PPRuNe Forums - View Single Post - Air Asia Indonesia Lost Contact from Surabaya to Singapore
Old 15th Jan 2015, 21:44
  #2080 (permalink)  
Ian W
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Florida and wherever my laptop is
Posts: 1,341
Originally Posted by Methersgate View Post
It seems reasonable to assume that the tail section may have downflooded more slowly than the fuselage. We know that there are strong currents in the area. Assume w current of 1.7 knots and assume an hour for the empennage to flood to sinking point and it will be 1.7 miles from the fuselage.
From a previous post:

"The current is so strong that it could rip open our masks or drag us into a whirlpool," said Totok Subagio, in charge of a group that this week found the plane's two black box flight recorders, after a lengthy, difficult search. Trained to swim to depths of 45 metres, the Indonesian navy's finest frogmen were drafted in to scour the seabed for wreckage of the Airbus 320-200 that went down in a storm on Dec 28 en route to Singapore.

But in the Karimata Strait between Indonesia's Sumatra island and Borneo island, they have had to contend with rough seas, powerful underwater currents, and weather that changes from bright and sunny one moment to cloudy and rainy the next."
The underwater currents are put at more than 5 knots. Not only is that relatively fast it will exert a considerable force on light weight aircraft parts such as the empenage plus some fuselage. It may well drag the empenage further and faster once it has started to sink.

I am actually surprised how close these pieces are to each other considering the strength of the subsurface currents.
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