Thrust lever

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Thrust levers in a Boeing 747 Classic. The center and rear levers are used during flight, while the forward levers control reverse thrust. Center panel of B747-100 cockpit.jpg
Thrust levers in a Boeing 747 Classic. The center and rear levers are used during flight, while the forward levers control reverse thrust.

Thrust levers or power levers are found in the cockpit of aircraft, and are used by the pilot, copilot, or autopilot to control the thrust output of the aircraft's engines.

In multi-engine aircraft, each thrust lever displays the engine number of the engine it controls. Normally, there is one thrust lever for each engine. The thrust levers are normally found in the aircraft's center console, or on the dashboard of smaller aircraft.

For aircraft equipped with thrust reversers, the control for each thrust reverser is usually found adjacent to the corresponding engine's thrust lever.

The position of each lever can be described by the current angle indicated. This is referred to as the Throttle Lever Angle or TLA. The greater the TLA, the greater the engine thrust.

Throttle levers

Airline Pilot rests hand on throttle quadrant of a Boeing 767 Throttleq.jpg
Airline Pilot rests hand on throttle quadrant of a Boeing 767

The throttle lever assembly is often designed to incorporate high-pressure (HP) cock switches so that the pilot has instinctive control of the fuel supply to the engine. Microswitches are located in the throttle box so that the throttle levers actuate the switches to shut the valves when the levers are at their aft end of travel. Pushing the levers forward automatically operates the switches to open the fuel cocks, which remain open during the normal operating range of the levers. Two distinct actions are required to actuate the switches again. The throttle lever must be pulled back to its aft position and a mechanical latch operated, or a detent (hard point) overcome, to allow the lever to travel further and shut off the fuel valve.

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