A fighter pilot’s worst nightmare is ejecting, and it’s not just because it means leaving their craft to burn to death in the process. Ejection is a difficult process that can cause significant injury to pilots.
The power of the explosion caused by the rockets under the seat is sufficient to break collarbones and severely bruise both shoulders from the harness straps if the pilot is thrown violently from the cockpit.
Also, make sure to keep your knees and elbows tucked in, as anything that strikes the cockpit door on the way out will be lost forever.
In an emergency, every pilot, and co-pilot, wears a massive parachute and is secured in their seat by a harness. You can launch yourself out of the plane by pulling one of two levers on the side of your seat, which sets off charges that blast the plane’s canopy and launches rocket boosters beneath your rear.
With any luck, your parachute will have you floating above the plummeting plane in a matter of seconds.
Modern two-seat planes have ejection seats coordinated with one another so that deploying one simultaneously deploys the other. On the other hand, each passenger in the T-38 is responsible for his or her safety.
The person in the back seat, who is the co-pilot, needs to go first. If not, the rockets from the front seat will burn the person in the back. When you leave the plane, the seat falls away. If you are low enough, the chute will open on its own. Hopefully, you will gently float to the ground.
Even if you grabbed the levers and exited the jet, your job is far from over. While most of the system is meant to run automatically, that is no guarantee that it will.
Airmen refer to the small red knob on the left side of their harness as the “red apple,” They are activated by a small metal key attached to their harness’s main belt and pulled when they eject.
If you are at an altitude of 14,000 feet or less when you press the button, your parachute will open automatically.
Going any further would put your life in danger, either from the cold or the lack of oxygen. Additionally, the thinner air at higher altitudes makes for far more violent canopy openings, increasing the likelihood of damage during chute release.
If you drop below 14,000 feet and your chute doesn’t open automatically, you can pull a rip cord to do it yourself. Usually, a pilot knows how high they are when they punch out, but it can be hard to tell how high you are when you are free-falling.
“Pull the rip rope if you see the earth coming up large and fast,” the Langley instructor said. If the chute opens over 14,000 feet and you are having problems breathing, you can pull a “green apple” knob on the right side of your harness to get approximately eight minutes of oxygen given to your mask from a reserve in your parachute gear.
Hiccups in the process of Aircraft ejection
If you are ever forced to eject from a fighter jet, you must immediately evaluate your circumstances to choose your next move. You are either over water or land, more critically, you are either at a sufficient altitude to prepare for landing, or you are left with no choice but to hit the land hard.
The only thing you can do in the event of a low-altitude aircraft ejection is to check your canopy to make sure it opens all the way, tuck your feet, bend your knees, and be ready to land hard.
The correct method is leading with the side of one foot, collapsing with the momentum, and spreading the impact across the leg, the hip, and the area behind the shoulder on the back, so reducing the overall force of the contact.
Even if you have had enough time to slow down with the parachute, you are still at risk of breaking anything if you land directly on the balls of your feet or with stiff legs.
If you eject at an altitude of roughly 10,000 feet and have some time in the air, there is a typical checklist to go through, one that fighter pilots can recite in their sleep: Shelter, eye protection, a face mask, a life vest, a four-line jettison, a course into the wind, and a PLF readiness checklist (parachute landing fall)
Parachute inspection begins with hands-on risers and a backward tilt of the head. If the suspension lines become tangled during ejection, You need to grab hold of the risers, pull them apart, and then kick your legs like crazy on a bicycle in order to make yourself spin around and get the lines untangled.
The parachute’s canopy should be a nice complete circle, but a few things can go wrong that will result in two smaller circles rather than a whole canopy, drastically reducing the chute’s efficiency.
For starters, a suspension line may become entangled in the canopy’s uppermost branches. When this occurs, you’ll need to begin pulling on lines to see which one or ones are tangled. It may sound insane, but if tugging and repositioning the line doesn’t loosen it, you should cut the cord.
The hooked knife in your flight suit’s little pocket is there for such an emergency. On the other hand, a strict regulation states you must not cut more than four lines. A harsh landing is inevitable if you cut four chutes and still can’t find the one that got caught.
Partial inversion describes the second typical defect. A complete inversion occurs when the parachute canopy opens with the wrong side facing out, but this is usually not a problem and may go unnoticed.
However, a partial inversion occurs when the canopy twists during deployment, resulting in the deployment of the chute with one half inside out and the other half normally.
If this happens, you need to pull the risers down to your hips and then release them so they snap back into place, rattling the chute and, hopefully, untwisting it, so you have a great, wide canopy.
what to do when coming down
Once the canopy is up, the rest of the procedure may be completed quickly. Remove your mask by first raising the visor away from your eyes.
The seat and accompanying survival kit should have separated from you at this point. The gear should be dangling behind you once you’ve done that.
If you’re planning on landing in water, You have to pull two cords to get your life jacket to work. If you don’t do this, the LPU will go off on its own after it soaks up some water.
Then, scrap four lines. If you didn’t have to cut any lines, your parachute is widely deployed, and there are no holes in the parachute, you will be asked to pull down on both steering lines to your hips, severing four lines on one side of the parachute.
This forms an indentation in the chute and propels it ahead at 5 knots. The idea is to use the steering lines after the four-line jettison to steer into the wind so that you’re virtually heading straight down when you strike the ground.
To perform a PLF( feet together, bent knees, chin tucked in), you must position your body such that your feet are together, your knees are bent, and your chin is tucked in. Then, using the same technique described before, you must fall along one side of your body so that as many of your body parts as possible absorb the impact.
Once you’ve landed, all you can do is hold out until help arrives. Given that the Air Force conducts much of its flight training over water and the Navy’s aviators operate from ships, being in the water is likely to be quite chilly.
Your seat kit includes the following:
- An inflatable life raft for one person.
- A smoke signal.
- A knife.
- First aid kits.
- Other necessities in an emergency.
When it’s late, and you’re far from civilization, search and rescue teams may not find you for hours or, in some cases, days.
Ejecting from a fighter plane will leave you severely damaged and bloodied, with broken bones and torn ligaments a distinct possibility. However, aircraft’s ejection seats save pilots’ lives, despite their dangers.
Never does a pilot wish to eject. The loss of the plane is bad enough, but then you add in the possibility of getting hurt badly. The option, nevertheless, is unmistakable when contrasted with the alternative.