Talk:Ejection seat

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Another early ejection seat was used on the Saab J21 push prop, the first was made on 1 June 1945. The first real use was on July 29 1946. A version using compressed air was tested in 1941. A gunpowder ejection seat was developed by Bofors tested in 1943. The first test in the air was on a Saab B17 on 27 February 1944. See // Liftarn

Shouldn't Zvezda SKS-94 be added to "Ejection seats in other aircraft" section?[edit]

Sukhoi 31M is equipped with ejection seat Zvezda SKS-94 for several years already. So far it is the only civil aircraft with factory-installed ejection seat. Can somebody add information about SKS-94? Here is more info about the seat —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:08, 8 July 2008 (UTC)

"Spurs" are common[edit]

The article mentions leg straps that pull the legs towards the chair as if they are something unique to the F-104. That is simply not true. --J-Star 15:52, 2004 Nov 15 (UTC)

Leg restraints are also used on the B-1B Bomber and F-22 also. Lucky Foot (talk) 17:29, 23 September 2011 (UTC)

Source for K-36 section[edit]

The utmost in contemporary ejection seat technology is incorporated in the K-36 series designed by the Russian Zvezda bureau.

At best this section is NPOV. But does this thing even work like this section claims? The whole thing should probably be removed if there's no source. Twinxor t 02:06, 17 December 2005 (UTC)

It is totally true that K36 is king. K36 has a primitive, but very efficient electro-mechanical thrust-vectoring techology, which can upright the seat under almost any circumstances, which means the seat will travel upwards and the parachute will have time to open. The three rocket engines are mounted under the seat at 90degrees offset to each other in 3D space and can be throttled individually, based on gyroscope command feed to upright the seat. The leg- and shoulder netting harness and the pop-up tennis racket (torso shockwave protector) mean the K36 is safe to use up to Mach3, which is not true for any modern western seat. The eject trigger handles are better located in K36 than western seats, easier to reach under high G-load. The only problem is weight. The K36 is very iron.
We have seen many incredible airshow videos of K36 ejection rescues, 1989 single, 1993 twice single, 1999 two-seater and the 20004 ukranian two-seater. Nothing, however, can beat this two-seater Szu-27 ejection from 1992 (one pilot OK, one retires from flight career due to injury). A lot of agricultural work before ejection:
It was apparently added by an anon ( a while ago. No source was given. Incidentally, that same anon made some erroneous (apparently; I'm no expert) claims on the F-35 article about that aircraft being based on a Russian design, which was promptly removed and written off as "fanboy tripe". I'm betting he made a few similar edits as well, but you'd have to check the history, because I'm too lazy. I say remove the section in its entirety. It's been without a source for too long after ample warning. TaintedMustard 17:29, 11 February 2006 (UTC)
The F-35 russian design input (Yakovlev-141 engine and blueprints) is now acknowledged in the corresponding wikipedia article, after a renewed debate. It was hard to deny after PDF found on Lockheed's company website said the same...
I tried to hunt down some info. I can't say I know too much about the subject, so I'm not going to add anything to external links unless someone with a bit more knowledge can verify my references.,,
In its Zvezda article, Wikipedia itself mentions that the system "is considered by many to be the world's best", though of course self-referencing is bad, and that article doesn't offer any links to news items or even hobbyist sites about the system.
My primary concern is whether the system is important enough to the subject to warrant its own section. I'm not going to remove the information if the system is indeed noteworthy in its own right, and from perusing the above sites, I don't doubt that it's notable within the relevent community, but I'd like someone with some familiarity to verify that (I didn't find any news items) and to add the relevent links.
Additional sources are also needed as to the US's unwillingness to adopt the system. TaintedMustard 14:28, 12 February 2006 (UTC)
In the absence of the NPOV problems with the first half of the section, and the lack of any credible sources for the testing / non-adoption part I'm going to delete the whole section. Hopefully someone will find some referenced material to replace it. Kevin 10:25, 11 April 2006 (UTC)
In dont know whats up with you guys and the K-36 ES but sorry, its simply today best ejection seat, it was even considered by US to equip the F-35 and F/A-18E/F Super Hornet, reasons are not only its more eficient than the ACES/NACES (as demonstrated in the sad Ukranie accident where the pilots ejected after the plane crashed and cartwheeled) ,its less agressive with the pilot as it uses a softer type of propulsion.. the problem was weight, it weighted many times more than the ACES/NACES so USAF/USN keep with the ACES/NACES. It was citated that maybe the weight gain of the K-36 would be compensated by the increase in confident by the pilots.. all that videos of MiG-29s and SU-27s crashing (where are the videos of F-16s , F-15s and so crashing :D ..even Mirages) feature the K-36 ES

Until you have the courtesy to sign your contributions to the discussion, you will have little credibility. You come across as nationalistically partisan in agenda.--Buckboard 08:34, 2 December 2006 (UTC)

Please note that Vmin 150kph ejection limit on MiG-29's takes roots in the canopy being teared off by airflow in process of ejection, not in seat limitations. There was at least one successful 0-0 ejection from Su-24. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:56, 10 March 2009 (UTC)

Zero-zero ejector seat?[edit]

What's the meaning of "zero-zero" in zero-zero ejector seat?

The ejection seat can be used whislt the aircraft is stationary and on the gound (zero altitude zero velocity) its usage under such circumstances is rare (if its ever been used!) but its development was very useful particularly as there was no longer a minimum altitude below which you weren't protected.
The most likely scenario for a (near) zero-zero ejection is in an arresting gear or catapult failure on an aircraft carrier, where the aircraft is about to fall off the flight deck but is not going fast enough to fly. FiggyBee 05:52, 26 December 2006 (UTC)

While serving in VF-154 onboard the USS Independence (CV-62) in 1997 one of our F-14B Tomcats nose gear was blown off the oil slick flight deck and into the catwalk by another jet's blast. Fearing the A/C was going to fall completely overboard the pilots initiated a zero-zero ejection. Both pilots shot out, parachuted down into the ocean and were picked up by an SH-60F Sea Hawk without injury. The aircraft did not fall overboard but was out of service for months while the ejection seat/canopy system was rebuilt. Swaflyer 15:51, 11 January 2007 (UTC)

The "Zero/Zero" capability of ejection seats came to be in 1961 with the incorporation of a rocket motor on the bottom of the seat. The added thrust provided by the rocket motor propelled the seat high enough for safe parachure deployment. --Soon Bok 22:54, 17 October 2007 (UTC)

One of the first zero-zero seats was the Martin-Baker Mk VRN.4 - this was fitted to the Short SC.1 and the Ryan VZ-3RY.
... and also ...
Flight Magazine 8th June 1961
By no means all the participants were fixed-wing aeroplanes. There were both helicopters and parachutists, one of the latter being W. T. H. Hay of Martin-Baker, who made a dramatic rocket ejection from a stationary lorry. This was the first public demonstration of Martin-Baker’s newest ground-level ejection equipment, which shot Mr Hay about 300ft into the air. On the Saturday, owing to a crosswind, he unfortunately landed on the edge of the runway instead of on the grass.
BTW, the driving force behind Martin-Baker's 'zero-zero' seats was VTOL and specifically what was to become the Harrier. The seat had to be usable at 'zero' airspeed because the Harrier was capable of hovering (like the Short SC.1 and the Ryan VZ-3RY), and a pilot might be forced to eject while the aircraft was, in effect, stationary. The same goes for the 'zero' altitude, as the Harrier might be hovering only be a few feet (40-50ft) above a clearing in a wood it was taking-off from or landing-on when the pilot needs to get out quickly.
... and the reason it's called a 'zero-zero' seat is that before this type of seat was devised all previous ejection seats had minimum speed and minimum altitude limitations, e.g., 90 kt/250ft, the minimum airspeed being needed to ensure that the seat got the occupant clear of the airframe (the seat and occupant slow down rapidly after ejection due to the drag, and if the aircraft is flying too slowly for the design of seat, the seat and occupant may strike the tail - this killed at least one Vickers Valiant pilot), and the minimum height to ensure the parachute had time to open fully. The 'zero-zero' had NO limitations, e.g., 0 kt/ 0ft, hence its name.
... oh, and BTW, the Harrier is also why the MDC was developed, as jettisoning the canopy in the hover isn't much use when all it does is go upwards so that the ejecting seat collides with it. Jettisoning is also too slow, so the MDC is used which shatters the canopy almost instantly, reducing the time needed before ejection-proper can take place. [1]—Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:37, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
There's a blog with some info on the USN's involvement with Martin-Baker seats here: [2] —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:31, 2 April 2011 (UTC)
Info on MDC for Harrier here: [3] — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 15:34, 13 September 2016 (UTC)

ACES II[edit]

Came here looking for more information about the ACES II seat used in the F-16. A little disappointed I didn't find much. Only a picture. Hope you will at least link to a more detailed page on this.

Dispute tag[edit]

The article Martin-Baker states;

Martin-Baker started to investigate ejection seats from 1934 onward, several years before Germany (1938) and Sweden.

Is this a date of invention? Or should the article be reworded to "the first working ejection seat was produced in Germany in 1938", or something similar. Emoscopes Talk 09:06, 17 January 2007 (UTC)

M-B don't claim to have had a working ejector seat until after the War. Since the Germans were actually mass-producing them, I think it's fair enough as it is. I've removed the tag, btw, since this doesn't seem to be a red-hot debate (2.5 months without comment) and it was uglying up the article. FiggyBee 02:33, 27 March 2007 (UTC)

Don't bother. A patent for the ejection seat was already issued in 1930 (with first experience in 1929), see Anastase Dragomir. --Alex:Dan 00:14, 21 April 2007 (UTC)

Was supersonic speed really a driving factor?[edit]

After World War II, the need for such systems became pressing, as aircraft speeds were getting ever higher, and it was not long before the sound barrier was broken. Manual escape at such speeds would be impossible.

Supersonic aircraft were not the driving force for ejector seats, were they? How many pilots were able to manually escape from fighter aircraft in WWII? (That would be a great stat for the article if anyone can look it up regardless.) Rather than supersonic speeds, I thought the driving force was merely the improvement of the technology. Tempshill 22:20, 27 June 2007 (UTC)

It was the increasing speeds. At 400mph+ the slipstream is so great that a pilot often lacks the physical strength to climb out of the cockpit. Ian Dunster (talk) 10:14, 2 August 2008 (UTC)

Bungee assisted escape?[edit]

Can anyone please supply a reference for the bungee assisted escape of 1910? Thank you. Nick1961 (talk) 11:40, 1 June 2008 (UTC)

F-104 inverted fatalities[edit]

The article states that, "Some models of the F-104 were equipped with upward-ejecting seats, which led to several fatal accidents when pilots trained on the downward-firing seats rolled inverted at low altitude and ejected."

I've heard this claim, I've searched for instances of it happening, but I have never seen it verified. I've added a 'citation needed' tag. Rpstrong (talk) 18:23, 29 September 2008 (UTC)

The early ejection seats were only intended to get the pilot or crewmember out of the aircraft, and so the seat was only ejected a relatively short way, and in T-tailed aircraft like the F-104 an upward ejecting seat could have lead to the seat and occupant striking the tail. So a downward-ejecting seat was chosen. At the time zero/zero-capability seats were some way-off and as the most likely source of aircraft loss for a combat aeroplane was enemy action, which would almost certainly have taken place at medium to high altitudes, the fact that the seat ejected downwards was of no real consequence. It was only later when the zero/zero seat became available that pilots started to survive in situations that they couldn't have survived before, ejection seat or no ejection seat, such as abandoning the aircraft at low levels, that the disadvantages of downwards ejecting seats became apparent. The capabilities of the newer seats grew so much that they removed all the previous limitations that had been present, such as a minimum height to allow the parachute time to open, since the parachute had been introduced. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:42, 21 December 2011 (UTC)

ACES II Ejection seats[edit]

This is an awesome article about the historical designs of both pre and post coldwar era aircrew ejection systems. However it is a common misconception that a seat merely leaves the aircraft when the handle is pulled and this is what I wish to clarify for some.

The ACES II ejection seat is catapulted out of the aircraft by a 2-stage rocket assembly lovingly referred to as the "Rocket Catapult". Upon exiting the aircraft the systems enviromental sensing unit takes in static and dynamic pressures allowing for one of the three modes of ejection to be determined. This information is in turn sent to the seats sequencing unit which in turn sends a signal out to the internally loaded munitions which both correct the trajectory of the pilots seat and allow for pilot - seat disconnection.

Upon ejection a "drag" chute is released to allow for the seat to reach the proper airspeed determined safe by the sequencing unit. It is only as this point that the actual pilot chute is released not before.

Again this is a brilliant article and I personally enjoyed reading it great job. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Sephios (talkcontribs) 01:46, 21 October 2009 (UTC)

Pilot Safety[edit]

No mention is made about pilots who, after ejecting, report a permanent loss of height of about 1" due to spinal compression. Chris Stricklin (sp?) of the F-16 airshow crash is a good example. Also, nothing is mentioned about pilots that are permanently grounded after an ejection. Not sure if its just the Americans who do this. (talk) 02:24, 22 March 2010 (UTC)

Sounds like you'd have ruptured disks in order to achieve such a permanent change from an ejection. Take a look at these sources.

Air Force report
--THE FOUNDERS INTENT PRAISE 01:16, 4 January 2012 (UTC)

Regarding Pilot Safety[edit]

Pilots generally lose on average one inch in total height due to spinal compression after an Ejection. Pilots are generally not grounded because of a single ejection, however after three total ejections a pilot is grounded but not removed from service. In regards to pilot safety the fact that the seat is designed for maximum survivability and not comfort is a testament to how many pilots have been brought back because it worked without a malfunction. Chris Stricklin unfortunately is not a good example to use since his faulty and wreckless piloting brough down his aircraft and endangered the lives of spectators and that of his ground crew alike. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:40, 15 April 2010 (UTC)

It was generally (even on old seats) less than an inch. That much compression is besides likely to cause enough spinal cord damage that there could be serious injury. Really though, the persistent height loss owing to compression was much reduced by the rocket seat (i.e. zero-zero seats). The seat was now lofted clear by the long duration but relatively low force of the rocket, rather than having to be thrown clear entirely by the force of the initial cannon (which can only be a few metres long). It was this need in the early seats to apply a huge force so quickly that caused the spinal trauma. Andy Dingley (talk) 23:12, 29 September 2010 (UTC)
(An aside from the spinal compression for those fortunate to survive an ejection): it is very rare (previously unknown?) for the harness system to be compromised. But this was the cause of the first fatality on the Eurofighter Typhoon project, in Spain, earlier this year. The system for the MB MK 16A has now been very rapidly re-designed and re-delpoyed, to prevent this from ever happening again. Worthy of mention in the article somewhere? Wittlessgenstein (talk) 19:45, 13 October 2010 (UTC)

I find it strange that throughout the development of ejection seats, I can't find any mention of improvements to the seat harnesses. All designs strap the pilots IN and DOWN, not one that holds the pilot UP. Imagine a suitably designed powered harness that also goes under the pilot's armpits to lift him UP off his butt at the moment of ejection charges firing, spinal compression injuries will be reduced, if not eliminated. At worst, dislocated shoulder joints are less harmful than a wrecked spinal column!Life is short, but the years are long! (talk) 05:08, 22 October 2011 (UTC)

That sort of harness is likely to pull the pilot's arms off, or else to break his collarbones. Pilots are stronger in compression, even their spines, than they are as beams in shear. Andy Dingley (talk) 09:21, 22 October 2011 (UTC)

You may be correct, but what I was thinking is similar to pre-tensioned seatbelts in case of a crash. the harness only have to tighten and lift him up half an inch at most to offload and share the loads with the spine. There would be three load points instead of just the pilot's seat. Broken arm and collar bones are much easier to treat than damaged spine.Life is short, but the years are long! (talk) 12:10, 22 October 2011 (UTC)

Lifting the pilot off the seat would only serve to allow the seat to attain a higher velocity (relative to the occupant) prior to contact with the occupant, which will increase the dynamic overshoot and increase the likelihood of a spinal injury. It would be better to precompress the spine prior to ejection, which is likely what the current haul-back reels do. --THE FOUNDERS INTENT PRAISE 01:03, 4 January 2012 (UTC)

Having a system with a high likelihood of disabling combat aircrew who has to control his descent and potentially evade hostile forces may be considered to be very low on the list of design priorities. Ejection seats give crews in otherwise unsurviveable situations a chance to fight again86.154.37.250 (talk) 10:32, 3 January 2012 (UTC) Oops forgot to log inKitbag (talk) 10:33, 3 January 2012 (UTC)

1981Flight article[edit]

There's an interesting 1981 Flight International article on ejection seats here; [4] —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:57, 12 April 2011 (UTC)

ACES II stats[edit]

These don't make any sense at all. How come 0-Deg Pitch, 60-Deg Roll requires 0ft altitude whereas 0-Deg Pitch, 0-Deg Roll requires 116 feet? How can this be more? Furthermore, if a "light-weight crewman would reach an apogee of close to 200 feet if they ejected at ground level with zero airspeed" how can it only require 150 feet altitude to eject from inverted? Something doesn't seem right... Turkeyphant 22:10, 17 July 2014 (UTC)


I seem to remember reading about an aircraft that was designed to blow the tail free when the ejection system fired, to ensure the pilot didn't get clipped by it on the way up. However, I don't seem to see it in the article, and I'm %$^&*( if I can remember where else I might have seen it. Or did I hallucinate it?

*Septegram*Talk*Contributions* 03:01, 10 March 2015 (UTC)

You may be thinking of the several aircraft that had pusher propellers--Saab J21 and Dornier 335, as I remember, but I could well be wrong--with explosive devices intended to blow the props off. (talk) 19:02, 15 October 2015 (UTC)

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