Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation
Top

There’s a good reason why plane windows are round and it’s terrifying

6320f32f12a68e6f01f346b68611b338.jpg

The question as to why plane windows are round may not have crossed your mind while you stare out of one, what with all the clouds, sunrises/sets, building frost and general epicness of the planet.

Turns out there's a very good reason why the windows are oval rather than square, and it's not because planes are the ferries of the sky.

Back in the 50s, higher air travel started to take off. Pressurised cabins meant that planes could go higher and faster than before, and it was the beginning of flight as we know it.

But in 1953, two planes fell apart in the air, killing 56 people. And it came down to the rectangular windows.

Where there is a corner there is a weak spot, which can cause windows to collapse from things like changes in air pressure. That means each square or rectangular window on a plane had four opportunities to become an exit that they didn't mention in the safety video.

By being round, any stress to the windows is distributed and the risk of cracking reduced.

While we're at it, that tiny hole in them is there to maintain cabin pressure should the synthetic resin on the outside window pane fracture for any reason.  

So you can go back to staring at the clouds, sunrises/sets and building frost with a god-like perspective without having to worry about the thing your pressing your face against exploding.

Happy flying.

Related

plane1.jpg

This is an ingenious solution to surviving a plane crash

arrow.jpg

You're going to want to build this LEGO paper aeroplane folder

astro.jpg

Apollo astronauts heard unexplained 'space music' during moon visit

More

Sir Bruce Forsyth has died aged 89

The legendary presenter has died aged 89

by Gary Ogden
18 Aug 2017

The biggest stereotype about men and sex is actually a load of rubbish

We've been wrong this whole time

by Gary Ogden
18 Aug 2017

Discover the words that became cool in the year you were born

Were you born in the year of booty calls or cybersex?

by Emily Reynolds
18 Aug 2017

This German town came up with a genius way of humiliating neo-Nazis

Is this the best possible way to deal with them?

by Alex Finnis
18 Aug 2017

Donald Trump’s lawyer: possibly not racist, definitely not intelligent

Oldest trick in the book

by Tom Victor
17 Aug 2017

The 10 worst cities in the world to live in 2017

To put your first-world problems into perspective

17 Aug 2017

We have some very, very good news about cheese

Cheese lovers, it's our time to shine

by Emily Reynolds
17 Aug 2017

Jurors refuse to work on Martin Shkreli's trial for the best reasons

He is *not* a popular man

by Emily Reynolds
17 Aug 2017

Apparently millennials hate boobs now - but what do we like instead?

These god damn millennials, eh

by Gary Ogden
17 Aug 2017

All the times Donald Trump has failed to condemn far-right extremists

This has gone on for some time

by Tom Victor
16 Aug 2017