles in their flight path should one engine go out (or, fall off).

    As an aero engineer I would know in my head that a 37 can fly safely with only one engine, but let me tell you: i would be scared ***less if I was on that plane looking out the window only to see the freaking engine fall of the wing...

    Well, I guess that why there's only 2 bolts holding each engine on... :eek:
     
  5. combatcolin macrumors 68020

    combatcolin

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    #5
    Aircraft repair tech walking back from lunch with his tools stands aimlessly

    "Er, Control," he asks into his radio "Where is the 10am job that got delayed before lunch gone?"

    "Err, didn't you say you fixed it Dave?"

    :eek:
     
  6. sunfast macrumors 68020

    sunfast

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    #6
    I learn something every day
     
  7. ~Shard~ macrumors P6

    ~Shard~

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    #7
    I hope they're at least big bolts... :eek: ;)
     
  8. Jasonbot thread starter macrumors 68020

    Jasonbot

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    #8
    I can imagine sitting by the window seat at the wing, Must've been a riveting experience. Well maybe not so riveting 'coz if they used rivets maybe the engine wouldn't fall off :p
     
  9. combatcolin macrumors 68020

    combatcolin

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    #9
    ...taken outside and shot for that one..
     
  10. cube macrumors G5

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    #10
    This happened at least 4 other times in the 80s with this model (737-200). I don't know at what flight phase.
     
  11. Jasonbot thread starter macrumors 68020

    Jasonbot

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    #11
    can we at least wait until we land?
     
  12. KD7IWP macrumors 6502a

    KD7IWP

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    #12
    Now would the engine just "drop" or would it rocket forward? Those turbines are spinning so fast that their rotational inertia alone should keep it thrusting for a few seconds. Enough that I think it would shoot forward in front of the plane.
     
  13. pianos101 macrumors regular

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    #13
    That's a good question. I actually don't know the "right" answer, but I agree that an engine producing 15klbf of thrust would surely go flying (no pun intended). However, once the engine breaks loose from the wing and the fuel lines are cut, I'm pretty sure that it very quickly loses thrust.

    EDIT: sorry, pun intended
     
  14. emw macrumors G4

    emw

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    #14
    Perhaps. I suppose it depends on what preceded the drop-off and if the engine were operating at full thrust at that point.

    In any case, stories like this make me feel more comfortable about the air travel I do. Sort of.
     
  15. pianos101 macrumors regular

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    #15
    Well it was during takeoff/just after rotation, so the engines were close to max throttle. It seems, though, that something was ingested into the engine. http://www.pprune.org/forums/showthread.php?p=3689566

    Here are some pics: http://www.news24.com/News24/Gallery/Home/0,,galleries-1-5068,00.html

    Believe or not, this has happened quite a few times before:
    http://ntsb.gov/ntsb/brief.asp?ev_id=20001211X13985&key=1
    http://ntsb.gov/ntsb/brief.asp?ev_id=20001213X27558&key=1
    etc...

    incredible

    Since the 37's have sheer pins that attach the engines to the wings, once those break the engine pretty much "falls" to the ground. You can see it laying there next to the runway...
     
  16. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

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    #16
    I thought it had to be capable of maintaining altitude, but not climbing. Of course the real danger of one engine quitting (let alone falling off!) at takeoff, is asymmetric thrust.
     
  17. pianos101 macrumors regular

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    #17
    Well to make a long story short, once the aircraft reaches a certain speed during the takeoff roll it must commit to taking off, even if an engine quits. The aircraft must then be able to rotate, and climb quickly enough to avoid a 50 ft obstacle located at the end of the runway. This total distance is the "actual" takeoff length for an aircraft.

    This is actually related to the asymmetric thrust that is created due to the (now) drag from one of the engines. The reason that aircrafts' rudders are so large is exactly for this reason. It must be able to provide enough yaw to keep the aircraft flying straight if an engine dies at lower dynamic pressures (i.e., slow speeds during takeoff).

    Even the overly massive 777-300 can takeoff with only one of its two engines even turned on. Granted that one engine produces over 110,000 lbf of force, but still.
     
  18. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

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    #18
    The 50 foot obstacle standard sounds similar to GA aircraft. It's a performance statistic which tells the pilot the amount of runway required for a given airplane to take off under different loads and conditions.

    Rudders may be large enough to counteract adverse yaw due loss of thrust, but the pilot still has to respond very quickly to the situation or that big rudder it going to be wrapped around a tree. In this case it must have been even tougher for the crew -- there can't be any established procedure for an engine actually falling off. These guys became test pilots in a hurry.
     
  19. pianos101 macrumors regular

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    #19
    Yup. I think different FAR parts have different requirements, but I could be wrong. This essentially is the balanced field length; the distance required to clear the obstacle with OEI, or the total distance required to stop the aircraft after the OEI even occurs.

    So now you got me started :) I just fired up X-Plane, and cut the No 2 engine on the 777 just after takeoff. It seems that the yawing motion occurs but not as fast as we would think. It's more of a gradual start and progressively gets worse quicker; it seems that there's definitely enough time for the pilot to react. The weird thing, obviously, would be the loss of the physical weight on that side of the aircraft. In addition to the yawing to the right, i'm guessing the aircraft started rolling to the left because of the (now) light right wing. But regarding a simple OEI condition right after takeoff, that's something that's routinely tested so it's nothing new to the pilots. But there must've been a few awkward seconds in the flight deck there while they're figuring out what happened to the engine. :)
     
  20. mcarnes macrumors 68000

    mcarnes

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    #20
    Why o why did microsoft start making airplanes. :mad:
     
  21. Daveman Deluxe macrumors 68000

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    #21
    The loss of weight on the right wing would actually counteract the right yaw somewhat... basically the aircraft would be slipping to the right, which can be a very uncomfortable feeling. :p
     
  22. swiftaw macrumors 603

    swiftaw

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    #22
    From my understanding, the engine is designed to remove itself from the wing in certain circumstances rather than risk the wing suffering critical damage.
     
  23. Daveway macrumors 68040

    Daveway

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    #23
    Its really rare to see -200 in service here in the states. Its a risk because its a really old model.
    It must have fell off sometime between v1 and v2 (right before liftoff) because the engine is on the tarmac. It couldn't be after v2 because the engine would be in the next neighborhood. Its after v1 because they didn't stop.
     
  24. iSamurai macrumors 65816

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    #24
    Hi there,

    I have seen this on CNN.com and on their news channel. The 737 has quite a few problems they need to sort out. The tailfin has a problem, and earlier this year, a 737 blew up after a few leakage upon landing in Okinawa. Luckily no one was hurt.

    Nationwide is a no-frills airline so the aircraft they use is normally 2nd hand and aged. So next time you fly you'd put your life on spending that extra bucks on a premium airline. Just a thought.
     
  25. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

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    #25
    Maybe it's different with light twins but I know the engine out on takeoff is essentially the twin pilot's worst case scenario, and they drill on it extensively. (An added level of difficulty not encountered with jets is feathering the prop on the dead engine.)

    Also, the loss of weight and the change to the airfoil become variables. Would the wing suddenly have more lift, or less? Would the flaps and ailerons behave normally? It may be as someone else posted that engine separation is a design characteristic, in which case they probably have a book procedure for handling it, but I sure don't know.
     

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