March 31, 2005

G Force

Charlie - "You were in a 4G inverted dive with a Mig-28" (Top Gun)

G - A measure of the force of gravity on Earth, equal to 9.8 meters per second squared. Climbing or diving in an aircraft can change the "G" forces felt by the plane's occupants. Climbing up -- pulling back on the control stick -- creates "positive Gs." Too many positive Gs will cause blackout; too many negative Gs will cause redout. Diving -- pushing forward on the stick -- creates "negative Gs." The body is much better equipped to handle positive Gs. It is frequently easier on the body to invert a plane and pull back into a "climb," thereby losing altitude, than simply pushing forward on the stick from an upright position.

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