How High Do Airplanes Fly?
Have you ever wondered how high do airplanes fly? Well, most commercial planes fly at the height of 25,000 to 40,000 feet, at this height the air resistance is low and the plane consumes less fuel, hence the engines run more efficiently. This height is also known as the ‘cursing altitude’ of an airplane, this is the height or altitude at which an airplane will spend most of its flight time. A commercial airplane carries passengers and cargo for a fare, these airplanes also carry machinery, food supplies and other cargo, which is to be delivered to a specific airport of a country or city.
Now, let’s find out how high a military jet airplane fly, these aircrafts include jet-fighter and bomber airplanes, and they easily go above 50,000 feet because they have more powerful engines and other high tech systems that allow them to reach such impressive heights safely. More advanced military jet airplanes can reach an altitude of 90,000 feet, that’s really high!
How Airplanes Fly?
Let’s learn how airplanes fly, first we have to understand the four basic forces of flight, which are lift, drag, weight and thrust. ‘Lift’ enables an airplane to go upwards, this is done by the plane’s engines and it’s ‘elevators’. The elevators are located on the tail of an airplane, if the elevators are lowered, the plane goes down, and if the pilot raises the elevators the plane goes up. ‘Drag’ is generated by the airplane’s forward movement or the friction caused by the plane’s body, and it makes the plane go backwards.
‘Weight’ is the force caused by earth’s gravitational force, and it causes the plane to go down, but the pilot keeps the plane in the air by controlling the thrust and lift. Finally, ‘Thrust’ is forward acceleration or force generated by an airplane’s engines and it enables the plane to take off and go forward; in addition, reverse-thrust is used during landings.
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Thrust and lift in together enable an airplane to fly and take-off, both these forces should be higher than the drag and weight, only then an airplane can fly. There are many other forces involved in an airplane’s flight such as air density, weather conditions, yaw, roll and pitch, but in simple terms this is how airplanes fly.
How Fast Do Planes Fly?
Every airplane has a speed limit; the bigger or more advanced the airplane engine, the faster it can go. For commercial aircraft flights there is no fixed speed limited, but they generally fly between 250 to 500 mph (miles per hour). A Boeing 747 can cruise or fly at the speed of 575 mph or 0.85 Mach, that’s really fast.
Military jet aircrafts can fly from 1800 mph to 5140 mph, these high speed airplanes easily break the sound barrier and fly faster than the speed of sound, impressive isn’t it?
We hope that now you have a basic understanding of how fast planes fly, how they fly and how high do airplanes fly. If you wish to learn more about aircrafts, you can consult a book about airplanes or better yet, do an online research.