Re: Wing vs. tail-mounted engines?

Date:         19 Apr 2001 16:40:29 
From: (Jonathan Thornburg)
Organization: Universitaet Wien (Vienna, Austria) / Institut fuer Theoretische Physik
References:   1 2 3 4
Followups:    1
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I wrote
| The industry doesn't care much about it, but safety is another big
| advantage of wing-mounted engines:  What kills people in a jet crash
| is often not the crash itself, but the ensuing fire.  Tail-mounted
| engines mean fuel pipes running from the wing (where the fuel tanks are)
| aft through the fuselage to the engines, i.e. you've got fuel right
| in the fuselage with the passengers.  In contrast, wing-mounted engines
| allow all the fuel to be kept in the wings, some distance away from the
| passengers.  (Some designs do put fuel tanks in the wing center sections
| anyway.)

In article <airliners.2001.149@ditka.Chicago.COM>,
John Liebson  <> asked
>What about wing-mounted-engine aircraft that _also_ have tail-mounted
>fuel tanks?

Not nice:
* fuel pipes in the aft fuselage (--> big fire risk in crashes)
* fuel tanks far from center of gravity --> big trim change as you burn
  that fuel --> hurts aerodynamic efficiency (fighting that trim change
  will cost extra drag)

-- Jonathan Thornburg <>
   Universitaet Wien (Vienna, Austria) / Institut fuer Theoretische Physik
   Q: Only 6 countries have the death penalty for children.  Which are they?
   A: Congo, Iran, Nigeria, (Pakistan[*]), Saudi Arabia, United States, Yemen
      [*] Pakistan reportedly ended it in July 2000. -- Amnesty International