[caption id="attachment_3483" align="alignright" width="224"] Rear door of an Airbus A319 aircraft, image © Christopher Doyle[/caption]
Aeroplane doors are pretty special and the safety regulations that apply to them must be immense. Apparently there are a number of back-up security measures in place to ensure that even if one safety feature fails, the other safety mechanisms will prevent any risk to passengers. Interestingly I recently read a lively discussion online about whether it is physically possible to open a door on a plane during a flight.
Some people argued that there were mechanical locks for the doors that were controlled by the pilot and managed with a secret code, however this is not the case. In fact, it seems that it is not physically possible to open a plane door during a flight and this is due to the difference in air pressure inside and outside the aeroplane. Once a plane reaches a certain altitude there is no way you could physically open the door. Where the cabin is not pressurised, like a cargo holding, theoretically it would be possible to open a door, however a person would not be able to get access to this area on a plane and they couldn't access the door controls.
How about skydivers? How does a skydiver exit a plane? These are special planes which are not pressurised and therefore opening the door is possible.
There seems to be a number of cases where a passenger has gone a bit crazy and threatened to open the door during a flight, but it seems highly unlikely that a passenger could actually open the door. Maybe these crazy passengers draw inspiration from the many films where someone (usually a hijacker) takes control of the plane and attempts to throw objects and people out of the plane. However it seems this is far from possible.
At Doorsan we are interested in all types of doors and we look at all kinds of doors for inspiration although we have never had a request for a fully airtight pressurised door.