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Malaysian Airlines MH370 contact lost

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Malaysian Airlines MH370 contact lost

Old 17th Mar 2014, 17:41
  #5241 (permalink)  
 
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Scenario at end of fuel exhaustion

Apologies if this question has been posted already. Have read most but not all previous posts.

Assuming the "incapacitated crew, flying on AP at FL 2XX until fuel exhaustion" scenario, could some with technical knowledge on the T7 supply the details of how the scenario would unfold at the "...until fuel exhaustion" end?

1) Would both engines shut down at approximately the same time, i.e. do they have a common fuel source, or could one run, say 15 minutes longer?
2) At which point does the AP disconnect, immediately as the first engine shuts down or does it stay connected in some degraded mode?
3) What is the likely profile during descent? Nose-dive to (beyond?) VNE or are there any protections to prevent over-speed? Fly as close to VMD as possible? Follow-up: How much time would the crew have in oxygen-rich air, e.g. below FL100, to recover? I'm guessing not much.
4) Given the above scenario, is the high or low vertical speed impact the most probable outcome?

I would assume a high vertical speed impact on the last questions, which would translate to a small debris field, correct? That would make the search effort harder, especially over the ocean or un-populated high terrain.

Still hoping for a non-foul play reason for the missing plane...

PS. Many thanks to all that have contributed with technical and/or operational input to this thread! As a GA pilot with basic ATPL knowledge, some posts give very good chances for self-education. Other...eh, less so.
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 17:48
  #5242 (permalink)  
 
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Pontius Navigator:
If all the new low post Ppruners posts were added up, would they reach 100?
Perhaps quantity does not necessarily equate quality.
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 17:51
  #5243 (permalink)  
 
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One of the comments on that CNN thread was actually useful:
Originally Posted by someone from the thread Mark from CA posted a link to
in 1972, a plane disappeared over Alaska carrying the then-current House Majority Leader, Hale Boggs, and another Congressman. Fifty years later, that plane still has not been found. Alaska covers 663,300 square miles. The total area of the Indian Ocean is in excess of 28 million square miles. There are reports that the total potential search area for the plane is some 2 million
square miles. That's about 3 times the size of the entire state of Alaska. Not so hard for a plane to just "completely disappear" in that large a potential
area when so much of it is remote
Puts the search team's challenge into some perspective.
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 17:51
  #5244 (permalink)  
 
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Hornbill88 - I did trawl back and find the reference to some Twitter feed which then led to the Reuters report, which spoke of sources who wished to remain anonymous. It indicated that the postulated track of IGARI-VAMPI-GIVAL, then possibly IGREX, was put together from military radar (presumably primary?)

Still not convinced it went west at all. Came across this which quotes another unnamed source as saying they now believe it is off the coast of Perth: Combing Ocean for Flight 370 Harder Than 2-Year French Hunt - Bloomberg

I actually think they may be looking in the right area now. Ocean depth there is such that it may take years to find, though.

This article is a couple of days old but I haven't come across anything else indicating they are favouring the southern arc over the northern arc.
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 17:58
  #5245 (permalink)  
 
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My problem with fe hoppy's analysis is: if a person is smart enuff to heist and enroute hide a t7 they arent going to be dumb enuff to die of lack of 02 or heat.

imo.
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 18:00
  #5246 (permalink)  
 
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If I may offer a small ATC insight to those who know little or nothing about ATC systems, and are fixated by concepts of Primary and Secondary radar, please have a look at the following link. This might give an insight into what actually goes on. The Civil ATC world does NOT run on radar: it runs on filed Flight Plans updated by radio communications, with radar providing supplementary information for conflict resolution or sequencing in the Terminal environment.

(Aircrew and ATC professionals are generally excused from reading the link )

Flight progress strip - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 18:00
  #5247 (permalink)  
 
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Indians also think Malaysia hiding

It seems the Indian side is also frustrated with Malaysian authorities for hiding information. They are also offended with them for postulating that the a/c could have landed in andaman. To the Indians this is preposterous, for the airfields there belong to the air force and navy ; and such theories underestimate the vigilance of the indians especially as these islands play a pivotal role in India's security .
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 18:01
  #5248 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by GarageYears View Post
For those who seem to be struggling with the SATCOM/INMARSAT operation the following gives a very good overview:

TMF Associates MSS blog » Understanding ?satellite pings??

Hopefully this will put-to-bed the repeated questions regarding this!
Thank you very much for that link it has answered my question have they got more accurate data from the regional beam, no they haven't because pings are handled by the global beam.


One of the comments also went along the path I did. Assuming a constant speed you can calculate the maximum distance between the rings of the hourly ping, and if it is less than this distance work out some other data. I suggested if the difference between max and actual was constant it would indicate a constant (but unknown track/hdg, in which case I favoured the southern route, suicide or dead and auto pilot on.

BTW perhaps we should all bookmark the link and use it to answer any future repeat questions,
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 18:01
  #5249 (permalink)  
 
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Authorities reportedly looking at flight engineer, plane altitude in missing Malaysia jetliner investigation | Fox News

"Authorities are also examining the possibility that the plane flew at an altitude of less than 5,000 feet to avoid radar coverage after it turned back from its planned route to Beijing, the Malaysian newspaper New Straits Times reports.

The newspaper said officials are reviewing the plane’s flight profile to determine whether it used “terrain masking” techniques during the time it disappeared from radar coverage.

"It's possible that the aircraft had hugged the terrain in some areas that are mountainous to avoid radar detection,” an official told the newspaper. “The person who had control over the aircraft has a solid knowledge of avionics and navigation…it passed low over Kelantan, that was true.”

Kelantan is a province in central Malaysia."


If this news is correct, it contradicts the hypoxic pilot theory, unless that happened after another climb out. Passengers must have been out or controlled because they would likely notice being at less than 5000'
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 18:02
  #5250 (permalink)  
 
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Stuffy

I'm not sure what you mean by "Not enough attention is being paid to the Muslim connection."

The Malaysian media has commented that Capt Zaharie is a religious doubter (at best) or a closet atheist (at worst, if you happen to be a Malay).

I still wonder, given his support for Anwar, whether he got word that someone was thinking of trumping up charges against him. Of course no-one will admit it.
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 18:04
  #5251 (permalink)  
 
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....oil rig works saw something else....

...what the oil rig workers saw, was the tail of a bigger meteor, which were common on that weekend. I had a lot of meteorscatter reflexions in my ham radio on that day.... . My thought about the oil plattform theory ...
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 18:09
  #5252 (permalink)  
 
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Beg to disagree with bigglesbrother on his following comments:

1 Aircraft now appears to have kept flying until fuel exhaustion – about 6-7 hrs.

This can be halved if a/c below 10,000. Chances of detection greater at higher altitude + assumption of hypoxia invalidated.

2 On autopilot – or it would probably have crashed earlier.

Less likelihood of technical malfunction for a/p to remain operative.

3 All major comms and auto electronic readouts disabled: BUT it seems that auto R-R engines monitor satellite report pinging cannot be deselected manually.

This assumption would contradict no3 above.

4 One of the crew is the culprit? Aircraft depressurised and all except hijacker pass out & die due to lack of oxygen. Eventually he goes too through cold or running out of his own oxygen supply.

Assumes a highly competent took control, not just in flying aircraft, but also well versed in close combat. We have no information to suggest that either member of the crew fulfill this criteria.

5 Hijacked, but did hijackers have enough technical knowledge to disable all major systems yet keep flying?
Most unlikely

6 Aircraft in the sea somewhere.

Highly likely.

7 USA knows far more than it has disclosed

On what basis could this become a reasonable assumption. There are no good reasons for the USA to withhold even if it is defence sensitive. Particularly after such a long lapse of time. Can you imagine the world reaction to such an eventuality. It would be considered callousness at the extreme. I cannot even for a moment accept that the US would be so unwise.
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 18:10
  #5253 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by oldoberon View Post
MAS adverts say 1st class has sat phones

PAx, engineers etc say this aircraft does not have sat phones
MAS only has 1st class on the 380.
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 18:13
  #5254 (permalink)  
 
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Should the story change again, and again, and an 'ACARS Off' event at some point in time, is used as a means of casting suspicion on the crew because they may have had some reason of their own to turn it 'off', then consider that the ACARS unlawful interference page has been made public knowledge at:

www.cockpitseeker.com/wp-content/uploads/A320/pdf/data/datalink.pdf

sk200.wikispaces.com/file/view/Manual++Operaci%C3%B3n+Normal+de+Vuelo+LAN.pdf

users.telenet.be/evics/content_11_1.pdf

.. and therefore a well researched interloper may have invited the crew to turn off ACARS as well. The crew should therefore be less suspect to the extent that an interloper could have trawled sufficiently deep to pull up these pages (or even got something out of the base Tech Library).

Nothing lasts forever, so we'll just have to think of a new method.
Meanwhile, have a think about who/what would gain from the blame being shifted towards the crew.
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 18:14
  #5255 (permalink)  
 
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CNN now cant figure out WHEN the acars was deactivated. So maybe all those " here is what we KNOW" lists are , eh, invalid. Maybe we don't actually KNOW very much at all.
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 18:22
  #5256 (permalink)  
 
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Well, it's becoming quite a marathon to keep up with the Thread. But in those quiet moments, when the techno-babble all fades, there are two posts which keep coming to mind. And, when all said and done, things are often far simpler than we ever suspected...

avionics/electronics have been shown to do weird stuff when shorting out or on fire. Humans do odd things when hypoxic, especially if not aware.
One day a fisherman will pull some strange plastic up in his net.
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 18:23
  #5257 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by oldoberon View Post
wouldn't be surprised if the idea came from shark repellant dyes
Back in the 50s and 60s when the battery life of a PLB was short we used to carry a flurocine dye marker. In the tropics we also carried a similar small quantity of shark repellent.

It was rumoured that the dye marker attracted sharks and the repellent didn't work. A packet, probably about 250 grams would create a bright patch around 10 feet diameter.

Obviously, 50 years on, improved dyes will be available but in other than a calm sea dispersion is likely to be rapid.
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 18:31
  #5258 (permalink)  
 
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Just to inform this issue.

An aircraft at 35-40kft will rise above the visible horizon of a sea level observer at a surface range of some 230-240 miles or so. You can add a few tens of miles for the height above sea level of an observer on a rig platform. So, the aircraft would be theoretically visible from a range of about 250 miles. It'll be extremely low to the horizon at that stage however, and very difficult to see until closer.

So the rig's 370 miles displacement from the aircraft's last reported position certainly presents a problem, but it's nothing like as big a discrepancy as most people would imagine based on their experience of viewing objects at and from ground or sea level, in which case the horizon is only a few miles away. Also, bear in mind that if MH370 did indeed come to grief over the Gulf of Thailand, it is unlikely to have done so at its last reported position and its normal flight path would have been carrying it generally toward the rig.

Unfortunately, the rig worker didn't specify the precise time of his observation, and I for one have rather lost the plot in terms of the confirmed time various events and positions occurred or were reported in reading this utterly unwieldy and rambling thread in which rumours and misunderstandings are frequently being promulgated repeatedly as unswervingly reliable facts.

"Send three and fourpence, we're going to a dance" about covers it, for those above a certain age...
The supposed oil-rig workers observation still makes no sense. If you read his email, he says
"I observed the burning (plane?) at high altitude"

So - even if he was able to see this aircraft from more than 350 miles away, it would not appear "at high altitude." All he would have been able to see, if anything, is a bright light on the HORIZON.

He would not have seen a plane at high altitude, could not have seen that it was "on fire" or "all in one piece."

it is either a hoax or he simply saw something else.

Can we please stop with the nonsense that someone 350 miles away saw a plane "up in the sky on fire?"
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 18:32
  #5259 (permalink)  
 
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You would need to be over 37,000 feet to be visible at that sort of range. Add heights of aircraft, find square root and then multiply by 1.25.
I believe that approximation is only valid near sea level.

I went back to basics and did the trig. I may have made a mistake, so would be happy to be corrected if someone wants to check the calculation.
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 18:33
  #5260 (permalink)  
 
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Had there been a truly robust system for flight tracking in place that reported 3D position every minute or so from takeoff to touchdown:

1) those with malign motives would have to rule out the possibility of "disappearing" a large commercial aircraft and a few hundred people simply by turning a few cockpit switches or flipping a CB;

2) whether or not this was not the result of a malign act, the CVR and FDR would have been found by now.

Had such a system been in place for AF447, the cause of that crash would have been known with a high degree of certainty at least a year earlier than it was.

ELTs are simply not sufficiently reliable in a crash into water, as AF447 again demonstrated. And it's very hard to find a crash site when it's somewhere in a large body of water without knowing within a a pretty small radius where it was likely to occur. See Varig 707 1979 disappearance, not to mention the Northwest DC-4 that vanished over Lake Michigan and, almost 65 years later, still has not been found.

I understand the concern over not being able to shut down an electrical device in case of suspected fire. But there have to be solutions for that. A GPS receiver reporting current 3D position to a satellite every few minutes via SATCOM (perhaps more often in case of altitude or heading changes) does not require a lot of power, nor would one need Li-Ion batteries to power it.

A truly robust system of flight tracking would achieve about 95% of what live streaming of CVR/FDR data would do at far less expense or pilot resistance, and pilots do have a legitimate interest in not having their every remark monitored by the ground.
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