So there has been a barrage of Food Posts from the past few weeks. I’ve been visiting quite a few restaurants in the past couple of weeks. Plus had a hectic travel schedule in the first half of March. Flew from Hyderabad – with my breakfast at Hyderabad Lounge – to Jaipur and then to Lucknow. For all of you who don’t know, I love to read and learn about aircrafts. Be it the ATR, Bombardier, the Airbus A320 or the Boeing 737 – the aircrafts I’ve flown in. So this post – Know your Aircraft – Airbus A320 – I’ll talk about a few things that you would have definitely come across while flying on the Airbus A320. In India Indigo has the largest fleet of Airbus A320s followed by Spicejet. Read on to find out all things you wanted to know about the Airbus A320.
3 Things you want to know about the Airbus A320
The Barking Sound – is there a Dog ?
You’ve cleared the security and are walking towards the aircraft. The pretty air hostess greets you with a pleasant smile as you walk towards your seat. The aircraft doors are closed and the safety procedures are on as the aircraft starts taxiing – driving towards the main runway for take off. Just then you hear a barking sound – not once or twice but a few number of times. Haven’t you ? If you haven’t, pay attention the next time you are flying. When I first heard it, I saw whether the flaps are moving (Because that’s one of the few pre-take off checklist) but the sound isn’t because of that. Now, after digging through the internet, I found the reason for the barking sound.
This barking sound is made by the PTU or Power Transfer Unit which is an integral part of the Aircraft. The PTU is responsible for maintaining adequate hydraulic pressure for various components on the aircraft. On a typical A320/A319 aircraft, there are 3 different hydraulic systems – coded as green, blue and yellow that are responsible for the functioning of different components. Also the thumb rule is never to fire all the engines at once, so after the first engine is fired IFF there is a pressure difference the green and yellow systems, the PTU fires up to increase the pressure in the deficient system. And that’s when you hear the barking sound. So the next time you are flying in an Airbus A320, you know there’s no dog in the cabin !
What is that yellow thing on the wings ?
If you (like me) prefer a window seat near the wings – seats 19 – 24 – provide a good view of the wings, I’m sure you would have noticed this too. When you look out of your window, you would have seen a little yellow thing on the wings. So what exactly is that yellow thing on the wings of the Airbus A320 ?
These little yellow things are used in case of emergency. You already know that the Airbus A320 has 8 emergency exits – two in the front, 2 at the back and 4 over the wings. (pay attention to what the air hostess tells the next time :P) So in case of an emergency landing when the safety slides are opened, these yellow things are there for the attachment lines to hold these slides securely so you don’t fall off.
Why is there a tiny hole in the window ?
Again, if you are seated at a window seat you would have surely seen this too. At the bottom half of the window there is a teeny-weeny hole. You might wonder what that is for ? That tiny little hole ensure that you are able to breath when in air. Basically when you are climbing, the air pressure outside is decreasing while the pressure inside increases (because of the AC system) This difference creates a lot of pressure inside the aircraft.
The windows are made up of three panels if you observe closely – outer, middle and inner. This tiny little hole is present on the middle pane and the entire air in the aircraft cabin circulates via these panes. So the tiny little hole helps maintain the cabin pressure to a certain extent without which it might be tough for you to breathe !
Now the next time you are flying in an Airbus A320/A319 do try to observe these things. These are some of the most common things on the Airbus and surely raises some eyebrows. This information could be found anywhere on the internet. Thanks to my interest in aircrafts, I read about these things and put them here in simpler words. I hope that after reading this post, you would now be a more aware flyer the next time you board an aircraft. Did you find this helpful ? If you are a pilot or an aviation expert – please correct if I’m wrong. Mention in the comments below or tweet to me at @Atulmaharaj