HKG to NRT Synopsis – Brazilian Navy To Honor 447 Victims – French Press Arrogance – Chatter


ferriswheelAll calm in Paris this lazy Sunday before the storm comes next week.  As expected, except for Michael Jackson coverage, the French Press has taken off for the weekend since most have been busy with the “Paris fair” and their European vacations.

The only articles appearing in the French newspapers are those headlined such as: “Brazilian military abandons the Search”.  The arrogance out of Paris is starting to smell like rot.! Too bad we must go to ChinaView to find any sort of appreciation to the Brazilian military for their efforts.

Guess what Paris?  The public has been paying attention!  The NTSB is watching and will be paying close attention to your Thursday BEA press conference.  The NTSB also has the flight data on the two incidents included in their press release.

BEA – You cannot hide the truth any longer!!!  When will the Paris Ferris wheel stop spinning?


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Is the below flight from Hong Kong to Tokyo the reason NTSB is investigating this second Airbus?

Synopsis: Tuesday 23, 2009 10am enroute HKG to NRT. Entering Nara Japan airspace.

FL390 mostly clear with occasional isolated areas of rain, clouds tops about FL410. Outside air temperature was -50C TAT -21C (your not supposed to get liquid water at these temps). We did.

As we were following other aircraft along our route. We approached a large area of rain below us. Tilting the weather radar down we could see the heavy rain below, displayed in red. At our altitude the radar indicated green or light precipitation, most likely ice crystals we thought.

Entering the cloud tops we experienced just light to moderate turbulence. (The winds were around 30kts at altitude.) After about 15 sec. we encountered moderate rain. We thought it odd to have rain streaming up the windshield at this altitude and the sound of the plane getting pelted like an aluminum garage door. It got very warm and humid in the cockpit all of a sudden.

Five seconds later the Captains, First Officers, and standby airspeed indicators rolled back to 60kts. The auto pilot and auto throttles disengaged. The Master Warning and Master Caution flashed, and the sounds of chirps and clicks letting us know these things were happening.

The Capt. hand flew the plane on the shortest vector out of the rain. The airspeed indicators briefly came back but failed again. The failure lasted for THREE minutes. We flew the recommended 83%N1 power setting.

When the airspeed indicators came back. we were within 5 knots of our desired speed. Everything returned to normal except for the computer logic controlling the plane. (We were in alternate law for the rest of the flight.)

We had good conditions for the failure; daylight, we were rested, relatively small area, and light turbulence. I think it could have been much worse. The Capt did a great job flying and staying cool.

We did our procedures called dispatch and maintenance on the SAT COM and landed in Narita.


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Brazil Navy to honor crashed Air France jet victims with frigate ceremony

BRASILIA, June 27 (Xinhua) — Brazil’s Navy will honor the victims of Air France flight by holding a ceremony on a frigate next Monday, a local report said Saturday.

The ceremony will be held aboard the frigate Bosisio, which participated in the month-long search operation.

Relatives of victims are invited to the ceremony and flowers will be thrown into the sea, the report said.

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The below Le Monde article is fairly typical of the arrogance of the French Press’s towards the Brazilian SAR mission… Don’t the French people know how to simply say “Thank You?”

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Flight AF447: Brazil abandons search

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Le Monde pic caption: Brazilian Marine and Aviation officials decide to abandon research on the area of the crash of the AF447 (AP / Eraldo Peres)

LEMONDE.FR avec AFP et Reuters | 27.06.09 | 09h13  •  Mis à jour le 27.06.09 | 10h09 LEMONDE.FR with AFP and Reuters | 27.06.09 | 09h13 • Mis à jour le 27.06.09 | 10:09

The Navy and the Brazilian Air Force announced Friday June 26 they ended the search for bodies and debris AF447 flight of Air France which crashed at sea between Rio and Paris on the night of 31 May to 1 June with 228 people on board. “No body has been found for nine days,” explained Lt. Col. Henry Munhoz during a press conference in Recife (north-east).

Operations conducted with the help of french ships and aircraft from Spain and U.S. to date recovered 51 bodies. Giucemar Tabosa, commander of the Brazilian Navy, said that the buildings remain on french area to try to locate the black boxes from the aircraft.

The reasons for the accident is still undetermined. The Office of Investigations and Analysis (BEA), responsible for the technical investigation into the disappearance of the Airbus announced Thursday June 25 that he would present a “factual report” on Thursday, July 2.


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ON-LINE AVIATION CHATTER /

MSG BOARDS / DISCUSSIONS

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).

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“It strikes me that Lindbergh had more useful and accurate data available than these poor guys had at their disposal”.

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COMMENT/QUESTION: Yeah? Haven’t you noticed that most of these media sources originate from aviation sites?

Always possible. But, on the other hand, there’s a technique in PR known as ‘information management.’ It basically consists of ‘trailing your coat’ with some of the conclusions a few days ahead of a formal statement, so you can get an idea of the likely press reaction and fine-tune your draft accordingly, if the reaction differs from the one you want and expect. This could be one of those cases.

Interesting that they appear already to be opening up the old, tried and trusted, ‘pilot error’ avenue – in this case, ‘lack of training.’ I think we can both agree that the implications of this accident, combined with the increasing number of similar such incidents being reported, begin to point to a more complicated problem than just that?

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COMMENT/QUESTION: I agree. The point being that some here have already gotten a conviction and are arguing it’s impossible someone (something) else was responsible – and we still haven’t the full details of the “crime”.

Yes… we’ll continue to build the case based on the scant evidence… but, until we obtain conclusive data that the suspect did the killing, we can’t say “yeaps, he killed the plane!” We can only say “We think it’s him, but we don’t have enough for a penal case to obtain a conclusive conviction.”

Just because the robber knocked the plane in the crime, we can’t conclude by the shortcut thinking of “well he hit the victim, so the victim died this time… he must be guilty of the murder”… Just ludicrous!

COMMENT/QUESTION:  I appreciate that whatever conclusion you and others are approaching, it is done after arduous and very careful analysis.

Systematic sleuthing, is an arduous task. At times, I have been tempted to take the shortcut method… but we’d be muddying the waters and tarnishing our respective professions that way.

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COMMENT/QUESTION:  So we are looking for the fingerprint or the eyewitness in the face of the FDR/CVR, the major defendant being the pitot tubes. Is it 100% certain that after hopefully retrieving the FDR/CVR, this theory will be able to be then validated?

Warning: Analogical comparison

If this was a crime… the suspect is Mr. Icing and Mr. Turbulence… or Mr. Godfather CB cell with his accomplices Mr. Icing and Mr. Turbulence. Past crimes, the method has been to perform the crime by Mr. Turbulence grappling the aircraft and shaking him, with mr. Icing using his baseball bat beating the pitot tubes. Past cases (in particular Mr. Air Caraibes F-OFDF) came out dazed and confused after the crime and he made it home (destination) before reporting the crime to the police (Airbus)…

Mr. Air France F-GZCP was reported to have been shaken by Mr. Turbulence… We know Mr. CB was in the area, and there trauma injury indicating the Pitot being beated by Mr. Ice (the ACARS messages)…

Does tht mean Mr. Ice killed Mr. GZCP? No… The most Mr. Ice can be guilty for is beating the Pitots… but we know past victims made it home (be the dazed and confused)… we know that Mr. Ice doesn’t intend on killing the victim, we wants to rob, not to kill…

For all we know, Mr. victim, if it was a person, could have been dazed and confused, walked to a bridge and accidentally fell off causing his death. Can we charge the mafia or Mr. Ice with murder? NO.

This is the difference between our various intentions in discussing the accident of GZCP…

All of us want to find the cause of death…

Some of us, construct the case…

But some of us, just want to blame Mr. Ice for the killing and some of us blame Mrs. GZCP for not dispatching her husband with protective armour.

Sounds silly? Well, it’s happening right?

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COMMENT/QUESTION:  So how does the aircraft handle in extreme weather with its systems reverting to various laws? Does a skillful pilot even know the difference? Or do things get real touchy? Mushy? That’s what I’m wondering.

They’d know they’d be in degraded law, ALT law… ALT 1 or ALT 2 we know know if they knew which… The point is, there isn’t that much of a difference if the aircraft was still actually within safe envelopes (and there’s no reason to doubt that for the moment). The difference is, ALT 2 doesn’t prevent you from exceeding the envelope… If they did exceed the envelope at some stage, we want to know why and how…

COMMENT/QUESTION: Yeah, not the ideal analogy.

Can someone come up with a better one then… I think we might all need a better analogy…  Smile

COMMENT/QUESTION: Add to that that the ‘low speed stability protection’ in ‘Alternate Law’ would presumably have reacted to the low ‘indicated’ speed by pushing the nose down, which you’d have had to counter with the sidestick? And you’d have to avoid any use of the rudder like the plague – eighty-three knots being below takeoff speed, the Travel Limiter would have removed all limits – so the rudder would have been free to go to 30 degrees of deflection or so?

What low speed stability protection? Alt 1 or Alt 2? I think Alt 2 is what happened. You mean stall warning? If you have the stall warning under ALT2 the plane will not “protect itself” by a nose down command. So, under ALT 2, if the plane is stalling, and you don’t do anything to the stick… the plane WILL stall… See my post #15… No low energy, no high AOA, no Pitch Att protection…

(Load factor protection means no matter what you do with the stick, it won’t let you go beyond a limited G loads).

Now, back to the rudder… The yaw dampening action goes no further than 4degs rudder travel in ALT 2 Law. And as you said… avoid using the rudder like a plague….

COMMENT/QUESTION: The idea that you could easily overstress the structure through un-protected full deflection of the flight controls is a red herring.

Let me elaborate from the post before…

On pitch yes… Load Factor protection remains… ie: it won’t let you do +6Gs and break the aircraft… (or do most of us have a difficulty in understanding what “G-Load demand” controls of Airbus FBW pitch???)

On roll? Nothing stopping you from going inverted… but why would you do that? On this, and 20 – 25deg / sec roll, that’ll mean from wings level, it’ll take >3 secs of FULL STICK deflection to reach 90deg bank.

On Yaw… well, as someone said above “avoid using the rudder like a plague”…

Red herring? Yes and No…

Over controlling into excess loads resulting in a breakup? Unlikely…

Over/under controlling into an abnormal situation leading to out of envelope situation (which then can cause a breakup, NOT by excess control surfaces load), more likely than the above. (note: “more likely” and not “is likely”.

COMMENT/QUESTION: But it honestly never occurred to me before just how absolutely fundamental knowing your correct airspeed is to flying an aeroplane. And it now appears that it is may be equally fundamental to the ‘systems.’

The system is still designed by humans… and human logic is programmed into the computer logic… otherwise, the crew would have difficulty in handling even a toilet failure. Humans or computers, it needs airspeed data for flight. We’re talking about a plane, not a ballistic missile (which only needs to rely on inertials)… however, the good thing about the computerized system is that it can detect unreliable airspeed without human input… the technology exist for the aircraft to fly without airspeed data… but it won’t be as accurate as with airspeed data. We can go on and on about this  Smile

COMMENT/QUESTION: “Based on initial physical evidence and information from automatic maintenance messages sent by the aircraft, these people said, the plane bucked through heavy turbulence created by a thunderstorm without the full protection of its flight-control systems — safeguards that experts say pilots now often take for granted.

I’d put a red flag on such a statement. Many aircraft today still fly through bad weather without the so called “protections”.

COMMENT/QUESTION: “Relying on backup instruments, the Air France pilots apparently struggled to restart flight-management computers even as their plane may have begun breaking up from excessive speed, according to theories developed by investigators.”

Again, a red flag. It’s not that simple. Statements such as that has a risk in ending up with public hysteria!

COMMENT/QUESTION:  I wonder – if the rudder limiter got an erroneous low-speed as its last valid input – that would allow rudder deflection much larger than would be considered safe for cruise speed. A) can such a scenario exist and b) if so, would that overstress the tail, rudder, or airframe?

Again…

1. I’ve written this before, for the above to happen, the ADR monitoring function of the system would have had to fail, allowing an unlikely simultaneous, slow and progressive reduction of the indicated airspeed on at least 2 ADRs… the AOA comparison feature of the ADR monitoring function, would pick up this error before long. Did that fail? If so, this puts 2 extremely unlikely events to occur together (ie: near impossible)… can we attribute aircraft accidents to “Bad Luck” ?

2. Why use the rudder? The yaw damping feature is still there (up to 4degs deflection, sufficient).

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COMMENT/QUESTION: Above you mean the investigating authorities are doing PR and writing their reports to get a specific press reaction???

Nothing at all wrong with that. Best description of PR I ever heard was, ‘telling the truth in the best light.’ In practical terms the investigators have a duty to say what they know (or, in this case, what they consider most likely at this stage). But it would do no-one any good if a carelessly-drafted phrase started needless waves of alarm.

So yes – it’s part of their job to make sure that they get the relevant facts over clearly and without ambiguity. And, often enough, the best way to check that is to run it past some responsible journalists.

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COMMENT/QUESTION: All of us want to find the cause of death…

Some of us, construct the case… But some of us, just want to blame Mr. Ice for the killing and some of us blame Mrs. GZCP for not dispatching her husband with protective armour.

I find it difficult to consider Mr. Ice, Mr. Turbulence or Mr. CB as contributing factors to an air crash. Human has to cheat nature in order to fly in some way….human can’t blame nature for falling out of the sky. Unfair.

Afterall, it is people building planes, people running airliners and people flying them. Commercial aviation has been making huge steps as far as air safety and passenger comfort are concerned as well as making huge profits. Accidents will continue to happen for a lot of years. Cheating nature is a hell of a task. But in order to take incident and accident rate to zero (or very close to zero, even closer than it is today), at least regarding the top carriers managed in developed countries, one has to turn to people when talking about allocating responsibilities after an incident/accident. That has been and will always be the only way in humans’ fight to make flying even safer.

It is up to people to figure out the way to protect flights against hazardous weather, terrorism, poor aircraft maintenance, unreliable parts and software glitches and to find the balance between alert, well trained pilots and automatisations.

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COMMENT/QUESTION: “Based on initial physical evidence and information from automatic maintenance messages sent by the aircraft, these people said, the plane bucked through heavy turbulence created by a thunderstorm without the full protection of its flight-control systems — safeguards that experts say pilots now often take for granted.

I can’t believe that a crew consisting of any two out of three experienced captains would not be able to deal with reasonable turbulence flying in Direct Law.

But some significant turbulence (“forte” or even heavier maybe close to these white spots in Tim’s analysis?) getting into the picture after the failure of the speed sensors? The crew would have to deal with two hazards related to identifying true airspeed at the same time: faulty airspeed readings (and maybe a stall warning) and heavy turbulence which affects airspeed in the first place. That is a pretty complex situation that could cause confusion, couldnt it? That could explain Airbus direction some days after the accident regarding maintaining a minimum thrust when in turbulence (please correct me if I am wrong).

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COMMENT/QUESTION: I find it difficult to consider Mr. Ice, Mr. Turbulence or Mr. CB as contributing factors to an air crash. Human has to cheat nature in order to fly in some way….human can’t blame nature for falling out of the sky. Unfair.

It’s just an analogy… We’re not trying to find who/what’s to blame with the analogy… as you said, can’t blame the sky or nature…

BUT, it’s just an analogy used when comparing to how some have pointed to weather as the cause of the accident…

COMMENT/QUESTION: I can’t believe that a crew consisting of any two out of three experienced captains would not be able to deal with reasonable turbulence flying in Direct Law.

2 Captains and 1 F/O or 1 Captain and 2 F/Os? And… did the aircraft go to direct law? (I know someone asked about the difference between ALT2 and Direct earlier).

COMMENT/QUESTION: But some significant turbulence (“forte” or even heavier maybe close to these white spots in Tim’s analysis?) getting into the picture after the failure of the speed sensors? The crew would have to deal with two hazards related to identifying true airspeed at the same time: faulty airspeed readings (and maybe a stall warning) and heavy turbulence which affects airspeed in the first place. That is a pretty complex situation that could cause confusion, couldnt it? That could explain Airbus direction some days after the accident regarding maintaining a minimum thrust when in turbulence (please correct me if I am wrong).

Be careful about being overwhelmed by the discussion… you seem to be getting muddled… (which is easy to do given the recent developments in the discussion)… if you don’t have a “likely sequence”, one would be open to risks of being muddled.

Please have a look at Tim’s analysis and see where the “last position” is… which Tim has pointed out but did not use (as his analysis was more on the meteorological front), that “Last Position” was originally thought to be at 0214UTC but has since been declared as 0210…

The so-called “failure of the speed sensors” happened at 0210, the message sent regarding turbulence is at 0200, 10 minutes beforehand. If turbulence was so bad at that time, the crew would have difficulty typing the message.

Please see where my previous weather analysis derived from Tim’s findings (which you commented on earlier), which at 0200, the arcraft was abeam and close to (about 5NM) from the edge of a rapidly developing small but dense cluster which came and went quickly…

This I point as a likely cause of the turbulence they were experiencing. It’s either that, or because they were effectively downwind of the convective cloud, and the 1 of the 3 core clusters within.

You can see the small dense cluster here, according to Tim, it is likely to contain a very strong updraft… the big white blobs he indicate as “updraft” cold spots… that small dense cluster is noted as “very strong updraft”…

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And below, you can find the last position as per ACARS transmission at 0210UTC, marked “ACARS POSITION”… ignore the “extrap position”. Note, the estimated weather radar paint the aircraft could have shown…

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Assuming the predicted path was valid. I currently have little reason to belief that the aircraft continued under so called “heavy turbulence” between about 0200 and 0210… although light to moderate is likely throughout the time.

I would go along with what others on this board said about the context of the message… they were abeam of a rapidly developing dense mini cluster… which I doubt they didn’t see as too bad before the aircraft was abeam of it… got over the “forte turbulence”, and saw the big formation(s) ahead and Ops Center to provide them with an update of the situation…

By 0210 was at the edge or had passed the edge of the big cluster… they’ve past the “white spots”…

COMMENT/QUESTION: It is my understanding that generally, pilots do not make any inputs to the rudder at all once airborne. Is this correct?

I’m not sure I understand how rudder deflection based on input could have been a factor in the crash…

The rudder input discussion was caused by the discovery of the tailfin intact… we’ve discussed it with hundreds of posts on it… because some thought (and some were convinced) that it was the cause of the airplane’s demise… based on the AA A300-600 accident at JFK… In cruise, you don’t normally use the rudder… you let the yaw damper and if fitted let the turn coordinator take care of required rudder deflection in the turn… This aircraft (like other Airbus FBW aircraft) has the turn coordinator function… If the aircraft degraded to Alternate Law, you’d loose that (until you’re on approach), but that doesn’t mean you need to use the rudder in turns in cruise… Boeings (at least the non-FBW ones) don’t have a turn coordinating function under autopilot or under manual flight…

Why have some thought the use of rudder might have caused the aircraft’s demise? If you want to know about it, I suggest you’d read the hundreds of previous posts on it… I’m just getting tired of repeating it allover again, only for someone to forget about it and try to put that argument forward again with nothing new to back it up… I don’t know if this is a discussion or “one trying to grind the other to wear them down and concede to silly/good ideas with little relevant basis”…

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COMMENT/QUESTION: Does not have to be a “Fault” with the ADR, The ADR’s could be operating perfectly normal. They just dont agree with each other.

Doesn’t this require 1 ADR to be rejected/switched off and the 2 remaining disagrees?

COMMENT/QUESTION: Unless the ADRs indicated a low-speed condition prior to fault due to the issue with the pitot tubes?

There is an ADR monitoring function… Airbus have added functions of “internal ADR monitoring” to detect failure cases on static and pitot probes.

Not sure if they’ve installed the AoA Estimator, this would greatly enhance fault self detect of each ADR by using speed from each, then a theoretical AOA is computed and compared to the AoA from the ADRS voted by the system…

The AoA estimator would prevent a simultaneous slow drift of the speed from the ADRs (which could go undetected.

COMMENT/QUESTION: My question was only to confirm my understanding, that pilots do not use the rudder in flight (normally) due to automatic coordination and the yaw damper.

Affirm… answer is… yes, no need for it.

COMMENT/QUESTION: This is what I did not know. In Boeing cable controlled aircraft (non FBW), isn’t the gain schedule portion of the yaw damper, in essence a turn coordinator? It utilizes Qc, or impact pressure.

You’re right… I seem to have been eaten up in the wording…

From the 737CL… I got 2 versions… one says it “assists in providing turn coordination”, and 2 other manuals and all my NG manuals says “provides turn coordination”…

The 767 manual says “the yaw damper system improve turn coordination” (not provides)

I gotta thank you for that… something I’ve missed all these times!

330maxrudderdeflection

A330 RUDDER TRAVEL LIMIT

Rudder deflection is limited as a function of speed. In case of three ADR or three FCPC failure, maximum rudder deflection remains at the value reached before the failure. Therefore, maximum deflection is available when the slats are extended.


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