Major technical advances were featured at the Show, particularly those developments that will be coming into service in the very near future. An outstanding demonstration was given by the Airbus Industrie A 300B2 Fly‐By‐Wire (FBW) whose autopilot simulates the control laws of the A 320. The pilot flies the aircraft through the FBW autopilot using the sidestick controllers as in the A 320, which is due to make its first flight in March, 1987. A convincing display by the A 300 FBW began with a slow fly‐past in landing configuration with gear and flaps down at a speed of about 100 knots. At mid‐runway position, the crew simulate a windshear encounter and the captain pulls back on the stick as might happen in such a situation. In a standard ‘conventional’ aircraft, this would lead to a stall with potentially disastrous consequences, but with FBW the pitch angle increases to the point where the wing reaches its maximum lift position and stays there. The ‘alpha‐floor’ protection incorporated in the aircraft then automatically increased engine power and the combination of maximum lift and power results in a climb‐out at 3,000ft/min. In another manoeuvre, the aircraft is positioned at an angle of attack of 15.5° in order to stabilise speed at 95–100 knots and only just below the limit of 17° — 18°. Also demonstrated was a stall turn with the nose up to maximum angle of attack and bank angle of 30° which stops there despite the fully‐deflected stick position. The engine power in this manoeuvre is controlled manually.
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