Thread: Concorde Blues
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Old 07-20-2016, 12:02 PM
Hail Ants Hail Ants is offline
Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: NY USA
Posts: 7,635
Originally Posted by Oddball_92 View Post
Blown tires on aircraft are quite common and the design of the Concord, with the air intakes low and behind the tires make it impossible to change. I am surprised the Concord flew as long as it did without engine FOD destroying an engine.
The Concorde's tires were long a source of problems. The fatal crash was not the first time such a thing had occurred. Several incidents of exploding tires, some fairly serious, had happened before. The problem was Concorde's extremely high take-off & landing speed (250 MPH). It put much more stress on the tires than with regular airliners. There's also a problematic trade-off between making the tires thicker or thinner. If you make them thicker they are stronger and more resistant to punctures, but if they do explode the thick fragments from them are as damaging as shrapnel. Obviously if you make them thinner blowouts will be too common.

The main problem with the Concorde was it was an answer to a problem that nobody needed solved. 90% of all airliner routes are under eight hours, so current planes are more than fast enough. In order to fly an airliner that could go twice as fast it cost the airline more than ten times as much to run. Boeing ran the numbers early in the game and came to this conclusion and dropped their SST project in favor of the huge-capacity 747. They were proven very, very right economically.

Last edited by Hail Ants; 07-20-2016 at 12:02 PM.