What Happens If Heat Exceeds An Aircraft’s Certification?

The certification (or recertification) of an aircraft is a complex process, in which many aspects are regulated to…

What Happens If Heat Exceeds An Aircraft’s Certification?

The certification (or recertification) of an aircraft is a complex process, in which many aspects are regulated to ensure that the plane in question can operate safely. Heat is one area in which careful attention is paid, as overheating can prove catastrophic under particular circumstances. But what happens if a plane does overheat? Let’s take a look.

What happens if an aircraft overheats? Photo: Getty Images


Aircraft certifications are designed to minimize the risk of overheating as much as possible. For example, EASA regulations deem that, as part of an aircraft being certified, “overheat or failures leading to damage to Engine Control System components, must not result in a Hazardous Engine Effect due to Engine Control System Failures or malfunctions.”

As part of the testing process, the EASA (European Union Aviation Safety Agency) requires aircraft to be pushed to extreme parameters that cause overheating. This verifies to regulators that “the electrical/electronic portions of the Engine Control System, when subjected to an overheat condition leading to Failure, will not cause a hazardous Engine effect.”

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Prevention mechanisms

Despite the aforementioned regulatory framework, overheating can happen. As such, it is important that aircraft have preventative mechanisms in place to minimize risk to them and their occupants. So what exactly happens in the event of overheating?

KLM B737
An Ibiza-bound KLM 737-800 returned to Amsterdam Schiphol in July 2019 after an engine overheated. Photo: Getty Images

Modern aircraft are equipped with sensors to monitor temperatures in crucial areas. According to Skybrary, for example, “overheat detectors are installed in the vicinity of bleed air ducts, and the bleed system is designed so it can be partially or totally isolated if required.” Skybrary also adds that this will generate a warning for the pilots in the cockpit.

Professional Pilot Magazine adds that “Saab’s Overheat Detection System consists of a fiber optic sensing line placed near the engines and bleed air ducts, and includes optical integrators and processing hardware and software for collecting data and control.”

As such, we can see that, in a sense, aircraft take care of themselves when overheating thanks to these systems. Aircraft Systems Tech explains further that the detectors function as part of a circuit. This means that, if an area overheats, the sensor will detect this and cause the circuit to be broken, allowing the component(s) in question to be safely isolated.

Air France Concorde
Concorde’s paint helped prevent it from overheating during supersonic cruises. Photo: Getty Images

How did Concorde prevent overheating?

Aérospatiale and BAC’s legendary Concorde airliner made the dream of supersonic a reality for the select few who could afford it. The world is yet to see another airliner quite like it (although Boom Supersonic hopes to change this by the end of the decade).

With it being an airliner like no other, its overheating prevention was also different. Flying at supersonic speeds up to twice as fast as the speed of sound generated significant heat. As such, it was painted with a special brand of highly reflective white paint.

This reduced its temperature by  6 to 11 °C (11 to 20 °F), and allowed it to sustain supersonic flight without compromising its safety. This was also the reason why Air France’s blue Pepsi-liveried Concorde was not able to cruise at such speeds. Indeed, the lack of protection provided by this paint scheme limited Mach 2 flight to periods of 20 minutes.

Did you know about the various mechanisms that are in place to protect aircraft in the event of overheating? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.

Source : Simple Flying More   

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Faroe Islands Atlantic Airways Reveals 2022 Flight Schedule

Faroe Islands’ Atlantic Airways has revealed its flight schedule for 2022. The flag carrier plans to fly direct…

Faroe Islands Atlantic Airways Reveals 2022 Flight Schedule

Faroe Islands’ Atlantic Airways has revealed its flight schedule for 2022. The flag carrier plans to fly direct routes to 10 destinations across Europe, including three domestic services and three to Spain for next summer. Let’s find out more about the airline’s plans from Vagar.

Atlantic Airways operates a fleet of three all-Airbus narrowbody aircraft. Photo: Airbus

Back on the map

According to Aviation24, Faroe Islands’ Atlantic Airways has announced its plans for the following year. The carrier flies out of Vagar, the capital of the self-governing Danish territory, serving the island located between Iceland and Denmark. After a tough pandemic year, the airline is making a comeback next year.

Atlantic Airways plans to fly to 10 destinations across much of western Europe. This includes three domestic destinations of Copenhagen, Aalborg, and Billund on a frequent basis. Neighboring Iceland will see twice-weekly (thrice from Easter onwards) from Vagar to Keflavik. However, long-haul flights are still off the map.

Atlantic Airways A319-100
Atlantic uses its A319s and A320neos for European services and helicopters for internal flights. Photo: Curimedia via Wikimedia Commons

Further out, Atlantic will serve Edinburgh from 7th April to 22nd December on a twice-weekly basis to provide flights to the UK. Neighboring France will also see direct flights to Paris from May to October. The first route in this schedule will be flights from Vagar to Gran Canaria, which run from 2nd November 2021 to next February.

Summer calling

In anticipation of a busy summer next year, Atlantic Airways is planning flights to sunny Mallorca and Barcelona from 7th June to 27th September, the peak period. Both flights will run once weekly on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, respectively.

The carrier is also launching a brand-new route from Vagar to Oslo, flying every Wednesday through 2022, with an extra Sunday service from Easter to 16th October. With year-round traffic between the countries, Atlantic is hoping to see strong demand on the route and looking to challenge the new entrant.

Faroe Islands Atlantic Airways Reveals 2022 Flight Schedule
The airline is flying an impressive schedule given its three aircraft. Photo: Gordon Leggett / Wikimedia Commons

Overall, Atlantic is hoping that travel restrictions will be eased next year and travel will return to some normality. While this is impossible to predict during the pandemic, things are looking up for the industry in general, with 2021 showing a strong recovery.


However, it’s not all smooth riding for Atlantic Airways, and schedules don’t mean flights will actually operate. In July, Atlantic was forced to pull its new Edinburgh route just three weeks after launch due to rising COVID cases in the UK. With cases still high in parts of Europe, there is a serious risk of next summer being impacted by COVID once again.

For now, Denmark, and by extension the Faroe Islands, are now welcoming EU and vaccinated travelers back without any restrictions. If the situation remains the same over the next year as well, the airline could be looking at a major recovery. However, with the pandemic constantly throwing curveballs at the industry, nothing is certain, and schedules might be over-optimistic.

What do you think about Atlantic Airways’ plans for next year? Let us know in the comments!

Source : Simple Flying More   

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