Someone on Quora asks the question “what do all the controls in an airplane cockpit do?” A pilot named Tim Morgan then provides a 9,000 word answer, using the Boeing 737 as his guide. Tim’s reply gets it’s own writeup in the Atlantic. Being somewhat familiar with aviation of the military speciality, here is a list of things missing from Morgan’s tour-de-force:
- A switch to arm the gun
- A trigger to fire aforementioned gun
- Similar arm and fire switches to drop other weapons
- More arm and fire switches for chaff and flares
- Switches to manage the radar warning receiver and jammer
- Knobs to operate the air refueling system
- An emergency switch to jettison all stores
- Switch to operate the Heads Up Display (HUD) camera
- Come to think of it, switches to operate the HUD
- Switches to operate the secure radios so that in case the bad guys are listening, they don’t hear us talk about how we are about to blow them up
- Various knobs and switches that control the system that alerts the pilot he is about to hit the ground. Actually, I hope airliners have these too.
- And last, and most hopefully least…ejection handles.
I’m 100% sure that airline pilots don’t have ejection seats. If they did, trust me when I say that you don’t want to fly on that airline.