Concorde Cockpit Shots.. say good bye to :30 Min

Orange Anchor

New Member
Had the chance to ride jumpseat twice and even got a bit of time in Concorde (okay.. it was the sim at Bristol but still...)

Some observations.
Note the abnormal checklist the FE has at around 4:02 in the video. The FE had something like 15 memory checklists and each one had about 4-5 memory steps. The FE had a LOT of work when things went awry.

Also note the use of the inboard engines in reverse for descent. NO speedbrakes on Concorde.

Visor goes down around 8:00 minute. 4 green? Yes, that includes the tailwheel.


The takeoff video is also a good view. Note the fuel tank configuration where the engineer told me, "The airplane is typically British with 13 fuel tanks numbered 1 through 11."

And this time, note the thickness of the normal checklist. Not your folded two page list...

FWIW, Concorde had a fly-by-wire flight control system albeit analog and not digital. Original design considered a side stick controller but that was not adopted.

Note too at 6:05 how takeoff thrust is set. The throttles are slammed to max. If they were eased up, it screwed up the fuel control unit so it was idle to max in one quick sweep.


Orange Anchor

New Member
Final video with accel to 1.7 Mach.

Note the fuel burn with 'burners of 44 TONNES or more than 90,000lbs/hr.

Note that temps are very impt. Warmer than ISA and you can move fuel aft faster than the aircraft will accelerate and colder than ISA it will accel faster than fuel can be moved aft. CG is constantly monitored and you want NO control deflections which means drag. What a beautiful machine.



Former Maddog Whisperer
I was lucky enough to fly from LHR to IAD on the Concorde back in the late 80's when I was a kid. At that time everyone was invited to the flight deck during the flight. I went twice :D !! Thanks for bringing back some cool memories!

Orange Anchor

New Member
You may notice in some of the shots behind the Capt the overhead panel. You may also note the edge of that panel is heavily padded. Too many banged heads. Also, when you get into the seat and slide the seat forward (left or right) your head is actually in a small arc. It was fairly easy to bump your head against something.

The cockpit, like the cabin, was anything but spacious. And though most flew on autopilot, some of the early Concorde Capts enjoyed hand-flying the entire flight across the pond.

Concorde had an old INS for nav and I asked if they were thinking of upgrading the equipment. The Capt said, "On such a short flight, the drift is insignificant." And considering the problems they had mounting the antennae for TCAS, they decided to stay with the old system.

Also, originally the shield was going to be solid.. no forward vis with the shield up. The FAA said, "Okay.. but don't plan on flying it in the US." The design was changed to the green-house glass.

Also, in the event that the controls were jammed, the system changed to a force sensing.. although the control column/ram's horn may not move, you could still fly the airplane. It was a very advanced machine for its time. VERY advanced and even now, nothing will routinely cruise at Mach 2. One of the Capts I flew with had more than 5000hrs above Mach 1 and most was at Mach 2.

Orange Anchor

New Member
Analogue fly-by-wire? How does that work?
Answer here...


The fly-by-wire flight control system eliminates the complexity, fragility and weight of the mechanical circuit of the hydromechanical flight control systems and replaces it with an electrical circuit. The cockpit controls now operate signal transducers which generate the appropriate commands, that are in turn processed by an electronic controller. The autopilot is now part of the electronic controller.
The hydraulic circuits are similar except that mechanical servo valves are replaced with electrically-controlled servo valves, operated by the electronic controller. This is the simplest and earliest configuration of an analog fly-by-wire flight control system, as first fitted to the Avro Vulcan in the 1950s.
In this configuration, the flight control systems must simulate "feel". The electronic controller controls electrical feel devices that provide the appropriate "feel" forces on the manual controls. This is still used in the Embraer E-Jets family of aircraft and was used in Concorde, the first fly-by-wire airliner.
In more sophisticated versions, analog computers replaced the electronic controller. The cancelled 1950s supersonic Canadian fighter, the Avro CF-105 Arrow, employed this type of system. Analog computers also allowed some customization of flight control characteristics, including relaxed stability. This was exploited by the early versions of F-16, giving it impressive maneuverability.


A digital fly-by-wire flight control system is similar to its analog counterpart. However, the signal processing is done by digital computers and the pilot literally can "fly-via-computer". This increases flexibility as the digital computers can receive input from any aircraft sensor. It also increases electronic stability, because the system is less dependent on the values of critical electrical components in an analog controller.

F-8C Crusader digital fly-by-wire testbed

The Airbus A320, first airliner with digital fly-by-wire controls

The Dassault Falcon 7X, first business jet with digital fly-by-wire controls

The computers "read" position and force inputs from the pilot's controls and aircraft sensors. They solve differential equations to determine the appropriate command signals that move the flight controls in order to carry out the intentions of the pilot.

More here...

Note also Concorde had the yellow, blue and green hyd systems which you find in the Airbi today.


Well-Known Member
Great videos! I loved the takeoff, that was very cool.

Also, note the flight engineers name is "Roger". ;)


All the responsibility none of the authority
Very cool vids. I really liked the first one with the Polar cleared for TO.

Very interesting procedures and systems. Obviously a very british machine.

I didn't know that the EJet FBW was analog based. I thought it was digital. Ya learn something everyday....


Well-Known Member
Also note the use of the inboard engines in reverse for descent. NO speedbrakes on Concorde.
Isn't that becuase the buckets close over the engine like a spoiler to slow it down?

Orange Anchor

New Member
Isn't that becuase the buckets close over the engine like a spoiler to slow it down?
A few aircraft have been certified to use the inboard thrust reversers in flight. I think the -8 and Concorde were two. NO outboards.

The Concorde Capt told the story about descending and ATC realized there was a problem and asked if he could expedite the descent. He said he was already in idle. The controller told him to use the reversers to which the very British fellow replied, "They are there for me to cover my mistakes, not yours."

Although absolutely NOT authorized, early on I flew with a Capt who continually played at the edge doing things such as seeing how slow he could touch down in a 737-200 (down almost to 100kts one time and well into the stick shaker), see how fast he could remain and still land at/near Vref, etc. Classic rogue. Anyway, he decided to hit the reverser over-rides one day with a friend of mine. Configured with flaps 15 (737-basic) and he opens the reverser over-rides on the overhead and pops the reversers in flight. "Watch this baby come down NOW!" he said. My friend almost crapped his pants. LOTS of vibration as you would expect. My buddy said, "Try that again and I will close the overrides and write the airplane up." The Capt said, "Close 'em and I will just open 'em again." My buddy said, "...with a broken arm?" A few years later after another incident, the Capt was given a choice, retire early or be fired but in either case he would never again step into a company cockpit. He retired.

anyway, here's a picture of the 'buckets'