Solenoid actuators are electromagnetic devices that are used to convert electrical signals or currents into mechanical linear motion. They consist of an adjustable wire-wound coil with an iron core that is connected to an electrical power supply, while a movable metal plunger is attached to a secondary mechanism. When an electric current energizes the coil, a powerful magnetic field is produced, pulling the plunger toward it and as a result, providing ample actuation movement.


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Spark plugs are essential for igniting piston engines. Designed to deliver a pulse of electric current from the ignition system to the combustion chamber, internal combustion engines require the use of a spark plug to set alight aerosolized fuel. In aviation, a spark plug is typically housed out of sight at the top of a cylinder head and can easily go unchecked if maintenance is irregular. Resulting in poor engine performance, loss of power, or a critical accident if the component is failing, it is imperative that routine spark plug inspections are not dismissed. To better understand how spark plugs function in aircraft, we will dive into their application types, how each works, and their common errors.


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Motor starters are electrical devices used to safely start, stop, and reverse the direction of a motor as well as protect the motor from low voltage and overcurrent. Overcurrent, or electrical overloading as it is often called, can result in the excessive accumulation of heat, posing the risk of fire or damage to assets or equipment. For this reason, if the output current surpasses the safe limit of your starter, the motor starter will deactivate the equipment in question.


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Plungers are spring-loaded devices (SLD) that are often used for the positioning of various work pieces. Generally, such components will feature a spring that is located within a threaded body or housing. With this common design feature, various types of plungers can be found, each of which differ in their particular design, application, and characteristics. Ball and spring plungers are both common types that are found in many settings, thus it can be useful to have a general understanding of their designs and functionalities.


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While many pilots may be well versed with the various power settings and power principles of piston engines, some may not be familiar with turbine engine power. In general, turbine engines express power in terms of N1 and N2, and power settings relate to the speed limits of engine rotation. This is due to the difference in operations between both engine types, turbine engines producing thrust for flight rather than power. To help you better understand the functionality of turbine engines, we will discuss what N1 and N2 measurements mean.


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While the future of aircraft engines is moving towards a full realization of electric power, a majority of current models rely on internal combustion engines for the burning of fuel-and-air mixtures for propulsion generation. Turboprop engine and piston engine types are very common for a number of aircraft, both of which have overlapping flight regimes though still greatly vary in their design and capabilities. As two reliable options that make heavier-than-air flight possible, it can be useful to understand the various differences between each to see which is a better fit for your particular needs and applications.


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Designed to be lightweight and durable, the complex construction of aircraft allows passengers to travel vast distances in just a short amount of time. Coming in a variety of sizes, shapes, and types, all aircraft are composed of the same five basic components, those of which include the fuselage, wings, empennage, power plant, and landing gear. Without any of these given items, an aircraft would be incapable of flight and would remain grounded. In detail below, we will go over the five major components that make up an aircraft and how these parts allow the aircraft to achieve the flight capabilities that our modern society depends upon.


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A relay is a type of electrically operated switch, and they are employed in electrical systems for the means of controlling a circuit with a low power signal or for managing several circuits with a single signal. Relays have been extensively used in technology since their inception, and many advanced types have come about over the years to provide unique advantages and characteristics. Electromechanical and solid-state relays are the two common classifications for relay components, and they both feature various differences and similarities that warrant their comparison.


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The vertical speed indicator (VSI) is one of the six pack instruments found in nearly every cockpit. The VSI displays an aircraft rate of climb or descent in hundreds of feet per second, gathering such measurements via a pitot-static system. The VSI may also be known as a variometer, vertical velocity indicator, and rate-of-climb indicator. When you look at each individual part, the VSI and its function are relatively easy to understand. There are just six main parts that comprise a VSI. In this blog, we will look at each part and how the device works.


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Gyroscopic instruments are an essential part of any aircraft, allowing for pilots to safely operate under Instrument Flight Rules and to generally be aware of various important flight conditions. Depending on the aircraft and its design, the power source that drives such instruments can vary. Regardless, it is crucial that any power source is capable of rotating the gyroscope at high speeds as that is how they are capable of operating efficiently. While there are numerous systems that can be used for gyroscopic instruments, common configurations include those that utilize vacuum systems, venturi tube systems, and engine-driven vacuum pumps.


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