It hardly makes sense how a mere bird would dent the cone of a plane, taking into account the fact that aircraft skins are made of thin aluminum sheets and on newer types of various composites.
However, the structural parts of the aircraft are made of solid aluminum parts. Especially the wings need to be very strong because they need to support the weight of the aircraft in flight while carrying the majority of fuel. When a bird goes through an airplane, it’s no longer a bird.
It’s just a mass of organic material that has high kinetic energy. It then follows that the deposited kinetic energy will inevitably become the dent. That kinetic energy is what destroys the structure of the plane.
That was the case when a bird was lodged in the shell of the Airbus A319 after striking the nose cone while approaching the South Florida airport from Mexico City. However, the plane landed safely and the animal was spotted as the airliner taxied to its gate at around 11am Wednesday. Everyone onboard was safe after the incident.
The incident follows a similar incident that took place last month involving a charter plane carrying NBA stars from the Oklahoma City Thunder that was hit by an unidentified object on its way to Chicago-Midway.
The Delta Airlines Boeing 757-200’s nose was badly dented and scratched after landing. Shortly after disembarking, Carmelo Anthony, the team’s star player, posted an image of the damage to social media.
In 2009, a US Airways pilot pulled off an incredible landing on the Hudson River after the passenger plane was struck by geese, with passengers and crew rescued from the stricken airliner by boat.
What possibly could we have hit in the SKY at this time of night? Everyone is Safe, Though. “All Praise Due” #ThunderStrong
The latest figures from the Federal Aviation Administration indicate that there have been more than 142,000 wildlife strikes with civil aircraft in the US since 1990, around 90 percent of which occur below 3,500ft.
That had to make one hell of a noise both at the time of impact and after. All that air whistling through the dent must have made for some tension in the cockpit.