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How is an airplane's lifespan determined?

As with any heavy machinery, an airplane is not designed to last forever, but how do New York airlines decide when a plane is no longer safe to fly? The lifespan of an airplane, according to Prime Industries Inc., is not a cut and dry thing. It requires many factors to be considered before an airplane is deemed too old to fly.

The main point used in determining the safety of a plane is called pressurization cycles. This is basically the flight hours of the plane. In other words, the plane's age is not as important as how many times it has flown. One cycle includes taking off, flying and landing. It does not matter if the plane flew a short or long flight. The focus is on the number of cycles. 

The reason for this is that when flying, the plane is subjected to pressure that stresses its different parts, such as the wings. This pressure and stress is the same regardless of how long the plane is in the air. 

In addition to the pressurization cycles, manufacturers will also state the lifespan of a plane. This gives owners an idea of how many cycles the plane can go through before it becomes unsafe.

However, safety is not always the only concern. Sometimes the lifespan of a plane is cut short because an airline needs to make changes for economic reasons or due to consumer demand. They may need to upgrade a plane, for example. This information is for education and is not legal advice. 

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