Why Are Airplane Windows Round?
The first rule of every airline company is to keep their passengers comfortable and safe. Stewards and stewardesses are trained to deal with people, while planes are build to keep people safe.
One of the things that are shaped for passengers safety are airplane windows. You have noticed that they are round, right? There is a specific reason for it and it’s not aesthetic or design-oriented. The reason behind it is far more serious. Discover why before your next flight.
1. The Round Windows
Whenever you leave your home and head off to the airport you are leaving the world of square windows behind you.
And with every flight, you get to experience the world of windows with rounded edges.
2. There Are No Square Windows
Have you ever entered an airplane and saw a window with hard corners? Probably not.
Actually, there is no airplane in the world where you will find a window with hard corners inside.
3. Commercial Air Travel
In the mid-20th century, commercial air travel seriously took off. At the time, airline companies began to fly at higher altitudes to save money. Why?
Well, the air density is significantly lower at higher altitudes, creating less drag for airplanes.
4. Humans Are Not Birds, Right?
Higher altitudes brought new challenges that airline companies had to address, such as – people had to survive so high altitudes. But how?
For passengers to survive at 30,000 feet a special conditions had to be created, including the proper cabin pressure.
5. The Cabin Pressure
Surviving on higher altitudes, such as 30,000 feet required a special approach when it comes down to airplane design.
Some changes had to be done to meet airline safety standards.
6. Airplane Changes
To make possible for passengers to feel safe on high altitude and to be safe some inside the plane design changes had to be done.
The first major shift was changing the cabin to a cylindrical shape to support the internal pressure.
7. Square Windows
At first, plane designers/builders left inside the standard square windows. Soon afterward they have realized that it was a really bad decision.
As it turned out, pressure builds more around the corners of square windows. Moreover, not one, but three airplanes with square windows crashed in the 1950s.
8. Deadly Windows
During these accidents, a total number of 56 people were killed.
After a thorough examination, it was determined that windows were poorly designed because they had corners.
9. Airplane Fuselage
In these three crashes, airplanes crashed when the fuselage was ripped to shreds.
The fuselage is the plane’s main part of the body. Simply, the fuselage is the part of the plane where the people are placed.
10. Windows And Pressure
It was determined that square windows are not suitable for higher altitudes. Actually, it turned out that square windows were deadly.
If there is a corner, there is a weak spot. So, every time a window has a corner there are four potential weak spots, making them likely to crash under stress.
11. Airplane Stress
When someone mentions airplane stress he or she doesn’t talk about the stress that is common to human beings. It is something far more dangerous.
One of the deadliest things that an airplane can be exposed to is stress known as air pressure.
12. Square Disaster
Sharp corners are natural weak spots. The stress concentrates in sharp corners, and they are weakened further by air pressure.
When you repeat the pressurization, four corners will simply explode.
13. Round Windows Era
Luckily, the designer realized that square windows were a mistake and decided to curve the windows.
By curving the window the pressure is distributed and the chances of breaking are minimized.
14. Curved Windows
Curved windows don’t have a focal point, so they distribute that stress or air pressure. Therefore, they reduce the chances of breaking or cracking.
In general, circular shapes are stronger and can resist deformation. Therefore, they can survive the extreme differences in pressure inside and outside of the aircraft.
15. Round Line
Since we are already talking about the airline world, you may have noticed another interesting thing about them: they are moving.
In some cases, airplane windows are not aligned with the rows of seating.
16. Who To Blame?
In most cases, people believe that airplane manufacturers are to blame when their window is far away from their seat.
But, this issue is solely up to the airline that purchases the plane. After all, it’s their property.
17. Building The Plane
When it comes to building, the manufacturers build the planes with row positioning, including legroom, pass, and window placement.
So, the manufacturers always pass their detailed recommendations along to the airline. It’s up to them to decide.
18. Approved Or Not?
Airline companies rarely decide to follow on with manufacturers suggestions. Again, it all depends on the airline. Some planes just have more rows than others.
So, anytime an airline company decides to add or remove a row or more, the window alignment gets messy.
19. Don’t Hate Your Seat
So, next time when you sit next to the window and your window is not utterly on your side, don’t hate the manufacturer.
Just make sure that your window is round and not square.
20. Must Love Those Round Windows
Thanks to good designers, now we have nice and round airline windows that will keep you safe during your flight.
Each round window is designed to withstand the pressure and keep everyone safe. So, you just enjoy your flight.