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Malaysian Airlines MH370 contact lost

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Malaysian Airlines MH370 contact lost

Old 14th Mar 2014, 01:05
  #3001 (permalink)  
 
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Breaking news from WSJ suggesting that new ACARS data shows the aircraft may have flown up to 5 hours toward the Indian Ocean at cruising altitude.

Meanwhile other reports state that the United States Navy is now relocating a Destroyer to the Indian Ocean for the search.

Originally Posted by Wall Street Journal
Updated March 13, 2014 8:43 p.m. ET

Communication satellites received intermittent data "pings" from a missing Malaysia Airlines jet, giving the plane's location, speed and altitude for at least five hours after it disappeared from civilian radar screens, people briefed on the investigation said Thursday.

The final satellite ping was sent from over water, at what one of these people called a "normal" cruising altitude. The people declined to say where specifically the transmission originated, adding that it was unclear why the transmissions stopped. One possibility one person cited was that the system sending them had been disabled by someone on board.

The automatic pings, or attempts to link up with satellites operated by Inmarsat PLC, occurred a number of times after Malaysia Airlines Flight 370's last verified position, these people said, indicating that at least through those hours, the Boeing Co. 777 carrying 239 people remained intact and hadn't been destroyed in a crash, act of sabotage or explosion.

Malaysian Airlines said it hadn't received any such data.

If the plane remained airborne for that entire period it could have flown more than 2,200 nautical miles from its last confirmed position over the Gulf of Thailand, these people said.
Satellites Received 'Pings' on Location, Altitude From Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 for Hours After Jet Fell Off Radar - WSJ.com
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Old 14th Mar 2014, 01:07
  #3002 (permalink)  
 
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Would the "mumbled" communication between the MH370 crew and the Japan-bound B777, as the last reported contact, possibly indicate slow hypoxia?

Slow decompression leading to stealthy hypoxia seems by far, to me, the most likely event. Confused crew, gradually slipping into unconsciousness, make cockpit errors, turn off transponder accidentally, try to set return course, select wrong heading, along with incorrect reduced height setting - aircraft sets off flying steadily into the Indian Ocean until fuel exhaustion.
Many aviation people with extensive knowledge are emphatic that the transponder must have been turned off by a deliberate action.

It just happens by pure coincidence that the course the disoriented crew set, is into an area not covered by any radar, and their flight over the Malay peninsula isn't picked up by the Malaysian military, or dismissed as a radar return of no consequence.

The denials by the Malaysians are in line with what they do actually know - but the Americans know vast amounts that the Malaysians (or Chinese) don't know - and the Americans are not about to tell anyone what they do know.
One must keep in mind, it takes days to sort through logs, and decipher the right info from the vast amount of electronic noise.

Uncontrolled decompression - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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Old 14th Mar 2014, 01:16
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Evey Hammond link

https://www.mapbox.com/blog/flight-M...ts-from-space/
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Old 14th Mar 2014, 01:17
  #3004 (permalink)  
 
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Single point of failure

We spend a lot of time trying to eliminate single points of failure. We do this because many years of hard won and at times bitter experience have shown that single points of failure are weaknesses, and that redundancy intrinsically makes systems much less likely to fail.

When I fly in a helicopter, I sometimes think about the various single points of failure.

There is an enormous amount of redundancy built into modern airliners, and I applaud the efforts of engineers over the years.

There is still a major single point of failure. However unpleasant, we do need to consider this. Especially with several (widely accepted) precedents involving over recent years (and not counting 9/11 here).

Clearly we are all interested in this incident. To this discussion, we all bring our past experience, professional background, and personal biases and prejudices. A balanced discussion that attempts to integrate our differences and cancel out bias is most likely to lead to the answer.

I find some of the theories with 100's of posts a bit to hard too accept, and there is no single point of failure and too many things have to line up just right. We have some event which simultaneously destroyed all forms of communication and incapacitated the pilots, but left the autopilot fine. Or we have hypoxia (either sudden or gradual onset) which also knocked out the transponder. Or we have a fireball across the sky seen from a oil rig far away, but no debris you would expect to find at the end of such an event. While some things may be conceivably possible, that does not make them plausible.

As more information slowly comes out, these theories are starting to fall down.

Against this background, I can't help wondering why the few posters speculating about a single point of failure are repeatedly deleted.
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Old 14th Mar 2014, 01:21
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View from an average 777 line pilot

Notes from an average B777 pilot. I feel deeply sorry for family and friends affected by this terrible situation. I have read most posts, 2000+.

1: Depressurisation without the necessary descent.

Leading to pilot incapacition sounds very plausible. Putting your mask on then checking your mate has his or hers on wastes time, maybe 5 to 10 secs. If you then find that the oxygen is not working game over, too late to descend the aircraft, your unconscious.

I have heard aviation doctors suggest that one pilot should use his useful conscious time, maybe only 5 secs to start the plane down to min safe altitude. The other puts on his oxygen straight away. If all goes wrong with donning the oxygen mask or supply at least the plane is going down and you might regain consciousness later at a lower level and hence regain control.

If the plane did depressurise and the crew were incapacitated why did it stay at a high altitude? Possibly the autopilot was working, because it flew at a high altitude and on a relatively steady westerly heading for maybe hours, using the best guess from primary radar and ACARS 30min radio pings! This suggest that the electrics were working in some way, but no transponder signals.

Seems too much of a coincidence, autopilot ok, transponder not, aircraft depressurisation and pilots not OK. Aircraft heading about west.

2: unlawful interference.

Timing perfect, just out of normal radio range, miles from land near a change of airspace. Transponder switched off, radio silence apart from some garbled messages. Military radar think they saw an aircraft flying west at FL295. ( Can't remember but I think all the 911 aircraft turned back with transponders switched off. So it's happened before. ) Plane eventually disappears. Did the pilots fool the hijackers or were the hijackers on their own and lost. Unfortunately I can't see a successful ditching being the outcome, because of the lack of ELT's etc.

Big problem with this theory, why didn't the few passenger phones that were almost certainly on, not get a signal over Malaysia or anywhere else. Not sure anyone would plan to bring jammers on board or confiscate every phone.


3: Note on transponder use.

We don't touch the transponder when busy.

When we do select a new code we just type in the new code,
NO switching to stby. When practicing Rapid depressurisation in the SIM it's very rare to see anyone select 7700, were just too busy. We turn of the airway or away from traffic, most pilots keep an eye on nearby traffic using TCAS. Some use look down on TCAS during emergency descent, it's force of habit from normal descents.

Last edited by Turkey Brain; 14th Mar 2014 at 02:51. Reason: Too,wordy
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Old 14th Mar 2014, 01:25
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Thanks. Had no idea HF ACARS would be used by an airline such as this.
I don't know whether or not they would use it - but the HF ACARS system exists in that region.....

HF voice comms is (AFAIK), commonplace for aircraft flying over ocean routes where VHF comms coverage is not available - I have listened in many times to the HF traffic for south-east Asia.
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Old 14th Mar 2014, 01:29
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HF ACARS is most often used near the poles, due to poor satellite geometry.
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Old 14th Mar 2014, 01:29
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Because the CVR only captures 2? hours, we will never know what exactly happened in that cockpit at 1:30 am. Barring the remote landing-strip, all safe scenario, at least.
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Old 14th Mar 2014, 01:31
  #3009 (permalink)  
 
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I no longer have any clue what to think... Even if you threw every box out of the EE bay, the HF's are in the back...

Can ANY 777 driver tell me what the load shedding is for things the communicate with the ground???
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Old 14th Mar 2014, 01:33
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Cellphone Monitoring

It seems the US can track cellphones from drones, likely based in Diego Garcia, and occasionally dispatches a Hellfire to a target identified from a drone and/or satellite.

Perhaps a number of cellphone pings were picked up and associated with the errant flight.

We can expect that any information derived from such activities will be carefully sanitised.

The destroyer sent out on the track most likely has at least one helicopter equipped for searching the ocean surface and underneath.
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Old 14th Mar 2014, 01:37
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On CNN it has been suggested that whoever turned everything off / whatever disabled everything failed only on the ACARS system. In which circumstances could the only remaining system be ACARS after a genuine accident?

After which we are now being told the plane flew in a different direction for some time.
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Old 14th Mar 2014, 01:40
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P-8A Poseidon

Once the P-8A gets on station in the Indian Ocean I hope we get answers quickly. It sounds to me U.S officials have more info than we know after receiving the raw radar returns from the Malaysians.


U.S. Navy to Add P-8A Poseidon Longer-Range Plane to Search Effort - China Real Time Report - WSJ
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Old 14th Mar 2014, 01:41
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Pretty interesting the US Navy is sending a P-8A Poseidon to the Indian Ocean. That plane is bristling with antennaes and advanced electronics for ELEINT and SIGINT and could be a vital tool in the search for electronic signatures. Clearly the search is now electronic, not visual....
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Old 14th Mar 2014, 01:41
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I find some of the theories with 100's of posts a bit to hard too accept, and there is no single point of failure and too many things have to line up just right.
No accident is dependent on a single point of failure. Never. It always ends up being a chain of events. Holes end up aligning themselves with each other, and the worse happens. If they ever find them, and I hope they will, for all the families sakes, you'll see. Whatever happened, it was a sequence of events, of actions that led to this situation.

I've been reading this thread since the beginning, and I am one of the crazy ones who go thru every single post I missed after a good night sleep, I can provide some explanations, but I won't dare to speculate on what happened. Too many variables, too many things I don't know, and too many things nobody knows.

Let's just hope, for a bit. Even if just for them to find the aircraft. Explanations will come much later...
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Old 14th Mar 2014, 01:47
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Quote from US authorities:

"Boeing offers a satellite service that can receive a stream of data during flight on how the aircraft is functioning. Malaysia Airlines didn't subscribe to that service, but the plane still had the capability of connecting with the satellite and was automatically sending pings, the official said."
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Old 14th Mar 2014, 01:50
  #3016 (permalink)  
 
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Depending on the type of surface (mountains, etc.), if you are at the limit of the radar coverage, a descend could be enough to lose the VHF communication and Transponder signal with the air traffic control.
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Old 14th Mar 2014, 01:50
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Long time lurker, have absolutely no experience in the industry other than by association. I'm totally in awl of the expertise and knowledge of the professionals here.

I'm inclined to believe that there was a decompression as this seems to be the most logical reason for the disappearance. I have just one question that after 150 odd pages doesn't seem to have been addressed. That is if in the early stages of hypoxia and associated confusion just how easy would it be to switch off the transponder in either error or in confusion with another procedure? ie is it just a simple switch or more elaborate process?

Thanks!
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Old 14th Mar 2014, 01:55
  #3018 (permalink)  
 
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Big problem with this theory, why didn't the few passenger phones that were almost certainly on, not get a signal over Malaysia or anywhere else.
Who has said they did not get a signal? Has anyone said that?

Some phones very likely did register with the network if they passed in range.

Passengers may have tried to use their phones if they realised there was a problem. But they may have tried to call, and voice contact would likely be fleeting. SMS is more reliable with marginal network, but I think your first instinct would be to call.

Plus passengers can use (non assisted) GPS even if no network coverage - although there likely would be no external evidence of this.
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Old 14th Mar 2014, 01:59
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Turn a knob

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Old 14th Mar 2014, 02:00
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Concord 002. It would take turning 1 rotary switch about 90 degrees ccw. So not hard at all
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