Loading an Aircraft for Flight
The ultimate test of whether or not there is a problem with an airplane’s weight and balance is when it is loaded and ready to fly. The only real importance of an airplane’s empty weight and empty weight center of gravity is how it affects the loaded weight and balance of the airplane, since an airplane doesn’t fly when it is empty. The pilot in command is responsible for the weight and balance of the loaded airplane, and he or she makes the final decision on whether or not the airplane is safe to fly.
Example Loading of an Airplane
As an example of an airplane being loaded for flight, the Piper Seneca twin will be used. The Type Certificate Data Sheet for this airplane was shown earlier in this chapter, and its center of gravity range and CG envelope were also shown.
The information from the Type Certificate Data Sheet that pertains to this example loading is as follows:
No. of Seats
For the example loading of the airplane, the following information applies:
For today’s flight, the following useful load items will be included:
To calculate the loaded weight and CG of this airplane, a four column chart will be used, as shown in Figure 4-22.
Based on the information in the Type Certificate Data Sheet, the maximum takeoff weight of this airplane is 4,200 lb, and the aft-most CG limit is +94.6". The loaded airplane in the chart above is 25 lb too heavy, and the CG is 1.82" too far aft. To make the airplane
safe to fly, the load needs to be reduced by 25 lb and some of the load needs to be shifted forward. For example, the baggage can be reduced by 25 lb, and a full 100 lb of it can be placed in the more forward compartment. One passenger can be moved to the forward seat next to the pilot, and the aft-most passenger can then be moved forward. If these changes are made, the four column calculation will be as shown in Figure 4-23.
With the changes made, the loaded weight is now at the maximum allowable of 4,200 lb, and the CG has moved forward 4.41". The airplane is now safe to fly.
|©AvStop Online Magazine Contact Us Return To Books|
Grab this Headline Animator