- Feb 3, 2015
The B787 is all electric, no hydraulics even. Since the original A320, then the B777 , neither has built an air plane with mechanical control surface linkages. A fair number of military aircraft would have been impossible to control with mechanical controls. A fair number of business aircraft also are FBW (fly by wire). There will probably be almost new designs with mechanical controls.Is that how modern airplanes actually work? My impression is that planes are actually similar in concept to what you see in newer cars in that there is "by-wire" braking and assisted steering but ultimately there are still mechanical linkages in case the assistive systems fail. In a plane, the hydraulic controls can fail and the pilot can still pull back on the yoke and control the flaps but it takes a lot of physical effort on a large jet.
1. They are lighter,
2. They are cheaper,
3. They are more reliable,
4. They are more adaptable and updatable,
5. Maintenance is much cheaper.
Cars should have steering by wire just as modern ICE do for engine controls. The same advantages as for aircraft would apply, with pretty serious cost savings.