Re: Gear placement in ditching

Date:         08 Dec 96 13:07:43 
From:         hackett@southwind.net (Kim Hackett)
Organization: Your Organization
References:   1 2
Followups:    1 2
Next article
View raw article
  or MIME structure


>>In a "controlled" (though the EA one was probably not) water ditching of
>>a craft the size of modern jetliner, should the main gear be up or down.
>>I can imagine the entry of bogeys into the water creating drag sufficient
>>to slow things down a bit resulting in less "belly time" before stop. This
>>would seem to lessen the chance of breakup.
>>
>>On the other hand,  the tremendous forces involved might create
>>belly-piercing missles from all or part of the main gear.  What do you
>>folks say?  What do the books call for?

I would say gear up.  However, the large engines on DC-10, 747, 767, 757, etc
would produce much more drag than the gear due to the difference in frontal
area.
One the ET767 ditch video, it appeared to me that once the left wing dipped
into the water, when the left engine hit the water, this is what spun the
airplane to the left.