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Old 16th Jan 2015, 22:14
  #2628 (permalink)  
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Go west young man
Posts: 1,732
Episode 316: Beaker's spin recycle machine.

Was the story provided designed to 'smoke out' Dolan? well, the slippery Cready went for it. A rehash of a two day old yarn, salted with a Muppet show script and was only just comparable with the risible SMH fine dining interview. Perhaps it's not GT who is in dire need of the gaffa tape treatment.
Key for the Tim Tam cupboard for Ben; well done that man

Okay take the Ben piece...
Searchers for lost Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 have always been concerned that wreckage might have come to rest in complex canyons or slopes or ‘holes’ in the south Indian Ocean sea floor search zones where it might escape detection by towed deep water sonar scanning devices.

Those concerns, and the blanks left unprobed during the current systematic sweeps of the sea bed, are to be addressed by a large autonomous underwater vehicle or AUV deployed from an additional search vessel, the Fugro Supporter, from later this month.

Fugro Supporter will join the other contracted ships, the Fugro Equator and Fugro Discovery and the GO Phoenix, which have been involved in the search effort to date.

It means that by May, when the primary ocean search should have been completed, any doubts that a piece of wreckage has been missed ought to have been removed.

It would make a decision to abandon the Australian managed search possibly easier to justify to the aggrieved relatives of the victims of the MH370 disappearance, although no one at an official level has done anything more than hint that May might be when the curtain is drawn over this baffling mystery.

The search areas, as shown in the map below, lie along the so called seventh arc of possible locations from which an Inmarsat satellite parked in equatorial geosynchronous orbit over the Indian Ocean near the east coast of Africa heard the last pings coming from a computer server on board the 777, which was carrying 239 people on a flight from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing when it suddenly disappeared over the Gulf of Thailand on 8 March last year.

It is possible that MH370 struck the ocean with such force that it was torn into small fragments that may in turn be buried under silt or hidden in crevices on the sea floor, which in places is as deep as about 6000 metres, and in others, as relatively shallow as 600 metres.

However the two engines and some of the heavier sections of the jet, such as the wheel structures and any metallic cargo containers or other underfloor objects are expected to have sunk comparatively intact making them easier to detect. The frames of seat racks may have settled in sufficient concentrations to create an anomalous return on the various scanners being used to examine the selected strips of sea floor.

The Kongsberg HUGIN 4500 AUV about to go down on the black holes will be the second such device deployed in the search for MH370. Last year the US Navy loaned a sophisticated but smaller AUV, a Bluefin-21, for use in the early unsystematic period of the sea floor search, in which it investigated areas where pings from MH370′s two black boxes had mistakenly been thought to have been heard.
The JACC describes its role as follows:
The AUV will be used to scan those portions of the search area that cannot be searched effectively by the equipment on the other search vessels. It is not connected to the ship by cable, but is rather deployed with a pre-programmed area of the sea floor to investigate. After each underwater mission, the AUV will ascend automatically and return to the Fugro Supporter in order for the gathered data to be downloaded and the AUV’s batteries to be changed out with a spare charged set.
This larger device, made by Norwegian firm Kongsberg Marine, is not only more capable in its instrumentation and performance specifications, but has the advantage of targeting areas identified by a detailed bathymetic survey of what is otherwise unknown or little mapped parts of the ocean floor.

These surveys have allowed the towed sonar scanning devices currently doing the systematic search to avoid hazardous obstacles like unmapped sea mounts that might otherwise destroy them. This work is critical to the success of the Kongsberg device in being able to enter and search the most difficult to see parts of the ocean floor terrain.

Whether use of this device finds MH370, or helps consign it to the forgetfulness of the future, is yet to be determined.
...then take a look at Steve's Beaker quotes:
“There was always a provision in the contract that we had with Fugro that we could acquire additional capability,’’ Mr Dolan said. “The towed capability gives us pretty good coverage of the area we’re looking at, but because the terrain is complex and uneven there’s a bit of shadowing and areas where we don’t have a 100 per cent guarantee that we’ve covered adequately, and that’s what the AUV is designed for.’’
“There’s still quite a way to go with the highest priority areas,’’ Mr Dolan said. “We’re looking at completion in probably April-May.’’ Mr Dolan said that if nothing was found by this date, the ATSB would have to talk to the government about the next steps.
“We’ve got the resources to search the priority areas … and we expect to complete that within the resources we’ve been given by April-May,’’ he said. “We’ll keep government informed. We’re still confident that we’ll find it within that priority search area, it’s just that we can’t give a guarantee so governments may have to run their mind to what next. But at this stage we’re focused on the area we’re looking at.’’
Beaker was obviously not satisfied with this primarily domestic coverage has then squeaked to the AFP (no not that AFP unfortunately..) and that is where the spin recycle machine has now gone into overdrive:

Ten months on, Australia confident of finding MH370

10 months on, Australia confident of finding MH370

This one is slightly different...: MH370: Missing Plane Will 'Very Likely' Be Found In Good Condition, Says Search Chief
Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370, which has been missing since March 8, is "very likely" in the current search area in the Indian Ocean, according to Martin Dolan, the chief commissioner of the Australian Transport Safety Bureau. Dolan, who heads the search operation being conducted from Australia, also told Agence France-Presse (AFP) that the plane could probably be in good condition despite being underwater for more than 10 months.

“Our satellite calculations gave us an area we determined was high priority,” Dolan reportedly said. “In this 60,000 square kilometers (about 23,166 square miles), it's very likely we will find the aircraft, but we don't know exactly where. We just have to cover that area thoroughly.”

Dolan said that authorities believed that the aircraft is about 13,000 feet below the ocean's surface, adding: "It's just that it's a very large area, so it's going to take a long time," AFP reported.

The search for the missing jet resumed in early October and is expected to be completed by May 2015, depending on factors like weather conditions and the operability of search vessels. Three vessels -- Fugro Equator, Fugro Discovery and GO Phoenix -- are currently involved in the search for the missing plane in the southern Indian Ocean where the Boeing 777 is believed to have crashed, while a fourth vessel is expected to join the operation in late January.

The current vessels use sophisticated sonar systems attached to tow cables, while the new Fugro Supporter will have an autonomous underwater vehicle, Dolan reportedly said.

"(It) can be programmed and cover areas much more thoroughly. It's of course a lot slower," Dolan said. "We need to go slow so that we can be 100 percent sure that we have covered that area totally."

Authorities are also reportedly ready with a recovery plan if the aircraft, which went missing on March 8 with 239 people on board, is found.

Investigators believe that the final resting place of the aircraft could be along the seventh arc, which has been described as “a thin but long line that includes all the possible points where the last known communication between the aircraft and the communication satellite could have taken place.”
What next Beaker the New York Times...

However the passing strange bit is that the relevant MH370 SAR authority the JACC still continues to neither confirm nor deny any of the Beaker offerings: MH370 Operational Search Update—14 January 2015

Indeed Beaker's very own agency the ATSB merely defers to the JACC update...

"...#MH370 Operational Update: 14 January 2015, includes details of new search vessel Fugro Supporter."

But IMO the biggest clanger is that since the Fugro contract presser - much like with the announcement of McCormick resigning - the Miniscule's office has not once acknowledged the existence of Beaker or the ATSB in relation to MH370. Example from earlier in the week:
Fugro Supporter to join search for MH370

Media Release
12 January 2015

An additional vessel has been commissioned to carry out underwater search activities for missing Malaysia Airlines aircraft MH370.

Fugro Supporter is currently on its way to the search area after conducting trials in Bali.

It is expected to arrive in the search area and commence search activities in late January.

The addition of Fugro Supporter, jointly funded by the governments of Australia and Malaysia, brings the number of vessels engaged in the underwater search for the aircraft to four.

The bathymetric survey of the sea floor has revealed previously unknown features including rugged terrain and deep trenches.

Fugro Supporter has been equipped with a Kongsberg HUGIN 4500 autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV). The AUV will be used to scan those portions of the search area that cannot be searched effectively by the equipment on other vessels.

The Australian Government remains committed to the search for MH370.
The other thing that has been missing - in regards to any commentary, press releases, speeches by the Miniscule where the ATSB has been part of the subject - is the total lack of any of the usual motherhood know the ATSB.."world leaders in aviation safety investigation" or "what an exemplary job their doing blah..blah..blah".

Probably the best example of this was in the Miniscule's speech to the Parliament 3 December 2014:
ATSB Governance

The government fully supports the vital role of the ATSB. Independent investigation of accidents or incidents remains a crucial element of the safety system, helping us understand the causes and hence the sources of risks to safety. This helps to avoid future accidents. If the system is to work well, industry must cooperate in providing information during accident and incident investigations and in reporting incidents generally. The government will take a number of actions to give effect to this commitment including:
  • the appointment of an additional ATSB commissioner with aviation experience; and issuing a new Statement of Expectations to the ATSB once the commission and the government has had an opportunity to
  • review the findings of the Canadian Transportation Safety Board review of the ATSB, which was publicly released in Canada yesterday.
Yesterday the Canadian Transportation Safety Board released its independent report into the Australian Transport Safety Bureau. The ATSB tasked the Canadian TSB to undertake an independent review of their investigation methodologies and processes; how they are applied in specific cases and how this compared to international best practice standards. The TSB review looked in detail at three separate investigations, one of which was the Pel-Air inquiry—which, as members may recall, was the subject of a report by the Senate's Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Committee.

While the Canadian TSB found that ATSB investigation methodology and analysis tools represent best practice and have been shown to produce very good results, they found in the case of the Pel-Air investigation there were errors made. I am concerned that the TSB report raises some concerns about the application of ATSB methodologies in the investigation of the ditching of the Pel-Air aircraft off Norfolk Island in 2009. As a consequence I have asked the ATSB Commission to give serious consideration to re-opening the investigation.

On a related point, I have just announced that I will shortly be appointing a new commissioner for the ATSB with a specific background in aviation. This will fulfil an undertaking made by the coalition prior to the election and also one of the recommendations of the report. I have asked that a fresh review of the Pel-Air accident take into account the findings of the ATSB report.
Why do I get the distinct impression that Beaker is on his own lone muppet mission...

I'll be back...
Sarcs is offline