Investigating the earth, its environment and climate from an aircraft while in flight places extremely high demands on a cockpiut crew. Within just a few minutes they have to routinely carry out flight patterns while flying through a succession of distinct air layers, and be capable of total concentration in storms or when flying at very low altitudes. Test dangerous borderline situations safely in a flight simulator and learn about the multitude of tasks associated with flight preparation, guidance and navigation.
Aircraft have important applications in science and research. This includes the two DLR research aircraft ATTAS and Falcon, which are being employed to find out more about a much feared aerodynamic problem - the dangerous eddies which form behind moving aircraft. As part of a European project these planes are demonstrating how these so-called wake vortices, which are highly dangerous for following aircraft, can be investigated from the air. With its ten planes DLR maintains the largest fleet of research aircraft in Europe.
Soon passenger aircraft will be taking over some of the research tasks. DLR is developing in international cooperation a very efficient suite of instruments for the purpose. During scheduled flights the concentration of various trace gases like ozone, water vapour, carbon monoxide and nitrogen oxides is to be measured.
In the DLR_School_Lab simulator with "X-Plane" software you'll feel as if you were in a cockpit. It's used to train pilots. Plan a measurement campaign and carry it out in a simulation. A data log will register important characteristics of the atmosphere like air pressure and temperature. Discuss and evaluate the results together. Why is a copilot essential for controlling a plane? Why do you need an ILS (instrument landing system) for safe landing? How do pilots orient themselves via radio transmission?
You'll take off into the physics of flight. And find out in the process why it's easy for birds and aircraft to fly.