Le Figaro – Cumulus Nimbus Video-

FAB Nota 32 – Radio Chatter –



Le Figaro – Cécilia Gabizon 15/06/2009 | Mise à jour : 08:25

For now, Air France Airbus rejects trail disintegration. (English Translation)(Emphasis mine)

Air France as the Bureau of Investigation and Analysis (BEA) also refuses to link the crash to a failure of Pitot probes. They are involved in the maintenance Acars messages issued during the last four minutes by the device. The site Eurocockpit published a list of these alarms, as confirmed by an expert close to the investigation. The failure of the Pitot seems to have been the first…

To improve security, Brazil will, as of August, equip airports new ADS-B radars to monitor planes even in the middle of the Atlantic. So far, this area is not covered by radar for about 50 minutes of flight.

These instruments can more easily monitor the weather conditions. Because the intertropical convergence zone experiencing unpredictable storms development. Images Meteosat 9 show a sharp increase when the Air France entered the area….


Bloomberg provides an update on the debate brewing on the location of the law suits, where the claims are filed. The amount of any award depends on the victim’s age, family status and work situation and the debate over jurisdiction issues may get even more heated with families making the ultimate decision based on where they can receive the most compensation.

Air France Crash Spurs Debate Over Lawsuit Locations

Bloomberg — Heather Smith – Paris Last Updated: June 15, 2009 10:43 EDT

… Air France complained in a letter to Brazil’s bar association about lawyers soliciting victims’ families at a hotel where the airline was housing them. The bar association said it may launch a formal probe of possible ethics violations…

…Compensation for families depends on not only where they eventually pursue their claims but also on criteria such as the victim’s age, family status and work situation, according to lawyers specializing in aviation disasters. The passengers came from almost three dozen countries, further complicating issues.

International accords limit the families to five places to bring claims: where the carrier is based, its main place of business, the victim’s home country, the passenger’s ultimate destination, and where the ticket was purchased.

Gaining victim status, also known as civil-party status…The largest number of victims in the Air France crash were French, with 61 passengers… Next were Brazilians, with 58 passengers, followed by 26 Germans. Another 30 nationalities were represented onboard, including two U.S. citizens.

…While Brazilian courts can be almost as generous as U.S. courts in awards of compensation, they’re slow, said Healy- Pratt. Claims related to a 1996 crash in Brazil are still being resolved in court, he said.

… It’s an open question whether tickets bought on the Internet from travel sites based in the U.S. establish a right to sue in U.S. courts, lawyers said.

“If you want to get to the bottom of something, if you want answers, probably the best place in the world is a U.S. court,” said Wisner. “When you hit them where it hurts and they have to pay damages and in the interest of preventing such expenditures in the future, they make changes.”





Resgate de Corpos do navio da Marinha /


15/06/2009 – 18h00 FAB Nota 32 – 15.06.09 (English Translation) (Emphasis Mine)


Command and the Navy Command of the Air report that, in search of today, the military aboard the aircraft sighted the wreckage about 950 km of Fernando de Noronha, in an area close to previously found. No bodies were sighted.

Currently, worked directly over a thousand searches in the Brazilian military, with 761 Navy and 250 of the Air.

The Frigate Bosísio at Fernando de Noronha will shift the six bodies found earlier by the French navy vessel and transferred to Brazil. The estimate of arrival to the island is tomorrow, Tuesday, March 16th

Centro de Comunicação Social da Marinha
Centro de Comunicação Social da Aeronáutica






You never know what you may hear on the radio! Below are the most recent on-line aviation chatter and message board discussions.  Please understand the below are only chatter/discussions among aviation professionals world-wide and should not be considered fact until all official information is released by Bureau d’Enquêtes et d’Disinformation (BEA).


Question/Comment: Proven is almost nothing in regards of AF447, only that it approached, likely entered a severe storm and encountered severe turbulance. As for a deviation, wouldn’t the pilot have reported such?

Ever tried reporting a deviation in Africa or congested HF airspace? In a non-radar environment… the atc couldn’t care less whether you deviate or not, they would be concerned about time separation through a revised estimate of your arrival at the next waypoint and the altitude you would be at.

Since the ACARS POS PLOT indicate that they would be ahead of schedule on arrival to TASIL, such a deviation would result in them reaching TASIL or abeam TASIL more or less near their ETA TASIL.

The proof of deviation comes in at the ACARS POS at 0214… north of track (a net of 2 degs off track if you take in the position from all the way back as their reported position at 0133 UTC… on an 11NM cross track position.

Looking back to previous comments…..

The last ACARS (0214UTC) position was 330NM and 2degs off track from INTOL… this gives an 11.5NM cross track at 0214UTC.

Aircraft was under autopilot control until 0210UTC.

If the aircraft was on track at 0210UTC, that means between 0210 to 0214, the aircraft would have travelled 31.8NM at 19.9 degrees off track.

Now assuming aircraft was still under control at 0214, one would not make a 20deg track error (not heading error) due to manual flying (+/-5 is acceptable)…

Based on the above, I guess it is safe to assume at this time that the crew DID deviate off track prior to 0210UTC (under autopilot control)

If they didn’t deviate, then it would be inevitable to conclude the loss of autopilot under the conditions the crew faced, the aircraft produced a net 19.9 degree deviation… that leaves nothing else but progressive loss of control between 0210 to 0214, with the minimum of inability to maintain wings relatively level. Whilst not impossible, I find that hard to believe.


Question/Comment: What’s the coordinated turn rates for 2.5degs, 5degs, 10degs and 15degs…

Currently, it needs a scenario such as progressive change in speed of 0.5kt per second and on a constant turn rate of 0.3 degrees, both commencing at 0211UTC, to result on a the cross track and lateral track requirements…

If one wants to OBJECTIVELY blame pilot error based on no course deviation due to weather, then I suggest one starts calculating such deviation rate scenarios from 0210UTC to 0214UTC to cause the aircraft to end where it is at… and see if such deviations are possible and plausible. Otherwise, until there is some factual base to it, it’s subjective.


Question/Comment: I was intrigued by your reference to ADMP. Do you have any reading suggestions on the topic? I’m looking at it from how it might benefit non-aviators professionally.

Try searching Human factors…

A nice one to start with is under www.faa.gov/library/manuals and I think one of the IFR or night VFR handbooks describes ADMP in one of the sections.


Question/Comment: I am getting a bit confused as to why the target region is still not able to be scanned using remote sensing satellites – with SAR (synthetic aperture radars) and also infra red sensors for sea surface anomalies. These scans do not always depend upon the weather, and are easy to program through ground based systems.

I am sure that whatever satellites that were in an orbit to look at this area have looked. Unfortunaelty, debris and other gunk floating on the surface is probably too small to see with radars. The vast majority of items will also be at ocean temperature as well – thus infared will not work. Keep in mind that most satellites have rather poor resolution of surface features. Seeing things less than 10 Ft is rather rare (and a lot of satellites cannot see less than 20 – 30 ft) – and typically the domain of spy satillites. I cannot see anyone retasking their spy satelittes to specifically look for this – but they might look if it were convienient.

Also, keep in mind that a normal low earth orbit satellite is on a 90 minute orbit – and they may only pass over this area a couple times a month due to the fact that many of them are set to slowly sweep the surface of the earth.


Question/Comment: There are satellites that can detect small mid air meteorites that “burn up on reentry” in the atmosphere, so why not check if any satellites scanning the ITCZ observed anomalies during the time of loss of the aircraft ?

The satellites that detect meteorite flashes are only able to see flashes of light (and other radiation) – and were set up to spot a ground or air nuclear explosion. Being a military system – the coverage is much more etensive than any civlilan network – and it also covers most of the earth at all times. These systems would never even see a commercial airliner – even if it blew up midair from a chemical explosive. These systems also are blinded by weather (they can’t see light flashes through clouds).


Question/Comment: It would not be improbable for f/a’s not to be in their jump seats if the plane was just entering a turbulance area or entered one with no warning or if some sudden event happened.  The crew could have been in the rest area by then. Remember this happened 3 hours into the flight.

Not neccessarily. Perhaps AF are still tidying up the meal service 3 hours into the flight. The crew may have been checking that the pax cabin was secure. And some airlines have a policy of no crew in rest area during severe turbulence.


Question/Comment: This also suggests that the cockpit crew did not deliberately and knowingly fly into the severe parts of the storm…

Looking at the ACARS messages it seems the incident took from 0210 to 0214. The cabin crew may have be securing the cabin or unable to get back to their seats. If the captain expected to hit severe turbulence (the final communication from the cockpit was encountering strong turbulence, ‘forte turbulence’) I’m sure the cabin crew would have been told to finish the service and take their seats.


Question/Comment: Taking that Black spot of turbulence you see in the radar return…say if you were flying in clear sky…and get that clear air turb…could you encounter the same strength of the black part…without knowing it and having no cloud around?

By definition CAT doesn’t show on radar. Only defense is a flight level change, or if CAT is identified as linked to mountain waves, or generally in a known localized area, a deviation…knowing full well that a change of heading could worsen the conditions.


In order to give some sense in the mad house. One of the most common aspects following an accident is the number of conflicting senses of urgency, focus and time agenda.

1/- The press. They want to sell, have the most immediate scoops and their agenda is basically about filling the next edition. Result is generally low content.

2/-The families and friends of the victims : they want the quickest answers because the mourning phase is paramount. Problem is that their main – and very often the only – reference is #1 above. There is a lot to say about the airline treatment of the accident but in general they can’t do much. There is an even more bigger lot to say about media irresponsibility.

3/- The professionals ; they have some conflicting attitudes : a/-respect of the deceased colleagues, b/- study of the potential flight safety aspects of the accident with very few indicators and the implementation of some likely measures or the insistence on some likely CRM improvements, c/-some hidden agenda from some unions having to settle a few accounts with management (probably the ugliest aspect of this post-accident events ),

4/- The investigators : they know that it is going to be a long and arduous set of studies, that each clue, each piece of evidence has to be weighted with all known facts in order to derive the most likely scenario, that the search of the airplane structure needs to be continued and the recorders would be an important piece of the investigation. They reason in terms of months or years.

5/- The lawyers : they need as many people as they could gather for the future lawsuits. So their time frame is double : immediately get the cases, knowing full well that the first trials won’t happen for several years, after the investigation report has been completed and further analysis could bring some malpractice / manslaughter possibilities…

Where do you personally put yourself ?

If you have followed all that has been written on these bulletin boards, you should now be able to pass quite a few exams on FBW control laws, weather charts reading….etc… Remember that we are bound by decency and intellectual honesty to work on facts and only on facts.

BTW:  I don’t remember anyone of us referring to the technical savvy of any newspaper.


Question/Comment: The only thing we can say with any degree of certainty is that the evidence strongly suggests a break up in the air. Unfortunately, everything beyond that is speculation.

Did the windshield shatter at 35,000 feet and immediately disable the crew? Did an unintentional, or intentional, explosion, small or large, structurally damage the aircraft leading to loss of control and crash? Did the wing(s) and/or vertical stabilizer sheer off due to extreme forces caused by turbulence? Did the aircraft stall at altitude for whatever reason?

The potential causes really are endless, which of course causes so much frustration. And of course the sadness for the victims and even for the aircraft itself are ever present. Rest in peace AF447, hopefully one day we will know what happened.



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