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To decrease drag in flight some undercarriages retract into the wings and/or fuselage with wheels flush against the surface or concealed behind doors; this is called retractable gear. If the wheels rest protruding and partially exposed to the airstream after being retracted, the system is called semi-retractable.
Most retraction systems are hydraulically operated, though some are electrically operated or even manually operated. This adds weight and complexity to the design. In retractable gear systems, the compartment where the wheels are stowed are called wheel wells, which may also diminish valuable cargo or fuel space.
Pilots confirming that their landing gear is down and locked refer to "three green" or "three in the green.", a reference to the electrical indicator lights from the nosewheel and the two main gears. Red lights indicate the gear is in the up-locked position; amber lights indicate that the landing gear is in transit (neither down and locked nor fully retracted).
Multiple redundancies are usually provided to prevent a single failure from failing the entire landing gear extension process. Whether electrically or hydraulically operated, the landing gear can usually be powered from multiple sources. In case the power system fails, an emergency extension system is always available. This may take the form of a manually operated crank or pump, or a mechanical free-fall mechanism which disengages the uplocks and allows the landing gear to fall due to gravity. Some high-performance aircraft may even feature a pressurized-nitrogen back-up system.
source: Wikitionary / Wikipedia and Related Sources (Edited)
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