So give the whole airplane a parachute [humor thread]

Thanks again!

And now for a humorous response, since that’s what this thread is for: I think all airliners should be equipped with external airbags, like the Mars Rover.

Heck, I think the entire airplane should have an airbag deployed at all times. A huge one. And we should fill that airbag with a lighter-than-air material to help with lift. What could possibly go wrong?

Maybe this? :wink:

Many small planes are now equipped with internal airbags built into the seat belts.

If the chute doesn’t rip apart, the wings probably will.

If the plane and chute are strong enough not to rip apart, you’ll have fun driving your 747, because it sure ain’t gonna fly.

I say wrap the plane in bubble wrap.

The plane and chute ripping apart are the least of the problems, as readily demonstrated by the several instances of actual deployment of real aircraft parachutes. Any airplane that suffers such a catastrophic failure as to require deployment of the parachute is not going to be moving very fast anyway. Without powerful jet engines providing thrust, the airplane will rapidly decelerate, especially if the pilot is still able to deploy spoilers and flaps.

A chute big enough for a 747 would require considerable space and weight, though, which would have to come at the expense of passengers, cargo, and/or fuel. Most airplanes that have built-in parachutes trade range for the chute.

A parachute system for a 747 would probably involve multiple parachutes, each deployed by its own rocket. To keep the parachute from opening too rapidly and tearing itself apart, a Teflon ring would slide down the parachute lines. The parachutes would be very large, but not unmanageable. The airplane, of course, would be destroyed in the process, but so what? The airplane is always destroyed by these parachute systems anyway. The only people who care about saving the plane is the insurance companies.

Cirrus Aircraft CAPS System

That’s what I was thinking. Imagine what it would look like if someone pressed the big red emergency ejection button in the cockpit. They’d be popping out the fuselage like popcorn!

Then figure in all the people without their seat belts on. Laptops and food trays being ripped out of their hands and hitting other people. The rocket exhaust from the seat in front of you cooking your face. The lack of oxygen when ejection over 20K feet.

Plus I worked on military aircraft with ejection seats. They aren’t all that safe to work around much less having people stuffing their carry-on baggage under them.

FYI: The Military Channel just started a 5-part series on aircraft disasters.

I like the ejection seat idea, but I would do it a bit differently. First, the big red button would be by each passenger seat. Your big red button would actually activate not your ejection seat, but your fellow passenger’s seat. There would be a credit card slot for payment. Let’s say $100 to activate the button.

Imagine you’re sitting next to a passenger who’s tell you all about his colonoscopy in vivid detail. You pretend to be reading your book, but your fellow passenger just isn’t getting the hint. “The doctor said he never seen anything that big!”, your fellow passenger boasts.

You grab your credit card, slide it through the payment slot, and press that button. Immediately, you are spared further details about the medical procedure. You now have a nice quiet flight. Plus, there’s no more fighting over the armrest.

That’s certainly worth $100.

Yes, but how much would they have to pay me to sit in a seat that my neighbor could eject?
Powers &8^]