While the paper dwells on the basics operation and construction of ejection seat, it also brings out new developments in the field.
Emergency escape from a malfunctioning aircraft is of utmost importance for any Air Force. The cost of training a fighter pilot is prohibitive and time taken for him to become operational is significant. Therefore all efforts have to be made to save a fighter pilot from the malfunctioning aircraft. In the older era, the aircraft envelope was fairly limited. The speeds of the pre World War I fighters were low enough to permit manual bail out, where in, the pilot jumps out of the aircraft with parachutes on. However, the modern day fighter class of aircraft operates at speeds beyond Mach .2.0 and at altitudes from Ultra Low Levels (30m) to beyond 60,000’. The kind of maneuvers performed by the fighter pilots during operations leave little margin of error. Flying at such envelope, it would be impossible for a fighter pilot to bail out from the aircraft manually. Therefore ejection seats are a must for a safe escape from the malfunctioning aircraft. The ejection seats not only provide a means of escape from the malfunctioning aircraft, but also house the Pilot Survival Pack which contains adequate reserve equipment for the pilot to survive for about 48 hours till rescue arrives. The type of survival pack would depend on the type of terrain over which the pilot is expected to operate namely jungle, snow or water.
The first bungee assisted escape from an aircraft took place as early as 1910. Earliest example of ejection seat was a seat using compressed air, patented in 1916 by Everard Calthrop. The current design for ejection seat is attributable to Romanian inventor Anastase Dragomir. Dragomir patented his "catapult-able cockpit" at the French Patent Office (patent no. 678566, of April 2, 1930, Nouveau système de montage des parachutes dans les appareils de locomotion aérienne). This design was successfully tested on ...
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