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New eruption starting in Iceland? (merged)

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New eruption starting in Iceland? (merged)

Old 25th May 2011, 22:51
  #261 (permalink)  
 
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Lord Spandex masher

How many passengers lives are you going to risk while you do this?
Your quote !!! If I loose just one life with my attitude as you put it! Then i will be the first in the history of aviation to loose a life due to ash as to date none have been lost in millions of flights and covering an era when there were no sophisticated systems. Then it was all just pure piloting and common sense an attribute that seems in short supply nowadays.

Why dont you put your efforts into arguing for closing down masses of airspace in the bird migration season. Now there there is a proven and demonstrable risk.

The Met office have updated the long range forecast this evening and Friday now doesn't look so problematic. The forecasts I posted earlier are now out of date.
Surprise!!! surprise!!! and we are supposed to have confidence in this so called science

The press have been having a field day with charts printed of these predictions and doom and gloom of how passenegers holdays and flights will be ruined!!!

Pace

Last edited by Pace; 25th May 2011 at 23:21.
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Old 25th May 2011, 22:57
  #262 (permalink)  
 
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Glad to see this is all blowing over at last - just hope I've retired before the next debacle and the lack of preparedness by all!
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Old 25th May 2011, 23:29
  #263 (permalink)  
 
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Dear Pace,

If I loose just one life with my attitude as you put it! Then i will be the first in the history of aviation to loose a life due to ash as to date none have been lost in millions of flights
Yes you would. However, there have been many lives within a gnats cock of being lost because of volcanic ash encounters. You're willing to put your passengers in that position deliberately?

You do also realise that BAW009 lost twenty thousand feet trying to recover? So do tell us brave aviator what would happen had they lost all engines at nineteen thousand feet. Splat. Luckily that hasn't happened...yet.

Simply stating that no lives have ever been lost due to VA encounters doesn't make it an intelligent thing to do.
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Old 25th May 2011, 23:53
  #264 (permalink)  
 
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Lord Spandex Masher

You do also realise that BAW009 lost twenty thousand feet trying to recover? So do tell us brave aviator what would happen had they lost all engines at nineteen thousand feet. Splat. Luckily that hasn't happened...yet.

We have all seen pictures of Volcanic source eruptions. Massive CB like mountains in the sky!

There was a superb shot of one of these eruptions with a single engines PA28aircraft flying by.

No pilot would fly into such a mass as without doubt such dense ash would stop his engines.

I have no problems with that! I do have problems with concentrations which are so low that they are not visible to the naked eye in the form of ash mist or cloud.

Would such low levels which are categorised as high levels by the authorities down a jet? IMO NO!! could such low levels shorten an engine life? possibley yes?

Is that a safety descison to fly in INVISBLE ash! IMO NO!

is that an economic financial decision? Possibly yes!

IMO there has to be some common sense and less of this burocratic nonsense and self protectionism nvolved.

As to my flight today to the South of France? back at FL380 beautiful weather over france, some benign looking cloud over southern UK. Windy but good flight, lovely weather and engines happy I doubt I will be the first in aviation history to loose a life flying in ASH!

Last edited by Pace; 26th May 2011 at 00:07.
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Old 26th May 2011, 01:35
  #265 (permalink)  
 
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Kazzie,

From what I gather, any danger areas that are created due to ash start from the surface, regardless of the fact that the ash cloud may be FL200+. Techincally, that means flying through a danger area. (Unless this has now been changed? It's what I was briefed on at work a couple of days ago)
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Old 26th May 2011, 02:24
  #266 (permalink)  
 
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At least some deviations in northern Canada as well in the Baffin Island area due to some of the ash flowing westward. It altered my flight plan today.
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Old 26th May 2011, 06:08
  #267 (permalink)  
 
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Pace,

I think most if not all pilots here know the engines are not going to just stop when flying through even a red sector of ash. There is a big difference between that and the ash cloud BAW009 flew through.

My concern though is that by flying through a low density area of ash I am causing a small amount of damage to the turbine sections, bearings, small amounts of glass stuck to the blades etc
After the days work, then what ?........I hand it over to a colleague to do the next shift.

Can a quick inspection by an engineer detect these small amounts of damage without the time for a bore-scope ? I doubt it.

I know where your coming from Pace but it's the hidden danger that concerns me.
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Old 26th May 2011, 06:40
  #268 (permalink)  
 
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Pace, I think most if not all pilots here know the engines are not going to just stop when flying through even a red sector of ash. There is a big difference between that and the ash cloud BAW009 flew through. My concern though is that by flying through a low density area of ash I am causing a small amount of damage to the turbine sections, bearings, small amounts of glass stuck to the blades etc After the days work, then what ?........I hand it over to a colleague to do the next shift. Can a quick inspection by an engineer detect these small amounts of damage without the time for a bore-scope ? I doubt it. I know where your coming from Pace but it's the hidden danger that concerns me.
not only that but I SUSPECT that it is the case that with volcanic ash that there will be a concentration at which it's still safe to fly but not economic. In that situation it seems right, to me, that airlines can choose not to fly even though to fly would be safe. Planes aren't cheap and to chose to expose some to conditions known to cause damage (which may or may not be at a higher concentration than the current red zone) may be an expensive decision. On the 'test flights' I'd feel they were intended more for science than PR if they had instruments measuring the (small) levels of ash they were flying through. The ash isn't going to be uniform through the red zone (or any other) and ISTM that what is needed is an accurate measure of the concentration flown through and the subsequent damage (or lack of thereof). I'd have thought only by calibrating the conditions flown through with the effect on the plane can sensible limits be set. Knowing only one (and AFAIK the 'test flight' are only measuring the latter) doesn't seem very useful IMVHO
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Old 26th May 2011, 06:43
  #269 (permalink)  
 
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The ash cloud id mapped on here - a convenient way of following its progress



Flightradar24.com - Live Flight Tracker! it works best in firefox
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Old 26th May 2011, 06:49
  #270 (permalink)  
 
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No this is not the ash cloud. This is a simulation.
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Old 26th May 2011, 07:07
  #271 (permalink)  
 
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Now, instead of a very coarse contour plot, labelled with emotive terms like "low", "medium" and "high", why not produce a fine grained plot with many different numerical values and then allow airlines to generate a safety case relating to the level that they are prepared to accept (if any of this is really necessary vice "see/sense and avoid", in any case)?
The Norwegian met office have a graphic showing more levels, rather than just low, medium and high. Don't know how accurate they are though.

Forside - met.no
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Old 26th May 2011, 07:31
  #272 (permalink)  
 
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He does exist! I've had the dubious pleasure of taking part in the telecons of the EACCC over the last few days - and assure you that Joe Sultana was playing a key role in each and every one.
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Old 26th May 2011, 07:32
  #273 (permalink)  
 
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Brilliant, thanks wetfeet!

I think this conclusively shows that it's actually very straightforward to draw detailed contour plots (and that 1970s style arguments about computing power are a bit old hat).

Trust the Norwegians to quietly and competently do it better and more precisely. They say: "Dette er tilleggsinformasjon til VAAC-bulletinene, som utstedes av Volcanic Ash Advisory. SNAP-modellen gir en beregning lenger fram i tid, fram til 66 timer, samt střrre opplřsning i tid og rom" <translating> "This is additional information to the VAAC bulletins, which are published by Volcanic Ash Advisory. The SNAP model calculates further forward in time, up to 66 hours, and greater resolution in time and space".

So, the Norwegians have a different model from the UK - I hope someone's talking to them to draw on their experience and not doing the traditional "not invented here". In fact, wouldn't it be wonderful if someone (from, oooh, let's say the regulators) called all the chemists, meteorologists, atmospheric physicists, jet engine engineers, flight ops professionals, etc. together in a multi-disciplinary team to sort this out once and for all. And, it's no good saying "that's TFD" - if you can't finish don't start, with "zero tolerance", which was never actually "zero" but a 0.2 mg limit because that was chosen as the model cutoff (quite arbitrarily, as far as I can tell)...

For the scientifically inclined, here's plenty to chew on:

http://www.skybrary.aero/bookshelf/books/1162.pdf

including a paper: "IMPACT OF VOLCANIC ASH FROM 15 DECEMBER 1989 REDOUBT VOLCANO ERUPTION ON GE CF6-80C2 TURBOFAN ENGINES". This states that the KLM Redoubt encounter was at a range of 150 nm and that the estimated ash concentration was 2 grams per m3 i.e. 500 times denser than what is currently being claimed to be dangerous.

Last edited by Herman the Navigator; 26th May 2011 at 08:07.
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Old 26th May 2011, 08:04
  #274 (permalink)  
 
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The ash plume has resided, looks like the eruption in Grímsvötn 2011 is over. There is however some ash floating around in the air, might cause local disruption here and there in the coming hours, over Iceland and elsewhere but that should be the end of it.

Today, there is glorious weather in Reykjavik, sunny and ca 12C. The darkness encroaching on the city and the whole of Southern Iceland has disappeared and the mood of the country improved
Sigrún Davíđsdóttir's Icelog

Trust the Norwegians to quietly and competently do it better and more precisely.
What exactly would showing a few spots of clean air surrounded by ash achieve?
Last time I looked, the purpose of flying is to get from A to B, not circle in a 10 mile patch of clean air.
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Old 26th May 2011, 08:12
  #275 (permalink)  
 
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Bullet

I understand your arguement too. We talk about Volcanos and ash as if it is some sort of new phenomina which has hit us and which scientists are quickly trying to find a solution to to save us from this new threat.

Infact the problem has been around in various corners of the globe for as long as aviation has existed.

The only difference from the 60s and 70s is that back then no one would have known whether they had flown through invisible ash and probably wouldnt have cared anyway.

Nowadays we do care or should I say the masses of government departments who see a new target for their attention care as do our huge liability driven society.
The science is far from perfect as shown by numerous non aviation scares in the past. (we are all going to die from bird flu etc and all the media hype surrounding those episodes)

There is a risk in flying. Proven safety holes have to be identified and plugged.
Against that there also has to be a level of common sense or the industry gets bogged down by burocracy, huge expenses and overregulation.

Unlike many threat areas which are killers but which we seem to accept and live with to date throughout the history of aviation ASH has not killed anyone.

We have to trust the science and that is the big ?mark

Pace
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Old 26th May 2011, 08:12
  #276 (permalink)  
 
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Good! So, what happens now? Do the regulators just shrug their shoulders and say, "nothing more for us to do". Or will they take very positive action to get a proper resolution? Or will the politicians force them to take their responsibilities seriously?

Who knows?

Last edited by Herman the Navigator; 26th May 2011 at 08:29.
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Old 26th May 2011, 08:26
  #277 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by peter we View Post
What exactly would showing a few spots of clean air surrounded by ash achieve?
Last time I looked, the purpose of flying is to get from A to B, not circle in a 10 mile patch of clean air.

Have we touched a raw nerve?

My argument for a more detailed contour plot was that it would allow those who wish to to make a safety case for areas where concentrations are >4mg per m3. At present this limit is "The Edge of the World" (quite appropriate when you think about the "science" involved) and no one can possibly make a safety case (as the regulators claim they have been expecting to receive) for areas that could have a concentration slightly above 4 mg per m3 or any arbitrarily large concentration >4mg per m3.
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Old 26th May 2011, 08:56
  #278 (permalink)  
 
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Statistically the biggest danger Vulcan poses to aviation has been CFIT and not ash.

Closing airspace is an overreaction to a low probability risk. It creates unnecessary travel disruption and falling airline shares.

When you over exaggerate risk who gets scared and who benefits?
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Old 26th May 2011, 09:04
  #279 (permalink)  
 
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With the best will in the world, what use is a contour plot operationally, when a simple graphic will in fact do, and be much easier to read? The only thing the contours and colours add is prettyness for those who don't need it, detail for those who need it! If you can't fly in concentrations of ash above 400micrograms, then thats all you need to know! People always want flashy pictures.... :P

What you need to remember though, and what has been mentioned numerous times, is that meteorology is an inexact science (its not bad science in any way, but the atmosphere is a complex beastie!) I don't know what those Norwegian charts represent - I don't read Norwegian and I can't see anything other than a single image! However the dispersal pattern of whatever it represents doesn't look too dissimilar to those on the Met Office VAAC charts. Some agencies will produce much more "optimistic" charts, and others much more "pessimistic". Just because one chart shows you what you want to see now, doesn't mean it will show you what you want to see later - you have to accept that the atmosphere changes dynamically, and that each model run will be different.

and if it helps, the meteorological community do talk to each other, and are highly collaborative.

and finally, every Met organisation in the world is most likely capable of producing pretty contoured output like the Norwegian Met Office.

Last edited by Postman Plod; 26th May 2011 at 09:21.
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Old 26th May 2011, 09:10
  #280 (permalink)  
 
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And this lovely notion of " no-one has died from flying in Volcanic Ash" is typical Dead Body Economics. have you an acceptable number in your head ...would 200 be a good number or bad number?

'Dead Body Economics', as you call them, are the basis of all risk management calculations where that activity has the potential to be fatal. To be brutal the 'acceptable' number is the point where the costs associated with fatalities become unsustainable. For instance 2,500 road deaths a year is clearly 'acceptable' in the UK or we wouldn't be able to drive. This doesn't stop us from trying to lower the number though.

If the acceptable number was zero then we wouldn't allow people to drive cars, swim, ski or any number of potentially fatal activities.
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