1986-10-01

Aircraft Performance and Control in Downburst Wind Shear 861698

The methods developed for analyses of the winds and of aircraft performance during an investigation of a downburst wind-shear-induced accident have been utilized in a more general study of aircraft performance in such encounters. The computed responses of a generic, large transport aircraft to take-off and approach encounters with a downburst wind field were used in examining the effects of performance factors and control procedures on the ability of the aircraft to survive. Obvious benefits are seen for higher initial encounter speeds, maximum thrust-weight values typical of two-engined aircraft, and immediacy of pilot response. The results of controlling to a constant, predetermined, pitch attitude are demonstrated. Control algorithms that sacrifice altitude for speed appear to provide a higher level of survivability, but guidance displays more explicitly defining flightpath than those commonly in use might be required.

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