The electronics and computers a computer uses to fly aren’t typically things the average person ever thinks about. However, most people would probably be shocked to learn that some airplanes, like the Airbus 350, have an entire server room beneath the cockpit.
Swedish pilot and YouTuber bjornpilot recently uploaded a video showing off a few areas on the gigantic plane that passengers wouldn’t normally get to see, like the sleeping area where pilots rest on long flights and an insane sub-cockpit server room. And if you’re an average person, like me, and you thought that all of a plane’s electronics were stored behind the instrument panel, watch this video and think again:
The video reveals just how much processing power is need to fly these enormous aircraft. We see bjornpilot open up a hatch, step down a ladder, and move the camera around to show dozens (if not hundreds) of rack-mounted computers in the avionics compartment. Although the room isn’t tall—in some areas you have to move around on your knees—it’s still quite large. Enough, at least, to make any sys admin anxious (especially when it’s at 30,000 feet).
It was also interesting to see how that room connects to other areas of the plane, like the cargo hold. Bjornpilot doesn’t offer a thorough tour, by any means, for security reasons. That said, the brief peek is incredibly fascinating, and it kinda makes you think about what the computing and electronics systems in other vehicles might look like.