The flight recorder installed on board the aircraft is used to record and store a variety of information received from the onboard instruments, as well as conversations in the cockpit. This data helps experts uncover the cause of the crash when the plane crashes.
For the first time, the use of flight recorders on airplanes to record crew conversations and facilitate the investigation of plane crashes was proposed in the mid-twentieth century by David Warren, a scientist from Australia. The recorder was invented a little earlier, but at first it recorded only some of the readings of the instruments, which was not enough when determining the cause of the crash. Therefore, the flight recorder was equipped with a device for recording the conversations of the pilots on magnetic tape, which could be used several times before it was replaced.
There is still no precise justification for the appearance of the colloquial name of the flight recorder, which is often called a black box, although in fact it is bright orange. According to one version, the whole point is that initially the recorder was painted on the outside in black so that sunlight, harmful to the film, on which the readings of the instruments were recorded, did not enter the body. Others argue that the recorder is called a black box only because such a name is associated with something mysterious, with a secret and, possibly, its safe disclosure.
The special body of the flight recorder allows it to withstand enormous loads, keeping all data intact. Including the recorder is perfectly protected from fire and can be under water for a long time without damage to information. And to make the device easier to find, it is equipped with a special beacon that transmits an emergency radio signal.
Since the 60s of the twentieth century, the equipment of all aircraft without exception with flight recorders has acquired the status of a mandatory procedure. For some time, a voice recorder was installed at the head of the airliner. However, it was later rightly moved to the rear, since it is the cockpit that tends to suffer the most in a crash.