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Turns at Cruise Level

Pro Member Trainee
CP16 Trainee

hi
Somebody can explain me, with details, why when we are in the aircraft at the cruise level, and the aircraft turns, we don’t felt that.
I know it’s that the reason is related to the G force or something likes that, but I would like to get something more detailed.
Thanks

11 Responses

Pro Member Chief Captain
Manuel Agustin Clausse (Agus0404) Chief Captain

Well, I can feel the turns sometimes. Specially when flying Boeing. I noticed a while ago that Airbus is much smoother than Boeing. But sometimes, when I'm even flying in an Airbus aircraft I feel the turns.

Now, in cruise altitude, the majority of the turns don't exceed 20 degrees of bank. Maybe 15 degrees. Having said that, we don't feel the turns since they are not made with a high bank.

Pro Member First Officer
Greg (FL050) First Officer

Agus0404 wrote:

Well, I can feel the turns sometimes. Specially when flying Boeing. I noticed a while ago that Airbus is much smoother than Boeing. But sometimes, when I'm even flying in an Airbus aircraft I feel the turns.

Now, in cruise altitude, the majority of the turns don't exceed 20 degrees of bank. Maybe 15 degrees. Having said that, we don't feel the turns since they are not made with a high bank.

Exactly. There is no real reason to do a sharp turn at cruise altitude unless traffic is an issue. Being so high, you would already be on your initial course and if you get off the course, can always just do a shallow turn for a while rather than one giant steep turn.

Pro Member Chief Captain
Manuel Agustin Clausse (Agus0404) Chief Captain

I agree 😉

Guest Ed Guest

In the flight sim, you can hit shift+Z a couple of times and see the G-forces as you fly.

(whether you're flying Airbus or Boeing 🙄 )

Ed

Pro Member Trainee
CP16 Trainee

But the G force exists, and when the plane turns, we only felt a little. This is the G force.

Guest

Agus0404 wrote:

Well, I can feel the turns sometimes. Specially when flying Boeing. I noticed a while ago that Airbus is much smoother than Boeing. But sometimes, when I'm even flying in an Airbus aircraft I feel the turns.

Now, in cruise altitude, the majority of the turns don't exceed 20 degrees of bank. Maybe 15 degrees. Having said that, we don't feel the turns since they are not made with a high bank.

Your'e right the Boeing isn't as smooth as the Airbus. That's why they have made it compulsory for captains on the 747 to put on the Yaw Damper on during flight ,other wise the passengers are likely to break a rib or get a bit of a bruise at the back of the plane, especially on a 767,747 or 777-300. I sat at the back of an A340 during a checkride and it was smooth [we were flying through bad weather] but when I was at the back of a BA 747 I felt like I cracked a rib when the captain turned off the yaw damper for landing.

Pro Member Captain
Jon Van Duyn (JVD) Captain

[quote="Anonymous"]

Guest wrote:

Your'e right the Boeing isn't as smooth as the Airbus. That's why they have made it compulsory for captains on the 747 to put on the Yaw Damper on during flight ,other wise the passengers are likely to break a rib or get a bit of a bruise at the back of the plane, especially on a 767,747 or 777-300. I sat at the back of an A340 during a checkride and it was smooth [we were flying through bad weather] but when I was at the back of a BA 747 I felt like I cracked a rib when the captain turned off the yaw damper for landing.

My bad.The last post was by me I just wasn't logged on as usual.

Pro Member First Officer
leadfoot First Officer

The other reason you don't feel a turn at altitude is the speed. at 550 mph the radius of a turn would be long, so the rate of degree change would be slow compared to slow flight or ground manuevers.

Pro Member First Officer
Greg (FL050) First Officer

leadfoot wrote:

The other reason you don't feel a turn at altitude is the speed. at 550 mph the radius of a turn would be long, so the rate of degree change would be slow compared to slow flight or ground manuevers.

Which is essentially what I said. But its up to the pilot to decide how steep he wants the turn to be. Granted it can't be to hard because going so fast he would exceed his manuerving speed which he would not do while performing a turn because it would cause structural damage.

Don Wood Guest

Hi guys and gals - I'm back after a two week trip to New Orleans and Washington DC.

The reason you don't (and should not) feel turns in commercial aircraft is primarily due to pilot technique. A perfectly executed standard rate turn will apply a continous force of 1 G. If your eyes are closed or you are not looking outside, you will not be able to tell you are turning.

What this requires, whether you are in an airliner or a C-172, is a perfectly coordinated turn. That is, the amount of aileron pressure you use to generate the bank must be perfectly coordinated with the amount of rudder pressure you use to creat the turn.

Even with a pefectly coordinated turn, you will begin to feel turning movement as the rate of turn is increased in excess of a standard rate turn. A high performance fighter can generate a 9 G turn with perfect coordination and I'll guarantee you'll feel that.

Pro Member First Officer
rob (Habu) First Officer

And the number one reason you would not feel a turn? First, at cruise you are almost always on auto-pilot, and GPS. So, you are very close,if not right on your assigned flight path and any turn is slight. Secondly, if a greater than slight turn is required, again, the auto-pilot is used and makes much more smooth turns as it is aided by yaw damper and usually are made with aileron only and hardly any rudder, if any at all. Plus, you don't want to wake up the pilot !! rob

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