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You're sitting on a plane trying to relax when a terrible thought crosses your mind:
What would happen if that airplane door opened?
Commercial airplanes pressurize their cabins to match the atmospheric pressure of 8,000 to 10,000 feet above sea level,
even though the cruising altitude of the plane you're in is 30,000 to 45,000 feet in the air.
As altitude increases, atmospheric pressure decreases.
This is due to Earth's gravitational pull on the air molecules in the atmosphere.
The closer to the Earth's surface the stronger the force exerted on these molecules.
If the door were opened the plane would depressurize in less than 0.5 seconds.
Unless your seat belt is fastened you and any loose objects would immediately be ejected due to the difference in pressure.
During such a scenario survival rates are very slim given the possibility of the entire plane breaking apart.
Because the air is substantially thinner at high altitudes there is substantially less oxygen.
A gradual decompression in the cabin will cause the oxygen mask to drop from above
and on average you have 18 seconds to put the mask on before hypoxia kicks in.
Hypoxia occurs when oxygen levels decrease, causing symptoms of nausea, dizziness and unconsciousness leading to death.
The oxygen reserves on the plane would last for only 10 minutes.
Enough for the pilot to descend rapidly to 8,000 to 10,000 feet
to match both the internal and external pressures and give you hope for survival.
Freaked out yet?
Don't worry, the chances of the door opening are so small
because there's eight to ten pounds of pressure exerted on every square inch of the plane.
Remember there's more pressure inside the cabin than outside.
Using the largest commercial airplane the Airbus A380 as an example,
the main door measures 4288 square inches,
meaning a 38,592 pounds of force would be required to even begin to open it.
To compare this would be equivalent of you trying to move 3 African bush elephants -
the largest land mammals on earth.
Additionally, plane doors are almost always electronically locked by the pilot
through functions accessible only from inside the cockpit.
And to ease your worries more:
It would also be nearly impossible for someone to punch and break through an airplane window.
These windows can also be made with up to six layers of various types of strong polymers and are bulletproof.
Furthermore, these windows are almost always rounded to decrease drag while in flight,
thereby preventing cracks and decompression.
You're more likely to die in a car than during aviation with a 1/114 chance of car accidents compared to 1/9821 for air travel related accidents.
So fasten your seat belts, pay attention to your safety videos, and above all enjoy the flight.
Thank you so much for watching! Make sure you subscribe,
because we make new science videos every Thursday.
And click the bell because apparently it does something.
If you want to watch more right now, we'll link a couple videos over here that you can check out
to satisfy your science needs,
Otherwise we'll see you next Thursday for a new video.
Peace!
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飛機恐慌!機艙門在高空打開怎麼辦? (What If Your Airplane Door Burst Open Mid-Flight?)

15811 分類 收藏
Samuel 發佈於 2018 年 2 月 28 日    Evie 翻譯    Evangeline 審核
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