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French Concorde crash

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French Concorde crash

Old 7th Dec 2010, 23:50
  #161 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by exeng
That engine was producing thrust.
As I recall, it was barely producing thrust by the time they cleared the threshold and would have continued to decrease to practically none in a matter of seconds. The "controversy", if you can call it that, was purely that the F/E broke protocol by shutting it down without an order from the Captain.

The CVR indicates that they believed they were dealing with an engine fire at first, and I'd be willing to speculate that the Captain would have been fully focused on trying to maintain control as (unknown to him) the electronics and flight surfaces began to disintegrate - so the F/E made an executive decision to shut the engine down and pull the fire handle.

So to answer the original question of "was it producing significant thrust", the answer would have to be "unlikely", and the answer to the implied question of whether the outcome would have been affected would have to be "highly unlikely".

Ex-Cargo-Clown : There's no evidence that the strip itself hit the wing - the damage was caused by fragments of tyre striking the underside of the fuel tank and the fuel itself punching a hole through it due to fluid dynamics. I'd be interested to hear how this would constitute a "cover-up" because - as has been pointed out by several people - EADS (i.e Airbus) were also assigned some blame.
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Old 8th Dec 2010, 00:06
  #162 (permalink)  
 
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Ex-Cargo-Clown : There's no evidence that the strip itself hit the wing - the damage was caused by fragments of tyre striking the underside of the fuel tank and the fuel itself punching a hole through it due to fluid dynamics. I'd be interested to hear how this would constitute a "cover-up" because - as has been pointed out by several people - EADS (i.e Airbus) were also assigned some blame.
Even better then, a piece of stainless steel would do exactly the same if not worse to the tyre, so why the concentrating on it being Ti rather than SS.

If it looks like a duck and quacks like a duck......
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Old 8th Dec 2010, 00:11
  #163 (permalink)  
 
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Tyre failure also caused the loss of a Swissair aircraft in the 1960s when it exploded after retraction and caused a catastrophic failure of the wing spar.

In my mind the Concorde prosecution was not the only dubious legal action taken by an aviation authority - the CAA prosecuted Captain Glen Stewart after he messed up a missed approach at Heathrow. A year later he committed suicide.

V1 is not a go/no go speed.
It is a reference speed in a balanced field take off - an engine failure at or below V1 will mean the aircraft should be able to stop within the runway (and associated stopway).
There have been many cases where a take off has been discontinued after V1 - rightly or wrongly.

Concorde had a directional control problem as well as the engine failure.
It rotated below VR and never attained V2 - if I remember correctly.
V2 is the engine out safety speed.
Despite the FO making several low speed calls speed was traded for altitude.
A swept wing stalls at approx. AOA of 45 degrees but has an exponential increase of drag with increase of AOA.

BA had a concord that had an engine go into reverse after lift off in the mid 70s - it passed over my house, at night, around 1000ft. My house was 35NM from LHR.
I believe the EngOut procedure was maintain V2 until 500ft, maintain 500ft until V?, maintain V? until 1500ft, maintain 1500ft until V??, climb at V??.
It crossed the Bristol channel at around 3000ft.

The point being on 3 engines at max TOW, with the gear up and cool tempr it's performance was marginal when flown at the correct speed; Gear down, engine out and below V2 no chance (unless it was flown in ground effect).

BEA had a Trident hit the approach lights during TO out of Malta at night with the stick shaker going - the captain flew it on radio altimeter in ground effect until he had burnt enough fuel and was able to accelerate to a normal flying speed.

It has surprised me that I have never seen a post re the decision to take an aircraft into the air when directional control has been lost????

Another observation - why did the CAA so quickly ground BA's Concords?

Did it have anything to do with the numerous AAIB reports of bits falling off and other incidents?

Were they waiting for an excuse?

And as the post regarding the French character traits as seen by the Anglo Saxons..... there are intelligent ones with flying ability and a sense of humour - I've met two!
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Old 8th Dec 2010, 00:30
  #164 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Ex Cargo Clown
...so why the concentrating on it being Ti rather than SS.
Read the preceding posts - it was a jerry-rigged part incorrectly fitted. I think the point is that if the part had been made of the correct material it would have been easier to fit correctly and would likely not have fallen off.

Originally Posted by blind pew
In my mind the Concorde prosecution was not the only dubious legal action taken by an aviation authority - the CAA prosecuted Captain Glen Stewart after he messed up a missed approach at Heathrow. A year later he committed suicide.
Apples and oranges - the French judicial system is automatically involved in air accidents in France in a way that it is not in the UK. I'm struggling to see the connection with the Stewart case - tragic though that was - where the CAA handled the investigation because the AAIB were fully committed to Kegworth.

It has surprised me that I have never seen a post re the decision to take an aircraft into the air when directional control has been lost????
I'm pretty sure it was covered in another thread many years ago, but I think the decision to get airborne had to do with being unable to stop within the remaining runway length (at the end of which was the main road into the airport), coupled with the fact that they weren't aware that they'd lost directional control - they thought they had an engine fire.

Another observation - why did the CAA so quickly ground BA's Concords?
Better safe than sorry. It's pretty easy to ground a type that only has 12 airframes in service.
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Old 8th Dec 2010, 00:58
  #165 (permalink)  
 
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it was a jerry-rigged part incorrectly fitted
I don't see the BEA report suggesting anything beyond the material used not being to specifications. It is mentioned that an adjacent wear strip was impacting and distorting the strip when cowls were closed. Previous posts here on the matter seem based on the erroneous assumption that the strip should have been made of aluminum.
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Old 8th Dec 2010, 02:08
  #166 (permalink)  
 
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Blame a piece of metal, a tack, chewing gum, whatever FOD you want........the pilots chose to 'GO' and rotated with a fire, rather then pull the levers and stand on the brakes.
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Old 8th Dec 2010, 02:40
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wings

You make a conclusion that "There should not have been a trial".

One cannot know that without the Trial taking place. An indictment is not a proof, and no finding can prevent a Trial from occurring, that is up to the Jurisdiction, (French, in this case).

If you don't like uncertainty, you should practice in Appeals!!

So, on the contrary, I believe wholeheartedly in the Trial's necessity.

bear
In particular:

You make a conclusion that "There should not have been a trial".
No, I emphatically do not. It was you who did, not me. Read your own posts.
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Old 8th Dec 2010, 03:26
  #168 (permalink)  
 
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Thanks DW

Will take your word on the takeoff decision. Too bad the winds were not enough for ATC to switch runways. Could have been an entirely different story altogether.

That's a can of worms, because it's central to an alternative theory doing the rounds on the internet, but neither the BEA or AAIB people concerned seemed to think it had any real significance.
I'm guessing it had a purpose of some sort. Haven't really heard of the alternative theories other than this spacer seemed significant to many familiar with the case.
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Old 8th Dec 2010, 03:53
  #169 (permalink)  
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You definitely say that I believe "there should have been no Trial". I said no such thing.

Your conclusion as to what I "Think" is incorrect.

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Old 8th Dec 2010, 04:21
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Cool

Hi,

Read the preceding posts - it was a jerry-rigged part incorrectly fitted. I think the point is that if the part had been made of the correct material it would have been easier to fit correctly and would likely not have fallen off.
When you read all the experts reports (at the trial) it's appears that this part was rigged incorrectly and was to fall one day or another made of the good or bad material.
The holes in the receiving body and in the part were not manufactured with the state of art .... (spacing .. number of .. etc)
(it was no one of the spare parts and so was manufactured on situ )
Also the mechanic added some bonding product (and it's appears to be not a practise in the maintenance book)

I don't see the BEA report suggesting anything beyond the material used not being to specifications. It is mentioned that an adjacent wear strip was impacting and distorting the strip when cowls were closed. Previous posts here on the matter seem based on the erroneous assumption that the strip should have been made of aluminum.
Yes .. it is a know problem with this engine .. and this wear strip was to be replaced many time .. cause .. it's a wear strip
Also looong discussion during the trial about the problem ...

Last edited by jcjeant; 8th Dec 2010 at 04:35.
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Old 8th Dec 2010, 07:37
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"I've never seen a reason given for why it might have been on fire before hitting the strip. Is there one?"
Yes ,"Pencil Whipping" the tire pressures on the line check,Along with wobbly wheel from missing spacer.
Also someone mentioned," the Concord had no design defects, How does that jibe with this,Continental is the ideal scapegoat. Besides the offense, in French eyes, of being foreign, a small titanium strip fallen from a Continental plane taking off before the Concorde was found on the runway. This, French investigators -- often loyal former employees of Air France -- conveniently concluded, slashed the Concord's tire and caused the accident. Case closed, with victims' families already paid generous financial settlements and sworn to silence.

That overlooks a few awkward things pointed out by Continental's lawyers and a dogged investigative reporter for a French TV channel. Like the plane being overloaded with baggage. Like a wheel spacer that, due to an Air France maintenance error, was missing from the left main gear, leaving it skewed. (Air France itself, whose careless maintenance was noted even by French investigators, is bumptiously suing Continental in the trial. Malicious gossips wonder why it's not a defendant instead.) Like testimony by a number of reliable eyewitnesses, including airport firemen and the veteran captain of Jacques Chirac's taxiing plane, that the Concorde caught fire several hundred yards before it could have struck the titanium strip.

But the most damning argument against Concorde is its record of near disasters. "French civil aviation authorities should have stopped Concorde service years ago," argues Olivier Metzner, Continental's lead lawyer. "They wanted to protect the image of France it projected." If the Paris disaster was Concord's first and only fatal crash, facts emerging in the current trial make clear that many passengers are lucky to be alive today: from 1976 to 2000 they unwittingly survived no fewer than 57 tire-related incidents. Thirty-two blowouts damaged the aircraft's structure, engines, or hydraulics, and six resulted in penetration of one or more fuel tanks.

The worst, uncannily like the Paris crash, occurred in Washington on June 14, 1979. Air France Flight 054 to Paris blew two tires on its left main gear on takeoff from Dulles airport, hurling rubber and wheel rim debris at the left wing and engines. After a frantic passenger practically forced a crew member to look through his window at a 12-square-foot hole in the wing, the flight crew barely managed a landing at Dulles with Jet A-1 fuel spewing from a dozen holes in fuel tanks, engine damage, severed electrical cables, and loss of two out of three hydraulic systems.

The near-catastrophes continued. James B. King, chairman of the National Transportation Safety Board, wrote to his French counterpart on November 9, 1981, expressing his "serious concern" about "the repetitive nature of these incidents." Besides the tire problems, Concord's occasionally lost parts of their elevators and rudders in flight. In 1998 the Federal Aviation Agency, noting "an unsafe condition" might exist on the Olympus engines that could result in shutdown or fire, ordered special inspections. As the resulting study warned presciently, "A major technical event would probably end Concorde operation."
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Old 8th Dec 2010, 08:25
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You definitely say that I believe "there should have been no Trial". I said no such thing.
Your conclusion as to what I "Think" is incorrect.
bearfoil
Please explain your post number 139 which says inter alia:

Nothing of any conclusive nature rising to acceptable thresholds for Criminal prosecution exists here, IMO.
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Old 8th Dec 2010, 09:22
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http://www.1001crash.com/index-page-...crash-164.html

Re loss of directional control on the runway - view image of soot trail on the runway.

There have been several take off abandons after V1 - some successful and others not.

The pilot handling should have realised that it wasn't a simple failure as he couldn't keep the aircraft on the runway.

An engine out, gear down and rotating way b4 Vr there was very little chance of continued flight.

It is always better to crash in control than not, better still don't crash at all.
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Old 8th Dec 2010, 11:12
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blind pew:

The soot trail indicates the path both before and after the aircraft got into the air - it would have been entirely reasonable for the Captain to assume that the loss of directional stability on the ground was due to the tyre burst and elect to get airborne. Once in the air the crew got an indication of an engine fire, which - they believed - was their primary problem right up until the end. If it had been just a burst tyre and an engine fire, they would have had ample time and thrust to make it to Le Bourget, which was again indicated by the CVR as their intended course of action. Unfortunately it is unlikely they were ever aware of the full scale of their predicament.

Golden Rivit:

I have not the words. Let's start with the fact that the court found EADS (part French, remember...) partially responsible and work forward from there.
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Old 8th Dec 2010, 11:38
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Two things greatly concern me about this bizarre decision.

Firstly, I believe the aircraft "collected" a bit of airfield lighting and grass due to going "off piste", I'm pretty sure Concorde had enought rudder/NWS authority to cope with assymetric thrust, so that was probably the spacer = AF fault

Secondly, I'm no Concorde pilot, but I do know Delta wings don't stall, they just run out of lift so to speak, so I would love to know why you would allow speed to decay so quickly whilst climbing to 200ft. I'd be happy with a V/S of 1 per hour if needs be to maintain speed. And if they saw the speed get to the point whereas you were going to plummet to the ground, trade off altitude for speed and stick it in a field. A controlled crash is better than an uncontrolled one. = AF fault.
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Old 8th Dec 2010, 11:48
  #176 (permalink)  

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exeng:
according to the tapes the F/E shut down the engine with a fire warning before the Captain asked for the engine to be shutdown.
but certainly the F/E shut down an engine producing thrust before any command from the Captain...
...That action by the F/E was not an action I would have expected from any F/E in another airline that operated the aircraft.
Rubbish. You're just citing numerous article from the gutter press and some posters with an agenda and I'm surprised that you did not read the report... because it's French, right ?
This is first the French original text :
"A 14 h 43 min 24,8 s, l.OMN annonce « coupe le moteur 2 ». Dans la même seconde, le
commandant de bord appelle la procédure feu réacteur. Moins de deux secondes plus tard, on entend un bruit que l'analyse spectrale et l'examen des sélecteurs HP ont montré être dû à la manette de puissance amenée en butée ralenti
"
...and the English explanation text : "The exceptional environment described above quite naturally led the FE to ask to shut down the engine. This was immediately confirmed by the Captain’s calling for the engine fire procedure. This engine had in fact practically been at idle power for several seconds and the fire alarm was sounding. The engine was therefore shut down following the “engine fire” procedure after having run for twelve seconds at low power. It is important to note that the Concorde Flight Manual requires an immediate reaction by the crew in case of a red alarm"

blind pew :
V1 is not a go/no go speed.
please read the official definition of V1 before you make a fool of yourself :
"2.1.2. Decision Speed: V1
JAR 25.107 Subpart B FAR 25.107 Subpart B
V1 is the maximum speed at which the crew can decide to reject the takeoff,
and is ensured to stop the aircraft within the limits of the runway.
"

Concorde had a directional control problem as well as the engine failure.
Rubbish. There was a thrust asymetry, therefore some directional control problems the crew coped rather well with until the destruction of the elevons (?) on the left side.

It has surprised me that I have never seen a post re the decision to take an aircraft into the air when directional control has been lost????
It's because you're not a pilot who has dicussed all sorts of possible occurences : here the exploded tyre was reducing his acceleration and causing him all sorts of directional problems ; plus at that speed, braking on a reduced number of brakes wasn't probably the best idea ; he's way past V1 so a greater acceleration should be possible airborne.
That's what the report stated in different terms than mine :"In
this exceptional and unknown environment, the decision to take off as soon as possible appears to have become compelling. The rate of the rotation also appears to confirm that the pilot was conscious of taking off at a speed below VR.
"

And as the post regarding the French character traits as seen by the Anglo Saxons..... there are intelligent ones with flying ability and a sense of humour - I've met two!
If that is what amounts to humour in your country, it's in a far direr state than I thought : prejudice, racism, xenophobia, arrogance...
Yes, go get laid, too !
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Old 8th Dec 2010, 11:52
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Originally Posted by Ex Cargo Clown
Firstly, I believe the aircraft "collected" a bit of airfield lighting and grass due to going "off piste", I'm pretty sure Concorde had enought rudder/NWS authority to cope with assymetric thrust, so that was probably the spacer = AF fault
See here:

Annexe 12

There wasn't any significant deviation from centreline until after the tyre burst. Added to which the aircraft had flown several times with the spacer missing and no significant issues were reported.

Have a look at that track and imagine what would have happened if he'd stayed on the ground (bearing in mind that at lift off he was near enough on 200 knots).
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Old 8th Dec 2010, 11:56
  #178 (permalink)  
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Yes, Thanks. I stated my opinion about the "Standard" of Proof not being met as an opinion, for what it may be worth. From that, you concluded that I believed that because of that opinion, I also believed there should have been no trial. This is not the case. A misunderstanding?? My original post had to do with post Trial findings, not the pre Trial "Foundation". Sorry.....

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Old 8th Dec 2010, 12:04
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Assymetric thrust and a tyre burst shouldn't bring give a track like that.

This looks like gross mishandling and then panic setting in resulting in a premature rotation and we know the rest.

Any SSC pilots want to comment on how easy she was to control in asymmetric conditions?

I'm not having it that the tyre burst caused this as you would actually create more drag on the port side, where the engine has failed.
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Old 8th Dec 2010, 12:16
  #180 (permalink)  
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bravo Lemurian

and I have to say again,

If some people here could just stick to Rumours and News
the tread would be much easier to read

without all their insinuations and "mad dog barking" too
 

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