The non black BLACK BOX — how did it get its name? click to read

Black box


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Let’s get one thing clear: The “black box” isn’t black. It’s orange. Before airlines made that color standard for their flight recorders, some Boeings used a yellow sphere, and the British had a gizmo called the Red Egg. So why do they call it “black”? One explanation goes this way: In 1939, an aviation engineer named François Hussenot devised a means of capturing an aircraft’s history to a box of photographic film. Onboard sensors flashed into the box through calibrated mirrors and traced a running tab of flight parameters, including altitude, air speed and the position of the cockpit controls. Because the device worked like a camera, its insides had to be in total darkness; thus, perhaps, the “black”-ness of the box…

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