Ch 6 - The Effect Of Mass An Its Distribution Flashcards Preview

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Flashcards in Ch 6 - The Effect Of Mass An Its Distribution Deck (20):

If an aircraft is too heavy:

V speeds will be impacted

Rate of climb decreases

Gradient of climb decreases

Lower cruise ceiling therefore decreased efficiency

Increased Fuel Burn

Decreased Range


Too Heavy effects 2:

Landing roll will be longer

Lower approach speed, margins above the threshold will be lower

Increased breaks and tire wear

Increased landing speed


CG Too Far Aft effects

Pitching up moment which could be a problem for TO - Tailstrike

Decreased longitudinal Static Stability

Decreased cruise fuel burn due to there being less trim drag

Stall speed will reduce

Poor landing characteristics

Range and endurance increased

Insufficient nose down authority


Forces Experienced by an airframe

Twisting (Torsion)

Tension (stretching)



An AC will be exposed to multiple stress inputs at the same time

If there is a large enough stress - the airframe could fail (break/snap)


Ultimate Load Limit

Is based on the load factor

The airframe will start to fail at this point

Design load limit has a 50% safety factors over and above the ultimate load limit



Metal fatigue is caused by multiple applications of stress below the ultimate load limit

Can cause the structure to eventually fail well below the ultimate limit

Cycles of compression/tensions produce fatigue rapidly when the stresses are larger

A med-long term source of damage


Fatigue Life

Determined by the manufacturer based on the number of hours flown or number of fatigue cycles (TO and landings)


How do we protect against failure

Observe mass limits

AC have multiple load bearing paths so if something breaks somewhere, the structure isn't totally failed


Overloading on performance

The basic stall speed will increase along with all other v speeds apart from V1

Reduced acceleration and deceleration

Reduces the rate and angle of climb


Overloading on TO

Reluctant to rotate and lift off

Takes longer to accelerate and rotate

Fail to become airborne


Overloading on Climb

Unable to achieve the required obstacle clearance

Lift off point closer to the obstacles

Climb gradient becomes shallower


Overloading on Cruise

Decreased Max speed

Decreased max ceiling

Increased Drag

Increased Fuel consumption

Decreased range and endurance

Decreased manoeuvrability


Overloading on Landing

Faster approach speed

Increased landing speed

Longer landing run

Brake fade caused by heating of the breaks


Overloading on Landing Gear

Can cause SEV tyre wear

Tyres may fail

Severe break wear

Wing spar failure (in the most extreme cases)


CG and CG position

Where the mass is considered to be concentrated

Weight acts through CG

Pitches/rolls/yaws around CG (in flight)

CG changes with mass distribution (fuel consumption)

Acceptable range of CG is determined by manufacturer (%MAC)


CG In flight (fwd)

Too far froward;
Too Stable
Controls heavy and unresponsive
Cristal stage of flight where the most effect is felt

Increased fuel burn (elevator drag/trim drag)
Decreased range and endurance
Decreased max speed
Increased stalling speed


CG in flight (aft)

Decreased stall speed
Decreased longitudinal stability
Decreased control authority (effective elevator)
Could cause uncontrollable pitch up
Insufficient nose down authority

Controls light and overly reponsive
Insufficient pitch down authority
Spin recover may be more difficult or impossible


Desirable CG Position

Operator and the pilot will opt for a slightly aft CG position (within safe limits) to reduce the drag and fuel used

This does however open the AC up to tail strikes in which case they opt for a slightly fwd cg


CG on the ground

CG aft of the main gear which can lead to nose up

Should be kept forward of the main gear at all times - care has to be taken when loading to unloading to ensure that this is the case

Tail support struts are sometimes needed

Aft CG - light nose wheel steering

Fwd CG - nose wheel collapse



CG effects both performance and handling in flight and on the ground

CG has to remain within limits