Introduction to Fly-by-Wire


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The Professional Pilot’s Guide to Modern Flight Controls

Fundamental concepts in fly-by-wire flight controls, explained from a professional pilot’s perspective. The essential companion to your aircraft flight manual. Plain-English explanations without math, relevant to all FBW aircraft.

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Most new aircraft use fly-by-wire control systems. This short course addresses questions of “how it works” and “why it’s designed that way”. Although an aircraft manual tells pilots “what” to do, the fly-by-wire control system is usually treated as a black box and not explained in an easily understood way.

These videos and highly interactive instructional materials describe the fundamentals of aircraft fly-by-wire designs in an approachable way for professional pilots, aviation enthusiasts, and aspiring aerospace engineers. Although fly-by-wire flight control systems are designed by engineers, the concepts that structure the system can be explained without any math or complicated wiring diagrams.

Knowledge of fly-by-wire principles gives professional pilots an advantage to apply the flight manual procedures for their aircraft. This is not an engineering course and there will be no math! Rather than describe a particular aircraft’s design, it explains general concepts from a pilot’s perspective. The math to design these advanced systems is complicated, but the strategies underlying modern aircraft designs are easily described and understood.