Go Back  PPRuNe Forums > Flight Deck Forums > Rumours & News
Reload this Page >

Malaysian Airlines MH370 contact lost

Rumours & News Reporting Points that may affect our jobs or lives as professional pilots. Also, items that may be of interest to professional pilots.

Malaysian Airlines MH370 contact lost

Old 17th Mar 2014, 01:56
  #4881 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: USA
Posts: 71
Professional pilots should bear in mind that the MH370 S&R fiasco will likely result in the public's demanding changes. It might be wise for professional pilots to propose their own solution, rather than wait for governments and regulators to impose new rules. Perhaps the pilots' unions should propose that:
1. the automatic reporting system installed by the airframe manufacturer, which transmits data through the Inmarsat satellite system, be modified so that it sends a GPS position as well as hull data;
2. that the frequency of the Inmarsat reports be increased from every half-hour to, say, once every ten minutes;
3. that this reporting system be tied to the aircraft's main power bus (and thus placed outside human control); and
4. that the pilots' unions would pay the marginal cost which, at $2.00 per transmission, is not very much at all.
This service would:
1. increase the difficulty of a third-party hijacking;
2. protect all pilots from the stain on them which may remain if the mystery of MH370 is never sorted out; and
3. provide much comfort to future passengers.
Damn straight, Sir

This probably warrants a thread of its own as it is not necessarily unique to this event (thought it will be triggered by it).

From a technical point of view the frequency of transmissions need not be in static intervals.
Transponder signals are somewhat continuous (short intervals).
ACARS can be dynamic in intervals depending on the "health" of the airframe. If all is good space them out or if faults/irregularities are detected send as often as possible.

While in flight, I see no reason that anyone should have control over that type of communication.

Last edited by MrDK; 17th Mar 2014 at 04:18.
MrDK is offline  
Old 17th Mar 2014, 01:57
  #4882 (permalink)  
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Ventura Ca U.S.A.
Posts: 219
"Thunder Ball"
Sooner not later they will cut back the searches, A notoice will come out "Please watch out for XYZ"
It's all about money, Not people. CYA not the truth.
The insurance carriers, Joint power Authorities & your Corrupt public officals will lead the way.

That plane can sit in 2 conditions.
1, Hijacked in one peice waittin for the payout.
2, Hijacked in a watery or dry smokin hole. Someone goofed.
3, Used as a weapon & blown out of the sky. Nobody wants to come clean.
Door 1, 2 or 3
hillberg is offline  
Old 17th Mar 2014, 01:57
  #4883 (permalink)  
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Antipodes Islands
Posts: 94
Transponder ID change?

Can the transponder on a 777 have its ID changed during flight?

That is is it possible to change the ICAO aircraft unique serial number and/or aircraft identification parameters.

If so, is it feasible MH370 was 'rebirthed' while out of civil radar range and entered new airspace as a different aircraft?

Last edited by Mahatma Kote; 17th Mar 2014 at 03:28. Reason: add ICAO number
Mahatma Kote is offline  
Old 17th Mar 2014, 02:00
  #4884 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: USA
Age: 41
Posts: 62
Sheep Guts says

Reasons not to stop searching in the South China Sea

1. Last SSR 01:22 am near IGARI waypoint
Last sightings (both military and civilian radar, plus eye witness accounts) had it back both over and past the peninsula after that time

2. Very descriptive eyewitness account from the Song Mercur Oil Rig off Vung Tau. Which was checked by 1 Veitnam Aircraft only, no sea or sea floor sonar search ever done to date.

he was 370 miles away. I don't know how many more times that can be stressed! His account is not creditable in the sense of "having anything to do with this investigation."

Plus, Vietnam told Malaysia on day 1 they watched the plane turn around, so it is not like it would have continued moving towards him - if anything, that distance would have been greater than 370 when he claims to have seen who knows what

3. The 40 degree IOR Satellite ring passes through the same area South Veitnam coast . Which is only being discounted for one reason radar coverage. The last ping at 08:11 am was on this 40 degree ring. Some reports saying all the pings came from 1 place. Yes they did come from one place, the wreckage in the South China Sea until it sunk some time after 08:11am.
By 8:11 there were ships, planes and satellites searching the area. How exactly did they miss a 777 sitting on the sea surface? (let alone one only 30-75 meters below the surface if it did actually sink)

...so the question is, do you have a real actually factual reason to search there, or is it just a gut feeling telling us to continue to search the very small body of very shallow water for more than the 8 days 14 countries already searched it?
D.S. is offline  
Old 17th Mar 2014, 02:00
  #4885 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Rockytop, Tennessee, USA
Posts: 4,671
Israel Prepares for Possible Attack by Hijacked Malaysian Plane

As terrorism fears grow in Malaysian plane case, Israeli officials increase already-tight precautions

By Times of Israel staff and AP March 16, 2014, 9:41 pm EDT

Israel has tightened security in its airspace following the disappearance and possible hijacking of Malaysian Airlines flight MH370 on March 8, Channel 2 reported Sunday.

According to the report, security officials and aviation authorities recently held a security assessment and decided upon a series of security measures intended to enhance safety in Israeli airspace.

Among the measures, airliners are now required to identify themselves much earlier when approaching Israel’s airspace. [anybody see this yet in a NOTAM? - Airbubba] Other actions were not disclosed at this time.

The increased security came as El Al’s former global security chief told The Times of Israel he believes that the disappearance of the Malaysia Airlines flight points directly to Iran.
Israel tightens airspace security after jet's disappearance | The Times of Israel

Once again, obviously there is still very much that is not being disclosed publically.
Airbubba is online now  
Old 17th Mar 2014, 02:02
  #4886 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: USA
Age: 41
Posts: 62
DCrefugee said

Not my understanding of the public information. ACARS was shut down shortly after feet wet and before Malaysian ATC bid the flight farewell. Shortly after which the transponder(s) was/were disabled.

The SATCOM system, however, continued to function, in a sort of keep-alive mode, but did not pass flight or aircraft data to the satellite(s). It's the last of those recurring signals that Inmarsat has plotted along roughly the 40N arcs.
It is a ACARS transmitted data collection though, from everything I understand

Don't have time right now to search for a better mention, but here is a quick one at least

Modern aircraft can communicate with airline operations bases and sometimes with the headquarters of its manufacturers automatically in order to send maintenance alerts known as ACARS messages. It was this system that sent out the regular ping, which may have lasted for several hours, the sources said.
D.S. is offline  
Old 17th Mar 2014, 02:03
  #4887 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: Perth
Age: 56
Posts: 65

The ping information released was only from the final 8:11am ping. Info about the earlier pings has not been released although there was apparently some unconfirmed rumour from CNN earlier this morning that the previous ping was from the same distance as the last.

The pings do just give us distance from satellite (based on signal travel time).

Yes, the investigators must have other rings for earlier pings.

The fact that POR and AORE did not hear pings at 8:11am rules out parts of the red circle. Travel distance also helps a little.

That gives two red arcs: north and south.

The plane either went to the north arc or the south one. Thus there are loosely two ``routes''.
ana1936 is offline  
Old 17th Mar 2014, 02:06
  #4888 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: NJ
Age: 37
Posts: 52
Role of ACARS event log:

"Event Log – In near real-time, the event log gives you a view of what is happening
in your fleet worldwide. From data taken from the Aircraft Management System and
transmitted through the EFB channel, you can determine what aircraft are on, in,
out or off. You can also access communications open/close events, view messages
sent or received, or determine when new content has been downloaded for transfer to
an aircraft."

(of course ACRS must be ON/active!!!)
rigbyrigz is offline  
Old 17th Mar 2014, 02:10
  #4889 (permalink)  
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Australia
Posts: 53
Question for ana1936

ana1936 posted some time ago:
"The red arcs are determined just by working out the accurate distance of the ping source from one single satellite (IOR).

The ping messages are very accurately timestamped using very accurate clocks at both ends. Even though this communication system is not for GPS purposes it uses similarly accurate clocks. So we know that the plane was, say 38000km, from the satellite at 0:11Z.

That gives a circle on the surface of the earth.(The so-called 40 degree circle).

No other satellites could be used as there are only four satellites altogether in space listening for ACARS pings. They do not cover the relevant longitudes: they are below the horizon from most of the Indian Ocean and middle Eurasia.

The fact that that the other satellites (POR and AOR-E) did not hear the 0:11Z ping rules out some chunks of the red circle.

This leaves the two red arcs."

ana1936 - your posts have been first class. Are you satisfied with the gap between the two red arcs and that it appears that POR did not pickup the ping? Perhaps, being near the extreme range limits of POR, it can be acceptable that the ping was not received ??

Last edited by Mach2point7; 17th Mar 2014 at 02:14. Reason: Improved language
Mach2point7 is offline  
Old 17th Mar 2014, 02:13
  #4890 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Where the Quaboag River flows, USA
Age: 66
Posts: 3,330
Can the "pings" be used to discern azimuth o those arcs? I understand how the arcs are defined, but is it just an assumption that the plane moved "around" the arc or is there a azimuth solution?
galaxy flyer is offline  
Old 17th Mar 2014, 02:14
  #4891 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: SFO/KCH
Posts: 42
From http://www.nydailynews.com/news/world/malaysia-pilot-t-shirt-fuels-talk-hijacked-flight-article-1.1723724:

"The mystery of the missing Malaysia Airlines jet deepened Sunday as a photo surfaced of its pilot wearing a T-shirt with the slogan “Democracy is Dead” and searchers set course for the Indian Ocean.

The T-shirt further fueled fears that Capt. Zaharie Ahmad Shah, an ardent supporter of jailed Malaysian opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim, hijacked Flight 370 along its path from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing in an act of anti-government protest."

So let me get this straight. Because the Captain is wearing a shirt declaring "Democracy is Dead" in protest of the overall UMNO/BN approach to government (and the obvious treatment of Ibrahim), and is a supporter of Ibrahim he is now more strongly considered to be some kind of hijacking suspect? What century are we in?

The pilot's viewpoints on politics and support of PKR are nothing special. There's quite a sizable contingent of people in MY with the same opinions and support for the opposition has been growing for years.

Secondly, Anwar Ibrahim is *not* jailed. The accuracy of modern media and "journalism" these days is just flat out appalling. It's no longer about being precise or accurate - it's completely driven by eyeballs.

Terrorists have won, haven't they? Time to burn some witches.
clayne is offline  
Old 17th Mar 2014, 02:15
  #4892 (permalink)  
Join Date: Sep 2001
Location: Connecticut, USA
Age: 59
Posts: 207
The photo's I have seen of the Captains sim indicate to me it is little more than a toy.

I do NOT understand why someone with as much experience as this guy flying the real thing would build such a box, let alone use it! He could have used the Sim's at work, clearly he was senior enough to probably even bring friends in if he particularly wanted to.
If the information that's been made public is accurate, it appears that the flight was very carefully planned to avoid radar detection - and it's possible that some of it was done at a low altitude in the dark. Further, depending on exactly where they went, the northern arc might have mountains to dodge.

Seems like if someone was going to try something like that, they would want to practice that route until it was automatic - the same way that various emergency procedures are practiced. And I can't imagine that they would want to do it on the simulator at work.
jugofpropwash is online now  
Old 17th Mar 2014, 02:16
  #4893 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: 35,000 Feet
Posts: 25
Here are some acars reports, these were taken off a site that streams acars online

ACARS mode: 2 Aircraft reg: .VH-OQC Operational Coms
Message label: 87 Block id: 1 Msg. no: U58A
Flight id: QF0012
Message content:-
-------------------------------------[16/03/2014 06:30]

ACARS mode: S Aircraft reg: .CC-CQF System Status
Message label: H1 Block id: 0 Msg. no: C18A
Flight id: LA0801
Message content:-
-------------------------------------[16/03/2014 07:00]

ACARS mode: S Aircraft reg: .CC-CQF
Message label: H1 Block id: 1 Msg. no: C19A
Flight id: LA0801
Message content:-
-------------------------------------[16/03/2014 07:00]

ACARS mode: S Aircraft reg: .VH-OJU Inbound With PAX Details
Message label: 86 Block id: 4 Msg. no: M05A
Flight id: QF0108
Message content:-
h M O $O
-------------------------------------[16/03/2014 07:45]

ACARS mode: 2 Aircraft reg: .VH-OJU AMDAR Weather Report - Lat,Long,Alt,Turbulence etc
Message label: H1 Block id: 5 Msg. no: D26A
Flight id: QF0108
Message content:-
AMDAR 1521
-------------------------------------[16/03/2014 08:08]

ACARS mode: 2 Aircraft reg: .VH-OGR Engine Report
Message label: H1 Block id: Msg. no: D004
Flight id: QF0091
Message content:-
2207 15MAR14 SYD- NOU- CL 7 VER026
======== =========
98 1
-------------------------------------[16/03/2014 09:11]
ACARS mode: 2 Aircraft reg: .VH-OGR
Message label: H1 Block id: Msg. no: D005
Flight id: QF0091
Message content:-
181 196 FATS TEMP
-------------------------------------[16/03/2014 09:11]
Space Jet is offline  
Old 17th Mar 2014, 02:17
  #4894 (permalink)  
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: Nirvana South
Posts: 726
A question to Lost in Saigon,
Is there (or was there ever) an Emergency Descent Mode available on the 777 AFCS? Some of the more recent systems initiate a 90 degree turn away from the programmed heading followed by a maximum rate descent to around 10,000 feet after a cabin depressurisation is detected.
The similarity of this scenario to the latest version of MA370's possible flight plan - even to matching the SATCOM line of position - bears review.
ICT_SLB is offline  
Old 17th Mar 2014, 02:20
  #4895 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Found in Toronto
Posts: 578
Originally Posted by ICT_SLB View Post
A question to Lost in Saigon,
Is there (or was there ever) an Emergency Descent Mode available on the 777 AFCS? Some of the more recent systems initiate a 90 degree turn away from the programmed heading followed by a maximum rate descent to around 10,000 feet after a cabin depressurisation is detected.
The similarity of this scenario to the latest version of MA370's possible flight plan - even to matching the SATCOM line of position - bears review.
None that I know of, and certainly not on the B777 fleet that I fly.
Lost in Saigon is online now  
Old 17th Mar 2014, 02:23
  #4896 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: Perth
Age: 56
Posts: 65

One answer …

The gap between the red arcs over south east asia can be explained because those points lie well within the coverage of the Pacific INMARSAT POR.


The Malaysian SAR map


omits red over that area and puts dashed lines in the region under POR coverage.

Thus we assume that the expert teams are satisfied that POR would have picked up the 8:11am ping if it was in that region and that it did not.

Obviously there must be some fuzziness to the ends of the arcs and the POR region because a satellite which is very low over the horizon but still above it may not pick up a signal.

However, when you look at places on the arcs at e.g. the south coast of Vietnam then the POR satellite is at about 10 degrees apparent height and it should have heard a ping.
ana1936 is offline  
Old 17th Mar 2014, 02:24
  #4897 (permalink)  
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Seattle
Posts: 22

having a nice computer sim at home isn't out of the question for an experienced pilot.

I wanted to make up one for the plane I was on but it was too expensive. I am after all a cheap airline pilot.
Having a sim at home allows someone to run and rerun scenarios. Obviously the control feedback isn't the same as a real a/c or sim but the visual fidelity is certainly there, especially compared to say an older Thales sim (I was just in a Thales B747-400 sim).

But the FMS/FD/FMC are terribly dumbed down on most of the PC sims.
XB70_Valkyrie is offline  
Old 17th Mar 2014, 02:28
  #4898 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: Perth
Age: 56
Posts: 65

I think that we can conclude that the experts have no way of getting azimuth estimates from the pings.

They are using (very accurate) ping timings to gauge the distance between aircraft and satellite.

But that just gives you a circle of candidate locations on the earth.

(As I have said, bits of the circle can be ruled out by using other reasoning, e.g. lack of ping receipt by other satellites and time of flight).
ana1936 is offline  
Old 17th Mar 2014, 02:29
  #4899 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: Las Vegas NV.
Age: 58
Posts: 165

Would you hazard a guess to the accuracy of the location? Within a degree, maybe 2?

I mean if the plane was a degree or so west, it would be out of view of the POR if I'm reading the map right. Could that be withing the margin of error?
LASJayhawk is offline  
Old 17th Mar 2014, 02:36
  #4900 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: NJ
Age: 37
Posts: 52
The B737 I know is the following op guide. I assume the 777 is much more elegant and automated.

Automatic Downlinks
The FMC can be configured by the airline to automatically transmit downlinks of
FMC data at predetermined points during the flight or in response to specific
information requests from the airline dispatcher. The FMC response in these cases
is completely automatic and no crew action is necessary.
rigbyrigz is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us Archive Advertising Cookie Policy Privacy Statement Terms of Service

Copyright © 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.