Traveling by planes has become quite common these days. Whether you need to go on a vacation or on a business trip, plane travel is not just the fastest way to reach your destination but also one of the most exhilarating experiences that we have in our lifetime. While plane travel is exciting, what’s equally exciting is the amazing features that the modern aircrafts are equipped with. Check out my list of amazing plane features that might change the way you look at airplane travel.
Modern airplanes are designed to withstand lightning
You would be surprised to know that planes are regularly struck by lightning during their flight time but thanks to their superior engineering, no harm has ever been caused to any airplane since 1963.
How does that work?
When lightning strikes airplanes, its superior built and design lets the electric charge run through the plane and out of it. In other words, lightning strikes one of the plane’s outer extremities – such as the wingtip and then the current exits via another extremity, such as the tail, without causing any damage to the plane or passengers sitting inside it.
The Tiny hole in the airplane window has a purpose
The tiny hole in the bottom of your airplane window may look like a design flaw to some but it is actually a very important safety feature. It is officially known as a breather hole. The tiny and insignificant looking hole is used to regulate the amount of pressure that passes between the panels of the window. It ensures that the outer pane bears the most pressure.
How does it work?
A plane’s window is made up of 3 panels of acrylic. The hole allows pressure between the air in the passenger cabin and the air between the outer and middle panes to equilibrate. This tiny little hole ensures that cabin pressure during flight is applied only to the outer pane, so when there is added strain on the window, it’s the outside panel that will break. The tiny hole also keeps the window panes from fogging up, so that you may a clear view of the clouds.
There is a secret button on your airplane seat
If you pay close attention to the aisle seats, you will notice a hidden button on the underside of the outer most armrest. The button is a safety measure which is there to help you exit the plane more easily and quickly in case of an emergency. It is also a great way to get a little bit of extra legroom.
How does it work?
When you slide your hand under the armrest near the aisle seat, you will find a button concealed near the hinge. By pressing it and you will be able to move that armrest up and get some extra space for yourself.
Hooks on plane’s wings
Planes are equipped with some amazing system of safety features which often go unnoticed by common people. One of the important but unnoticed features is the yellow hooks on the plane’s wings. The hooks that are placed on the wings have two small holes. They may look very small, but they can save lives in the event of emergency landings. Read on to find out how.
How do they work?
It is a very important safety feature, which can be used only in the event of landing on water. When a plane lands on water, the wings become very slippery for the passengers trying to get an inflatable slide set up. The yellow hooks enable the crew members to attach a rope to the aircraft door and one to the inflatable slide, so that passengers can hold onto it as they evacuate. The number of hooks and their placement on the wing varies from plane to plane.
There are chemical oxygen generators in your emergency oxygen masks
Planes are enclosed public places. The more densely-packed the less oxygen we get on board. In case of emergencies, when oxygen masks drop, there are certain chemicals that get into action to keep the oxygen supply going. Airplanes use oxygen generators, also known as – oxygen candles. The chemicals you will find in oxygen candles are – barium peroxide, sodium chlorate and potassium chlorate – in powder and liquid form.
How do they work?
When you pull down on the mask when it drops, the tug starts a chemical process that engages the oxygen candles. It starts a chemical reaction between barium peroxide, sodium chlorate and potassium chlorate to produce oxygen. The oxygen produced by the chemical reaction only lasts for 15 minutes but this time is more than enough. During this time, the expert pilots can fly the plane to a safe altitude where the passengers can breathe normally without any assistance.
Triangle stickers above your airplane seat
If you frequently travel by airplanes, you will notice there are four black or red triangle stickers above the windows, two on each side of the plane. They might look like ordinary stickers to you, but they are more important than you think. When pilots or flight attendants need a better view of the wings, the triangle stickers act like a sign telling them exactly where to look.
When do they use it?
The flight attendants and pilots use these windows when they must check the moving parts of a wing (the flats and slats) for problems like ice. The seats with triangles are also the best seats to get Instagram worthy shots of air wings.
Pro Tip: If you’re getting motion sick on a plane, the best way to feel better would be to request a seat between the two triangles. The wings are the planes’ center of gravity, sitting there makes you feel better.
Planes’ designs have surely undergone some amazing transformation since the days of Wright Brothers. From that first wood-and-cloth contraption to sleek and superfast airplanes of today, the aerospace technology has really come of age. These out-of-sight but important airplane features can mean the difference between making your entire flight experience safe or unsafe. So, the next time you travel by an airplane, don’t forget to pay closer attention and appreciate the technology for such an incredible gift.
Author: Harsh Arora is a Content Consultant at Enuke Software, a pioneering Travel portal Development Company in the USA. Harsh is passionate about the start-up ecosystem, Cryptoworld, entrepreneurship, latest tech innovations, and all that makes this digital world. When He is not writing, He loves to play basketball, cook and go on drives. Prior to this, He was working for a technology marketing company based in Norwalk as a content contributor and crypto advisor.