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How do they weigh an Aircraft .. !! ?

How do they do it ? 

Weighing general aviation (GA) aircraft, helicopters, turboprops, corporate jets, or transport category airliners can be accomplished in two ways: top of jack load cells and platform scales. Equipment selection is dependent on the operator’s needs and or equipment currently on hand, as well as the airframe manufacturer’s recommendations. Using load cells, whereby the aircraft is lifted up, or using a weighing platform. For this weighing, the aircraft is pulled by a tow truck onto yellow platforms. Each wheel has itsown set of scales. “They can calculate the total weight by combining the weights measured at all the platforms. It’s really important that the aircraft is standing exactly horizontally at this point. To ensure this, they use a plumb line, which is a thread with a piece of lead on the end.”

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weighing process .!

  1. Every four years each aircraft’s diary says it’s time for a weighing session.
  2. An appointment is made with Weight & Balance in the hangar.
  3. The aircraft is completely emptied. The kerosene is drained out of the aircraft, right down to the last drop. Then the drinking water and toilet water are removed.
  4. The Ground Engineers prepare the aircraft for weighing and make sure it really is empty and dry (rainwater can distort the measurement by adding extra weight).
  5. The Weight & Balance engineer uses a checklist to ensure the contents of the plane have been removed entirely.
  6. The aircraft is weighed.
  7. File the weight.

Weighing Basics 

Scales are like torque wrenches and you would not use a 100 foot-pound torque wrench to torque a 20 inch-pound nut. Why then would you use a 150,000-pound scale system to weigh a light GA aircraft, turboprop, or helicopter? We see this practice a lot where many shops and or technicians use large scale systems to weigh light aircraft, or they have the wrong size cell top to fit a large jet jack point.

There are many military surplus scale units out there, be careful, many of these units still in use are analog meter movements and may or may not be calibrated correctly. When calibrating scale equipment we always recommend using an aviation-based calibration lab with an Airframe and Powerplant certified technician on staff or returning the unit directly to the manufacturer for calibration. Some units require specific calibration procedures, software access, and or adapters; to complete the calibration properly always audit your provider to ensure that the proper procedures and equipment are being used. Primary National Institute of Science and Technology (NIST) traceable certifications and test equipment are a must.

Universal Scale Weighs

AC30-60 ™ Aviation Weighing System

Top of jack systems:

The standard aircraft scale is a top of jack, cell-based scale, where each jack point receives a cell-based transducer on the top of the jack. This system’s advantage is, it is very easy to use and level the aircraft during the weighing operation. The system is easy to transport, light weight, and easy to set up.

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M2000-3-10CS Helicopter top of jack scale kit

Platform systems:

Platforms are available in many weight ranges and sizes, these systems either use ramps or the aircraft can be jacked and lowered onto the platforms during regular maintenance. Platforms are easy to use and are a choice for many shops that do not have jacks for the many types of aircraft to be serviced.

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Resolution and accuracy

As a general rule scales less than 10,000-pound capacity will measure in a 1-pound count and scales over that and up to 25,000 pounds will count in a 2-pound count. Large jet 50,000-pound scales will measure in a 5-pound count and so on. Always use a scale with the proper size and count resolution. The idea is to pick the right scale size and resolution for the aircraft type and accuracy needed.

Courtesy : Aviationpro, klmblog,

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He is an aviation journalist and the founder of Jetline Marvel. Dawal gained a comprehensive understanding of the commercial aviation industry.  He has worked in a range of roles for more than 9 years in the aviation and aerospace industry. He has written more than 1700 articles in the aerospace industry. When he was 19 years old, he received a national award for his general innovations and holds the patent. He completed two postgraduate degrees simultaneously, one in Aerospace and the other in Management. Additionally, he authored nearly six textbooks on aviation and aerospace tailored for students in various educational institutions. jetlinem4(at)gmail.com

Aerospace

Pakistan’s Ambitious Plan to Acquire and Produce Chinese FC-31 Stealth Fighter

Pakistan’s Ambitious Plan to Acquire and Produce Chinese FC-31 Stealth Fighter

Pakistan is embarking on an ambitious endeavor to bolster its air defense capabilities with the acquisition and potential local production of the Chinese FC-31 stealth fighter jet.

Talks are reportedly underway between the Pakistan Air Force (PAF) and the Shenyang Aircraft Corporation, the developer of the FC-31, signaling a significant leap forward for Pakistan’s military aviation prowess.

The FC-31, a mid-sized, twin-engine fifth-generation fighter, promises advanced air combat capabilities, including stealth technology that surpasses anything currently in the PAF‘s fleet. With plans to retire the JF-17 production line by 2030, the FC-31 could emerge as the new flagship aircraft, offering unmatched performance and versatility.

Experts speculate that Pakistan’s interest in the FC-31 could also signal broader implications for the international market. As China develops both land and carrier versions of the FC-31, analysts foresee it becoming a cost-effective alternative to pricier options like the F-35, potentially challenging the dominance of the US aerospace industry and reshaping global strategic rivalries.

Adding complexity to the deal is China’s push for the WS-13 engine, previously rejected for the JF-17 but now under consideration for both the FC-31 and future JF-17 variants. Engine standardization could streamline logistical and maintenance processes for the PAF, further enhancing the appeal of the FC-31.

While negotiations continue, the success of the FC-31 acquisition and local production hinges on several factors, including the outcome of the WS-13 engine discussions. Pakistan’s pursuit of the FC-31 comes amidst its eagerness to replace its aging fleet, with previous attempts to upgrade its F-16s by the United States due to geopolitical pressures.

Amidst these developments, Pakistan previous interest in the Turkish-made Kaan fifth-generation fighter underscores its eagerness to replace its aging fleet. Despite previous attempts to secure upgrades for its F-16s from the United States, Pakistan’s quest for advanced aerial capabilities has led it to explore alternative avenues, with the FC-31 emerging as a promising contender in its pursuit of air superiority.

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Aerospace

Airbus presents new Wingman concept at ILA Berlin Airshow

Airbus presents new Wingman concept at ILA Berlin Airshow

At the prestigious ILA aerospace trade show in Berlin, Airbus Defence and Space made waves by introducing its pioneering Wingman concept, marking a significant leap forward in military aviation technology.

Teaming up with Helsing, Europe’s leading defense AI and software company, Airbus showcased a framework cooperation agreement aimed at revolutionizing the realm of artificial intelligence (AI) in defense.

Airbus Wingman

The Wingman concept represents a paradigm shift in aerial warfare, introducing unmanned platforms equipped with advanced AI capabilities to augment the capabilities of manned combat aircraft. Pilots in command aircraft such as the Eurofighter command these autonomous drones, positioning them to undertake high-risk mission tasks that would traditionally pose a significant threat to manned-only aircraft.

Central to the Wingman concept is Manned-Unmanned Teaming, wherein manned aircraft serve as “command fighters,” retaining ultimate control over mission decisions while delegating tactical tasks to unmanned systems. This synergistic collaboration promises to enhance mission flexibility, increase combat mass, and minimize risk exposure for pilots, thereby bolstering overall operational effectiveness.

The capabilities of the Wingman extend across a diverse spectrum of mission profiles, ranging from reconnaissance and target jamming to precision strikes against both ground and aerial targets. Equipped with advanced sensors, connectivity solutions, and a diverse array of armaments, the Wingman stands poised to redefine the operational landscape of modern air forces.

While the Wingman model showcased at ILA Berlin represents the pinnacle of current technological innovation, it also serves as a catalyst for future design iterations. As with any pioneering concept, refinement and evolution are inevitable, with each generation of the Wingman poised to push the boundaries of aerial warfare even further.

MQ-28 Ghost Bat

Boeing introduced the MQ-28 Ghost Bat, an unmanned combat aerial vehicle (UCAV), which made its maiden flight in February 2021. Developed by Boeing Australia, the MQ-28 leverages artificial intelligence to serve as a force multiplier for manned fighter jets.

The Ghost Bat is engineered to operate in tandem with existing military aircraft, enhancing and extending the capabilities of airborne missions. This cost-effective UCAV is designed to work as an intelligent teammate, complementing and amplifying the effectiveness of manned operations in various mission profiles.

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Aerospace

Take First Glimpse of USAF B-21 Raider, Latest Nuclear Stealth Bomber

Take First Glimpse of USAF B-21 Raider, Latest Nuclear Stealth Bomber
Image:USAF

The United States Air Force (USAF) has unveiled the first photographs of the Northrop Grumman B-21 Raider bomber in flight.

These images were captured during test flights conducted by the B-21 Combined Test Force at Edwards Air Force Base, marking a significant milestone in the development of this sixth-generation aircraft.

Currently undergoing flight tests in California, the B-21 Raider represents the next generation of stealth bombers. With an estimated cost of around $700 million per aircraft, the B-21 Raider is poised to become a crucial component of the USAF’s arsenal for conventional Long Range Strike missions.

According to Air Force briefings, the B-21 Raider will form part of a comprehensive family of systems, encompassing Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance capabilities, electronic warfare, communication systems, and more. Notably, the bomber will be nuclear-capable and adaptable for both manned and unmanned operations.

It boasts the flexibility to deploy a wide array of stand-off and direct-attack munitions, ensuring versatility in various combat scenarios. One of the B-21’s distinguishing features is its extensive integration of digital technology, as highlighted in discussions held during a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing.

Designed with an open systems architecture, the B-21 Raider is built to swiftly incorporate emerging technologies, ensuring its effectiveness against evolving threats over time. The B-21 Raider is slated to replace the aging B-1 Lancer and B-2 Spirit bombers, bolstering US national security objectives and providing reassurance to allies and partners worldwide.

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