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Malaysian Airlines MH370 contact lost

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Malaysian Airlines MH370 contact lost

Old 17th Mar 2014, 12:52
  #5081 (permalink)  
 
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@StormyKnight

* assuming 1hr pings (has this been confirmed?)
Yes, 1hr interval pings have been confirmed.
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 12:57
  #5082 (permalink)  
 
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Am I the only one who thinks that if the 'pilot suicide' line currently in favour by many commentators turns out to false (as I suspect it is), we may well see all airlines forced to adopt what I think is already the El Al system where the pilots are totally isolated from the cabin for the whole flight? (Does El Al allow a small servery hatch for meals, or is everything the pilots require, including food, put in with them before the flight?)
If this happens, God help us all! I'm pretty sure FAA will come up with another idea though, as locking up the pilot and co-pilot together in a box for a 12hr flight, while being in charge of the aircraft and everyone on board, is simply inhumane.
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 13:02
  #5083 (permalink)  
 
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@PA28Viking

"...all three types of transmission could have stopped/been disabled at the same time due to human action or technical malfunction"


I believe the authorities have said/implied that they know that "ACARS was disabled by someone on board" and readers here have suggested that's because it did a tidy "log-off", which itself sends out a transmission, rather than suddenly stopping transmissions. But (I think) you're right in saying that all 3 of comms, xpdr and ACARS could have been disabled at the same time at or around the FIR boundary
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 13:04
  #5084 (permalink)  
 
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@Lord Spandex Masher

Correct TCAS does not display direction of travel per se, it does however show the position of the other aircraft relative to yourself.
Hopefully a TCAS is that accurate otherwise the sole purpose of its use is for naught.
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 13:06
  #5085 (permalink)  

Keeping Danny in Sandwiches
 
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"Malaysia Airlines revealed the plane’s co-pilot, Fariq Abdul Hamid, was the last person to communicate to the ground from the cockpit, apparently after the communications system was shut off."
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 13:06
  #5086 (permalink)  
 
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I thought it had already been reported here a while back that he was doing some work for the flight sim software development company (PMDG?)
PMDG has said this is not correct.
PMDG Simulations Comments on the loss of MH 370 - PMDG General Forum - The AVSIM Community
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 13:09
  #5087 (permalink)  
 
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FE Hoppy

What is the elapsed time from the last known position (Malaysian/Vietnamese FIR boundary) to the nearest point on the 'arc inducing, satellite-based ping'?

What is the distance from the last known position (Malaysian/Vietnamese FIR boundary) to the nearest point on the 'arc inducing, satellite-based ping'?

Do the facts suggest that the aircraft 'flew in a circle'?
If the flight crew, a member of it or a knowledgable intruder into the flight deck were trying to make the aircraft 'disappear', why would they fly around in circles inside airspace that has SSR & Primary radar capability? Isn't the airspace around there fairly busy at that time of night?

The flight had NO crew-actioned communication whatsoever, post the 'Goodnight' sign off at handover. The transponder & ACARS were manually selected OFF. If the aircraft had a bonafide emergency, the crew still had 2 or 3 VHF radios & probably a pair of HF radios & maybe even a SATPHONE on the flight deck, depending on the MAS fit, in order to communicate a problem. Lots of communications methods available, none were utilised.
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 13:10
  #5088 (permalink)  
 
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It was clarified at the press conference today, that they do not know when the ACARS was turn off/stopped. They only know that the last transmission was at 17.07 and that the next transmission expected 17.37 never happened.
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 13:13
  #5089 (permalink)  
 
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As many others, I am thoroughly perplexed by this whole incident. Some of the questions is my mind are:

1. If this was a case of pilot suicide (which I personally highly doubt) why would he have gone through the bother of shutting comms systems down and taken another course instead of simply ditching the plane as soon as possible?

2. If this was a case of a hijacking this would also be highly unusual in that hijackers usually want to make some sort of statement and have their demands met.

3. If this was a case of mechanical failure then why did the aircraft 'ping' a satellite(s) hours later?

4. If this was a case of cabin depressurization, and resulting hypoxia, then the aircraft would not have been able to be turned around to another flight path?

5. Why would anyone fly the aircraft to 45,000'? What purpose would this serve other than "ridding" the aircraft of coherent, or semi-coherent, passengers?

I'm sure there are several other questions I'm not asking.

However, having said all that and this is just my own feelings on this issue: I wonder if the aircraft and passengers landed somewhere else and was refueled to await "further orders"?? I know this scenario is a bit "out there" but......
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 13:14
  #5090 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Captain Charisma View Post
@Lord Spandex Masher

Correct TCAS does not display direction of travel per se, it does however show the position of the other aircraft relative to yourself.
Hopefully a TCAS is that accurate otherwise the sole purpose of its use is for naught.
Yes it'll give you a rough indication of other aircraft positions but it's sole purpose is to provide vertical separation/guidance. It is notoriously inaccurate laterally and certainly not good enough for interception and that's not even counting it's extremely limited range.

I guess that's why fighters have expensive radar kits as opposed to TCAS.
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 13:17
  #5091 (permalink)  
 
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Pax

Quote:
something about a Flight Engineer as a PAX on board the aircraft? any one else heard about this?
-early article in WSJ indicated a Malaysian aircraft engineer aboard -did not indicate whether Pax or crew

Last edited by SLFplatine; 17th Mar 2014 at 13:17. Reason: sp errors corrections
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 13:17
  #5092 (permalink)  
 
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It was clarified at the press conference today, that they do not know when the ACARS was turn off/stopped. They only know that the last transmission was at 17.07 and that the next transmission expected 17.37 never happened.
Which presumably means that, contrary to supposition, no tidy "system logoff" message was received, and that in fact there is nothing to support the hypothesis now rampant that the crew or some other person deliberately disabled the transmission of ACARS data, and reopens the possibility that it was lost through some failure event or other?
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 13:25
  #5093 (permalink)  
 
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It was clarified at the press conference today, that they do not know when the ACARS was turn off/stopped. They only know that the last transmission was at 17.07 and that the next transmission expected 17.37 never happened.

We have three phases of the flight:

1) The known part which took MH370 to IGARI. Around 17.20 we had the last voice comm and transponder stopped. Last ACARS was 17.07 and next expected ACARS was 17.37. So all three types of transmission could have stooped/been disabled at the same time due to human action or technical malfunction.

2) The primary radar part where the flight is seen tracking towards VAMPI/GILVA/IGREX. We know little about that track. Important is if the aircraft could be seen to be manoeuvring in a way indicating humans controlling the flight path.

3) The 'dark' part where MH370 is travelling to its faith on the 40 dgr arc north or south. This could either have been under control of humans as intended by pilots/hijackers OR just a continuation of whatever was programmed at some stage before loss of control (HELIOS style).

Remember that what happened may not be what hijackers intended or the pilots tried to accomplish in an attempt to save the aircraft.
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 13:27
  #5094 (permalink)  
 
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I think since every second post is about the pings, we need to put that into perspective.
Firstly its very clever and definitely a line of enquiring worth persuing, however it must still be treated with caution, there are some assumptions made just the same as in any other theory.
Firstly the ping is literally just that a ping, it has no identifiable data with it. Its purpose is purely to check a devices readiness it is not limited to just aircraft satcom systems.
The assumptions that have been made in this particular case is that MH370 satcom unit has pinged one hour after its last transmission or acars shutdown and that MH370 was in fact the unidentified military radar target in the malacca strait at the time of the ping. If the assumptions are correct then we listen out for each hourly ping. If on the other hand the assumptions are not for example the ping came from another source say SQ68 bound for Barcelona, then that line of enquiry ends right there.
The 0811 ping is the last one received at the expected time, not necessarily the only ping received that could be from MH370 because the next expected time would be beyond the time that the satcom could possibly be powered. (fuel)
The difficulty is that as the hours tick by the probability of a ping at the expected time becomes more likely that it could be from a different source, particularly towards Europe on the northern arc as aircraft and satcom units start powering up for their days work. I hope this puts the satcom ping back into perspective.
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 13:29
  #5095 (permalink)  
 
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Can Pings give more accurate data ie a constant Track

Originally Posted by oldoberon View Post
About 8 pages back EPPo posted today's update and says they had 6 pings that is basically 1 an hour after falling of milrad.
Please follow me through this.


If you look at the map by Volcanicash page 203 #4043 ( http://s8.postimg.org/ye87yekz9/isat.jpg )

Counting back that is 40, 45,50,55,60 65. He clearly could not have gotten that close to the centre of the elevation rings ,and still get to those final arcs, so he must have flown at tangent to them, My best guess is

1st ping 45 - west bound from final radar loss point
2nd ping 50 still west ish bound
3rd ping 55 still west ish bound
he then turns NW or SW
4th ping 50
5th ping 45
6th ping 40

and ended up on the north or south arc.

But there was a rush to the north (Andam sea) why?


Finally if you look at this link from Vinnie_boombatz p201 #4011
http://telecom.esa.int/telecom/media...-Obj4-hres.jpg


It shows the beaming arrangement of the I-4 series inmarsats (3 cover the world), there is wide beam (the whole area), a number of regional beams and finally the narrow beams. ( used I-3 diag for explanation purpose only)

To my knowledge the signals were picked up by the old I-3 sats which use 4 to cover the world and only have wide and regional beams.

As I understand the workings of the system the sat send a "hello anyone there" signal using the wide beam and if a reply is received it calculates the best regional beam to use transmits back to the response using the regional beam. Sat engineers pls confirm/correct.

The point of this post is to ask an expert if it can do that why don't we know a more accurate position ie a shorter arc based on the regional beam.
yes it is my own post from late night early morning but still hoping satellite savvy person can confirm because it would tell us it is possible to significantly shorten the arcs. MY hypothesis below could rule out the northern one

CAN PINGS GIVE CONFIRMATION OD A CONSTANT HDG ( not the actual hdg)
Most of the investigators work seems to assume a constant speed (presumably based on distance between pings.

The following assumes the rings shown are just the five degree rings for clarity ie they not fixed aerials on the satellite but dependent on aircraft position and all others are possible ie 51,52,53,53 etc

If you used this speed and assumed at any previous ping the aircraft crossed 1st ring at 90 deg, then you can calculate at which ring the next ping should occur at, if it is less than this radius , you should be able to using this difference calculate the angle at which he crossed the second ring to give this reduced distance ( ie actual distance traveled is the same but not at 90 deg to 2nd ring. If following pings show the same ring spacing he is on a constant track. You will not know where on the arc he crossed it or the hdg.

If plane on a constant track I would suspect heading south because north would certainly end up with a contact on radar unless evasive action taken.

Any maths folk out there who can confirm this is a valid idea.
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 13:30
  #5096 (permalink)  
 
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FE Hoppy

I've re-read your posts. How big a circle are you talking about? Enough to 'lose' a bit of time until MH370 could get close enough to another airliner, for example SIA68, to 'shadow'? To use this unsuspecting 'host' to mask MH370's transit through SSR, Primary & Procedural airspace?

It's feasible but isn't it all a bit too 'James Bond'?
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 13:31
  #5097 (permalink)  
 
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As an IT professional I have been wondering about the following the last few days. We all have seen tomnod publishing DigitalGlobe maps where users can search for the plane. Wouldn't it be possible for someone smarter than me to come up with an algorithm to scan all the satellite imagery from DigitalGlobe to eliminate big parts of the ocean in the search operation. Water has a characteristic pattern / color and I'm sure an algorithm could be developed to search for patterns out of the ordinary (floating debris). Then these hits could be checked by specialists or even through crowdsourcing.
As an "IT Professional" you should know better ! Exactly how long do you think its going to take someone (or rather, as you well know, a number of someones... known as developers !) to (a) come up with a viable algorithm (b) code it (c) test and debug it ........ seriously man ! Its a non-starter of a hairbrained idea to think someone would expend so much resource !

The best you can hope for in that area is that, seeing as they are in the business of analysing satellite images for people trying to hide stuff, the intelligence agencies already have such an algorithm already in-use and that their masters may permit them to use it for this purpose to see what they can come up with (obviously findings would never be publicly released for obvious reasons, but would be passed in some obfuscated form to the nations taking part in the SAR). But I suspect satellite resources in that part of the world may be busy elsewhere... and they'd need a lot of fresh imagery becasue of the vast search area of seas + some landmass.

As for "crowdsourcing" don't make me laugh. Tomnod is no more than marketing PR excercise for its owners. Have you seen the sort of nonsense the "crowdsourcing" community have been highlighting on the images ? People with no SAR and no satellite imagery analysis experience are not going to come up with anything of remote use.

Last edited by mixture; 17th Mar 2014 at 13:41.
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 13:34
  #5098 (permalink)  
 
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"Flight Engineer"

The police have been looking into the background of this so-called flight engineer travelling as pax and it seems he has been employed as an engineer by a business jet outfit, for what it´s worth.

As an engineer specialising in executive jets, Khairul would not necessarily have all the knowledge needed to divert and fly a large jetliner.
Khairul had said he worked for a Swiss-based jet charter firm called Execujet Aviation Group, but the company declined to say whether it still employed him.
In a picture posted on Khairul's Facebook account in 2011, he identified himself as an employee of Execujet's Malaysian operations.
Missing MH370: Flight engineer aboard plane under probe - Nation | The Star Online
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 13:37
  #5099 (permalink)  
 
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My first post and sorry I haven't read all previous.
I was wondering is it possible the signals from MH370 could be replicated by another party on another aircraft while 370 diverts to wherever it is now.
I remember getting a Tcas RA ONCE due to a person on the ground calibrating a transponder, to us it looked like an aircraft was coming up from beneath at a very fast pace and we got an RA but there was nothing there.
Equipment could be used to show it went to 45,000 when it actually didn't or that the signal was a decoy.
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 13:38
  #5100 (permalink)  
 
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Xeptu I understood even a basic ping containing the embedded code for the aircraft frame number.

Also if SQ68 (and assuming SIA use satconm for acars) that would definitely identify it as SQ68
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