What about the aircraft I fly that have no autoland facility?
As it happens autolands (Cat IIIB approaches) are rare. The aircraft must be equipped for it, and the crew trained for it. All associated equipment must be functioning correctly (no MEL restrictions). If LVPs are not in force at the airport the crew must request autoland - aircraft on the ground must then be held at the Cat III holding points, and if there are aircraft already beyond that, holding at a Cat II or Cat I holding point, then no autoland can take place.
Tuesday, February 14, 2012 12:04:47 AM
Angillion - the wheels are skidding at touch down not rotating, so there's a lot of play allowed at the initial point of contact, also there is presumably an element of self correction if the rate of descent is low and the horizontal aspect of the plan is level, in that the drag on the rear wheels being behind the CoG have a straightening affect.
My question wasn't clear. I was wondering about just the final touchdown, when you`ve turned from crabbing along in the air above the runway to making physical contact with the runway itself. Obviously the ideal is to have the plane precisely parallel to the runway when you touch it, pointing exactly straight down the runway. My question was how far you can deviate from *that*, e.g. what if you hadn`t fully turned the plane from crabbing partially sideways against the wind before touching down, or you overcorrected and swung a bit the other way? Say, for example, you were crabbing at 9 degrees and touched down at 5 degrees instead of 0 degrees. Do the wheels on the landing gear swivel? Could the plane remain balanced moving on the ground at an angle? Or would that cause what you mentioned - one wing dipping and the engine cowling dragging on the ground?