Aviation Hazards and Cumulonimbus associated effects

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1 Aviation Hazards and Cumulonimbus associated effects

2

3 Aviation Hazards The main effects associated directly to convection/ thunderstorms Turbulence/windshear Icing Hail Lightning Heavy precipitation

4 Aviation Hazards Other effects associated to convection/ thunderstorms Reduced visibility Water ingestion Altimeter interference

5 Weather related accidents

6 Nearly 87% or 7 out of 8 of these involved general aviation operations GA General Aviation Ag Air carrier Commuter

7

8 19,562 total accidents 4,159 (21.3%) weather related Main cause = wind

9

10 Turbulence What is turbulence? A discontinuity in the wind field aloft, which has direct effects in vertical displacements, velocities and acceleration of the aircraft. Close to the ground, appears mainly due to the gusts from horizontal outflow associated to a downdraught out of storm base/windshear

11 Light Moderate Severe

12

13 Bumpiness in flight Four types Low-level turbulence (LLT) Convective turbulence Clear-air turbulence above 15,000 ft (CAT) Mountain wave turbulence (MTW)

14 Low-level Turbulence (LLT) Occurs in the boundary layer Surface layer of the atmosphere in which the effect of surface friction is felt Typically 3,000 ft deep, but varies a lot Friction is largest at surface, so wind increases with height in friction layer Vertical wind shear turbulence Important for landing and takeoffs

15 Factors that make low-level turbulence (LLT) stronger Unstable air encourages turbulence Strong wind More energy for turbulent eddies Rough terrain

16 Mechanical Created by topographic obstacles like mountains, and by buildings and trees Increases with increasing flow speed and increasing surface heating (afternoon) Thermal Occurs when air is heated from below, as on a summer afternoon Increases with surface heating

17 Aircraft deviation due to convective motions

18 Deep summer convective boundary layer causes thermal turbulence (more stable air above) up to 20,000 MSL thermal thermal dust devil Hot, dry, unstable air

19

20 B Let s identify the main areas associated to turbulence!!! Turbulence associated to strong descent Turbulence associated to outflow D X A Turbulence associated to strong convection Turbulence associated to strong in-cloud currents MUST BE CRAZY TO FLY IN!!! Turbulence associated to strong descent - downdraught C D B

21 Downburst...

22 Downburst... There can be two different types of downbursts: -Dry downburst, in which the cold air mass from inside the cloud falls, without being associated to precipitation on ground -Wet or moist downburst, associated to heavy precipitation on ground WHICH ONE IS THE MOST DANGEROUS???

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30 Icing What is icing? An ice deposit on the aircraft structure How it works in case of CB? Thunderstorm updrafts support large drops of super-cooled liquid water Super-cooled water may freeze upon impact with an aircraft

31 Icing The risk of icing depens upon: Temperature inside the cloud Water droplets size Vertical motion inside the cloud

32 Why? Icing The highest risk of severe icing occurs between 0 and C The risk of severe icing increases dramatically with the size of the water droplets also, the structure of the water in clouds creates different types of icing.

33 And, finally Icing Vertical currents inside the cloud determine variations of temperature, droplet size, composition... This increases dramatically the difficulty of icing forecasting inside the CB Clouds

34

35 Icing May lower aircraft performance: Increase stalling speed Ruin the aerodynamics of the aircraft Increase drag/decrease lift Cause engine failures Cause propeller vibration/in jet engines, damage compressor blades Cause blockings of the mobile parts

36 Icing May interfere with: Control surfaces and landing gear Instrument readings (e.g. air speed, altitude and vertical speed) PITOT Tube Communication systems Reduce visibility

37

38

39 Hail Stones from the sky. No need for other words explaining the dangers for aviation

40

41

42 Lightning A high-current electrical discharge caused by a thunderstorm -Cloud-to-cloud -Within-cloud (~ 50 % of all strikes) -Cloud-to-ground

43 Lightning Direct damage -Puncturing the fuselage -Burning, melting or distorting aircraft parts

44 Lightning Indirect damage -Temporary or permanent damage to avionics -Fire in the fuel system -Temporary blinding of the pilot (Visual or instruments)

45 Waves

46 Orographic Turbulence When air encounters an obstacle it is deflected in many directions (up and out) These pockets of wave energy have different wavelengths The speed at which these waves travel depends mainly on their wavelength

47 Atmospheres with different profiles produce different effects The two extremes are: Trapped waves Untrapped waves Both types can produce turbulence in the atmosphere The actual turbulence regime depends on the depth of stability and the Froude number

48

49 Lee Waves Narrow cloud bands in the lee of the mountain ranges: width between approx Km Perpendicular to the wind direction Easily visible in VIS: white; only dark grey in IR and only visible if broad enough

50 Ci shields in the lee of the mountain range Bright in IR only translucent grey in VIS Is blown downstream with the upper level wind: Large extensions can occur (up to 1000s kms) Can be detached from mountain chain Life duration is several hours. High Lee Cloud

51 Superposition of both lee cloud types

52

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55 Example: Extreme MWT encounter DC8 cargo plane over Evergreen, CO 9 Dec 92 encountered extreme CAT at FL 310 Left outboard engine, 19 ft of wing ripped off 10 sec duration, 500 ft vertical excursions, 20 deg left/right rolls Safe landing at Stapleton

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