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Old 01-08-2008, 04:21 PM   #10 (permalink)
Lazarus's Avatar
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Central Texas
Posts: 1,482

Iron Horse (retired) - '97 Iron horse Intrepid

Ninja - '08 Kawasaki 250R
90 day: 76.23 mpg (US)
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I don't fly for an airline( I have lots of friends that do) but I did stay at a Holiday Inn express last night.
All in all with the major carriers it is all about fuel. They plan altitude for best fuel and route with the winds aloft and aircraft weight(if there is not a lot of turbulence at the desired altitude). They will taxi out on one engine, shutdown on the end of the taxiway if excessive delays. Ask for straight in approaches, ask to keep the speed above the 250 kt limit below 10,000 ft. Of course if the airspace is saturated it's all for not but they figure that all into the planning because they are going into the same places. I know some of the overnight freight companies will give bonus to the crew if they beat the predicted fuel burn and I'm sure that is for the regular carrier too.

Here's some data on fuel. It dated (3 years old) but it will give you the general idea.

What does a one-cent increase per gallon in jet fuel mean for a carrier like American, the
largest in the nation? Last year, American consumed 2.956 billion gallons of jet fuel. A
penny increase will jack up fuel costs by $2.5 million per month. So far, prices are 12
cents higher per gallon compared with last year. Talk about sticker shock.
As far as gliding into landing. Most turbojet engine have a lag time of about 5-13 seconds from idle to full power, depending on the engine, So if you flight idle it you would be committed from about 800 feet above the ground. It takes a while to arrest the sink rate of a 100,000 pound airplane once the engine hit max power. So they have procedures that they will have the approach stabilized at 1000 feet with power setting appropriate for the aircraft landing configuration.
"Judge a person by their questions rather than their answers."

Last edited by Lazarus; 01-08-2008 at 04:26 PM.. Reason: landing
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