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Malaysian Airlines MH370 contact lost

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Malaysian Airlines MH370 contact lost

Old 10th Apr 2014, 16:33
  #9661 (permalink)  
 
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Lonewolf
4. Related to 3, political/cultural issues in re body recovery? How serious, how expensive? But, as some have discussed earlier from the pathology point of view, would not examining some of the dead provide a clue regarding how all of the people on board died?
This must be a huge dilemma for the organisers of the recovery operation. They surely would want to examine some of the bodies but how could they retrieve some but not all ? The Chinese hold the remains on the dead with great reverence although surprisingly cremation is now widely accepted (I suppose it is a case of needs must) but always the remains are interred in a family plot and this is visited each year for 'grave sweeping'. I think they are going to have to recover the whole plane if this is in any way possible.
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Old 10th Apr 2014, 16:51
  #9662 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Propduffer View Post
What is your source for this?
The source, quoted yesterday, see post #9648 from recanted, was the acting transport minister.

He said he had had the Chief of the Malaysian Defence Force contact his Indonesian counterpart.

Subsequent discuss in this thread suggested that what he said may have been a limited answer.

Source would appear to have been quoted in thestar.com 7 April.

Last edited by Wader2; 10th Apr 2014 at 17:23.
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Old 10th Apr 2014, 17:00
  #9663 (permalink)  
 
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" ..........................the use of a sonobuoy pattern in the ocean to detect and localise a target is one of the first and basic detection methods used in Anti Submarine Warfare for over 50 years."

As an Ex-Navy pilot, I'm wondering why some agency, aircraft company, or even the CVR/FDR makers, didn't previously contract for a thousand or two sonobuoy's especially configured to detect these signals, perhaps with a cable depth option of greater than 1000 feet. There should have been a stack of these devices sitting in some warehouse just waiting for the next airliner to go down at sea, especially where the water is deep or the exact crash location isn't known.

These special sonobuoys could then be flown anywhere in the world and scattered, if necessary, over a wide area without interfering with any other concurrent search effort. Plenty of aircraft are capable of deploying these devices.

I don't understand why they have to modify an anti-submarine sonobuoy a month after MH370 went down, especially given the Air France search of several years ago.
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Old 10th Apr 2014, 17:01
  #9664 (permalink)  
 
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ECHO

HMS Echo now seems to be at edge of Ocean Shield's search area doing a much reduced speed of 7 knots
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Old 10th Apr 2014, 17:09
  #9665 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Wader2 View Post
I would be surprised if they planned to recover a sample rather than everything they can.
Not to be undertaken lightly. At a depth of over 10,000 feet, get remote vehicle into the cabin, get a grip on body, bring it to surface, get it into an appropriate box/bag/container, keep it on ice so that it doesn't rot away/become a health hazard. Rinse and repeat 238 more times ... presuming all bodies are still with the aircraft. Grim business.
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Old 10th Apr 2014, 17:13
  #9666 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Wader2
The source, quoted yesterday I believe, was the Malaysian Minister or Defence or similar top Airman who spoke with his Indonesian opposite number.
I was hoping for something more specific than that, like the actual quote with a date, source etc. Are you posting under two handles?
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Old 10th Apr 2014, 17:17
  #9667 (permalink)  
 
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I see your point, Carjockey, and we sort of agree. The points you make weren't what the story was going on about.

If the initial reaction was to begin with own assets, and they then later called for help because their first estimate on where to look didn't pay off, how is that different from usual procedures?

The larger question strikes me as

"What was going on between about 2 in the morning and 8 in the morning as it became clear that the aircraft wasn't going where it was supposed to be going, and had been out of contact"
rather than
"you went looking for it and told nobody else that you went looking for it."
If the ATC's, military and civil aviation authorities of neighboring countries had been informed of the situation immediately, the chances of 370's flight path being tracked would have increased dramatically and we would not be faced with the present situation.
Not sure if that is true or not, but my gut feeling is that you are right.

Cheers.

Last edited by Lonewolf_50; 10th Apr 2014 at 17:32.
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Old 10th Apr 2014, 17:30
  #9668 (permalink)  
 
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If the ATC's, military and civil aviation authorities of neighboring countries had been informed of the situation immediately, the chances of 370's flight path being tracked would have increased dramatically and we would not be faced with the present situation.
I thought it had been agreed or presumed that they were looking for a ditched aircraft rather than a missing one.

The RMAF response would have been for surface search and not an air search. Depending on what they had available they might either have set up for a day search or an immediate launch to locate survivors based on the ELT. There was of course no ELT so where would you start a night search?
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Old 10th Apr 2014, 17:45
  #9669 (permalink)  
 
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Wader2, I think the question being asked about the time between about 0200 and 0800 (KL time) is "why no air search/scramble." I don't think anyone would fault the Malaysians for looking on the surface after first light ...

Regarding that gap.

"What did the folks who got the info that an aircraft had not reported in/was missing think the problem was?"
  1. Did they think it was simply lost comm? Maybe.
  2. Did they think it had gone down? Most likely
  3. Did they think that there'd been a Payne Stewart type problem (depressurization) and was flying about with no hand at the wheel? Maybe.
    • If so, they'd probably expect to hear from another agency when it wandered further into foreign airspace.
  4. Did they think it was hijacked? Probably not, given a lack of a hijack code
  5. Other estimates inserted here _______________
So what do you do?

Did RMAF have any radar contacts that were heading toward sensitive areas, or 9-11 type targets in KL or other major city?
Assessment was probably "no" on that score. If no, why scramble fighters?
The depressurization scenario would be the assumption where one probably would ... but where was it? Fighters don't have infinite fuel. Did Malaysia have a ready AAR tanker on alert?

Was there certainty that it had gone down, rather than it being still in the air in the early period of the 0200 - 0800 gap?
Probably not.
Was the first practical time to start a search for a downed aircraft during daylight?
Yes.
Well I'll be, they sent some planes up after sunrise to go and have a look.

Seems to me that morning launch is a non story.

The coordination and comms questions, 0200ish to 0800, may be a story. Depends on the facts and what the investigation uncovers.
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Old 10th Apr 2014, 17:48
  #9670 (permalink)  
 
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.
ECHO
HMS Echo now seems to be at edge of Ocean Shield's search area doing a much reduced speed of 7 knots
Most likely getting ready for the go ahead. They will not want any submersibles in the area until the Black Box batteries have totally died or they have a really good idea where the plane is.

The weakening signals will give them a more accurate location.

I think the retired AM is doing a great job. He will not be rushing anything that is for sure.
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Old 10th Apr 2014, 17:58
  #9671 (permalink)  
 
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Both Echo & Ocean Shield have maintained locations for over 30mins at opposite ends of the last search pass.
The next AIS data will be interesting.
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Old 10th Apr 2014, 18:00
  #9672 (permalink)  
 
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@Lonewolf

The larger question strikes me as "What was going on between about 2 in the morning and 8 in the morning as it became clear that the aircraft wasn't going where it was supposed to be going, and had been out of contact"rather than "you went looking for it and told nobody else that you went looking for it.
We don't know what was going on between 2.00am & 8.00am, but something was obviously wrong because the aircraft transponder and comms were "off" or "disabled" for whatever reason. The question must surely be why didn't ATC pick up on this and alert the civil and military authorities of neighboring countries immediately? Why the big delay?
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Old 10th Apr 2014, 18:08
  #9673 (permalink)  
 
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Bottom contours

RE Lonewolf #9753: "1. Bottom contour of the local area. If...valleys and peaks....sound could be reflecting/echoing..."

I believe I have read all posts and do not recall any that address whether wreckage located next to a largely vertical and non-sedimented seafloor face (cliff) would reflect pings directionally, and if so might increase distances that a ping could be heard. By now it is improbable that any wreckage is perched high on a promentory with no impediments to pinging in every direction, so ping blanketing must be occuring. Valleys would have an axis; deep circular depressions would not; narrow chasms would have an axis but short duration of pings if transecting, etc. If a pinger was located between two cliffs and a receptor perpendicular to those axes, to what degree would an echo represent additional information? The questions are distinct from thermoclines and salinity issues. Could someone with experience speak to these several situations?

Ocean Shield is not close to the large sea floor variations to the NW and SW but despite sediment the sea floor near it might be quite jagged relative to wreckage. The two hour acquisition a few days ago would seem suggestive.
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Old 10th Apr 2014, 18:11
  #9674 (permalink)  
 
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Carjockey:
I was under the impression that Viet Nam ATC alerted someone in Malaysia ATC. (around 0130-0140 or a bit after, when their attempt to contact the aircraft they expected went for naught) What happened within the various bits of Malaysian bodies who keep track of such things remains unclear. I am not sure that the assumptions you are making are correct, but your questions are well asked.
but something was obviously wrong because the aircraft transponder and comms were "off" or "disabled" for whatever reason.
What became obvious was that the flight was not on scheduled route. What seems to have become apparent was that attempts to contact and pick it up on secondary via squawk were unsuccessful.
The question must surely be why didn't ATC pick up on this and alert the civil and military authorities of neighboring countries immediately?
Good questions, but the answers aren't on this forum. They are within the various agencies in Malaysia.
Originally Posted by Leightman
I believe I have read all posts and do not recall any that address whether wreckage located next to a largely vertical and non-sedimented seafloor face (cliff) would reflect pings directionally, and if so might increase distances that a ping could be heard.
This is why I asked the question about bottom contour. The terrain underwater can influence sound propagation.
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Old 10th Apr 2014, 18:11
  #9675 (permalink)  
 
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then the submarine may have a use as a faster way of carrying out a 'quick and dirty' search for metallic debris on the sea bed.
Please can we drop the submarine stories? As many posters have pointed out, submarine sonars are not suited to listening in the 30-40 kHz range.

As far as magnetometers go, you cannot detect an engine-sized lump of steel in a depth of 4000 m, using a P-3's MAD or from a surface-towed magnetometer.

A submarine might be able to get one down to a depth of perhaps 500 m, but that still isn't going to help.
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Old 10th Apr 2014, 18:26
  #9676 (permalink)  
 
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@Clear Prop

Re the 2am - 8am time span:
Be careful not to look back with the benefit of hindsight and imagine that everyone was wide awake at 2am thinking "Right then! Emergency! Now what?" it was a calm Friday night and the initial moments of this emergency started after the flight had handed off from its departure nation and began flight in an oceanic territory with moderate to poor coverage.
Unless you have significant information of distress beforehand, it is normal not to initiate an alert phase until after the aircraft is confirmed as not arriving where it departed to.
It's this kind of casual attitude that I find extremely frightening. No matter if it's Friday or any other day of the week; no matter if it's "calm", no matter what time of day or night it is. An aircraft disappeared from ATC radar and it seems that no one was sufficiently concerned to alert all relevant authorities until six or seven hours after the event. You think that's OK?
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Old 10th Apr 2014, 18:26
  #9677 (permalink)  
 
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The BF21 can be equipped with a mag and sidescan with working depth of 6000M.

You can tow an array at any depth you want, as long as you have cable...
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Old 10th Apr 2014, 18:27
  #9678 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Carjockey View Post
@Lonewolf

We don't know what was going on between 2.00am & 8.00am, but something was obviously wrong because the aircraft transponder and comms were "off" or "disabled" for whatever reason. The question must surely be why didn't ATC pick up on this and alert the civil and military authorities of neighboring countries immediately? Why the big delay?
From Malaysia ATC point of view nothing was wrong. The aircraft had been successfully handed over to Ho Chi Minh controller in Vietnam. Controller now stops watching that aircraft as it is not hers/his any more. The controller that should take action - and did - was the Vietnamese controller. The repeated calls and requests to call and listen were all initiated by the Vietnamese controller - as they should be - it was her/his aircraft. However, then the Vietnamese went further and said to Malaysia, MH370 seems to have turned back. Malaysia seems to have said - can't see it - handed it to you, not my problem. This is the problem with using cooperative surveillance systems.

The stop squawk and no VHF contact at the handoff meant that there was an administrative problem on who was responsible for initiating SAR. The Malaysian controllers cannot be expected to take SAR action on an aircraft that they handed off in good order, and could then no longer see. In theory an aircraft becomes overdue 30 minutes after it should have landed. That was several hours into the future.

This is yet another area where old protocols are no longer adequate or sensible. I think that this MH370 and to some extent AF447 losses are going to result in a major international rework of procedures and protocols on aircraft overdue/loss of contact, aircraft tracking, and the international protocols for setting up accident investigations.
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Old 10th Apr 2014, 18:29
  #9679 (permalink)  
 
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submarine passive sonar

Perhaps you're thinking of active sonar? Not applicable here, nor is it much used on the boats for that matter. But the OBERON's Type 197 passive set is very capable of receiving and recording underwater beacon signals in the required KHz band.
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Old 10th Apr 2014, 18:44
  #9680 (permalink)  
 
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From that same Malaysian Insider article:

The source also revealed that investigators have confirmed that MH370's pilot, Captain Zaharie Ahmad Shah, was the last person to speak to air traffic controllers with the words "Good night Malaysian three-seven-zero".

According to CNN, the Malaysian source told them that there was nothing unusual about the voice and there was no indication of stress. Confirmation of the voice belonging to Zaharie came after police played the recording to five other Malaysia Airlines pilots who knew the pilot and co-pilot, first Officer Fariq Abdul Hamid.
RMAF deployed search aircraft on March 8, but did not inform anyone - The Malaysian Insider
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