If you have ever been on a flight, you would know that apart from boring food and the obligation to sit on the fixed seat for hours, its usually quite comfortable.
But comfort is more of a subjective thing, so let’s talk about something essential for human survival during the flight, the oxygen!
The must-have thing for humans to survive is oxygen. But have you ever wondered, how do we get oxygen on the airplane while it’s flying?
Availability of oxygen in the air
Okay, you might know that there’s a short supply of breathable air on high altitude levels where the most airplanes fly. Here, the word breathable holds the most significance, because the air at 35.000 feet altitude is available in abundance and shortage of air is actually not the real problem. In simple words, the altitudes where most airplanes fly have a sufficient amount of oxygen available. Not just that, the air is abundant at the altitude where the International space stations work.
So the catch is, although there’s an abundance of air available at the level where airplanes fly, the pressure of air (oxygen) is too low, and people can’t directly inhale it.
How do airplanes get the supply of breathable oxygen?
Well, the surrounding air gives airplanes the limitless supply of oxygen in the air. A compressor is used to supply outside air and pass it through several types of machinery that convert the unbreathable oxygen into breathable oxygen. Finally, the breathable oxygen gets piped into the cabin area where people are sitting.
There’s also an outflow valve present on the rear end of the plane, which collects the used air from the cabin area and releases it outside the airplane to regulate the quality of air.
So, I hope now you understand how we can get a constant supply of breathable oxygen at such a high level with ease.