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Flight Recorder facts

While investigating facts about Flight Recorder, I found out little known, but curios details like:

Danny Elfman came up with the theme to 'Batman' on a flight from London but since he couldn't write music he kept running to the bathroom to record himself on a tape recorder whenever he had a new idea, causing the flight attendants to think he was a junkie

On 'Rain Man's' release many airlines showed an edited version on flights, cutting the scene in which Ray highlights crash records for specific airlines. Quantas was the only airline that showed the scene in full due to Ray stating they "never crashed."

In my opinion, it is useful to put together a list of the most interesting details from trusted sources that I've come across. Here are 50 of the best facts about Flight Recorder I managed to collect.

  1. A SwissAir flight was recording a documentary when an engine failed. The film crew was able to capture the calm and cool of the pilots while they turned the engine off, informed passengers, dumped fuel, ate chocolate and took a coffee break.

  2. NASA Astronaut Owen Garriott successfully pranked flight controllers by playing a recording of his wife whilst on SkyLab. There were no women on board the space station and was used to make it look like there was a stowaway.

  3. The record for most passengers ever carried by a commercial airliner is 1,088, by an El Al Boeing 747 during Operation Solomon, which involved the evacuation of Ethiopian Jews from Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, and started on 24 May 1991. This figure included two babies born on the flight.

  4. The record for the most passengers on an airplane was set in 1991 when 1086 Ethiopian jews were evacuated on a Boeing 747 to Jerusalem. The plane landed with 1088 passengers as two babies were born during the flight.

  5. The SR-71 did more than just take pictures. It could aim its radar 45 degrees to the side, map the terrain like side scan sonar... intercept enemy comm and radar signals, record its entire flight path with infrared cameras... to prove to countries that it didnt violate their airspace.

  6. During WWII they developed an ultra long range fighter to escort bomber raids in the joining two heavily modified P-51 Mustangs with one single wing. It still holds the record for longest flight of a piston powered fighter, after flying more than 5000 miles from Hawaii to New York

  7. Freddie Mercury was seated behind billionaire record producer David Geffen on a flight when Geffen turned around with his cheque book and said "I want you to sing on my label, just fill in the amount yourself!". Freddie refused.

  8. Flight recorders (Black boxes) from military planes float. From commercial planes? they Sink.

  9. The cockpit voice recorder of China Northern Airlines Flight 6901 captured the sound of the ground-proximity warning system giving instructions in English and of the crew discussing in Chinese the possible meaning of the English phrase "pull up"

flight recorder facts
What are the best facts about Flight Recorder?

Flight Recorder data charts

For your convenience take a look at Flight Recorder figures with stats and charts presented as graphic.

flight recorder fact data chart about Recorded pressure in a plane's cabin for an entire flight.
Recorded pressure in a plane's cabin for an entire flight.

flight recorder fact data chart about graph of acceleration (minus g) of the first ~5 minutes of m
graph of acceleration (minus g) of the first ~5 minutes of my flight from London City Airport. Recorded with Phyphox app while resting on the seat.

What is true about flight recorder?

You can easily fact check it by examining the linked well-known sources.

SR-71 pilots sometimes came from bomber aircraft because nobody else had experience in long supersonic flights. A crew taken from a B-58 Hustler ended up setting a world record for longest supersonic flight after flying the SR-71 for over 10 hours... over 15,000 miles. Nonstop.

A flight attendant named Vesna Vulović survived a 33,333 ft fall when the plane she was in broke apart from a bomb explosion. She holds a Guinness World Records, for surviving the highest fall without a parachute - source

On it's last flight one SR-71 Blackbird broke four world speed records. The trip from L.A. to D.C. was completed in a cool 64 minutes 20 seconds. The plane landed at the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum and has never flown again. - source

Bumblebees hold the insect record for high altitude flying. They have been discovered on Mt. Everest at more than 5,600-meters above sea level, and flew successfully in a flight chamber which recreated the thin air of 9,000-meters.

The Apollo 13 flight, which launched 49 years ago, still holds the spaceflight record marking the farthest humans have ever traveled from Earth. - source

David Warren, the inventor of the black box, was buried in a casket labeled "Flight Recorder Inventor; Do Not Open"

Serbian flight attendant Vesna Vulovic, who holds the Guinness world record for surviving the highest fall without a parachute of 10,160 meters (33,330ft)

In 2007 a woman who only occasionally played an old game boy (for which Tetris was the only game she owned) on long car rides and plane flights broke the world record by 500 lines.

The longest flight lasted over 2 months, a record that hasn't been broken for more than 50 years.

About a Brazilian priest who died 10 years ago after trying to break the world record of "longest flight using helium balloons". His last transmission was asking for someone to "just explain how to use his GPS"

Interesting facts about flight recorder

Aviation experts say African airlines have a terrible safety record but Ethiopian Airlines has always been considered an exception with a solid history. The previous fatal crash was in 1988 when a domestic flight hit a flock of pigeons and crashed, killing 31 people

Before takeoff on Delta Flight 1181, the pilots discussed what they'd say on the cockpit voice recorder if they got in a crash. This distraction caused them to forget to properly set the airplane for takeoff, which crashed just beyond the end of the runway, killing 14.

The first female Italian astronaut, Samantha Cristoforetti also holds the records for brewing the first espresso in space as well as longest space flight for a woman and longest uninterrupted space flight for a European astronaut.

The SR-71 carried a Fairchild tracking camera and an HRB Singer infrared camera which recorded data throughout the entire flight solely to respond to accusations of violations of airspace.

In 1870, an average person could have been alive for the first telephone call and voice recording, as well as the birth of the electrical grid, the radio, automobiles and flight.

Air Transat Flight 236 lost both engines over the Atlantic, and set a glide record for a commercial airliner of 120km as the pilot successfully made an emergency landing at Lajes Air Base in the Azores.

The record for the longest human-powered flight stands at 71.5 miles and was achieved by a team from MIT in 1988

The record for the longest flight in history was achieved onboard a Cessna 172 flying for 64 days and 22 hours.

Richard Branson took the longest hot air balloon flight on record leaving Japan and arriving in Northern Canada. His hot air balloon speed also set a record at 245 miles per hour.

The world record for longest manned non-stop flight is nearly 65 days, set in 1959. Flying in a modified Cessna 172, the two pilots would descend and match speeds with a truck in order to refuel and stock up on supplies without landing.

The longest recorded flight of a chicken is 13 seconds long ( 301.5 feet )

In 1991, a Boeing 767-300ER operated by Lauda Air had its thrust reverser deployed in flight without being commanded, causing the aircraft to spiral out of control, break up midair, and crash, killing all 223 people on board. One of the pilots' last recorded words were "Oh, reverser's deployed"

The fastest horizontal flight belongs to a bat, not a bird. Recorded speed: 160km/h (100mph/h)

Andre the Giant's unofficial record for beer consumption in one sitting is 156. Hulk Hogan also claims to have seen Andre drink 108 beers in just 45 minutes before a flight.

Aeroflot Flight 593, An Airplane That Crashed Into A Mountain Range In Russia, After No Technical Malfunctions Were Found. Investigators Learned From Cockpit Voice Recordings That The Pilot Let His 16 Year Old Son Use The Controls, While Thinking That Autopilot Was On.

As a publicity stunt, the Hacienda casino in Las Vegas in 1958 paid a slot machine mechanic to continuously fly around in a modified Cessna 172. Not only did the pilot and co-pilot set the flight endurance record, the record still stands today as 64 days 22 hours and 19 minutes.

Aerobatic pilot Art Scholl was hired to do in-flight camera work for the film Top Gun. While recording for a "flat spin" stunt, Scholl came into real issues when he entered an unrecoverable spin which led to a fatal crash. Neither Scholl's body nor his aircraft were recovered.

On July 14, 1938, Howard Hughes set a record by completing a flight around the world in just 91 hours (three days, 19 hours, 17 minutes)

This is our collection of basic interesting facts about Flight Recorder. The fact lists are intended for research in school, for college students or just to feed your brain with new realities. Possible use cases are in quizzes, differences, riddles, homework facts legend, cover facts, and many more. Whatever your case, learn the truth of the matter why is Flight Recorder so important!

Editor Veselin Nedev Editor