titanmiller
Topic Author
Posts: 91
Joined: Thu May 25, 2006 2:57 pm

Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Fri Sep 08, 2017 12:52 am

Why are modern aircraft designs still using floor mounted control columns? A column and yoke is about the worst ergonomic design that I can imagine especially with a fly by wire aircraft where a side-stick is feasible. You have to look and reach around the yoke to see and manipulate the instruments. Even worse than that, the yoke typically hits your knees or those of the other pilot so that you have to fly with your legs spread out sideways just so the controls don't bind. Before I started flying I had no idea how horrible yokes are from an ergonomic standpoint.

Floor mounted control sticks aren't much better especially with how your thighs restrict the range of movement of the stick.

Does anyone else have similar opinions or are my body proportions just weird?
 
User avatar
golfradio
Posts: 835
Joined: Mon Jun 15, 2009 5:35 pm

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Fri Sep 08, 2017 2:40 am

Bring back the old site.
 
mmo
Posts: 1105
Joined: Thu Apr 18, 2013 3:04 pm

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Fri Sep 08, 2017 5:31 am

titanmiller wrote:
Why are modern aircraft designs still using floor mounted control columns? A column and yoke is about the worst ergonomic design that I can imagine especially with a fly by wire aircraft where a side-stick is feasible. You have to look and reach around the yoke to see and manipulate the instruments. Even worse than that, the yoke typically hits your knees or those of the other pilot so that you have to fly with your legs spread out sideways just so the controls don't bind. Before I started flying I had no idea how horrible yokes are from an ergonomic standpoint.

Floor mounted control sticks aren't much better especially with how your thighs restrict the range of movement of the stick.

Does anyone else have similar opinions or are my body proportions just weird?


I don't know what aircraft you are flying, but Id suggest your seat is in the wrong position. I have flown both conventional yokes and sidestick aircraft and have had no problems at all. That applies to both civil and military aircraft.
If we weren't all crazy we'd all go insane!
 
VSMUT
Posts: 1167
Joined: Mon Aug 08, 2016 11:40 am

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Fri Sep 08, 2017 10:06 am

mmo wrote:
titanmiller wrote:
Why are modern aircraft designs still using floor mounted control columns? A column and yoke is about the worst ergonomic design that I can imagine especially with a fly by wire aircraft where a side-stick is feasible. You have to look and reach around the yoke to see and manipulate the instruments. Even worse than that, the yoke typically hits your knees or those of the other pilot so that you have to fly with your legs spread out sideways just so the controls don't bind. Before I started flying I had no idea how horrible yokes are from an ergonomic standpoint.

Floor mounted control sticks aren't much better especially with how your thighs restrict the range of movement of the stick.

Does anyone else have similar opinions or are my body proportions just weird?


I don't know what aircraft you are flying, but Id suggest your seat is in the wrong position. I have flown both conventional yokes and sidestick aircraft and have had no problems at all. That applies to both civil and military aircraft.


For short people, the positioning of the yoke can be a bit bothersome if you place the seat correctly according the the balls. I have to move my seat in the ATR one notch back from the correct position in order to get full movement of the yoke.
 
titanmiller
Topic Author
Posts: 91
Joined: Thu May 25, 2006 2:57 pm

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Fri Sep 08, 2017 12:36 pm

I do have a short torso and long legs so that might be some of the trouble. I have to put the seat all the way up which also leads to my shins touching the instrument panel when I'm on the brakes.
 
BravoOne
Posts: 2189
Joined: Fri Apr 12, 2013 2:27 pm

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Fri Sep 08, 2017 1:35 pm

Haven't we been down this road before?
 
bhill
Posts: 1449
Joined: Thu Sep 13, 2001 8:28 am

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Fri Sep 08, 2017 6:05 pm

How can ergonomics be the issue? With all the automation on the flight deck, how much time is really spent hand flying the airliner?
Carpe Pices
 
User avatar
thewizbizman
Posts: 86
Joined: Wed May 03, 2017 4:15 pm

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Fri Sep 08, 2017 7:19 pm

Pilots appreciate and are more used to the Yoke.
 
VSMUT
Posts: 1167
Joined: Mon Aug 08, 2016 11:40 am

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Fri Sep 08, 2017 7:47 pm

bhill wrote:
How can ergonomics be the issue? With all the automation on the flight deck, how much time is really spent hand flying the airliner?


You still need to be able to fly the plane if the autopilot kicks out for whatever reason. I had 2x 3 hour flights last month without the A/P because it was broken.
 
User avatar
Starlionblue
Posts: 17888
Joined: Fri Feb 27, 2004 9:54 pm

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Fri Sep 08, 2017 10:26 pm

thewizbizman wrote:
Pilots appreciate and are more used to the Yoke.


Some of us are more used to a sidestick. ;)
"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots." - John Ringo
 
BravoOne
Posts: 2189
Joined: Fri Apr 12, 2013 2:27 pm

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Fri Sep 08, 2017 11:04 pm

Yea but real pilots use a yoke.....just feeding the troll.
 
User avatar
Starlionblue
Posts: 17888
Joined: Fri Feb 27, 2004 9:54 pm

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Sat Sep 09, 2017 10:20 am

BravoOne wrote:
Yea but real pilots use a yoke.....just feeding the troll.


Yeah but then how do you eat your meals? Feeding the troll some more. :D
"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots." - John Ringo
 
benbeny
Posts: 171
Joined: Thu Nov 03, 2016 1:44 pm

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Sun Sep 10, 2017 1:03 pm

Unless we're talking about backdriven sidestick like what can we see on G500 and G600, I think yoke gives more sensory feedback. Does it matter? Not very much during normal ops. BUT it may increase safety, especially for those who are used to click-set-and-forget :D
 
Andre3K
Posts: 89
Joined: Tue May 30, 2017 10:11 pm

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Sun Sep 10, 2017 6:07 pm

Best of both worlds is the centerstick that the C-17's have.
 
User avatar
Starlionblue
Posts: 17888
Joined: Fri Feb 27, 2004 9:54 pm

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Mon Sep 11, 2017 1:04 am

benbeny wrote:
Unless we're talking about backdriven sidestick like what can we see on G500 and G600, I think yoke gives more sensory feedback. Does it matter? Not very much during normal ops. BUT it may increase safety, especially for those who are used to click-set-and-forget :D


The surfaces aren't necessarily following the stick/yoke in a FBW aircraft. For example on Airbus sideways stick pressure commands a roll rate, while fore and after commands a load factor. A mechanical stick backdrive dependent on aerodynamic forces acting on control would not be an accurate indication of what is happening.

Do I need to feel turbulence through the stick in a FBW aircraft? Personally I don't think so. We're not flying by the seat of our pants like in a light piston. We use the instruments. Even in direct law we use the instruments.

The spring loading on the Airbus stick does the job fine.

Andre3K wrote:
Best of both worlds is the centerstick that the C-17's have.


It's in the way of the tray though. ;) A sidestick is out of the way when you're not using it and works just fine in its position. Also it seems more natural for my arm to be at the side than in the middle.
"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots." - John Ringo
 
Andre3K
Posts: 89
Joined: Tue May 30, 2017 10:11 pm

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Tue Sep 12, 2017 12:03 am

Starlionblue wrote:
benbeny wrote:
Unless we're talking about backdriven sidestick like what can we see on G500 and G600, I think yoke gives more sensory feedback. Does it matter? Not very much during normal ops. BUT it may increase safety, especially for those who are used to click-set-and-forget :D


The surfaces aren't necessarily following the stick/yoke in a FBW aircraft. For example on Airbus sideways stick pressure commands a roll rate, while fore and after commands a load factor. A mechanical stick backdrive dependent on aerodynamic forces acting on control would not be an accurate indication of what is happening.

Do I need to feel turbulence through the stick in a FBW aircraft? Personally I don't think so. We're not flying by the seat of our pants like in a light piston. We use the instruments. Even in direct law we use the instruments.

The spring loading on the Airbus stick does the job fine.

Andre3K wrote:
Best of both worlds is the centerstick that the C-17's have.


It's in the way of the tray though. ;) A sidestick is out of the way when you're not using it and works just fine in its position. Also it seems more natural for my arm to be at the side than in the middle.


Maybe if it's on the right side, but on the left it feels funny. At my desk for my flightsim I only fly right handed with my stick, but fly left handed with my yoke.
 
User avatar
Starlionblue
Posts: 17888
Joined: Fri Feb 27, 2004 9:54 pm

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Tue Sep 12, 2017 1:36 am

Andre3K wrote:
Starlionblue wrote:
benbeny wrote:
Unless we're talking about backdriven sidestick like what can we see on G500 and G600, I think yoke gives more sensory feedback. Does it matter? Not very much during normal ops. BUT it may increase safety, especially for those who are used to click-set-and-forget :D


The surfaces aren't necessarily following the stick/yoke in a FBW aircraft. For example on Airbus sideways stick pressure commands a roll rate, while fore and after commands a load factor. A mechanical stick backdrive dependent on aerodynamic forces acting on control would not be an accurate indication of what is happening.

Do I need to feel turbulence through the stick in a FBW aircraft? Personally I don't think so. We're not flying by the seat of our pants like in a light piston. We use the instruments. Even in direct law we use the instruments.

The spring loading on the Airbus stick does the job fine.

Andre3K wrote:
Best of both worlds is the centerstick that the C-17's have.


It's in the way of the tray though. ;) A sidestick is out of the way when you're not using it and works just fine in its position. Also it seems more natural for my arm to be at the side than in the middle.


Maybe if it's on the right side, but on the left it feels funny. At my desk for my flightsim I only fly right handed with my stick, but fly left handed with my yoke.


It's just a matter of habit. When you're in the left seat you fly with the left hand even with a yoke.

If your sim stick is "right handed" it will feel weird, but in the "bus" the left hand stick is "left handed" so it is not an issue.
"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots." - John Ringo
 
GalaxyFlyer
Posts: 209
Joined: Fri Jan 01, 2016 4:44 am

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Tue Sep 12, 2017 3:02 am

Moving side sticks will be a minor "improvement" in tactile feel. The pilots have a poor visual view of the opposite stick and the movement isn't near as great as the yoke. Overall, a "solution" to a non-problem or, if you feel the need to see/feel the flight controls, use a yoke. Best was the thru panel yokes in the Sabreliner and Jetstar.

GF
 
User avatar
thewizbizman
Posts: 86
Joined: Wed May 03, 2017 4:15 pm

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Wed Sep 13, 2017 4:11 pm

BravoOne wrote:
Yea but real pilots use a yoke.....just feeding the troll.



Yeah, only real pilots use a yoke, and as far as eating, do it like they did in the 80s.
 
axmiha
Posts: 10
Joined: Tue Jun 13, 2017 4:02 am

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Thu Sep 14, 2017 12:20 am

So no one single pilot is uncomfortable with the notion that, if the digital system breaks (and do they ever?), you have no cables and physical gear to fly the plane? I'm not a pilot, but I am a driver, so if I got a "drive by wire" car, my first question would not be "how is the ergonomics?", but rather "what happens if the computer dies and I'm in the middle of a "sierrra" full of curves at about 60mh? No one seems to be bothered by this, I wonder why. No problem filling the plane with digital paraphernalia, but please leave the stick, the cables and all those basic old stuff just in case - I would think. AND a real pilot, by the way.
 
rbretas
Posts: 15
Joined: Mon Aug 22, 2016 10:21 am

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Thu Sep 14, 2017 2:39 am

axmiha wrote:
So no one single pilot is uncomfortable with the notion that, if the digital system breaks (and do they ever?), you have no cables and physical gear to fly the plane? I'm not a pilot, but I am a driver, so if I got a "drive by wire" car, my first question would not be "how is the ergonomics?", but rather "what happens if the computer dies and I'm in the middle of a "sierrra" full of curves at about 60mh? No one seems to be bothered by this, I wonder why. No problem filling the plane with digital paraphernalia, but please leave the stick, the cables and all those basic old stuff just in case - I would think. AND a real pilot, by the way.


Now imagine your car weights 80.000kg and, unlike other cars, the faster your are the heavier the steering become. If you lost your hydraulic steering on the "sierra" you would be dead, better have 2 or 3 redundant systems than direct control.
 
skyhawkmatthew
Posts: 467
Joined: Wed Oct 26, 2005 4:42 pm

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Thu Sep 14, 2017 3:40 am

axmiha wrote:
So no one single pilot is uncomfortable with the notion that, if the digital system breaks (and do they ever?), you have no cables and physical gear to fly the plane? I'm not a pilot, but I am a driver, so if I got a "drive by wire" car, my first question would not be "how is the ergonomics?", but rather "what happens if the computer dies and I'm in the middle of a "sierrra" full of curves at about 60mh? No one seems to be bothered by this, I wonder why. No problem filling the plane with digital paraphernalia, but please leave the stick, the cables and all those basic old stuff just in case - I would think. AND a real pilot, by the way.


We do have physical gear to partially control the plane if everything quits. On the 777, that is cable linkages to the actuators for the 4 & 11 spoilers, and the stabiliser. Airbuses I believe are similar with manual stabiliser and a cable linkage to the rudder (at least on older-build aircraft until they realised such a catastrophic failure never happens!).

Fly-by-wire aircraft have enormous redundancy. The 777 has four ACE (Actuator Control Electronics) units, supplemented by three Primary Flight Computers. It's possible to still fly the aircraft with only one ACE unit still functioning, out of all seven computers—such a remote possibility that it's not even worth worrying about. If the electrical system completely fails (also unbelievably unlikely with three primary and two backup generators), the RAT will deploy within seconds and restore the power supply.
Qantas - The Spirit of Australia.
 
mmo
Posts: 1105
Joined: Thu Apr 18, 2013 3:04 pm

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Thu Sep 14, 2017 5:44 am

axmiha wrote:
So no one single pilot is uncomfortable with the notion that, if the digital system breaks (and do they ever?), you have no cables and physical gear to fly the plane? I'm not a pilot, but I am a driver, so if I got a "drive by wire" car, my first question would not be "how is the ergonomics?", but rather "what happens if the computer dies and I'm in the middle of a "sierrra" full of curves at about 60mh? No one seems to be bothered by this, I wonder why. No problem filling the plane with digital paraphernalia, but please leave the stick, the cables and all those basic old stuff just in case - I would think. AND a real pilot, by the way.


Let me try to put this in perspective. You seem to be somewhat concerned about FBW and not having the "basic old stuff". If you look at the 744, not FBW, but normal cables and pullies, so that meets your perspective. Even in that aircraft, should have a catastrophic failure of all 4 hydraulic systems or lose all 4 engines, granted that is very unlikely to occur, you would be in a position of having no controls. The 744 has hydraulic powered flight controls, with NO manual reversion.

If you look at the 777/787, as been pointed out, there are plenty of redundant systems that would allow control to be maintained. So unless you want to find a 737/727 to fly around in, you are pretty much SOL.
If we weren't all crazy we'd all go insane!
 
Andre3K
Posts: 89
Joined: Tue May 30, 2017 10:11 pm

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Thu Sep 14, 2017 10:11 pm

Has anyone ever considered a Permanent topic for this question that has come up probably 20 times on this site? And maybe with some kind of system where if you put keywords in your topic it will kick it back to the Permanent topic?
 
User avatar
Starlionblue
Posts: 17888
Joined: Fri Feb 27, 2004 9:54 pm

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Fri Sep 15, 2017 1:47 am

FBW systems have to be proven as reliable as any other system. And in modern planes FBW and other systems are ridiculously reliable. Way more reliable than cable and pulley systems were 30 years ago.

Example: Air data on the 350. 3 independent systems, plus ISIS, plus the FADEC's air data system. All automatically and transparently switching over in case of malfunctions. Likelihood of ever completely losing air data? Insignificant.

As mentioned if we lose all hydraulics, we're done. Is that ever likely to happen? Out of the things I worry about when flying, it is very very far down the list.

Andre3K wrote:
Has anyone ever considered a Permanent topic for this question that has come up probably 20 times on this site? And maybe with some kind of system where if you put keywords in your topic it will kick it back to the Permanent topic?


No fun. We like arguing the same thing over and over. :D
"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots." - John Ringo
 
tommy1808
Posts: 6361
Joined: Thu Nov 21, 2013 3:24 pm

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Sat Sep 16, 2017 2:06 pm

axmiha wrote:
I'm not a pilot, but I am a driver, so if I got a "drive by wire" car, my first question would not be "how is the ergonomics?", but rather "what happens if the computer dies and I'm in the middle of a "sierrra" full of curves at about 60mh? No one seems to be bothered by this, I wonder why.


Because and certified by wire system is wastly more reliable than the human driver will ever be. And the highest car ASIL level D is an order of magnitude less reliable than DAL-A in aviation or SIL-4 in Railways/workplace safety related equipment. SIL3 is usually enough even in applications that will kill someone almost definitely if it fails.

Best regards
Thomad
Times are changing: 70 years ago the USA went to war to defeat the Nazis, now they elect them to run their country.
 
axmiha
Posts: 10
Joined: Tue Jun 13, 2017 4:02 am

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Sat Sep 16, 2017 11:35 pm

Replying to all at once, thank you guys. You completely took away my worries. Nothing like having people who really know explaining things, so thank you again. There were some accidents involving Airbuses recently and there are people (even pilots) pointing the finger at the plane (I imagine you know about this far more than I do). I saw a documentary where pilots actually asked to be transferred (I don't know how this works) in order not to fly Airbuses anymore. And the AA 587 (the one that lost the vertical stabilizer) was quite weird. I asked a friend, who is the son of a pilot, and he never heard of a stabilizer falling off because of the pilot stepping hard on the rudder, specially at takeoff speeds. So these things start to accumulate and we start looking at the Airbus with suspicions. And when even Boeing changes (didn't it merge with MD?) and you see something like the film "Broken Dreams", you begin to see that technical aspects are only a small part of the problem - maybe the least. Maybe it's not the problem at all. At the end when something happens like JAL 123, even a UFO would crash. Thank you once more, you guys are fantastic. If there's a discussion about this you can point me too, it would be great so I can shut up and read more.
 
tommy1808
Posts: 6361
Joined: Thu Nov 21, 2013 3:24 pm

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Sun Sep 17, 2017 5:49 am

axmiha wrote:
.And the AA 587 (the one that lost the vertical stabilizer) was quite weird. I asked a friend, who is the son of a pilot, and he never heard of a stabilizer falling off because of the pilot stepping hard on the rudder, specially at takeoff speeds. So these things start to accumulate and we start looking at the Airbus with suspicions.


AA587 was neither an fly by wire aircraft, nor is the rudder controlled by the yoke, which the Airbus A300 also had since side sticks haven't found their way in Airbus cockpits.

And for parts breaking off, just like you can get almost any car to flip if you do the right steering inputs with the right frequency, you can disintegrate any aircraft by hitting the same "sweet spot". In both cases electronics can prevent that.

Best regards
Thomas
Times are changing: 70 years ago the USA went to war to defeat the Nazis, now they elect them to run their country.
 
User avatar
Starlionblue
Posts: 17888
Joined: Fri Feb 27, 2004 9:54 pm

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Sun Sep 17, 2017 8:30 am

tommy1808 wrote:
axmiha wrote:
.And the AA 587 (the one that lost the vertical stabilizer) was quite weird. I asked a friend, who is the son of a pilot, and he never heard of a stabilizer falling off because of the pilot stepping hard on the rudder, specially at takeoff speeds. So these things start to accumulate and we start looking at the Airbus with suspicions.


AA587 was neither an fly by wire aircraft, nor is the rudder controlled by the yoke, which the Airbus A300 also had since side sticks haven't found their way in Airbus cockpits.

And for parts breaking off, just like you can get almost any car to flip if you do the right steering inputs with the right frequency, you can disintegrate any aircraft by hitting the same "sweet spot". In both cases electronics can prevent that.

Best regards
Thomas


Well put. The rudder didn't snap off because of full input one way. It snapped because of repeated sharp inputs in opposite directions. The rudder is only certified for full input one way, then back. It is not certified for flapping it back and forth like the wing of a panicked pigeon. Bear in mind the rudder is by far the most powerful control surface.

Even in the FBW Airbi, the manuals state that repeated strong rudder inputs in opposite directions are not permitted. If the AA587 plane had been a 767, the fin/rudder would most likely still have broken off. FWIW, investigation showed that it failed at higher than certified loads.
"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots." - John Ringo
 
titanmiller
Topic Author
Posts: 91
Joined: Thu May 25, 2006 2:57 pm

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Sun Sep 17, 2017 3:05 pm

This wasn't intended to be a FBW sidestick vs mechanical yoke discussion (which it has come down to), but rather a acknowledgement that a yoke is a horrible control interface considering that it blocks the instrument panel and hits your/the other pilot's knees.
 
User avatar
Starlionblue
Posts: 17888
Joined: Fri Feb 27, 2004 9:54 pm

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Sun Sep 17, 2017 11:56 pm

titanmiller wrote:
This wasn't intended to be a FBW sidestick vs mechanical yoke discussion (which it has come down to), but rather a acknowledgement that a yoke is a horrible control interface considering that it blocks the instrument panel and hits your/the other pilot's knees.


If you're sitting correctly, neither of those things happens, at least in an airliner. The yoke in the 172 might sometimes hit my leg, but only because I was wearing a kneeboard.

I wouldn't call modern yokes a nightmare. They seem to do the job fine. The reasons I prefer the stick is that it is out of the way when you don't need it, and that (at least with an Airbus sidestick), the whole lower arm is supported, meaning you can make very fine control inputs with ease.
"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots." - John Ringo
 
axmiha
Posts: 10
Joined: Tue Jun 13, 2017 4:02 am

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Tue Sep 19, 2017 4:49 am

Once again, thank you. If I could, I'd ask you guys a billion questions. I don't know how much habit - and how hard it is to change it - is an issue in these matters. I had to change from analog to digital in my profession (music) and I hated it. I like the old ways better, but I couldn't prove beyond any doubt that it is the best way, or the music came out better. It actually did, for other reasons, but it's not provable, and to many kids it would mean nothing. Or like learning another software, once you're used to one that already took you years to learn. A pain. At the end you learn, adapt and go on. My only question now would be, for you pilots, did flying get really better? I ask because in these examples I gave there wasn't a real change for the better, it was just change. Softwares love to do this, change from 6 to half-a-dozen (as we say here) just to be cooler or look different, some stupid commercial reason like that, and you have to learn all over again just to continue doing the same thing in the same way. Anything like that in aviation?...like....changing to a joystick after years with a yoke column? (I hope this re-connects to the main discussion. Sorry about that, titanmiller).
 
User avatar
Starlionblue
Posts: 17888
Joined: Fri Feb 27, 2004 9:54 pm

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Tue Sep 19, 2017 5:15 am

I learned to fly with a yoke. I fly commercially with a side stick. I even fly commercially with a side stick from either seat. Going back and forth is a non-event. It's using the rest of the pushbuttons with the "correct" hand for the seat you're sitting in that is harder to ingrain in muscle memory. :)

Yoke or stick, back is still pitch up, forward is still pitch down, side to side is still roll. Going from one to the other doesn't change very much. Different aircraft yokes and sticks even work differently. A 172 yoke goes back and forward in one plane for pitch, while a Boeing yoke is hinged lower down so there's a an actual pitching motion. A Cessna 162 stick works the same in pitch as a 172 yoke, but side to side is in one plane with no rolling motion. Take a minute to get used to any of them, mostly at a subconscious level.

There is no "cooler solution" about it. The change to a stick makes sense because there is no need in a modern airliner for the leverage afforded by a yoke. We're not manually actuating the controls. A heavy yoke that is almost always in the way is somewhat nonsensical compared to a stick that is out of the way when you don't need it. But again, ergonomically, WHEN IN USE, a yoke is fine as well. It's not like you can fly more precisely with one of the other.
"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots." - John Ringo
 
axmiha
Posts: 10
Joined: Tue Jun 13, 2017 4:02 am

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Fri Sep 22, 2017 1:10 am

I can only use the car analogy again, and I can't imagine driving using a joystick - or sidestick I think is the correct name, right? Probably the analogy doesn't work too well, but in any case I can't avoid thinking about one German pilot, very against the sidestick (and probably a long time ago), saying that with the yoke you just touch it with your hand and you can feel (that's the operative word) everything the plane is doing without having to look at the instruments, but with the joystick you can't feel anything so you have to look and monitor the instruments, panels etc all the time. Reminds me of the digital vs analog discussion in audio (another endless discussion). A friend defended analog simply because analog was being developed for a long time - and indeed digital can't match the quality (and "feel" is very much involved) of a good analog record on a very expensive equipment. So the thing with digital was not quality but rather price, affordability etc. Indeed any kid now can have a recording studio in his iPhone, but that doesn't mean better quality (good orchestra recordings are not done with iPhones and audiophiles still listen to analog). Now, if that's applicable to aviation, and since almost everything followed the same route, that could be a big problem. Not that planes crash more, which apparently they don't (?), but it is something to discuss. Probably not here though(?).
 
Woodreau
Posts: 1416
Joined: Mon Sep 24, 2001 6:44 am

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Fri Sep 22, 2017 1:34 pm

Even with a yoke, there is no direct feedback from the flight control surface back to the control yoke - as its all hydraulic. So you can't feel anything in the control yoke either.

What the control surface does has no direct relationship to where you move the control yoke. The computers take your input - either the control yoke or a sidestick - and translates that to control surface movement - aileron and spoiler, etc.

On some airplanes there is an artificial feel unit attached to one of the control yoke to give the illusion of "feel"/feedback from the control surface.

But when you're visually flying, whether all manual controls like a cessna 172 or fly by wire in a modern airliner - you make a control input, you watch what it does to the aircraft's flight path, and if it's not what you want you make another input until you get the desired result. I'm looking outside, not staring or fixated on the instruments inside, I do glance inside just to make sure I'm good on airspeed and to verify my aircraft's relationship to the glidepath and localizer. So you're not doing anything different flying a FBW aircraft or an aircraft with all manual controls, you're just manipulating what controls are afforded to you by the aircraft designer to achieve a desired effect. You just want the aircraft nose to go in a certain direction, you manipulate the control to move the nose to the desired direction ... you don't care how the nose gets there - spoiler, aileron, rudder, or in the case of a spacecraft - maneuvering thruster....

It's probably all in my head, there is a "different" feeling flying a 319 vs flying a 321. Even though it's the same exact sidestick and flight control computers in the two airplanes . the 321 flight controls just "feels" like a more solid airplane.
Bonus animus sit, ab experientia. Quod salvatum fuerit de malis usu venit judicium.
 
User avatar
airmagnac
Posts: 425
Joined: Wed Apr 18, 2012 10:24 pm

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Fri Sep 22, 2017 2:26 pm

axmiha wrote:
. Not that planes crash more, which apparently they don't (?).


In the end, that is all that matters.
Over 30 years, there is only 1 accident in which some argue that sidesticks may have perhaps contributed to the problem, while conveniently ignoring the myriad of cases where yoke-equipped aircraft went down in similar circumstances. Which doesn't mean that yokes are unsafe, either.

So if sidesticks and yokes are equally safe, is there any point to the whole pseudo-technical debate ?
My goal as an engineer is to fill my soul with coffee and become immortal
 
BoeingGuy
Posts: 4465
Joined: Fri Dec 10, 2010 6:01 pm

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Fri Sep 22, 2017 3:39 pm

Woodreau wrote:
What the control surface does has no direct relationship to where you move the control yoke. The computers take your input - either the control yoke or a sidestick - and translates that to control surface movement - aileron and spoiler, etc.



Basically you just described how the 777 and 787 work.
 
axmiha
Posts: 10
Joined: Tue Jun 13, 2017 4:02 am

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Fri Sep 29, 2017 12:51 am

Well, I'm not a pilot so I have no real opinion, only what I hear. I heard that (former) Lufthansa captain, Heino Caesar speaking on the documentary "Blaming the Pilot" that you can feel what the plane is doing just by resting your hand on the yoke. Woodreau says that's not so. All I have is an old Leadership Gammer joystick piece of crap with which I "fly" the IXEG 737. I am interested in the discussion between you guys, real pilots, to see if there is a consensus, if there is anything technical to it or it's just a subjective issue, but I don't want to bother you either. What makes my hair go up (and probably a subject for another forum) is related to something that happened all over the place, not only in aviation, which is a new kind of way of doing things that is, for old guys, questionable. Like doctors not being doctors anymore, just "exams readers", then they look up in some manual what drug goes for what problem and voilà. That's crap. (A doctor once said "they don't look at the patient anymore, they don't smell the patient, nothing, just read exams" etc). A pilot once told me that this was also happening in aviation - pilots not knowing the aircraft fully, being just more like managers or programmers than actual pilots. I guess you'd say "hands on" pilots? In music, law, art, here and there you see something similar going on, things changing in questionable directions. In aviation this is more scary for obvious reasons. To say nothing of the financial side of things, stresses etc. That's the view of the passenger. But again, if planes are crashing less (or the same but with millions more flights), end of story. I don't know if I touched some tabus here. As I said I'm just interested in your views, but don't want to cause any problems, please.
 
User avatar
Starlionblue
Posts: 17888
Joined: Fri Feb 27, 2004 9:54 pm

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Fri Sep 29, 2017 2:27 am

Holy monolith of text, Batman... ;)

"You can feel what the airplane is doing just by resting your hand on the yoke." Not quite. On a Boeing the yoke moves, but it is not actually moving in response to what the airplane is doing. There's no backpressure required in a turn, for example. To know what the airplane is doing, use the PFD. The yoke is moving in response to commands by the pilot or autopilot. This is a crucial distinction. Three examples of commanded vs actual in aircraft:
- Selecting a heading on the autopilot control panel will give me a readout on the panel, of, say, "090". That's what I am commanding. However what the airplane is doing is read off the PFD, where the heading bug will rest on "090".
- If I select Flaps 1 with the flap lever, that is what I am commanding. What the flaps are actually doing is shown on the engine warning display (330) or the PFD (350).
- I was once told off for checking if the parking brake was set by looking at the handle instead of looking at the status display. The handle shows what you have commanded, not the actual status.
Many pilots refer to this distinction as "rumour" vs "fact".

My feeling is that nowadays yokes and sticks are close to being only different looks to a grip that commands roll and pitch to a FBW system. It's not like the computers really care how the inputs are generated. Next up, voice commands. I jest... I jest... :)

Pilots being managers and increasingly out of touch with the aircraft. This debate has been raging since pilots complained about enclosed cockpits in the 20s and 30s making them out of touch with the aircraft. Technological advancement means we don't need to know every itty bitty detail. We can focus on managing the aircraft. This has made aviation safer than having to keep track of a zillion parameters and integrating them in your head. I don't need to check the hydraulic pressure myself (though we still do periodically). If something is wrong, ECAM will tell me. Having said that, there is value in keeping up "basic flying skills". The paradox is needing both those basic flying skills while increasingly being an automation manager. Either way, the issue is much deeper than "getting out of touch with the aircraft."
"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots." - John Ringo
 
Planetalk
Posts: 262
Joined: Thu Aug 27, 2015 5:12 pm

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Fri Sep 29, 2017 3:09 pm

airmagnac wrote:
axmiha wrote:
. Not that planes crash more, which apparently they don't (?).


In the end, that is all that matters.
Over 30 years, there is only 1 accident in which some argue that sidesticks may have perhaps contributed to the problem, while conveniently ignoring the myriad of cases where yoke-equipped aircraft went down in similar circumstances. Which doesn't mean that yokes are unsafe, either.

So if sidesticks and yokes are equally safe, is there any point to the whole pseudo-technical debate ?


Well there might be to all the people who died in that particular accident and their families, no?

In any case, I don't think the issue is between sidesticks and yokes, the ergonomical advantages of sidesticks seem fairly clear, the issue is whether sidesticks should have feedback or not. But I know that's a whole can of worms I apologise for opening...indeed the BEA did mention it in the AF447 report and specifically mentioned that it didn't help the situation, despite many here repeatedly claiming otherwise.

And I wish people would stop saying things like 'well a plane with a back-driven yoke crashed like that once so feedback makes no difference'. What matters is whether feedback has assisted the pilots in other incidents, and whether it might have prevented any actual crashes that have occurred. Of course these can never be proven, so it is impossible to say that feedback makes no difference. But using an example of a plane that crashed with feedback as proof that it doesn't matter, is complete logical nonsense. What if it prevented 50 other crashes, which, because they didn't crash, we'll never know about?

(I say this an more of an airbus fan by the way, but I think we should all be able to put aside our biases to discuss these issues sensibly without becoming defensive).
 
axmiha
Posts: 10
Joined: Tue Jun 13, 2017 4:02 am

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Sat Sep 30, 2017 12:23 am

Starlionblue I apologize for the monolith. Shish...concision is not my forte. And thank you for the response. Planetalk's reply made me think of something, but I don't know if I can say it without another monolith. Basically it's about "feeling", something quite disregarded by technocrats, but that are fundamental for people who actually do things repeatedly. Let me see if I can be clear. I'm sure a lot of procedures in the cockpit don't make any sense to people who are not pilots, and these people could easily say "hey I know a better way do to this", which could be true logically, but doesn't work practically. When you do something repeatedly, patterns emerge, feels or feelings etc which are not "visible", let's say, to someone who doesn't do it. So another question could be proposed; do these technological changes come from pilots or form technocrats and managers? I know humans can adapt to anything, so pilots will train and adapt, but the origin of the changes could be a better question - for me at least. I play the guitar (repeatedly since I was 14). If someone comes up with some technological change to playing guitar, and it doesn't feel right to me (changing the neck to a sidestick with the notes played digitally - much better ergonomically) or something like that, my first question is gonna be "for how long have you been playing guitar?" If the answer is"I'm not a guitar player", I'll just punch the bastard (as the scotts say). And I'll stop this wee monolith here.
 
User avatar
Starlionblue
Posts: 17888
Joined: Fri Feb 27, 2004 9:54 pm

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Sat Sep 30, 2017 12:47 am

You're right about patterns. In fact one of the things you have to work on, especially as a commercial pilot, is to develop sound operating patterns and cues, and discourage unsound ones. It is very easy to get into bad habits. And yes, a lot of what we do seems somewhat weird until you get rather deep into the subject matter, and have had hours and hours of practice and training.

Back to your central point, I don't know who drive sidestick development, engineers or pilots. I get a feeling it was a collaborative thing.

Again, I think having a non-moving control makes sense given:
- The control surfaces aren't moving in sync with the stick anyway.
- The stick is an indication of commanded inputs. Outputs can be different, and in bad situation very different from what the pilot wants. This is in contrast to a light piston where an actual cable or rod connects the yoke and the flight control, so unless the cable/rod has broken you know what you are doing is directly resulting in a control surface movement.
- By and large, airliners are not flown "by feel". It is rather hard to gauge movement by the seat of your pants in a large aircraft, even more so at night. Trying to gauge what the aircraft is doing by feeling the yoke instead of looking at the PFD is a tricky proposition. As mentioned, you're getting a sense of what you commanded. What you need to know is what the results of the commands were. In other words, I already know what my hand did to the stick. I need to know if the aircraft responded correctly.

Having said all that, backdriven yokes and sticks seem perfectly safe as well. It really isn't as big a deal as it is made out to be by some. Aircraft are safe if operated conservatively by trained pilots according to the published procedures. Yoke or stick has a minor impact on the equation.
"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots." - John Ringo
 
User avatar
airmagnac
Posts: 425
Joined: Wed Apr 18, 2012 10:24 pm

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Sat Sep 30, 2017 2:24 pm

Planetalk wrote:
And I wish people would stop saying things like 'well a plane with a back-driven yoke crashed like that once so feedback makes no difference'. What matters is whether feedback has assisted the pilots in other incidents, and whether it might have prevented any actual crashes that have occurred. Of course these can never be proven, so it is impossible to say that feedback makes no difference. But using an example of a plane that crashed with feedback as proof that it doesn't matter, is complete logical nonsense. What if it prevented 50 other crashes, which, because they didn't crash, we'll never know about?


I honestly don't really care about these debates. Both solutions are technically fine by me. The yoke is the best solution when commanding control surface movements ("classic aircraft, and mimiced by Boeing FBW), and a sidestick is the best solution to control attitudes, which is what is done on Airbus FBW.

But what is logocal nonsense is the cherry-picking of AF447 to make sweeping conclusions about one solution vs the other. The idea often implictly contained in many discussions, including this argument here, is that AF447 is a unique accident. Nothing like it ever happened before, nothing like it ever happened since. Therefore it is possible to make general statements based on this single ocurrence in which the sidesticks may have created confusion for the crew.

This is utterly false, and I wish people would stop saying things like it.

AF447 is a standard example of loss-of-control in flight : a disturbance (in this case the temporary corruption of measured airspeed data) triggered confusion in the cockpit, which led to crew inputs not adapted to the situation which led to the aircraft leaving its envelope (in this case by stalling) which led to loss of control.
Since the Airbus FBW was introduced 30 years ago, there have been about 150 such accidents, of which only 2 are on Airbus FBW aircraft, all the other aircraft (so 140+) were with good ol' yokes.
It's easy to google LOC-I and find reports from Boeing, Airbus, IATA, FAA, EASA...It's also possible to navigate through wiki from articles such as Air Algérie 5017, West Caribbean 708, Aeroflot 821, Flash Airlines 604...

So no, it is not "just once" that yoke-equipped aircraft crashed. If any general conclusion is to be made about control interfaces and their contribution to confusing situations, all of these accidents must be considered. Again, focusing on AF447 is cherry-picking, and therefore the logical fallacy is on your side.
Note that I do not support the other extreme, which would say that as there are 70x less crashes on sidestick aircraft, sidestick is inherently safe. The reality is much more subtle.

Beyond that, to conclude that sidesticks were contriubtors to the confusion is to imply that the alternative (yokes) would not. There is clear evidence that after the first 30 seconds, the crew was not reacting to any information inputs available, nor were they seeking further information from the aircraft or from each other.
Therefore it is difficult to state with certainty that they would have reacted to yoke movements. And a good reason for the BEA to not go down this road.
I do not deny the circumstancial evidence of sidesticks playing a role, but I think the behavior of the displays in front of them played a much greater role in the event (FD coming on and off for instance)

Again, just to be clear, I do not really have an opinion on the superiority of one over the other in terms of pilot performance in performing their basic function of "aviate". I will bow to the expertise of actual pilots regarding the ergonomy aspects, to go back to the OP. From a design engineer point of view, a sidestick system is much easier to install and imposes much less induced constraints on the cockpit floor design, and on the design of manufacturing and maintenance operations.

axmiha wrote:
So another question could be proposed; do these technological changes come from pilots or form technocrats and managers? I know humans can adapt to anything, so pilots will train and adapt, but the origin of the changes could be a better question - for me at least. I play the guitar (repeatedly since I was 14). If someone comes up with some technological change to playing guitar, and it doesn't feel right to me (changing the neck to a sidestick with the notes played digitally - much better ergonomically) or something like that, my first question is gonna be "for how long have you been playing guitar?" If the answer is"I'm not a guitar player", I'll just punch the bastard (as the scotts say).


What you are suggesting is that only experts in a given field have the right to propose technical evolutions in that field.
It's not a completly invalid point of view ; at the very least, these experts should be consulted before putting any new technology into service, especially if there are safety aspects. Please note that this was done in the case of the sidestick, and the Airbus FBW in general (itself a direct descendant of FBW designs generated by research run by the US military and NASA, with many pilots involved).

There is a problem, however : experts of a given technology will generally not push for new solutions, and may actively resist them. It's natural, either out of an emotional tie to their favorite gadgets (as in your guitar example, with you punching the bastard) or out of fear of losing their status of "expert". So if we were to follow your suggestion, we would never make any progress. Hunters would prevent putting seeds in the ground, horse drivers would prevent automobiles, and lute players would have resisted the guitar.

In the end, to qualify one solution as better than another, it does not matter if it is "new" or comes from a non'expert. It comes down to the function of the considered items.
If you play the guitar because it provides you pleasure that no other instrument approaches, then your are right to stick with it. If the purpose of playing the guitar is instead to generate music, and that this sidestick device does it more easily, with a wider range of sounds, cheaper and in ways which are easier to share with people, then maybe it is actually better.
As I said before, the function of the sidestick is to enable the aircraft to be piloted safely and efficiently. Both the yoke and sidestick accomplish this well, and that's just about the end of the story, in terms of their main function.
The only remaining debate is the OPs remark on ergonomic superiority.

(And now I have written a monolith)
My goal as an engineer is to fill my soul with coffee and become immortal
 
Planetalk
Posts: 262
Joined: Thu Aug 27, 2015 5:12 pm

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Mon Oct 02, 2017 1:26 am

airmagnac wrote:
Planetalk wrote:
And I wish people would stop saying things like 'well a plane with a back-driven yoke crashed like that once so feedback makes no difference'. What matters is whether feedback has assisted the pilots in other incidents, and whether it might have prevented any actual crashes that have occurred. Of course these can never be proven, so it is impossible to say that feedback makes no difference. But using an example of a plane that crashed with feedback as proof that it doesn't matter, is complete logical nonsense. What if it prevented 50 other crashes, which, because they didn't crash, we'll never know about?


I honestly don't really care about these debates. Both solutions are technically fine by me. The yoke is the best solution when commanding control surface movements ("classic aircraft, and mimiced by Boeing FBW), and a sidestick is the best solution to control attitudes, which is what is done on Airbus FBW.

But what is logocal nonsense is the cherry-picking of AF447 to make sweeping conclusions about one solution vs the other. The idea often implictly contained in many discussions, including this argument here, is that AF447 is a unique accident. Nothing like it ever happened before, nothing like it ever happened since. Therefore it is possible to make general statements based on this single ocurrence in which the sidesticks may have created confusion for the crew.

This is utterly false, and I wish people would stop saying things like it.

AF447 is a standard example of loss-of-control in flight : a disturbance (in this case the temporary corruption of measured airspeed data) triggered confusion in the cockpit, which led to crew inputs not adapted to the situation which led to the aircraft leaving its envelope (in this case by stalling) which led to loss of control.
Since the Airbus FBW was introduced 30 years ago, there have been about 150 such accidents, of which only 2 are on Airbus FBW aircraft, all the other aircraft (so 140+) were with good ol' yokes.
It's easy to google LOC-I and find reports from Boeing, Airbus, IATA, FAA, EASA...It's also possible to navigate through wiki from articles such as Air Algérie 5017, West Caribbean 708, Aeroflot 821, Flash Airlines 604...

So no, it is not "just once" that yoke-equipped aircraft crashed. If any general conclusion is to be made about control interfaces and their contribution to confusing situations, all of these accidents must be considered. Again, focusing on AF447 is cherry-picking, and therefore the logical fallacy is on your side.
Note that I do not support the other extreme, which would say that as there are 70x less crashes on sidestick aircraft, sidestick is inherently safe. The reality is much more subtle.

Beyond that, to conclude that sidesticks were contriubtors to the confusion is to imply that the alternative (yokes) would not. There is clear evidence that after the first 30 seconds, the crew was not reacting to any information inputs available, nor were they seeking further information from the aircraft or from each other.
Therefore it is difficult to state with certainty that they would have reacted to yoke movements. And a good reason for the BEA to not go down this road.
I do not deny the circumstancial evidence of sidesticks playing a role, but I think the behavior of the displays in front of them played a much greater role in the event (FD coming on and off for instance)

Again, just to be clear, I do not really have an opinion on the superiority of one over the other in terms of pilot performance in performing their basic function of "aviate". I will bow to the expertise of actual pilots regarding the ergonomy aspects, to go back to the OP. From a design engineer point of view, a sidestick system is much easier to install and imposes much less induced constraints on the cockpit floor design, and on the design of manufacturing and maintenance operations.


I think you've slightly mis-interpreted my argument. I wasn't at all saying that AF447 definitively proves anything, I even stated that it is an unknown whether feedback in other planes has prevented other crashes. It's something we can never know.I also said that actually for me the argument isn't about yokes versus sidesticks but about sidesticks versus backdriven sidesticks, I hope you can acknowledge you have rather misinterpreted what I was saying.

I was raising the question though, and I don't think it can be dismissed out of hand, it is something some pilots think matters, as apparently did BEA.
My point being, is that the only argument I've seen for not having them backdriven is that it reduces complexity and weight, and therefore cost. If there is a possibility that it may help avoid a particular crash is that not worth considering? Is there any benefit to the guys actually flying the thing of them not being backdriven? And no-one as far as I know had noted the design of yokes as a safety issue, an ergonomic one yes, but not a safety issue. The lack of feedback with the current sidestick design does have a logical potential downside for safety, and it appears to only have been done for cost reasons.

I don't understand why people get so defensive about it. BEA themselves noted in the report that the lack of feedback made it hard for the PNF to know what commands were being given, and contributed to false reassurance because he believed what the PF said he was doing, even though his actual actions on the controls were different. Anything that can help safety should be considered, no? Yes many other planes have LOC accidents, that is irrelevant to whether it is possible to make this system safer. If I'm designing a product and see an opportunity I don't say 'well we could make this safer, but hey the competitor's products crash a lot, so let's not bother.' If someone thinks the yoke causes safety issues they are free to say so, but I've never seen it raised.

Yes, planes flown conservatively by a skilled, well trained, well rested, crew, according to published procedures will be fine. But shouldn't we help the rest as much as possible?
 
axmiha
Posts: 10
Joined: Tue Jun 13, 2017 4:02 am

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Tue Oct 03, 2017 3:30 am

Good monolith, airmagnac. Hey, some things can't be said in so many words, so monoliths welcome here. I see everybody's points and I can only agree with all of them. It's indeed hard to slam the hammer on one thing as "the truth". At least my worries have vanished with this issue, thanks to your explanations. Just to throw one more at you guys, and using my area as example again, I never had anything against digital sound, when this thing appeared. But what I saw happening in my business was that it destroyed the business completely. Transformed it into another thing altogether. Yes, we had all the advantages of being easier to record, to have good sounds, cheaper, this and that and the other thing, but at the end it destroyed the livelihood of many musicians (no longer needed) - I myself having contributed to this disaster since, being a producer in a studio long ago, I was forced to use synths (samplers actually, which have the real instrument sampled, so you get the real sound on your keyboard) and I saw many musicians being forced to find other lines of work, and many studios closing doors. What used to cost 40.000, now can be done in bed for almost nothing. Excellent for the industry, horrible for the "pilots" (musicians) and studios. So...if (IF) there's a not so clear interest on the part of the industry to get rid of the pilot (another big debate I imagine), something I have heard somewhere, and digital technology is excellent for that, that's the question behind my question about FBW and where did the idea come from. Maybe it has nothing to do with safety or progress. A hammer has been a hammer forever because it does its job perfectly, no need to change it. If some industry comes up with an auto-hammer, the only reason would be to get rid of the guy hammering. And why would that be? I imagine there is a discussion about the pilot being the main reason for accidents, which would be the dumbest thing. Pilot error this, pilot error that, hey...let's get rid of the pilot then. How about that? (Sorry, this goes way out of this post's discussion. Maybe I should start another one?)
 
oldannyboy
Posts: 1290
Joined: Wed Jun 15, 2016 8:28 am

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Tue Oct 03, 2017 2:28 pm

...Anyone here has an opinion on the ram's horns yoke design of the HS Trident?... (I am being serious, and NOT feeding the trolls) :-)
 
rbretas
Posts: 15
Joined: Mon Aug 22, 2016 10:21 am

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Wed Oct 04, 2017 1:59 am

oldannyboy wrote:
...Anyone here has an opinion on the ram's horns yoke design of the HS Trident?... (I am being serious, and NOT feeding the trolls) :-)


Many other aircrafts use that same type of yoke (Concorde, almost all Embraers, Tu-204, Bristol Britannia...) . According to other topics, seems like most people find it neither inherently worse nor better.

viewtopic.php?t=772769
viewtopic.php?t=750427
 
User avatar
airmagnac
Posts: 425
Joined: Wed Apr 18, 2012 10:24 pm

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Thu Oct 05, 2017 8:35 am

Planetalk wrote:
I think you've slightly mis-interpreted my argument

You are stating that non-driven sticks are likely a safety issue because
a/ AF447 involved them
b/ "no-one as far has noted the design of yokes as a safety issue"
and therefore there is a positive link between sidesticks and safety which does not exist for driven columns, meaning non-driven sticks are more dangerous.

The AF447 argument is flimsy at best as it focuses on a single aspect out of context of a sequence of events involving multiple actors triggered by many inputs.
Even the BEA report you mention only "notes" that pilots may not easily observe inputs by the other pilot (p174) ; it does not say they cannot observe at all, nor is there a clear statement either way. Also, it is mentioned as one element among many others leading to the initial confused actions of the PNF in the first few seconds, as he could not converge on a coherent mental representation of the aircraft.
The report immediately afterwards mentions (2.1.2.5) that in the next phase a few seconds after that " the PNF detected the climb based on observation and reasoning".This means that the PNF was indeed receiving exploitable feedback about his aircraft. Actually he was getting it via the main source of feedback for any aircraft, his PFD.

As for b/, I re-state that it is a severe case of cherry-picking to say that (driven) yokes have never been involved in accidents where the crew became confused. With 30 years of comparable experience on these setups (driven and not driven), there is simply zero correlation between either design and safety events.

I don't see a clear opportunity here to improve safety. On the contrary, both cockpit are holistic integrated designs. Changing one aspect has actually more chances of reducing safety.
The Airbus pilot controls attitudes, therefore his main feedback is the attitude measurements on his PFD. Attitudes evolve too fast for a pilot to gather information about control inputs from his colleague or the autopilot, calculate an expected effect under current circumstances and deduce whether the inputs are acceptable or not. By the time he's done the situation has long since evolved, so any conclusion would be out-of-date and therefore dangerous. Better just to read what the aircraft is actually doing and reason from there, as Station has mentioned somewhere above.


oldannyboy wrote:
Anyone here has an opinion on the ram's horns yoke design of the HS Trident?... (I am being serious, and NOT feeding the trolls)


Have a look at the controls of an Armagnac. A mechanized hoe operator would feel right at home :)
My goal as an engineer is to fill my soul with coffee and become immortal
 
oldannyboy
Posts: 1290
Joined: Wed Jun 15, 2016 8:28 am

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Thu Oct 05, 2017 10:28 am

[
oldannyboy wrote:
Anyone here has an opinion on the ram's horns yoke design of the HS Trident?... (I am being serious, and NOT feeding the trolls)


Have a look at the controls of an Armagnac. A mechanized hoe operator would feel right at home :)[/quote]

OMG :shock: what are those spooky things???
 
fightforlove
Posts: 33
Joined: Tue May 09, 2017 7:36 pm

Re: Aircraft yokes are an ergonomic disaster

Thu Oct 05, 2017 4:36 pm

Well we're going to be seeing yokes for a while still on Boeing aircraft thanks to pilots unions and Southwest Airlines.

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: FlyHossD, UltimateDelta, zaphod42 and 3 guests

Popular Searches On Airliners.net

Top Photos of Last:   24 Hours  •  48 Hours  •  7 Days  •  30 Days  •  180 Days  •  365 Days  •  All Time

Military Aircraft Every type from fighters to helicopters from air forces around the globe

Classic Airliners Props and jets from the good old days

Flight Decks Views from inside the cockpit

Aircraft Cabins Passenger cabin shots showing seat arrangements as well as cargo aircraft interior

Cargo Aircraft Pictures of great freighter aircraft

Government Aircraft Aircraft flying government officials

Helicopters Our large helicopter section. Both military and civil versions

Blimps / Airships Everything from the Goodyear blimp to the Zeppelin

Night Photos Beautiful shots taken while the sun is below the horizon

Accidents Accident, incident and crash related photos

Air to Air Photos taken by airborne photographers of airborne aircraft

Special Paint Schemes Aircraft painted in beautiful and original liveries

Airport Overviews Airport overviews from the air or ground

Tails and Winglets Tail and Winglet closeups with beautiful airline logos