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Spherical FDR found off Somalian coast?

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Spherical FDR found off Somalian coast?

Old 6th May 2016, 08:02
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Spherical FDR found off Somalian coast?

I wondered whether anyone would know what sort of aircraft(?) would carry one of these.


Sanduuqa Madow Ee Diyaaradaha Oo Ku Soo Caariyay Garacad (Sawirro) - Jariiban News Network


(Scroll down for pictures)
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Old 6th May 2016, 11:33
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The original patent for spherical shaped flight recorders was granted to Dornier (Pat. No. US 5859765 A), so I guess it is valid to assume at least it is used on Dornier aircraft. Major reason for the sphere appears to be higher crash forces and the ability to mount the sphere outside.

Last edited by Fly4Business; 6th May 2016 at 16:43.
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Old 6th May 2016, 12:22
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Thanks - that's a possible lead then. Someone suggested it could be Russian and designed to float. Might have a look at crashes in the region if I had an idea of the age of this design.
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Old 6th May 2016, 16:36
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Does not look like Russian. Patent US 5859765 A was issued October 1996 and is connected to Reinhold Grewe at Dornier Germany. Underlying German patents DE3243495C2 and DE3546403A1 date back as early as 1984. As far as I could research with little effort, quite some DO 2xx and DO 3xx were equipped with similar devices under the wings, as well as some american types to be able to distress even when the structure was broken. And as Somali Police Force used Do-28 Skyservants, my first bet would be a piece of one of them.

see i.e. http://www.google.tl/patents/EP0768240A2?cl=en
Even the "69" marking can be found on stock photos for FDR: http://www.dreamstime.com/stock-illu...-image42739668
can't be an uncommon device.

Last edited by Fly4Business; 6th May 2016 at 16:52.
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Old 6th May 2016, 17:55
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That's brilliant. Thank you very much for all this information - I thought the Dorniers were quite popular in parts of Africa, and this seems to wrap it up.


Nothing to get excited about then!


Appreciate your help
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Old 6th May 2016, 23:04
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and this seems to wrap it up.
Nothing to get excited about then!
...except there's an FDR on the beach, and no aircraft.
Something to get excited about, maybe?
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Old 7th May 2016, 11:45
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So the question remains....How was it attached to the aircraft and how did it get detached? ....
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Old 8th May 2016, 13:09
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The Somali Police operated two D28 in the Siad Barre regime, ie up to c.1990. I can find no evidence that they escaped the fate of the rest of Somalia's government-owned aircraft and escaped elsewhere only to return and continue in service in recent years. The unit pictured hasn't been in the water long, if it was ever in the water (it is merely artistically draped with seaweed that looks suspiciously identical to the washed-up weed in the background, not the weed and barnacles that would encrust it thickly after even a month afloat in that area) and as the various wrecks in Somalia were stripped of every removable item by 1993 it hasn't just been removed from an scrapped airframe either.

Would the Somali Police have has CVRs in 1990? Seems a little unlikely somehow. Light twins don't usually carry that sort of thing, esp not then.

Have a suitable aircraft gone missing in the area recently? Surely this is a matter of record?

Perhaps someone has dug an old trophy out of his cupboard and set it up for a bit of publicity? The pics are certainly staged rather than impromptu.

Last edited by Wageslave; 8th May 2016 at 13:29.
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Old 9th May 2016, 18:35
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Originally Posted by sms777 View Post
So the question remains....How was it attached to the aircraft and how did it get detached? ....
The spherical design must be better in a very heavy impact than those edges in the traditional shape.
The patent mentioned above seems to favour fitting the device in the wing tips. I wonder if it fell out due to being fitted improperly.
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Old 9th May 2016, 23:21
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Well, something that big didn't fall from a D28's wingtip, that's for sure.

Off the back of a lorry seems more likely, given it's condition and where it was "found".
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Old 14th May 2016, 12:48
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Didnt a dornier go in off the coast of Goa a couple of years ago.
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