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old,not bold
3rd Jul 2019, 22:05
UK CAA Safety Notice 2019/005 (http://publicapps.caa.co.uk/docs/33/SafetyNotice2019005.pdf)landed in my inbox just now.

It is a devastating indictment of regulators and operators who have allowed a situation to develop where this SN is necessary.

Stripped of the dreadful jargon-ridden, ungrammatical verbiage it is telling everyone to get back to teaching and practising basic flying skills.

Isn't it?

macdo
3rd Jul 2019, 22:21
Or you could just insist everyone spends a couple years tooling around in a knackered old turbo prob with no Ap! Sorry that bus has already departed, hasn't it!

421dog
3rd Jul 2019, 22:45
Or you could just insist everyoneb spends a couple years tooling around in a knackered old turbo prob with no Ap! Sorry that bus has already departed, hasn't it!

Not really... better yet, they should spend a couple years tooling around in a 10k hr beat up piston twin full of checks and Fedex overload. In crappy upper-Midwest winter weather with a disgracefully thin MEL (missing stuff like A/p, de-ice and functioning RNAV (the real vor-based thing, not a GPS approach that links just like an ILS) going into airports with nothing but ADF approaches in the dead of night 5 days a week.


-Flame Off..,


I doubt one of those guys, even though I thought a lot of them were kinda crappy pilots, would EVER hold a plane in a 20 min stall into the south Atlantic....

CDRW
4th Jul 2019, 02:09
About damn time an authority got some balls. Remember that great presentation " Children of the Magenta Line".
well those " children" have now grown up to adults of the autopilot autohrottle and the Magenta line with company policies that actively encourage loss of manual flying skills. And they sit next to more children.

clark y
4th Jul 2019, 02:38
And some of those children are so young, they can't even legally enjoy a beer in some countries.

TheiC
4th Jul 2019, 05:42
I doubt one of those guys, even though I thought a lot of them were kinda crappy pilots, would EVER hold a plane in a 20 min stall into the south Atlantic....


At risk of immediate and catastrophic thread drift, no-one intentionally ‘held a plane in a stall’. The AF447 crew were utterly devoid of comprehension of the aircraft’s condition, let down by poor and unreliable systems, and I strongly suspect profound distrust of those systems. They did the wrong thing because they hadn’t a clue what was going on and therefore had no idea what to do about it.

Yes, children of the magenta are all around us, and professional standards have never been lower, but please don’t blame the AF447 crew in that manner.

Bob Viking
4th Jul 2019, 07:29
The previous poster did not say that the pilots deliberately held AF447 in a stall. He/she stated merely that they had held it in a stall. That is an absolute fact. They did.

They did not do it intentionally but you cannot deny the fact that they flew a stalled aircraft into the Atlantic Ocean.

AF447 remains the scariest aircraft accident I have ever been made aware of.

In the same way that doctors make bad patients, pilots often make bad passengers. I prefer not to even think about what is going on up the front end while Iím watching my movie and drinking wine.

I just try to trust that the guys and girls at the sharp end know what they are doing and would be able to handle whatever is thrown at them.

BV

Iron Duke
4th Jul 2019, 07:57
I wish the fantastic videos of Captain Warren Vanderberg ( Ex USN, and AA Training Captain), were freely and widely available on the internet ...

I remember watching them as a younger man, and they left me totally engaged in the subject ... his self affacing, open and honest description and remedy of Jet Upset scenarios were as good a training that has ever been recorded on video ..

I imagine being at the lectures ( " Children of the Magenta " ) was even more beneficial, but without exception everyone would be better prepared for an unintended, inadvertent entry into the Jet Upset environment. Having seen the lectures and considered privately their responses, every pilot would at least have a place to start if ever confronted with entry into the flight envelope way outside what is normally covered in formal simulator training ....

Does anyone know where these videos can be viewed in toto ... ?

TheiC
4th Jul 2019, 08:02
The previous poster did not say that the pilots deliberately held AF447 in a stall. He/she stated merely that they had held it in a stall.

With apologies for the previously-warned thread drift, but this is important...

Bob, I'm sorry, but I must absolutely disagree with you.

Considering 'they held it', if an action is not deliberate, or even conscious, is it an action? I would argue, no, it isn't. They exhibited the outward signs of functioning, they moved controls, they reacted (mostly - but not entirely - inappropriately) to their (deeply confusing) environment, but they were a world away from acquiring and processing information, using it to build an accurate comprehension of their circumstances, referring to experience and training, and acting on it.

Moreover, some of their actions were contrary to 'holding it in a stall', so in strict terms I disagree with you there too.

The aircraft stalled into the ocean, without doubt, but it did so not because any pilot intended it to stall, and almost certainly none of them recognised it was stalling, at least not until it was much too late. By all means say they were confused, overloaded, in dissonance, but we should never say that anyone 'held that aircraft in a stall'. To do that does our profession a grave disservice and perpetuates the underlying faults which led to AF447 and others.

pineteam
4th Jul 2019, 08:17
I'm flying with kids who have less than 300hr TT and will jump on the AP p/b less than 500 feet agl after airbone when they can legally hand fly until RVSM airspace; How sad and scary is that....Children of the magenta is the number 1 threat in aviation IMHO.

FZRA
4th Jul 2019, 08:35
I'm flying with kids who have less than 300hr TT and will jump on the AP p/b less than 500 feet agl after airbone when they can legally hand fly until RVSM airspace; How sad and scary is that....Children of the magenta is the number 1 threat in aviation IMHO.

Iím flying with Captains with 5000hr TT who jump on the AP at 500ft. How sad and scary is that? Including ex-military and what have you. Children of the magenta or fear of cocking up under Flight Data Monitoring?

pineteam
4th Jul 2019, 08:44
Yes Yes that's the trend. Many captains also engage the AP super early... I was shocked when I joined. But maybe they hand flew a lot before so you can almost forgive them But a kid fresh out of school, come on, he should enjoy it and hand fly while he can since he has no experience. Hand flying is not really encouraged. That's an issue. the Fear of the QAR or FDM whatever you want to call it is real but so ridiculous. To cock up you seriously need to deviate and it means the PM did not do his job... 80% of the accidents is due to a lack of monitoring. I very often fly raw data not only cause it's important to maintain my skills but because I love it. That freedom to hand fly is what makes me wake up with a smile in the morning before going to work. It makes me angry that so many people are so scared to fly because of QAR/FDM system... Just fly safely within the envelope is not rocket science unless you never practice. xD

macdo
4th Jul 2019, 09:24
Not really... better yet, they should spend a couple years tooling around in a 10k hr beat up piston twin full of checks and Fedex overload. In crappy upper-Midwest winter weather with a disgracefully thin MEL (missing stuff like A/p, de-ice and functioning RNAV (the real vor-based thing, not a GPS approach that links just like an ILS) going into airports with nothing but ADF approaches in the dead of night 5 days a week.


-Flame Off..,


I doubt one of those guys, even though I thought a lot of them were kinda crappy pilots, would EVER hold a plane in a 20 min stall into the south Atlantic....
Sorry, you misunderstood me, I was advocating a few years in crappy aircraft with no automation for all, but the opportunity for all to do this has now past. The only chance for improvement is for far more exacting training. Airlines will baulk at the cost, but legislators must insist. TBH I was given a completely unexpected unreliable speed in the sim a few month back (Airbus) and the sea of contra indications from the FWC was appalling. Fortunately, my brain immediately went to basics of attitude/power and it all worked out, but it was a bit heart stopping.

Bob Viking
4th Jul 2019, 09:52
I am a fast jet pilot not an airline pilot so I will happily defer to those more knowledgeable than myself. However, Iím not quite getting your point.

If an aircraft has full power applied (for virtually the entire time) and descends at 35 AoA from 35000 until impact how is this happening if not done by the pilot?

I know there was a Ďdual inputí issue and then one of the guys was trying to take corrective action. The Captain seemed to appreciate there was a stall but the FO kept his stick fully back trying to climb.

Do you use the acronym SABIRS in the civilian world for signs of the stall? The last one is Ďstick fully backí.

I understand that there are different modes or laws with the AP (my current jet has autopilot but far more simple than an Airbus) which will affect handling etc. The basics still apply though.

This is not me disagreeing with you necessarily but I still do not understand how you can say the pilot did not hold the aircraft in a stall. I know it wasnít a deliberate attempt to hold it in a stall but the stick fully back is what caused the stall isnít it?

I understand the speed mis-match, caused by icing, was the initial problem but if held straight and level the aircraft would have continued on its merry way until clear of the icing conditions.

BV

Dan Winterland
4th Jul 2019, 09:55
The Vandenburg videos were the property of American Airlines and were removed from circulation after the AA587 crash in New York in 2001. In this accident, the PF used massive rudder inputs in response to wake turbulence which overloaded the fin and it sheared off. In one of the videos, Vandenburg had been advocating the aggressive use of rudder in some situations. It seems that American Airlines thought there might be some liability issues with advice that wasn't from the manufacturer.

Cornish Jack
4th Jul 2019, 10:46
Dan W - as you possibly rememder. we used the Vandenberg videos for refreshers at your previous employer. I must have sat through them some 30-40 times and never got bored! The rudder over-application suggestion is a bit of a misapprehension and Warren VdB makes the point very clearly re. differences in type rudder effectiveness - MD11 "You can hold that puppy in level flight (knife-edge) ..." or something similar. There is so much in that series that rewards constant re-viewing.

Iron Duke - PM me.

gearlever
4th Jul 2019, 10:49
This video?

This video?

neilki
4th Jul 2019, 11:25
I wish the fantastic videos of Captain Warren Vanderberg ( Ex USN, and AA Training Captain), were freely and widely available on the internet ...

I remember watching them as a younger man, and they left me totally engaged in the subject ... his self affacing, open and honest description and remedy of Jet Upset scenarios were as good a training that has ever been recorded on video ..

I imagine being at the lectures ( " Children of the Magenta " ) was even more beneficial, but without exception everyone would be better prepared for an unintended, inadvertent entry into the Jet Upset environment. Having seen the lectures and considered privately their responses, every pilot would at least have a place to start if ever confronted with entry into the flight envelope way outside what is normally covered in formal simulator training ....

Does anyone know where these videos can be viewed in toto ... ?
.Youtube
nothing is ever webdead :-)

lederhosen
4th Jul 2019, 11:31
One of the exciting developments is the growing availability of cheaper, so far fix based simulators. Ryanair have bought a number of these at around a million per box versus ten million for the full motion sim check variant. These can be booked for practice in a no jeopardy environment and would seem to offer a great opportunity to practice exactly this kind of stuff.

neilki
4th Jul 2019, 11:33
Sorry, you misunderstood me, I was advocating a few years in crappy aircraft with no automation for all, but the opportunity for all to do this has now past. The only chance for improvement is for far more exacting training. Airlines will baulk at the cost, but legislators must insist. TBH I was given a completely unexpected unreliable speed in the sim a few month back (Airbus) and the sea of contra indications from the FWC was appalling. Fortunately, my brain immediately went to basics of attitude/power and it all worked out, but it was a bit heart stopping.
Baulk they may but the regulator did in the US. FAA AC (https://www.faa.gov/regulations_policies/advisory_circulars/index.cfm/go/document.information/documentID/1027328) Extended Envelope/Upset Recovery is mandatory initial and recurrent training under 121 (Scheduled Airline Services) in the land of the free. An extensive modification of simulators is underway (completed at the Airbus owned facilities in Denver & Miami)
It's very interactive includes Upset Recovery (near vertical, rolled through the horizon etc), HA stalls held well into the buffet and Unreliable Airspeeds.
The maneuvering is certainly aggressive and we've heard stories of the concrete platforms under Sims failing. Theres no doubt watching one from the outside what's going in within..
Good to see this becoming the norm globally.
Happy 4th

yoko1
4th Jul 2019, 11:37
Does anyone know where these videos can be viewed in toto ... ?

Last I checked, some of them were available on YouTube though the quality was not particularly good. They are great video with one important caveat. As knowledgeable and as insight full as Capt Vanderburgh was regarding many aspects of automation dependency and aircraft upsets, he did not have a sufficient grasp of the use of the rudder in large transport aircraft. This was probably due to his extensive military fighter background where the rudder is used quite heavily in maneuvering. His recommendation for aggressive use of rudder in response to an aircraft upset was considered to be contributing factor to the loss of AA587. Otherwise, I highly recommend these videos for any commercial aviator.

Sikpilot
4th Jul 2019, 12:14
About damn time an authority got some balls. Remember that great presentation " Children of the Mgenta Line".
well those " children" have now grown up to adults of the autopilot autohrottle and the Magenta line with company policies that actively encourage loss of manual flying skills. And they sit next to more children.

With our children sitting behind the locked door thinking everything will be fine. I remember those bank check days.

ZFT
4th Jul 2019, 12:27
we've heard stories of the concrete platforms under Sims failing.

I would suggest these are just that - stories

yoko1
4th Jul 2019, 12:35
I would suggest these are just that - stories

Nope. Happening with our sims. The floors were not original designed to absorb the stress the new sim motions are inflicting. Can be fixed with new concrete pours, but that will take a while not to mention taking the sim offline in the process.

Judd
4th Jul 2019, 12:46
At last, full marks to a Regulator who has bitten the bullet and addressed the scary fact that, out there, are pilots that cannot fly to save themselves - literally
ICAO study groups as well as State regulators,would be well advised to study the content of this CAA Safety Notice and ensure the message is absorbed by operators under their jurisdiction.

The document succinctly addresses the trend with some operators towards the dilution of simulator training exercises for type ratings and IPC to the extent that most sessions are primarily dedicated to full use of automatics, usually accompanied by a plethora of often unnecessary company mandated SOP call-outs and superfluous briefings. Valuable simulator time, which could be used for pure flying skill practice, is thus wasted. Same problem six months later.

The CAA Safety Notice should used as a template for the inclusion in simulator training of pure flying skill exercises - separate from procedural instrument flying. Only then will personal flying skills of pilots be improved from the current mediocre.

Brockton
4th Jul 2019, 12:49
Says it all! QED

CaptainMongo
4th Jul 2019, 14:00
True. We (a US based carrier) initiated new upset training procedures about 18 months ago. Every crew has now been through it once, and it is part of our refresher training. I would think other airlines/regulators world wide are at or very close behind as well. It was quite an undertaking by our training department. The new upset training has little in common with the old. That got my attention, new thinking in the commercial aviation world is a rarity.

gearlever
4th Jul 2019, 14:14
I had the great fortune to start commercial flying on B727. No autoland, no autothrust, no auto-spoilers.
Simple AP/FD. Lots of handflying... Just pitch&power.
Thereafter I flew various Airbus Types and never ever experienced any difficulties during training or check rides.
I appreciate the UK initiative. Other regulators/states should follow IMHO.

TheiC
4th Jul 2019, 15:04
Bob,

Thanks for your thoughtful response...

I am a fast jet pilot not an airline pilot so I will happily defer to those more knowledgeable than myself. However, I’m not quite getting your point.

Well, they're all aircraft, with fundamentally similar characteristics, so that shouldn't get in the way of our discussion. I'll try to clarify.

If an aircraft has full power applied (for virtually the entire time) and descends at 35 AoA from 35000 until impact how is this happening if not done by the pilot?

Let me tackle this a couple of ways. First, lets say that we were able to freeze time with AF447 established early on in the descent to the ocean, and ask each of the crew 'what are you doing?'. I believe they would all be unable to give cogent answers. If we then ask, 'what is happening?', I anticipate the same result. Therefore, I can't say that 'they did x', where x is any intended action, with knowledge of the possible or probable outcome.

Another approach: you're driving along the motorway, and a truck in front of you drops a large stone which bounces off the road and through your windscreen, and strikes your forehead. Immediately, you lose your sight. You do what instinctively seems right, and apply the brakes, and continue to steer, using your mental model to try to stay on the carriageway. Moments later, your car hits the crash barrier. Did you drive it into the barrier? I would say you did not. You were physiologically blind to your situation, in the same way that the AF crew were cognitively blind to theirs. Like them, you were unable to process and function. Like them, you continued to 'do things', but those things were, with hindsight, wrong.I know there was a ‘dual input’ issue and then one of the guys was trying to take corrective action. The Captain seemed to appreciate there was a stall but the FO kept his stick fully back trying to climb.


May we leave aside dual inputs? (I will say that independent stick position with summing is one of the aspects of the A design which I am very critical of).

Considering the full back stick, early training is often very powerful. The first time I flew an Airbus FBW simulator, I was shown that, whatever the problematic situation I was in, I could simply apply TOGA thrust, hold the stick fully back, and watch the aircraft fly away at its peak performance. This was common teaching, and yet was fundamentally and fatally wrong.

Do you use the acronym SABIRS in the civilian world for signs of the stall? The last one is ‘stick fully back’.

No we don't -- but we should (though we need to adapt it because our stabiliser is much more powerful than the elevator, so the stick could be anywhere, if the stab is extremely LE-down. I do cover it, usuallly as a discussion point, in which I name the other symptoms of the stall and ask which is missing. Very few people get it.

I understand that there are different modes or laws with the AP (my current jet has autopilot but far more simple than an Airbus) which will affect handling etc. The basics still apply though.


The basics do apply, but flying with protections had become one of the basics, as illustrated by the 'hold the stick back to live' teaching I mentioned. My personal philosophy is that envelope protection which may not be available when it's most needed, is worse than no envelope protection at all.

This is not me disagreeing with you necessarily but I still do not understand how you can say the pilot did not hold the aircraft in a stall. I know it wasn’t a deliberate attempt to hold it in a stall but the stick fully back is what caused the stall isn’t it?


If we place responsibility for stalling the aircraft on the pilots, we are destined to repeat their failures. Any modern textbook on human factors will illustrate this with words such as, 'the identification of human error is the beginning, not the end, of the investigation'. Investigative agencies would do well to heed those words, though few do.

I understand the speed mis-match, caused by icing, was the initial problem but if held straight and level the aircraft would have continued on its merry way until clear of the icing conditions.


In a perfect world, the pilots would have recognised the instrument failure (well in a perfect world the recurring faults with the system would have been dealt with before they carried hundreds to their watery grave, but I hope you take my point). They would have resolved it: 'I see that we have cruise thrust, and a suitable pitch attitude, but the speed seems wrong'. They didn't set out not to do that, they behaved the way their training, experience, nature and nurture, and so forth, destined them to.

I'd like to quote another poster here, posting in a different thread. His username is FH1100 Pilot, and he is writing about a helicopter which crashed following an unexpected double-engine flameout at low height, at night. The pilot's name was Dave:

Like all of us, my ego makes me want to sit here and think to myself and promise you that *I* surely would have done a better job in that situation. But I cannot guarantee that. Perhaps I would have done the same thing, basically sitting frozen on the controls for those eight brief seconds. I like to believe I'm Chuck Yeager/Aaron/Norris all rolled into one awesome human bean. Most of the time though I'm just Chuckles the Clown. I cut that Dave guy a lot of slack.

Having done what I've done in my career, and seen what I've seen, those words resonate very powerfully indeed.

172_driver
4th Jul 2019, 15:34
Maximum use of automation is a culture that has evolved, it's prevalent among newcomers as well as old timers. I am not so sure just because they could do it, they still can. I have observed terrible performance in the sim and on the line. The deficiency lies in scan, hand-eye coordination, call it whatever. The characteristics of mental overload are striking.

So what kind of teeth does a safety bulletin have? This is nothing new, line pilots and training departments are well aware of the problem. Yet few do anything about it. It's just easier that way. What will change this time?

alf5071h
4th Jul 2019, 15:34
The CAA Safety Notice should be read carefully, evaluating critically what is written, opposed to what people might wish it to state.

The subject is pilot awareness of aircraft trim state, and safety interventions (relating to awareness).
It is concerned about inappropriate trim input or mishandling situations involving adverse trim conditions, particularly in aircraft with conventional control systems.

The recommended action is to identify gaps in training involving flying skills, knowledge, awareness, startle effect, etc.
This could be disingenuous criticism of those operations who have a robust training and safety systems; alternatively a necessary reinforcement of safety action questing aspects which might have been overlooked, particularly relating to recent accidents.
The notice is best read for what it is, a timely safety reminder.

Syllabus items are wide ranging, covering a number of safety issues all of which could challenge flying skills, but none specifically targeting awareness.
The primary subject - awareness, is often ill defined, difficult to quantify, as with most human factors issues.
How are lack of awareness, distraction, workload, or startle to be identified during training, and how related to trim.
If an aspect has been identified then how is this to be managed. As with most training and specifically human factors, the success from Ďtrained forí items cannot be guaranteed to be repeated in real situations, because of changing context.
No two situations are the same, nor pilots; the operational world is uncertain, defined by individual viewpoint.

Recent accidents, as with many previous events, remind us of the limitations of safety systems and training. Aircraft and systems can fail, as can humans, but so too the industryís ability to imagine rare situations which have to be managed in real time, by real people in real aircraft. Also, we have a major limitation in understanding situations in hindsight, considering what incident pilots understood.

We must not allow the human dislike of uncertainty change our views of what situations could be encountered (oppose to those which were), or how these should be managed.
The important question - to self. Do I actually understand the situation, and not choose what I wish the situation to be; either in flight operations or just reading a safety notice

averow
4th Jul 2019, 16:17
Iron Duke: I have found a fine playlist of Captain Vanderberg on Youtube: https://youtu.be/35Zy_rl8WuM .

RetiredBA/BY
4th Jul 2019, 16:46
With apologies for the previously-warned thread drift, but this is important...

Bob, I'm sorry, but I must absolutely disagree with you.

Considering 'they held it', if an action is not deliberate, or even conscious, is it an action? I would argue, no, it isn't. They exhibited the outward signs of functioning, they moved controls, they reacted (mostly - but not entirely - inappropriately) to their (deeply confusing) environment, but they were a world away from acquiring and processing information, using it to build an accurate comprehension of their circumstances, referring to experience and training, and acting on it.

Moreover, some of their actions were contrary to 'holding it in a stall', so in strict terms I disagree with you there too.

The aircraft stalled into the ocean, without doubt, but it did so not because any pilot intended it to stall, and almost certainly none of them recognised it was stalling, at least not until it was much too late. By all means say they were confused, overloaded, in dissonance, but we should never say that anyone 'held that aircraft in a stall'. To do that does our profession a grave disservice and perpetuates the underlying faults which led to AF447 and others.


Then, sorry, I must disagree with you. ( speaking as s former heavy captain)

AF 447 showed a serious lack of understanding of the handling of a big jet at altitude. Something which appears to have become far too common, with the Magenta line crowd.

They did not lose their ADI, attitude, or their EPR guages, power, as far as I know, and if you have these two parameters and the third, airspeed will sort itself out !

Thats why Boeing, and I suppose, Airbus, have a checklist for unreliable airspeed.

Bob Viking
4th Jul 2019, 19:13
Thankyou for your very detailed and thoughtful post.

I was just about to concede that maybe it was just a misunderstanding or lack of knowledge on my part but then I read BaByís post.

I know that BaBy was a former Fast Jet QFI as well as an airline pilot. So I know his brain will likely work in the same way to my own in some respects.

The fact that someone who crosses the boundary between the two worlds also questions your explanation does get me thinking again.

I fully appreciate that when IMC at night the situation the pilots were presented with was confusing and terrifying in equal measure. Who knows what I would have done on that Airbus that day. Iím not a large aircraft pilot of course. However, I know what I would have done in my fast jet. It has happened to me, albeit during the day, and my knowledge of power settings and attitudes meant that I was able to conclude fairly quickly that it was obviously a faulty ASI.

I still canít quite get my head around the idea that you think they didnít hold it in a stall just because they didnít know they were in one.

At a lower altitude in my fast jet if I kept pulling back on the stick it would loop. At 35000í it would stall. The AI and AoA gauges would tell me that along with airframe buffet and all the other constituents of SABIRS.

A standard stall recovery (relax, max, roll or however else you might brief it) would solve it for me and would surely have saved them also).

Again, I have to admit I have never flown a large aircraft so I must defer to those more experienced than myself. Maybe others can help you or I out here?!

BV

n5296s
4th Jul 2019, 20:14
To do that does our profession a grave disservice and perpetuates the underlying faults which led to AF447 and others.
Give me a break! You wouldn't let someone solo a 152 without understanding that holding the stick full back is going to end badly - and why. Sure, the Bus has envelope protection. You can hold it over to one side too, and it just sits there in a fairly steep bank instead of rolling. Hopefully that isn't the way people fly them.

I confess - I've never flown airliner. But even the worst case of magenta-line syndrome presumably learned on something that you actually have to fly, rather than giving gentle suggestions to. How could he even have passed his PPL?

ZFT
4th Jul 2019, 20:16
Nope. Happening with our sims. The floors were not original designed to absorb the stress the new sim motions are inflicting. Can be fixed with new concrete pours, but that will take a while not to mention taking the sim offline in the process.

Somewhat confused as the motion systems haven't changed. I assume the motion pad wasn't correct to start with and more aggressive use caused the problem?

Chris2303
4th Jul 2019, 21:16
The CAA Safety Notice should be read carefully, evaluating critically what is written, opposed to what people might wish it to state.

The subject is pilot awareness of aircraft trim state, and safety interventions (relating to awareness).
It is concerned about inappropriate trim input or mishandling situations involving adverse trim conditions, particularly in aircraft with conventional control systems.

The recommended action is to identify gaps in training involving flying skills, knowledge, awareness, startle effect, etc.
This could be disingenuous criticism of those operations who have a robust training and safety systems; alternatively a necessary reinforcement of safety action questing aspects which might have been overlooked, particularly relating to recent accidents.
The notice is best read for what it is, a timely safety reminder.

Syllabus items are wide ranging, covering a number of safety issues all of which could challenge flying skills, but none specifically targeting awareness.
The primary subject - awareness, is often ill defined, difficult to quantify, as with most human factors issues.
How are lack of awareness, distraction, workload, or startle to be identified during training, and how related to trim.
If an aspect has been identified then how is this to be managed. As with most training and specifically human factors, the success from Ďtrained forí items cannot be guaranteed to be repeated in real situations, because of changing context.
No two situations are the same, nor pilots; the operational world is uncertain, defined by individual viewpoint.

Recent accidents, as with many previous events, remind us of the limitations of safety systems and training. Aircraft and systems can fail, as can humans, but so too the industryís ability to imagine rare situations which have to be managed in real time, by real people in real aircraft. Also, we have a major limitation in understanding situations in hindsight, considering what incident pilots understood.

We must not allow the human dislike of uncertainty change our views of what situations could be encountered (oppose to those which were), or how these should be managed.
The important question - to self. Do I actually understand the situation, and not choose what I wish the situation to be; either in flight operations or just reading a safety notice


A sad indictment of the industry as a whole, but where were the CAA when this was all happening?

Surely they bear some responsibility???

megan
5th Jul 2019, 05:00
Does anyone know where these videos can be viewed in totoplay list here.

https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLr7hIxqYCNsbRRoQIOfMrobxg-UBGW3rf

OPENDOOR
5th Jul 2019, 09:07
Do you use the acronym SABIRS in the civilian world for signs of the stall?

Sorry, but what does it stand for?

Bob Viking
5th Jul 2019, 09:17
SABIRS is used to recognise the signs of an approaching stall.

Speed reducing
Attitude increasing
Buffet
Instability
Rate of descent
Stick fully back

In my current jet there is an AoA Warner when the gear is down and an E bracket in the HUD to show target AoA. Thee is also a Ďgear not downí audio warning that sounds at low power and low altitude.

Do airliners routinely have AoA gauges? Is it something that is considered much during flying and approaches in particular?

BV

StudentInDebt
5th Jul 2019, 09:46
SABIRS is used to recognise the signs of an approaching stall.

Speed reducing
Attitude increasing
Buffet
Instability
Rate of descent
Stick fully back
this amuses me, or saddens me. During a sim involving stall recovery training a few years ago I was asked what signs would indicate approaching the stall by the TC (Checkie). I reeled off the above list of signs and was immediately corrected as the correct answer is apparently - an audible ďSTALL STALLĒ warning and then treated to a white board presentation of the speed tape cues to correct my lack of understanding of the question. Finger, pulse etc

etudiant
5th Jul 2019, 11:04
Thankyou for your very detailed and thoughtful post.


I fully appreciate that when IMC at night the situation the pilots were presented with was confusing and terrifying in equal measure. Who knows what I would have done on that Airbus that day. Iím not a large aircraft pilot of course. However, I know what I would have done in my fast jet. It has happened to me, albeit during the day, and my knowledge of power settings and attitudes meant that I was able to conclude fairly quickly that it was obviously a faulty ASI.

I still canít quite get my head around the idea that you think they didnít hold it in a stall just because they didnít know they were in one.

At a lower altitude in my fast jet if I kept pulling back on the stick it would loop. At 35000í it would stall. The AI and AoA gauges would tell me that along with airframe buffet and all the other constituents of SABIRS.

BV

The evidence suggests that the PF in AF447 did not recognize that he had the stick back, perhaps because he had not properly settled into the left seat when the Captain gave him the nod rather than the more senior PM.
He promptly climbed to excess altitude and stalled, keeping back pressure on the stick almost continuously till impact. The PM did not intervene sufficiently forcefully, perhaps because he had just been put down. CRM here was not effective.

Bob Viking
5th Jul 2019, 11:40
Let me begin by repeating I have never flown an Airbus, or any heavy aircraft (a go in the Nimrod sim doesnít really count).

However, there are a few things you say that donít sit easy with me.

You say the junior pilot hadnít settled in. He stated he had the controls and had been in the seat for 9 minutes when the AP disconnected. How long does he need to get comfortable. I also donít believe he didnít realise he was pulling back on the stick. How could a qualified pilot not know that?

As for the other pilot feeling Ďput downí, I donít buy it. Surely any long haul airline pilot must expect for the duties to be shared round between the crew.

Is it possible, Iím honestly not trying to start an argument, that some people are looking to provide excuses for the crew when really there arenít any?

The one positive thing that comes out of the AF447 incident is the learning that is now, belatedly, coming out of it.

As I said I am not trying to rile people but, as a frequent long haul passenger, I obviously have a vested interest.

BV

yoko1
5th Jul 2019, 13:00
Somewhat confused as the motion systems haven't changed. I assume the motion pad wasn't correct to start with and more aggressive use caused the problem?

Over the years as old planes are retired and new fleets are added, simulators get swapped out. Some of the sim bays at my company go back decades, and even the "newer" ones were built before the new motion programs took effect. The original sims were never programmed to represent the full range of forces that would be felt by the crew during a full stall. The new programming, while much more representative, requires the sim to make much more aggressive motions to simulate those forces. Newton's law and all that, these now increased forces were never part of the specs when the floor mounting systems were designed. I suspect this was known in advance and those involved hope that the typically over-engineering that goes into aviation related products would handle the issue. Unfortunately not. I don't know if this is a problem everywhere, but eventually the concrete around some of our sims will need to be replaced.

yoko1
5th Jul 2019, 13:06
As much as I welcome seeing the CAA waking up to the problem, there were similar calls for reform after AF447 and Colgan Air 3407 which have not been fully enacted. While we are seeing the introduction of advanced upset training, at least at my airline there has been no additional time allotted in the sim. As a result, this training has the effect of crowding out other events, and the pacing of the sim sessions has become even more chopped up as the instructor pushes through all the boxes with event, position reset, event, positions reset. It is becoming increasingly hard to absorb the lessons from one event before moving on to the next one.

Sailvi767
5th Jul 2019, 13:11
At risk of immediate and catastrophic thread drift, no-one intentionally Ďheld a plane in a stallí. The AF447 crew were utterly devoid of comprehension of the aircraftís condition, let down by poor and unreliable systems, and I strongly suspect profound distrust of those systems. They did the wrong thing because they hadnít a clue what was going on and therefore had no idea what to do about it.

Yes, children of the magenta are all around us, and professional standards have never been lower, but please donít blame the AF447 crew in that manner.

The Captain of AF447 was aware he was in a stall and took the appropriate action. He was unaware the copilot was holding full aft stick so the best he could get was neutral elevator.

infrequentflyer789
5th Jul 2019, 13:35
The evidence suggests that the PF in AF447 did not recognize that he had the stick back, perhaps because he had not properly settled into the left seat when the Captain gave him the nod rather than the more senior PM.

Rubbish, it's right there in the transcript: "But Iíve been at maxi nose-up for a while". Stall might not have been deliberate, but the control inputs certainly were.

Possibly, possibly, when he said this the captain may have realised what was going on, but he wasn't settled into either seat and only came in after LOC was well in progress. Recovery was probably impossible by that point as well.

Problem is none of them correctly associated stick-back and altimeter unwinding as stall, even when the alarm was going off. Maybe flying a plane that normally protects you from stall leads to that? There are plenty of references to "climbing" (and to engines being on full power) in the CVR even as altitude is being lost at speed and they are clearly falling. Translation may have turned "pitched up" into "climbing" but this does not detract from the fact that if you are "pitched up" on full power and falling out of the sky, you are not flying, you are stalled - at least that is my non-pilot's understanding from aerodynamics courses long ago, feel free to correct me if I am wrong...

Bob Viking
5th Jul 2019, 13:48
I suppose one advantage I may have here (which may contribute to my astonishment that the AF447 crew didnít fully appreciate their situation) is that, as a Fast Jet QFI, I practice stalling airborne with almost monotonous regularity.

When we teach SABIRS on the ground and in the sim, we then go and fly it and experience all the effects first hand. I have done them at night as well (not in the UK I hasten to add, but in other Air Forces where they donít mind doing such things) and the signs are all there.

I realise a direct comparison between an A330 and a small FJ is a little specious but flying is flying at the end of the day.

BV

beardy
5th Jul 2019, 13:58
I once watched (for a short time) whilst my FO handled turbulence so pronounced that it disconnected the auto pilot (a rare occurrence in the A330), the auto thrust remained engaged. We were close to max cruise alt with a narrow gap in the speed tape. Although an experienced ex military pilot and should have known better his reaction was to maintain ALTITUDE. Whilst yoyoing up and down the engines spooled up and unspooled to maintain speed, but slowly enough to be out of sync with his pitching. Within 2 cycles we were going up at idle and down at full power and he was still chasing ALTITUDE.
There is a tendency to want to retain vertical separation rather than admit loss of control.
He learned a lot that night.

gearlever
5th Jul 2019, 14:16
I once watched (for a short time) whilst my FO handled turbulence so pronounced that it disconnected the auto pilot (a rare occurrence in the A330), the auto thrust remained engaged. We were close to max cruise alt with a narrow gap in the speed tape. Although an experienced ex military pilot and should have known better his reaction was to maintain ALTITUDE. Whilst yoyoing up and down the engines spooled up and unspooled to maintain speed, but slowly enough to be out of sync with his pitching. Within 2 cycles we were going up at idle and down at full power and he was still chasing ALTITUDE.
There is a tendency to want to retain vertical separation rather than admit loss of control.
He learned a lot that night.

- manual flight
- manual thrust

beardy
5th Jul 2019, 14:29
- manual flight
- manual thrust
Not always, but in this case, yes.
There were many more lessons than that.

Bob Viking
5th Jul 2019, 14:33
If he was ex military then he would have understood if youíd given him any of the following helpful debrief points:

Stop being shit.

I can do it, why canít you?

Why do you find this so difficult?!

How about we turn down the suck and turn up the awesome?

The three principles of old school flying instruction. Fear, sarcasm and ridicule.

Ah, the good old days.

BV

neilki
5th Jul 2019, 15:30
As much as I welcome seeing the CAA waking up to the problem, there were similar calls for reform after AF447 and Colgan Air 3407 which have not been fully enacted. While we are seeing the introduction of advanced upset training, at least at my airline there has been no additional time allotted in the sim. As a result, this training has the effect of crowding out other events, and the pacing of the sim sessions has become even more chopped up as the instructor pushes through all the boxes with event, position reset, event, positions reset. It is becoming increasingly hard to absorb the lessons from one event before moving on to the next one.
Wow. My operator added a full day for recurrent and initial training UPRT. its a non jeopardy; train to proficiency event. 2-3 hours briefing, 4h in the sim and a solid debrief.
Sorry to hear it's not like that everywhere...

beardy
5th Jul 2019, 15:39
If he was ex military then he would have understood if youíd given him any of the following helpful debrief points:

Stop being shit.

I can do it, why canít you?

Why do you find this so difficult?!

How about we turn down the suck and turn up the awesome?

The three principles of old school flying instruction. Fear, sarcasm and ridicule.

Ah, the good old days.

BV

Don't be silly. We talked about it like grown ups, as grown ups do, or have standards slipped that badly since I left the waterfront?

alf5071h
5th Jul 2019, 16:11
Chris 2303, #37

“CAA … Surely they bear some responsibility”
Responsibility, yes. But life is grey; what is responsibility, why or how to proportion responsibility.
With hindsight every ‘player’ could intervene, but it is difficult to identify slow change or specific outcomes before hand.

The CAAs’ tasks are equivalent to those asked of operators and pilots; understand the situation and select a course of action, awareness, workload, monitoring - all as in the safety notice.

Decisions follow awareness. Following the introduction of A320 it was suggested that the type should have a specific instrument rating; it was the exception. Nowadays that technology is the norm, the exceptions are legacy aircraft.
Who identifies the significance of this difference and decides on a course of action; probably the authorities, but that should not exclude everyone else.
New from old is easier to judge - adapt to the new; however, new back to old is retrograde, more difficult to justify, it depends on assumptions that the standards of human performance are maintained, and those which are currently trained still apply to the older technologies.
We have same-type differences ratings upwards, but retrograde … …

Thus everyone should continuously review the assumptions in operation, old and new; that is what the safety notice asks …, but who asks the CAA.

vilas
5th Jul 2019, 16:54
The entire thrust of the argument about AF447 centers around recovery from stall but not much is discussed about the incorrect handling in alternate law. The crew didn't realize the UAS but they should have realized they were in alternate law. Even simple theoretical knowledge that in alternate law you never apply full back stick would have saved the day.

gearlever
5th Jul 2019, 17:06
The entire thrust of the argument about AF447 centers around recovery from stall but not much is discussed about the incorrect handling in alternate law. The crew didn't realize the UAS but they should have realized they were in alternate law. Even simple theoretical knowledge that in alternate law you never apply full back stick would have saved the day.

Yep, but to be fair the roll rate command worked "perfectly" e.g. made it harder to recognize a stall. A conventional plane would have rolled...., dived and regained speed! A deadly trap IMHO.

Gipsy Queen
5th Jul 2019, 17:08
UK CAA Safety Notice 2019/005 (http://publicapps.caa.co.uk/docs/33/SafetyNotice2019005.pdf)landed in my inbox just now.

It is a devastating indictment of regulators and operators who have allowed a situation to develop where this SN is necessary.

Stripped of the dreadful jargon-ridden, ungrammatical verbiage it is telling everyone to get back to teaching and practising basic flying skills.

Isn't it?

Sadly, the grammatical construction of this SN is pretty typical of the debased level of English employed by a UK civil service no longer dedicated to the maintenance of those standards which once were the hallmark of a splendid institution. This is but an extension of the lamentable quality of teaching currently to be found in the British maintained education system.

It seems inevitable that the lack of regard for proper communication demonstrated by this Notice will be reflected in a diminished respect for its contents.

etudiant
5th Jul 2019, 22:58
Let me begin by repeating I have never flown an Airbus, or any heavy aircraft (a go in the Nimrod sim doesnít really count).

However, there are a few things you say that donít sit easy with me.

You say the junior pilot hadnít settled in. He stated he had the controls and had been in the seat for 9 minutes when the AP disconnected. How long does he need to get comfortable. I also donít believe he didnít realise he was pulling back on the stick. How could a qualified pilot not know that?

As for the other pilot feeling Ďput downí, I donít buy it. Surely any long haul airline pilot must expect for the duties to be shared round between the crew.

Is it possible, Iím honestly not trying to start an argument, that some people are looking to provide excuses for the crew when really there arenít any?

The one positive thing that comes out of the AF447 incident is the learning that is now, belatedly, coming out of it.

As I said I am not trying to rile people but, as a frequent long haul passenger, I obviously have a vested interest.

BV


Thank you for a helpful input, I'd not known the PF had been in his seat 9 minutes before the AP disconnected.
The details of the timeline are important, because he did pull the plane up to an unsustainable height pretty immediately on taking the LH seat and the PM remonstrated.
The crew dynamics matter, because the PM was senior but apparently on a slower track than the PF, so the PM did not assert himself when the PF goofed.
A lot of this was touched on in the AF447 threads, including the suggestion, which seemed plausible to me, that the PF had not settled fully into his seat and hence was not keeping the stick neutral.
I can't explain the initial altitude bust otherwise.

sheppey
6th Jul 2019, 00:24
2-3 hours briefing, 4h in the sim and a solid debrief. This is but an extension of the lamentable quality of teaching currently to be found in the British maintained education system

2-3 hours briefing makes a mockery of Education Departments recommended classroom lesson at schools of 45 minutes duration. It is well known that students attention wanes beyond that time. Pilots as the captive audience are no different.

In fact, having already endured 2-3 hours preflight briefing, plus four hours of sweat in the simulator, the last thing the poor blighters need to endure is a "solid" debrief. This is a very common fault with simulator training instructors despite all the lecture technique courses they are supposed to attend and get signed off. No doubt death by Power Point was included in the 2-3 hours. And how about the "solid" de-brief? Another hour of the instructor droning on?

john_tullamarine
6th Jul 2019, 04:06
Surely, the student pair will have a set of course/session/endorsement/recurrency notes for reference ? If this is the case, as it should be, the pilots should be turning up for the session already well-briefed.

The pre-session instructor briefing then should be a recap and discussion session to detect any errors in understanding so that, when the group gets into the box, things should be able to move in a productive and interesting fashion.

The post-session brief should, again, be a recap with discussion, as appropriate, on things which might not have gone as well as expected. In that case, of course, a sensible session will have spent a bit of time on revision/practice at the time to get the folk up front on top of whatever may have presented a problem.

As for several hours pre-brief, after 30 minutes (unless the presenter is very skilled and interesting) I'm restless and, by 45 minutes, quite lost to the cause. Waste of time, in my view. Same views on classroom coursework - max 40-45 minutes and then a 5-10 minute break.

Sheppey, whom I have known and held in high esteem for many years, is a very experienced instructor and a mighty fine one. His views are tempered with many decades of instructional exposure ...

Or am I just an old dinosaur sort of instructor and over the hill ?

ZFT
6th Jul 2019, 04:23
Over the years as old planes are retired and new fleets are added, simulators get swapped out. Some of the sim bays at my company go back decades, and even the "newer" ones were built before the new motion programs took effect. The original sims were never programmed to represent the full range of forces that would be felt by the crew during a full stall. The new programming, while much more representative, requires the sim to make much more aggressive motions to simulate those forces. Newton's law and all that, these now increased forces were never part of the specs when the floor mounting systems were designed. I suspect this was known in advance and those involved hope that the typically over-engineering that goes into aviation related products would handle the issue. Unfortunately not. I don't know if this is a problem everywhere, but eventually the concrete around some of our sims will need to be replaced.

Noted and understood. Thanks

vilas
6th Jul 2019, 05:23
Yep, but to be fair the roll rate command worked "perfectly" e.g. made it harder to recognize a stall. A conventional plane would have rolled...., dived and regained speed! A deadly trap IMHO. AF447 was in alternate2 where it does not hold bank. Roll stability is natural like conventional aircraft and not computer generated. 1g flight path stability with auto trim is the main philosophy of Airbus FBW. It demands much less handling skills than conventional aircraft and that's what has made Airbuses popular. 447 was a massacre of the Innocents. They simply had no clue of what happened, what they should do and lastly what they were doing. Aircraft are to be flown by competant enough people. If anyone can sit there then pilots won't be paid so much. Come to think of it if it hadn't happened that night, over a period of time the crew would have amassed thousands of hours and would have been considered competant while hiding the fatal weakness all along. A350 has alternate speed system which should make UAS now a thing of the past.

Iron Duke
6th Jul 2019, 08:41
Thanks for all the links on Captain Warren ... fine viewing !!

Snyggapa
6th Jul 2019, 10:58
The Captain of AF447 was aware he was in a stall and took the appropriate action. He was unaware the copilot was holding full aft stick so the best he could get was neutral elevator.
He took the appropriate action apart from saying 'my aircraft' and pushing the button to take over the controls?

yoko1
6th Jul 2019, 12:19
Or am I just an old dinosaur sort of instructor and over the hill ?

No not at all. I think the sometimes grueling 2 hour brief/4 hours in the box is part legacy from the old days of beating up on pilots in the sim, and part keeping the training "efficient" from the perspective of schedulers and accountants. Breaking up sim sessions into more but shorter sessions is better from a teaching perspective, but more complicated and potentially expensive (i.e. a pilot in training is a pilot not flying a revenue flight) than the current method.

My biggest critique of our training over the years is that 1) they continue to try to stuff 8 pounds of training in a 5 pound sack, and 2) everything has become so scripted and so well advertised in advance that anyone going into the box who doesn't know exactly what the events will be, in what order, and what the desired response should be simply wasn't paying much attention. Way too much, check the box, reset the sim, and move on to the next event for my tastes. This approach may be sufficient to aviators who make an honest effort to keep current in the books and turn off all the automation and hand-fly or a regular basis, but not so much for the "A/P on at 500' and back off inside the marker, what's for dinner, and what should we do on the layover" crowd.

gearlever
6th Jul 2019, 13:43
AF447 was in alternate2 where it does not hold bank. Roll stability is natural like conventional aircraft and not computer generated.
Yep, my bad.
Thx for clarification:ok:

cessnapete
6th Jul 2019, 17:06
- manual flight
- manual thrust


Not in BA. SOP dictates Autothrust must remain on at all times, on all types, even when manual handling. (Except B744 where the SOP remains Manual Handing, AP out AT off)

TheiC
6th Jul 2019, 18:10
Not in BA. SOP dictates Autothrust must remain on at all times, on all types, even when manual handling.

Truly a disgrace.

pineteam
7th Jul 2019, 08:09
Truly a disgrace.

Agree. And dangerous. Thatís against what Airbus recommends...

fab777
7th Jul 2019, 08:28
Not in BA. SOP dictates Autothrust must remain on at all times, on all types, even when manual handling. (Except B744 where the SOP remains Manual Handing, AP out AT off)

As a consequence of this, we see a captain unable to fly a single engine return to London, asking his FO to hold the throttle and keep the speed for him....

cessnapete
7th Jul 2019, 09:01
As a consequence of this, we see a captain unable to fly a single engine return to London, asking his FO to hold the throttle and keep the speed for him....

As the normal definition of manual handling is "Manually controlling the Flightpath and Speed of the aircraft" BA crews never practice manual/non FD flying, during normal route flying.
Its all OK though, they practice their skills once or twice a year with an Approach or two in the Sim!

cessnapete
7th Jul 2019, 09:57
As a consequence of this, we see a captain unable to fly a single engine return to London, asking his FO to hold the throttle and keep the speed for him....

With large yaw excursions due to the uncoordinated power changes too.
The extended period of roll excursions which the crew appeared unable to mitigate, during the relatively recent Airbus Wind Shear Go Around at Gib, come to mind.
The B744 Fleet appears to maintain their handling skills intact, as the superbly handled emergency, after uncomanded Flap retraction just after takeoff at JNB showed.

alf5071h
7th Jul 2019, 16:49
The central aspect of the safety notice is awareness of the aircraft’s trim condition, particularly with conventional trim systems.

Several off-topic posts imply ‘the crew must have known that ”, representing our inability to explain behaviour and awareness.
There are many definitions of (situation) awareness, generally science based, anchoring reference points are useful in discussions - what ‘it’ is, the ‘know what’ part of knowledge. This does not help understand an individual’s activities in forming and using knowledge; assessing training programmes or individual performance - ‘know how to’.
This difference aligns with training knowledge, explicit and tacit, where the factual aspects are easier to teach from books, etc, but the tacit depends on activity, self learning, interaction.

Broadly, awareness is ‘knowing what’s going on so you can figure out what to do’.
How do we determine what is going on. This is classic high level HF, often simplified with a reference point.

One post - ‘knowing where the stick is’, must be considered in relation to some norm, a point of reference. e.g. the seat position, any change in reference could affect the sense of position. Conventional aircraft use force-feel more than position as the primary reference. Zero force = the aircraft is ‘in trim’, but not for all situations; understanding this is central to awareness in abnormal situations.

e.g. training sim, with AP engaged induce a lateral out of trim - fuel imbalance; fail the AP.
As an instructor observe; as a student learn from experience. The normal reference zero force / stick central has changed, how quickly are pilots able to recognise this and adapt, and how, and why. What if trim was unavailable.
How do pilots gain this experience.

Another aspect of this thread is the divergent view of training standards; this too could be ‘relative’.
‘It’s not as good as the old days’ (I was there), but if our reference is biased by the experiences of intervening years, how can we relate then and now. Like ‘policeman are getting younger’, time passes quicker in later life - relative to age.

With high reliability aircraft there is reduced need for the evaluative know-what; complex systems are difficult to teach. There is more benefit - safety value, cost effectiveness in teaching use, application, know-how to manage the normal operational scenarios and use all available technology, both increasingly complex. Not so for the rare failures, these are real surprises, but relative to what.
Not the same as we the ‘oldies’ faced (different reference), but new, emergent, unforeseeable, unexpected by regulation, and thus not trained for situations.

What are the norms for these aspects - defined by regulation / trading standards, how might they be identified.

Instead of looking at training - ‘what should be happening’, flying the line and seeing ‘what is happening’ provides a better reference; an old-fashioned ‘line check’ or what ever the modern term for that its.
Then consider what has been seen ‘down the line’ and how that should be referenced to operational need, but against what norm. The fewer to number of incidents the more difficult the task, but not necessarily a safer operation.
The norm could be awareness of this, or at least continuing to look at real operations, not training.

blind pew
7th Jul 2019, 19:08
You guys are missing the truth as the crew were totally unprofessional as they had spent the day sight seeing in RIO including a helicopter flight instead of resting. The Skipper was more interested in his girlfriend than ensuring the safety of his aircraft during the crossing of the ITCZ which possesses the most dangerous wx that I have experienced. PM was apparently one of those guys whom, if in BA, would have been classed as coordiniated enough to master the handshake and was on his 90 day recency trip. Neither of them up front knew how to use the radar and successfully cross the zone whereas all the other aircraft that night made safe decisions. Extremely tired, frightened and in the middle of the night not having adequate training and with uncertified, defective pitots they didn't stand a chance. It's significant that Air France brought in a group of experienced, well qualified foreign pilots to sort out their typical French arrogant establishment.

Sunamer
7th Jul 2019, 19:23
Considering 'they held it', if an action is not deliberate, or even conscious, is it an action? I would argue, no, it isn't

holding the side-stick all the way aft, is an action....unless you wanna argue that trained semi auto responses from a pilot is not actions (which quite frankly would be a stupid thing to say), since we rely on pilot’s actions and inputs to have a safe and uneventful flight.
Whether an action was deliberate or not, conscious or not, is another question...but an action is an action. Side-sticks do not put themselves in the aft-most position by themselves, but they require AN ACTION to be put in such position.

RetiredBA/BY
7th Jul 2019, 19:28
You guys are missing the truth as the crew were totally unprofessional as they had spent the day sight seeing in RIO including a helicopter flight instead of resting. The Skipper was more interested in his girlfriend than ensuring the safety of his aircraft during the crossing of the ITCZ which possesses the most dangerous wx that I have experienced. PM was apparently one of those guys whom, if in BA, would have been classed as coordiniated enough to master the handshake and was on his 90 day recency trip. Neither of them up front knew how to use the radar and successfully cross the zone whereas all the other aircraft that night made safe decisions. Extremely tired, frightened and in the middle of the night not having adequate training and with uncertified, defective pitots they didn't stand a chance. It's significant that Air France brought in a group of experienced, well qualified foreign pilots to sort out their typical French arrogant establishment.

......and so, I ask, why was’nt the captain, anywhere near the ITZC, in his seat , strapped in, with the radar looking 200 miles ahead with a tilt of about 3 degrees searching for the weather which might, or might not be shown on the charts?
Unbelievably poor airmanship.

I also ask why on earth EVERY pilot, supposedly qualified to fly an airliner, does not know how to use the weather radar, if he does not he is not, in my opinion, fully qualified at all.

capngrog
7th Jul 2019, 21:21
'Tis a fine line indeed between blame and fact finding. For example, is the statement: "Well, Capngrog sure screwed the pooch on that one", affixing blame or stating cause? Without identifying the cause (Capngrog screwed the pooch), how can we possibly understand the event and formulate procedures to prevent a recurrence? Tiptoeing around an assessment of an event should not be tolerated. Facts (cause) must be stated plainly, and one must not be required to "read between the lines" to reach an understanding of the facts (cause). If Capngrog's otherwise mediocre reputation is sullied by stating that he "screwed the pooch", well, then, that's life.

I believe that the AF 447 flight deck crew made many errors on that fateful night, and these errors must be plainly stated so that they will understood and not (hopefully) be repeated ... with a further loss of life.

Just my opinion.

Respectfully,
Capngrog

Meester proach
7th Jul 2019, 22:39
Theyíve been banging the Upset recovery gong ever since AF. Every bloody sim now, boom, some crazy attitude.

this whole magenta line children thing is fairly bogus really. BA have taken and trained low hour cadets since the 60s and have they had any crashes attributable to it ?no.

And as for whoever is on about hand flying up to RVSM....yeah great idea....NOT. For a start my pet cat could follow the FD in what will be many staright lines - and donít suggest raw data - it would be a bad call to try that in the busy TMAs we operate in, not to mention putting your often tired workmates workload through the roof.
You have to balance flying practice with operational safety/ common sense.

I do think every sim should have loss of airspeed and raw data ILS though .

172_driver
7th Jul 2019, 23:13
And as for whoever is on about hand flying up to RVSM....yeah great idea....NOT. For a start my pet cat could follow the FD in what will be many staright lines - and don’t suggest raw data - it would be a bad call to try that in the busy TMAs we operate in, not to mention putting your often tired workmates workload through the roof.
You have to balance flying practice with operational safety/ common sense

With an attitude like that you're never gonna get good. First you think following flight directors is too easy, then you go on implying that raw data is a handful for a two man crew?

Start with what you're comfortable with, and work from there. It needs to be backed up by a company that values and encourages manual flight. If not, they often put so many restrictions on hand flying it gets useless.

n5296s
7th Jul 2019, 23:56
It's significant that Air France brought in a group of experienced, well qualified foreign pilots to sort out their typical French arrogant establishment.
Curious to know whether this comes from anything public?

A year or so after the accident, I happened to fly back from France sitting next to one of these "well qualified foreign pilots" We had an interesting chat. His view was that the accident had seriously shaken up AF and that they had done a great deal to make sure nothing like it ever happened again. Would be interesting to know more if there is anything public.

hans brinker
8th Jul 2019, 04:27
Theyíve been banging the Upset recovery gong ever since AF. Every bloody sim now, boom, some crazy attitude.

this whole magenta line children thing is fairly bogus really. BA have taken and trained low hour cadets since the 60s and have they had any crashes attributable to it ?no.

And as for whoever is on about hand flying up to RVSM....yeah great idea....NOT. For a start my pet cat could follow the FD in what will be many staright lines - and donít suggest raw data - it would be a bad call to try that in the busy TMAs we operate in, not to mention putting your often tired workmates workload through the roof.
You have to balance flying practice with operational safety/ common sense.

I do think every sim should have loss of airspeed and raw data ILS though .

I seriously doubt doing an ILS raw data twice year is going to do wonders for my hand flying skills. I have been doing this for 2 decades, and it is easy to get used to the automation. Thankfully (for me at least) my company gives us a lot of leeway, and lets us do anything from raw data to auto-land, (conditions/equipment permitting). After having the FD and/or AT deferred a few times, I realized I wasn't entirely comfortable going back to basics and have since made it a habit of (again, circumstances permitting) departing/arriving without the use of AP/FD/AT. It certainly has benefited my hand-flying skills, and my confidence in handling unexpected situations. I also have seen quite a few FOs, after a few legs, doing the same, and expressing gratitude at being able to practice skills they felt were eroding after flying fully automated for a few years. If you honestly feel you couldn't hand fly while in a busy TMA, I respectfully wonder if you should do it more, so you would be comfortable...

Bob Viking
8th Jul 2019, 06:42
Parts of your post scare me to be honest. Have you ever heard the term Ďtrain hard, fight easyí?

Not practicing something because it is difficult is 180 out from my approach. It is PRECISELY the reason to practice it. As for your crew being tired, can you ever guarantee a real emergency will only ever happen when everyone is completely rested?

As for a TMA being busy, what difference does that make? Traffic or no traffic, the workload is the same.

I realise many of you could point out that my kind of flying is very different and I would agree with you to some extent. Our aircraft are not the same. However, before you rush to ignore my thoughts may I point out that I have flown my little fast jet into and out of San Fran International, Mcarran (night), Chicago Midtown (night) and several other busy international airports in North America, Europe and the Middle East.

That was in a jet with no autopilot, no FMS, nowhere to clip my approach plates (balancing them on my knee or flying one handed are the only options) and being single pilot. Remember, this is also without the benefit of two hours worth of extra fuel.

May I please ask another, unrelated, question of the assembled masses?

We have had discussion of many stall events in civil aviation (obviously AF447 being the main one).

Have any any of these LoC or stall events been computer driven? Or are they a problem of human creation?

I am still not not trying to be contentious despite how my questions may appear.

BV

blind pew
8th Jul 2019, 07:33
In my case I spent 6 years watching the captain use echo (Marconi?) Radar before an aircraft change allowed me to play with the next set up. It wasn't easy and whilst the books described the criteria and cut offs there is also the varying amount of water droplets not only depending on altitude but the updraft velocities.
My next shared set was on the DC9 with one of the world's best operators and training systems of the time. Led by fast jet pilots of various nationalities in an environment that mixed soft centered returns with cumulus granite..
Followed by the death cruiser, another set and the ITCZ which always had a full crew in the cockpit and occasionally the second captain. I thought I had it sussed until one night heading back to Europe from west Africa, after I had diverted 300nm off track to avoid I realised that we were the only one on vhf2 that was diverting and I had misread the returns.
The radar on the fokker 100 was easier.
As an anecdote a BA colleague during training on the VC10 started avoiding a rocket cloud visually..the skipper took over and flew through it..result heavy turbulence check..broken back and a fleet of ambulances waiting on the tarmac at Colombo. It wasn't showing on radar because radar doesn't (or maybe didnt)show velocities nor shear layers.
Having spent 50 years flying and the last 25 gliding and paragliding around the world I am still learning the vagaries of weather..mostly without personal damage.

pineteam
8th Jul 2019, 12:48
They’ve been banging the Upset recovery gong ever since AF. Every bloody sim now, boom, some crazy attitude.

this whole magenta line children thing is fairly bogus really. BA have taken and trained low hour cadets since the 60s and have they had any crashes attributable to it ?no.

And as for whoever is on about hand flying up to RVSM....yeah great idea....NOT. For a start my pet cat could follow the FD in what will be many staright lines - and don’t suggest raw data - it would be a bad call to try that in the busy TMAs we operate in, not to mention putting your often tired workmates workload through the roof.
You have to balance flying practice with operational safety/ common sense.

I do think every sim should have loss of airspeed and raw data ILS though .



I’m not saying you should fly with AP off until RVSM airspace, I’m just saying it’s legal to do so.
BA might not have a fatal accident yet due to poor flying skills may be cause we are lucky to fly very reliable aircraft. But would the crew be ready to cope with a serious failure in direct law? Flying the FD bar is easy but raw data is another skill you can not maintain if you only practice in the sim. I can tell easily who are the guys who fly raw data in line or not when I go to the sim: Simple the one who never practice in line are tense and inaccurate for most of them. How can someone expect to fly accurately by only praticsing twice a year in a box is beyond me. Oh and by the way, raw data in the sim is easier than the real plane. Just saying. xD

grizzled
11th Sep 2019, 12:58
TheiC

I tried to reply to your PM re the other forum on pprune but the system says you've chosen not to receive PMs. Just FYI
Cheers mate

fdr
11th Sep 2019, 15:09
this amuses me, or saddens me. During a sim involving stall recovery training a few years ago I was asked what signs would indicate approaching the stall by the TC (Checkie). I reeled off the above list of signs and was immediately corrected as the correct answer is apparently - an audible ďSTALL STALLĒ warning and then treated to a white board presentation of the speed tape cues to correct my lack of understanding of the question. Finger, pulse etc

Your observations are sadly consistent with observations of multiple training systems and operators. A simple hard fact about the real world vs simulator training is that events in the real world are dynamic and frequently confusing in the development of cues to the crew. The quoted instructor's point on what counts as primary cues belies the fact that in most CVR tapes, there is most often profound confusion and cacophony arising from multiple cues, warnings, alerts and dynamic inputs. The training focusing on exact displayed data is lost in the noise, whereas what does invariably exist is the big picture factors; attitude, air noise, response to controls, vibration etc. Basing the determination of your flight path and energy state to a "STALL, STALL" alert or a flashing red light is akin to planning to avoid obstacles in your car by the cue of the airbag deployment, rather than the cues from looking out the window.

The sad fact is that when a loss of SA occurs, recovery of the split between expectation and reality arises from the outside inwards, from the woods not the trees, from the overview to the detail. Awareness of flight dynamics and the response of the aircraft to flight controls is the absolute first part of flight training for very good reason; detail inputs are beneficial to accuracy but not to global comprehension of flight state.

When we train stalls in the simulator, we train to BS canned, staged conditions, that (and I apologise to all of the TRI/TCE's in advance of the following comment but....) minimises the training value fo the exercise. a stall or loss of control condition in the real world occurs from a loss of SA, and that is necessary to be the case to gain greatest training value. The logical outcome from my heretical position is that recovery training needs to concentrate on big brush items, not detail, "lipstick on the pig" stuff. Every aircraft (other than helicopters) will fly given half a chance. AF447 would have recovered had the pilots taken their hands off the controls, and placed the thrust levers to idle. Same applies to a Pitts, 747, and even most odd ball B/A aircraft like the F4, if the recovery is commenced early enough, at the point where the aircraft stops responding in the expected manner to the pilots control input.

The FAA improved their position on stall recognition and recovery, but the manner in which we do the training today remains less than optimal. Flight crew should not be afraid of stalls, they are embarrassing when inadvertent, but they are just another part of the envelope of the aircraft, and our training acts to increase anxiety in what is just another part of driving the plane. Reliance on warnings and instruments that have shown themselves to be prone to error is a lousy basis to keep the blue side on top reliably.

The French legal system has spoken, and it appears to be a limited scope of causation that has been determined to be causal in 447. The crews competence is in part the consequence of organisational and regulatory training and qualification standards and their efficacy. The decision on the removal and replacement of a known compromised sensor system was also the result of factors beyond the crew who were confronted with the consequence with an adverse outcome.

"Tout commence en mystique et finit en politique." Pťguy

172_driver
11th Sep 2019, 16:31
The FAA improved their position on stall recognition and recovery, but the manner in which we do the training today remains less than optimal. Flight crew should not be afraid of stalls, they are embarrassing when inadvertent, but they are just another part of the envelope of the aircraft, and our training acts to increase anxiety in what is just another part of driving the plane. Reliance on warnings and instruments that have shown themselves to be prone to error is a lousy basis to keep the blue side on top reliably.

Nothing to add. Superbly written, that's all :ok:

TriStar_drvr
11th Sep 2019, 17:30
https://cimg9.ibsrv.net/gimg/pprune.org-vbulletin/1500x2000/img_20190717_214352607_44e08fc92d4ceaf86a2ffbcf0a4f861c83c33 fb2.jpg
This is from my recent training. Although the Sim obviously cannot replicate the G loads of these maneuvers, it does record what loads do occur during recovery. The Sim has been modified to replicate the buffeting as the aircraft approaches a full stall. It will rattle your teeth. Overall a very enlightening training session.

cwatters
11th Sep 2019, 17:45
Seems to me this is an important passage in the SN...

Training should focus on a flight crew’s ability to prevent an undesirable aircraft state by identifying and recovering from any out-of-trim state, particularly during high workload and dynamic situations in all phases of flight. This should include pilot awareness of aircraft trim condition, intervention strategies and techniques when the automated system is not performing correctly...

I agree that hand flying and training in old manual aircraft is beneficial but perhaps the folks that design and run training sessions in sims need to be more creative with the failure modes they can throw at pilots.

neilki
11th Sep 2019, 23:42
https://cimg8.ibsrv.net/gimg/pprune.org-vbulletin/1500x2000/img_3284_2de5784f00c76274fe9aa8dae371e7895f513c6a.jpg
UPRT in a 320neo....

fdr
12th Sep 2019, 01:03
I would contend that 3*drivers image (post #89) is a similar setup as neilki's (post#91) insofar as they are upsets arising from an unusual attitude commencement. 3*'s in particular is not likely the consequence of a stall event in the sim, resulting in the attitude. It is correct that some time ago the 737 sim did have tweaking to the aerosim model, and that has resulted in a more realistic stall and post stall behaviour. Buffet in the stall of the B737 specifically is most pronounced at the low altitude stall cases, either clean or configured for landing; the high altitude stalls and accelerated stalls are quite gentle in comparison. High speed buffet is a fairly high frequency vibration that increases in intensity dependent on increasing speed and g load/aoa. High altitude stalls give a mild low frequency buffet that is not as unpleasant as the stall buffet at low to mid altitude and configured for landing. The 737 meets the rolloff requirements of FAR in almost all cases, unless the slats have been poorly rigged, then a rolloff at the break or just before the break can be quite interesting.

Years ago, while evaluating a 3rd party TCI and his students, the NG crew kept on planting the box in the dirt following an encounter into an aggressive microburst model. While they were recuperating and licking their wounds, I ran a quick QTG eval, and then ran the same scenario. The off axis entry into the microburst was causing a pitch up, which is correct, and a yaw towards the center of the microburst, which is also correct. The net result was the crew were adding a pitch up with the initial warning, which was taking the box into a stall while there was a lot of yaw rate, and the box was doing a 180 roll and being planted. If the crew respected the PLI (aoa limit) or kept the ball in the center, the box behaved impeccably. The TCI wanted to fault the box for it's behaviour, until he was debriefed as to the QTG eval and the importance of aoa and yaw management in a stall. Again, the sim even in the out of balance stall was providing reasonable modelling, and was still recoverable, but it needed to be flown to recover from what should be an expected outcome of a stall with a yaw rate on. This sim model was in stark contrast to another 3 engine model that could be fully stalled and would climb in stall at 6000FPM, whereas in the certification testing the plane had demonstrated normal stall break.

The difference between the actual aircraft to the simulator is the continued period of a load experienced at the seat, and the intensity of the buffet that can be encountered. In most cases the real aircraft will leave you in no doubt as to the fact you have stalled the aircraft at the lower levels.

The observations above come from a rather misspent career. Flight crew use SOPs and the FCOM/POH to avoid getting into these areas, which is highly appreciated by the SLF and their families. The planes however behave like a variant of a Cessna 150 out on the edges of the envelope. They certainly behave better than the PT-22 in a stall following Hap Arnolds design input into what had been a beautiful design.

ironbutt57
12th Sep 2019, 04:19
Or you could just insist everyone spends a couple years tooling around in a knackered old turbo prob with no Ap! Sorry that bus has already departed, hasn't it!


people onboard that bus learned how to fly, unlike these MPL wonders

Centaurus
12th Sep 2019, 06:04
different High altitude stalls give a mild low frequency buffet that is not as unpleasant as the stall buffet at low to mid altitude and configured for landing.
Now that is very interesting because one B737 Classic full flight Level D simulator I have observed, has entirely different stall warning characteristics to that you have described. This simulator is about 25 years old and has passed regular fidelity checks by the regulator. As the stall approaches at 37,000 ft and well before stick shaker actuation the buffet in this simulator is very marked indeed and is absolutely un-mistakeable.

On the other hand, when configured in the landing configuration and approaching the stall below 1000 feet on an ILS, there is no pre-stall buffet at all - only the stick shaker shortly before the stall.
The FCTM states a stall warning should be readily identifiable by the pilot, either by initial buffet indication or an artificial indication (stick shaker).

In our operation this landing configuration approach to the stall is designed to replicate as realistically as possible the Turkish Airlines crash on final to Amsterdam where the captain's radio altimeter gave erroneous readings which in turn caused both autothrottles to close to idle without pilot input. In that accident, the crew failed to take corrective action until too late to be effective..

. the difference between the actual aircraft to the simulator is the continued period of a load experienced at the seat, and the intensity of the buffet that can be encountered. In most cases the real aircraft will leave you in no doubt as to the fact you have stalled the aircraft at the lower levels.

Your point is well taken. But how does one explain that in the case of at least one simulator (737) there is no initial pre-stall buffet warning in the landing configuration (hence the stick shaker requirement). Would buffet be apparent in a more up to date simulator? How should the simulator instructor explain this apparent anomaly to the candidate he is training for a type rating? Is it all about fidelity of "old" simulators getting worse with age?

During annual or scheduled fidelity checks it is apparent that although clean approaches to stall at 15,000 feet may be a fidelity test regulatory requirement in some States, this writer has yet to see a fidelity test on the approach to stall in the landing configuration at sea level. After all it would be extremely unlikely to have a airline fidelity test pilot current on various stall configurations in the actual aircraft. It simply would never happen for all the obvious reasons.

It does make one wonder the how reliable are some simulator stall recovery fidelity checks that in theory require the testing officer to be knowledgeable and current yet he may never have stalled the real aircraft.

fdr
12th Sep 2019, 06:51
The FCTM states a stall warning should be readily identifiable by the pilot, either by initial buffet indication or an artificial indication (stick shaker).


O wise sleeve valve one, the stall of the 737 is quite compliant with 25.207. The stall warning buffet occurs prior to the break in all cases. The stall warning may occur before or after buffet depending on the setup of the aircraft and the configuration that it is in, however occurs before the break. The aircraft meets 25.203 stall characteristics, however if the slats are not properly rigged, it can give a considerable roll off which is manageable. Accelerated stall at FL370, the buffet occurs before the stall warning. Taking the event to a full break takes some altitude, but is not uncomfortable. level unaccelerated stall at altitude are quite benign. That is for the aircraft, -300,-400 to -500 series. The Classic is not much fun above MMO, the amount of vibration from the ailerons is considerable, enough to give visible vibration of the wingtip from the flight deck, from below MMO dependent on the aircraft condition to above MMO. Up to 0.85 the classic still behaved OK, other than those examples that had vibration from the ailerons below MMO. Above 0.85 there is a noticeable reduction in CL/aoa. The NG fares better at high speed in general, particular without the winglets, the aileron design is better and not as sensitive to shock interaction as the classic is.

One loss took the type to an extreme dive speed, (way above Vdive) at which point there was evidence in the flight data that aileron reversal was occurring. The situation that confronted that crew (and unfortunate pax), was self imposed and was already well beyond recovery at that point. Shortly after that the aircraft started to shed important bits, much beyond what would be reasonably expected. (important safety tip: don't pull breakers airborne or try to determine the limits of the system knowledge that the crew have).

The SLUF is not my personal favourite Boeing by a long shot, but it has been successful for the CFO's, CEO's and shareholders. The later variants are overrepresented in runway excursions, approach speeds are higher than would be desirable IMHO, and technology to improve the lift generation of the flaps exists, but has not been implemented.

Centaurus
12th Sep 2019, 14:50
FDR,
Fascinating and thank you for your erudite explanation of what happens in the real aircraft rather than a simulator.

Centaurus
14th Sep 2019, 15:08
fdr. Check your PM's 15 Sept

fdr
14th Sep 2019, 16:19
FDR,
Fascinating and thank you for your erudite explanation of what happens in the real aircraft rather than a simulator.

You are too kind, sir. "Verbose" could be a simile for "Erudite", for which I apologise, this is my industry, for better or worse, and discourse is at least provocative to opinions.

The take home from my observations is that the 737 is, in the end, just an aircraft. It handles adequately, I have never been fond of its ailerons, but that is a personal conceit, CEO's/CFO's love them. The stall behaviour is benign, and to a point, operations beyond VMO/MMO are reasonable. Older aircraft, there are some I have not been prepared to take to the normal limit without rework. The NG is a competent cockpit, and the plane does a good job. I don't see that the MAX will be much different, once we have returned to normal, and learn what needs to be learnt. The manufacturer has not done itself any favours in the MCAS saga, they should have opened up from day one, and engaged with stakeholders rather than attempting to limit blowback to their legal standing. When understood and trained, remembering the lessons forgotten from the early years of these aircraft, the manual trim issue can be mitigated.

The events around the MAX have been unfortunate. The industry was quite prepared to blame the crews, the OEM did, the FAA did, elected officials of the US congress did, and many voices on this forum were strident in their accusations on the crews competence. That is disappointing, but in keeping with what occurs routinely in this "enlightened" industry, one that spends so much time with corporate policy statements, and pledges to honesty and integrity, of valuing the employers, and assurance of "Just Culture". IMHO, "Just Culture" is to be found on the label of yoghurt containers, but remains lacking in our industry, from the regulators through the OEM's to the operators. We are diminished accordingly.

It's miller time.

misd-agin
15th Sep 2019, 02:17
Simulators in the past weren't certified to provide accurate post stall AOA performance. So saying anything about a simulator in the past and thinking that is how the airplane would respond doesn't work. Articles in AW&ST have stated that Boeing and Airbus have agreed to a generic narrow body stall simulator performance model. It is not necessarily an accurate depiction of the stall characteristics of any aircraft.

Mark in CA
18th Sep 2019, 13:27
I've seen this theme brought up in many threads on this board. Now the NY Times Magazine attaches it to the Lion Air and Ethiopia 737 Max crashes. I posted this in another thread:

NY Times Magazine: What Really Brought Down the Boeing 737 Max? (https://www.pprune.org/rumours-news/625605-ny-times-magazine-what-really-brought-down-boeing-737-max.html)

greeners
4th Oct 2019, 23:48
Do airliners routinely have AoA gauges? Is it something that is considered much during flying and approaches in particular?

Hey Bob. Couldn't help but smile at the question, perfectly valid though it is. Over the last six years in about twenty conferences and seminars around Europe on Flight Safety - and especially Upset Prevention and Recovery Training sessions - the debate is initiated: why don't airline pilots have easy access to an Alpha gauge? Mil guys mostly swear by them: flying alpha around the corner to final means that it's accurate and you don't have to do calculations about speeds based on your fuel weight, etc etc

And of course modern aircraft not only have alpha vanes, they drive all the translations into speed warnings on the PFD. It is possible to figure out what the alpha is with certain PFD settings, but for the main part commercial pilots are trained to follow flight directors and effectively be clueless about what is actually happening with the aircraft.

IMHO it is mostly engineers who argue that alpha is not necessary; I've also been told by OEMs that it would be 'too difficult' for commercial pilots...

The bottom line is that speed is only a proxy for alpha and a very large proportion of airline pilots that we fly during on-aircraft UPRT have to be taken back to basics in understanding how an aeroplane flies - especially with respect to the impact on alpha of relative airflow in a climb and a descent.

Just as an aside, if you buy a new Cessna 172 Skyhawk, it comes with an Alpha gauge included!

ironbutt57
5th Oct 2019, 03:48
Or you could just insist everyone spends a couple years tooling around in a knackered old turbo prob with no Ap! Sorry that bus has already departed, hasn't it!

well thats one way to practice and polish basic flying skills isnt it...you see to have a bug up your ass (head) when it comes to this...what's your problem with ex-turboprop guys n gals??