A cockpit or flight deck is the area, usually near the front of an aircraft, from which a pilot controls the aircraft. Most modern cockpits are enclosed, except on some small aircraft, and cockpits on large airliners are also physically separated from the cabin. From the cockpit an aircraft is controlled on the ground and in the air.

The term described the sailing term for the coxswain's station in a Royal Navy ship, and later the location of the ship's rudder controls. Cockpit appeared in the English language in the 1580s, "a pit for fighting cocks", from cock + pit. Used in nautical sense (1706) for midshipmen's compartment below decks; transferred to airplanes (1914) and to cars (1930s). From about 1935 cockpit came to be used informally to refer to the driver's seat of a car, especially a high performance one, and this is official terminology in Formula One.

The cockpit of an aircraft contains flight instruments on an instrument panel, and the controls that enable the pilot to fly the aircraft. In most airliners, a door separates the cockpit from the passenger compartment. After the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, all major airlines fortified the cockpit against access by hijackers.

On an airliner, the cockpit is usually referred to as the flight deck. This term derives from its use by the RAF for the separate, upper platform in large flying boats where the pilot and co-pilot sat.

Read more about CockpitErgonomics, Flight Instruments, Aerospace Industry Technologies

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Cockpit - Aerospace Industry Technologies
... National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) have researched the ergonomic aspects of cockpit design and have conducted investigations of airline industry accidents ... Cockpit design disciplines include Cognitive Science, Neuroscience, Human Computer Interaction, Human Factors Engineering, Anthropometry and Ergonomics ... Aircraft designs have adopted the fully digital "glass cockpit" ...
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... The Cockpit Theatre is a Fringe Theatre in Marylebone, London ... The Cockpit Theatre was designed by Edward Mendelsohn built in 1969-70 by the Inner London Education Authority as a community theatre and is notable ... This change meant The Cockpit is no longer used for day-to-day teaching or academic office space and is now operating as full-time theatre and training venue ...
Louis Strange - Aerial Combat and Bombing Pioneer
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Cockpit (sailing)
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