How do helicopters fly, work & turn (Animation) ?

July 5, 2016

Very few are lucky enough to take a ride in a Chopper & I am happy to be one of them ! Anyway, helicopters are indeed one of the most interesting machines from which I know so far. Subjects like flight mechanics & helicopter dynamics are not for weak hearted ones; they are seriously challenging to study  ! Well keeping those complex calculations, equations & relations aside, lets at least know how helicopters work, fly & are steered ! more “How do helicopters fly, work & turn (Animation) ?”

What are Flight Recorders/Black boxes ?

July 5, 2016

One of the most frequently used tech-word we hear from the media after a  flight crash is “Black box”. Well, many of the people don’t even know that Black boxes aren’t“black”.  Do you really know about them enough ? If not, here’s everything you need to know about Black boxes/Flight recorders. more “What are Flight Recorders/Black boxes ?”

MotoArt – Company which makes furniture from retired airplanes !

May 20, 2016

Just leave everything aside & have a look at these sophisticated & elegant furniture made by a Calfornian company named – MotoArt, which takes furniture to a whole new level of innovation. MotoArt is a company which makes furniture by recycling old parts of military & commercial airplanes. All our home furniture are ordinarily made up of wood, glass or plastic & you can buy them by getting huge discounts through Pepperfry Coupons unlike these amazing stuff… because great things come at a great price !

About MotoArt :-

MotoArt was founded by Donovan Fell & Dave Hall in 2001. When Donovan Fell saw some old dented B-17 propellers in the back of metal scrap pile, he came up with an idea.  He gave it some time polishing and degreasing it & made a splendid sculpture. Later on he came to know a place where the old & retired airplanes are sent to.
Separating the parts by cutting them they started making cutting edge furniture. Eventually, making high end furniture became their hobby & they made a team as intense labor was needed for separating the parts. Thus evolved the company MotoArt & now as the most recognizable company for making hand crafted high quality corporate and high end furniture from vintage airplane parts.

Their furniture include beds, tables, conference tables, cowling desks, coffee tables, credenzas, couches, chairs, sculptures & my God what not ! If you want to buy furniture from other websites apart from MotoArt’s, you can get great coupons at

Lets take a look at them, they are definitely attention grabbers !

Conference table made from the turbofan jet engine of a 747 jumbojet ! Credits:- MotoArt
A conference table made from the flaps of B-52 bomber ! ©MotoArt
cowling reception desk
A reception desk made from the cowling of aircraft engine ! ©MotoArt
A reception desk made from fuselage of an airplane ! ©MotoArt
Bed made by cutting the cowling of a Boeing 747 ! ©MotoArt
DC-9-airplane desk
A small desk cut from DC-9 aircraft ! ©MotoArt
DeskWatch or a clock made from a piston of a radial engine. They are machined at 60 degrees for easy reading ! ©MotoArt

Donovan Fell and Dave Hall presenting the large propeller sculptures ! ©MotoArt

We have over 100 designs and have produced thousands of pieces that you find nearly in all parts of the world, from the Dubai Burj, to the Sears Tower, and even as far away as the North Pole.

says Dave Hall, the founder & the managing partner of MotoArt.

This proves that there isn’t a shortage of aviation enthusiast in the world 🙂 .
Very few are lucky enough to make & work in the field of airplanes or even to relate their name with the modern aviation world(it would be a honour, seriously).

I wonder whether the top Aerospace Companies like Boeing, Airbus Lockheed Martin & many others be using the Cowling reception desk or the long wing/flap conference tables during their meetings & conferences.
I wish I could own at least one of those… Damn, my poor ass 🙁 !

Well, my favorite one is the DeskClock?… which one did you like the most ? Share your thoughts in the comment section below. I would love to hear from you 🙂

How do missiles work ? | Targeting, Guidance & Propulsion

May 1, 2016
working of missiles

Missiles – pretty cool uhh.. but what makes them so cool ? Well, the best thing is you could launch a weapon thousands of miles away. This leaves no reason why the military of every nation won’t keenly research on it.

Missiles :-

The word missile comes from the Latin verb mittere, which means – “to send” ! Basically, a missile is a self-propelled guided munition system. The first missiles were developed by Nazi Germany in WWII. These were simply radio controlled by the operator & were only built in small numbers.

So here we will be looking into the main systems of a missile i.e guidance system, flight controlling, propulsion & about warheads. Lets get to the first one –

How are missiles guided to their target ?

Missiles can be guided & targeted in a number of ways. The most common method is using some form of radiation such as infrared, laser beams, radio waves. The radiation may be emerging out of an engine or radio waves from a radar station. In case of fighter jets, the missile follows the heat signatures of the engine or the heat released through the nozzle & in case of radar, the missiles follow the radar waves itself(an echo; return signal). These methods are called fire-&-forget as they don’t need any further assistance or guidance to follow their target. A human operator can also steer the missile by using his computer. Another method is to guide the missiles using visible light. One can imagine this as a person flying a RC helicopter of drone.

How do missiles change their directions OR how does the flight system of missiles work ?

To steer or maneuver the missile, the flight system uses the information from the guidance system & accordingly adjusts its thrust & other components. One way of maneuvering is thrust vectoring.
Trust Vector Control(TVC) is the ability of an aircraft to manipulate the direction of it’s thrust through nozzle. Therefore TVC are also used to change the direction of missiles.
Other way of guiding missiles is through aerodynamics i.e by adjusting wings & fins(tail). Some missiles are also equipped with gyroscopes which are powered by batteries & sometimes help the missile to tilt rapidly.

Direction controls of missiles
Animation showing how thrust vector controlling works !

Source:YouTube; Credits: documentariesfootage

How are missiles propelled ?

Here comes the engine section 😉 . Missiles generally use rocket & jet engines for their propulsion. As missiles often have multiple engine stages, they use rocket engines for OR a rocket booster for launching(as more energy is required to overcome gravity & its own weight in the beginning) & later jet engine is used for further flight. Either solid type of fuel or liquid propellant (for larger missiles) is used to run the rocket engine & generally turbojet engines are used for the 2nd stage for flight.

Warheads :-

Missiles generally have one or more explosive warheads.
The warheads of a missile provide its primary destructive power (many missiles have extensive secondary destructive power due tTo the high kinetic energy of the weapon and unburnt fuel that may be on board).
Other types of warheads include nuclear weapons, chemical or radiological weapons.
Warheadless missiles are often used for testing and training purposes.[Source]

Fact for the day :-

The Dongfeng-41 missile

The Dongfeng-41, is a Chinese nuclear solid-fueled road-mobile balistic missile in the flight test stage of development. It is believed to be one of the most powerful missile in the world having an operational range of 12,000-15,000 kms & a speed of Mach 25(30,626 km/h; 19,030 mph; 8.5073 km/s) 😮 .

Damn…these guys build these high-military class-shit & fly as well as control them at such high speed, whereas I’m having difficulty even to imagine that speed 🙁 !!! Hats off to them.

How do Rotary engines(Gnome engines) work ?

March 7, 2016

Rotary Gnome engines were widely used in aviation before & during WW I ! Besides aviation, Gnome engines were also used in some early motorcycles & aircrafts. So lets see what are & how do rotary engines(gnome engines) work ? more “How do Rotary engines(Gnome engines) work ?”

Top 5 Websites for Mobile Recharge in India !

February 23, 2016

Online recharge is a blessing for people who are tired of waiting in queues and wish for instant solutions. This service also becomes vital in emergencies like finishing up your balance at odd hours such as midnight. If you are new to the world of online transfers yet then here’s our list of top 5 websites for mobile recharge in India. They all are secure, highly reliable and offer quick recharge solutions for both pre-paid and post-paid mobile connections.

mobile recharge websites

Freecharge gained a lot of popularity due to the fact that it offers free vouchers with every recharge. They still do that and the companies associated with the company are reputed brands like KFC, McDonalds, Peter England, etc. Apart from mobile, data card, landline and DTH recharge they also offer other facilities like gas bill payment, metro recharge for Mumbai metro, etc. The website can help you get the first recharge done in just 5 stages.

If you only own one or multiple mobile connections and all of them are provided by reputed mobile company Airtel then using their own website is a smart idea. Here you can recharge all your mobiles, broadband connections, landlines and DTH in one go. You can also keep some money handily in the Airtel Money that you might need for future bill payment. If you use the Airtel app, you will have a chance to get great cash back schemes, free data and full talktimes.

As the name suggests, the website is for extremely busy people. Here you can get the mobile recharged within a few seconds and just by a few clicks. This website also has an app that will please online shoppers. They allow you to browse the biggest online, fashion and retail stores and earn payback on every recharge. You even get Rs. 10 when you sign up for the first time.

This is another brand that you can rely on. If you are a new user, you get the benefit of enjoying 25% cash back on your very first recharge. They also launch great offers and exclusive deals on the website like you can get talktime worth Rs. 88 by doing a recharge of only Rs. 78. So you get Rs. 10 talktime for free. This number also increases with the number of amount you pay for. You can also check status of your recharge on this website if you don’t get in a few seconds.

PayTm website is also quite easy to use. You can do a recharge with just 3 steps, First one is to enter your mobile number, second is to name your operator and the final step is to enter the amount. If you wish to know the best pre-paid or post paid plans then you can also browse plans of all operators at PayTm. Some of the most popular operators they are associated with are Vodafone, Airtel, BSNL, Aircel, Reliance, Idea, and Tata Docomo.

How do radial engines work ?

February 14, 2016
An aircraft's propeller is powered by a radial engine

Nothing much to give introduction on Radial engines except that they were widely used during World War II.
More efficiency & power were the greatest needs of that time. Having many advantages over the rotary engines used in World War I, radial engines proved to be great for aircrafts.

Radial engines :-

Radial engines are Internal Combustion Engines same alike the piston-cylinder arrangement except one change – the piston in the cylinders radiate(oscillate/reciprocate) outward from the central crankcase(like the rims of a tire). Radial engines are also called “Star engines” as they resemble the shape of a star when viewed from the front side. The radial configuration was very commonly used for aircraft engines before the gas turbine engines came into existence.

History :-
C. M. Manly constructed a water cooled 5 cylinder radial engine in 1901 – a conversion of rotary engine for an Aerodrome aircraft. The machine was unsuccessful, but the Manly-Balzer engine(later in 1903) pointed the way to high power, low weight aircraft engines.

Parts :-

Piston – The piston is used to transfer the expanding force of gases to mechanical rotation of crankshaft via a connecting rod. The piston is able to do this because it is secured tightly within cylinder using piston rings to minimize the clearance between cylinder and piston !
Crankshaft – A crankshaft is a part which is able to convert the reciprocating motion to rotational motion.
Connecting rod – A connecting rod transfers motion from a piston to crankshaft which acts as a lever arm.
Inlet & Outlet valves – It allows to enter fresh air with fuel & to exit the spent air-fuel mixture from the cylinder.
Articulating rod assembly – The assembly joins all the connecting rods of pistons with a single part as the cylinders are coplanar (discussed later).
Spark Plug – A spark plug delivers electric current to the combustion chamber which ignites the air-fuel mixture leading to abrupt expansion of gas.

Working :-

Animation of radial engines
Animation of a radial engine consisting of 5 cylinders ! source:- wikipedia

Radial engines work like any other 4 stroke engines. They both have similar parts but their construction & design are different. Each cylinder has an intake, compression, power & exhaust stroke.
If you consider the above engine consisting 5 cylinders, numbering the top as 1 & going clockwise, then the firing order is 1-3-5-2-4 & again 1 !
Nothing complicated to understand, the firing order & opening/closing of valves are such adjusted that the ongoing power stroke directly helps compress the next cylinder to fire, making the motion more uniform.

Why odd number of cylinders ?
For smoother operation of the engine, consistent power should be produced. For producing consisting power, odd number of cylinders are used so that every other piston firing order can be achieved.
If an even number of cylinders were used, an equally timed firing cycle would not be feasible.[Source]

How do inlet & outlet valves open & close at that particular times of strokes ?
Unlike the engines used in cars & bikes, the axes of the cylinders are coplanar, hence the typical camshaft cannot be used for controlling the inlet & outlet valves nor the same crankshaft could be use to deliver the power.
Instead the pistons are connected to the crankshaft with a master-and-articulating-rod assembly.  I know it is quite difficult to imagine especially which we’ve never heard of, so I’ve included an animation 🙂 !

The articulating rod assembly which controls the inlet & outlet valves by moving 2 rods.
The articulating rod assembly which controls the inlet & outlet valves by moving 2 rods.

Radial engines generally use poppet valves which are overhead the cylinders. These valves are driven by the push rods- which are controlled by the cam plate which rotates in opposite direction than of the crankshaft.
The cam is made to spin slow with the help of a geared mechanism.

Advantages :-

  • Smoother operations :- Radial engines are great at producing consistent power(contribution of each piston) as discussed earlier. This consistency helps the engine to run smoother.
  • Tougher & easier maintainence :- All thanks to simple design which makes it less vulnerable to damage as well as it makes much more easier for maintenance workers during routine check-up.
  • Cost :- Radial engines’ parts, repair costs, & maintainence costs are inexpensive. A cheaper option is welcomed blindfoldedly in a expensive field of work.

Disadvantages :-

    • Drag :- As the cylinders are clearly exposed to the airflow during flight, drag increases considerably.
    • Visiblity :- The pilot may experience visibility problems, due to huge single engines located near the nose of aircrafts.
    • Installation :- It is more difficult to ensure adequate cooling air in a buried engine installation.

Gas turbines OR popularly known as jet engines stole the market as they were much more powerful, efficient & light weight than radial engines.
To know more about gas turbines/jet engines, read one of my previous articles in which I have explained in detail about working of  jet engines !
I have also written a post on types of jet engines (it’s pretty cool…you should give it a try 😉 )