• Shashank Raj

Crux of Crosswind Landing

I hope everyone is doing well on their ends! , today I came with yet another topic and it's a bit interesting one.

So let me start with my story of how exactly I got to know about it. I was traveling from Jammu Airport (IXJ) to Srinagar (SXR) on 23rd March 2021 in Air India Airbus A321 (Narrow-Body Aircraft) and during this journey, the aircraft encountered huge air turbulences, which continued till we finally landed in Sri Nagar. So as an aviation enthusiast, I was quick enough to judge that onerous crosswinds were dis-aligning the aircraft from its track.

So now let us dive straight into its mechanics,

Demonstration of Crosswinds

After taking a brief look at the above video you might have known the meaning of the word crosswinds. Now imagine how stressful it is for the pilot to land in these situations, but on the bright side, they already handle even more intricate tasks while they are in the simulator during their training period.

How exactly do they land?

In practice, there are multiple ways in which a crosswinds landing can be performed namely Crab, Sideslip, Forward Slip, etc. But all of them pretty much work the same in the principle of basic science.

I have prepared a mix of GIFs to make you understand it better...

A typical approach during crosswinds.

Now as the above illustration makes it clear that aircrafts do not approach runways in conventional ways during crosswinds, rather they adjust their position to match the resultant vector of runway component and crosswind component, which grants them a straight position when landed on the runway.

The final position is something like this,

So in a nutshell, this is was a simple application of vector that you might have learnt back in your schools, but simply there are hell lot of calculations going into aircraft electronics 😄.

Now take a cup of coffee and enjoy some open-source videos of crosswinds striking aircrafts.

So allow me to sign off for the day, I hope to come up with something interesting next month.

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