Searching for autopilot

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  • Autopilots used in piston GA usually do not have throttle control. They only manage the control surfaces. However to trim an aircraft one needs to play on both throttle setting (and more physically, thrust) and control surface deflections (aerodynamic forces). What happens if the autopilot cannot trim the aircraft due to the propulsion settings? Is there any alert from the autopilot for the pilot?

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  • If one wanted to, how large part of the flight could a modern commercial airliner do completely on its own? That is, if the pilot only was allowed to set things up and then leave the cockpit, from whe...

  • I have read that some airplanes have multiple autopilots, specifically airliners. What is the reason for this, and how does that system work?

  • What's the procedure to use the Bendix/King KAP 140 autopilot in the Cessna piston singles to climb to a certain altitude and then capture it and level off?

  • How often does an autopilot update the position of the ailerons (or any other control surface) during cruise? Per second, per minute, or something else?

  • In the newest aircraft, autopilots are of paramount importance, but how are they designed? What is the hardware used to run them (I guess it is quite different from my laptop)? What is the software (l...

  • In aeroplanes that are equipped for autoland and landing at an airport with a working and adequate instrument landing system for the conditions, why would a pilot choose not to use autoland? If I had...

  • This comes from a flight simulator experiment ages ago in the Boeing 737.... I'm on the runway. I engage the heading switch, followed by the altitude and thrust. The aircraft lifts off, although hardly in a clean rotation. Now I'm wondering: While it did work in the flight simulator, will the autopilot follow these commands in real life as well if I repeated this in a business or commercial jet? Is there anything stopping the autopilot from engaging a specified altitude or from following instructions which are utter nonsense?

  • I have X-Plane 10 with Boeing 777 Worldliner Pro- Extended Pack, which is designed to model the real-world operation of the 777. Why does the AP never go to the heading hold direction even if I press...

  • Was wondering if ATC can detect if aircraft is being flown manually vs. autopilot and if that affects their clearances given out for surrounding aircraft? More specifically, can they tell through ADSB signal or just by observation (holding flight level, turn rate, correction for wind, etc)? I would imagine that in high winds/bad weather non-AP operation would need to be better isolated from other aircraft?

  • that it must be engaged, or even operative. Simply "equipped", and also that this is to approve an aircraft for RVSM. From what I can find, there is no operational requirement for the autopilot to actually be working or engaged. Assuming that my MEL allows me to defer the autopilot and still fly, can I fly in RVSM airspace? Some people however say that if you are in RVSM airspace that the autopilot must be working and engaged. Right or wrong?

  • Half bank can make turns more comfortable for passengers, but ATC expects turns to be at standard rate much (most?) of the time. When is it permissible to use half bank?

  • The major reason that lead Aeroflot Flight 593 to crash was the partial disengagement of the of autopilot (by the pilot's kid who was in the cockpit) which could have been avoided if the pilots were more familiar with the Airbus 310-100 or there was an audible alert. Do new Airbus aircrafts have an audible alert in such cases now? were the old ones some how altered to implement this?

  • As part of a project I'm doing I plotted the flight paths of about 2000 flights around the globe, I noticed over both the North Atlantic and Pacific that there is a pattern to the flight paths: You...

  • With the recent advances in drone and remote control technology, why are there still commercial and military pilots? I understand that there can be some serious tactical advantages to human pilots in...

  • What is a Flight Director, and how does it differ from Autopilot?

  • In the AF447 incident, the autopilot system was offline due to the aircraft's pitot tubes being obstructed by ice particles. Since the physical condition of the plane in air is cold and risky, the same physical obstruction could happen again and again. Though the pilot is trained to fly the plane in bad weather, I'm wondering why not just use the GPS to aid the plane's computer? The GPS system could be a secondary source to providing the computer with information for flying, like speed and altitude. If the GPS could've aided AF447 in preventing the autopilot system from going offline

  • Generally speaking, What programming language is used in aviation for (ATC Radio, Radar, ILS, Auto-pilot and on-board avionics)? Is there a standard enforced by ICAO? Does every plane manufacturer u...

  • I've heard that some pilots have this difficulty to determine the correct use of both features. So, which is the difference between using the vertical speed, instead using the flight level change duri...