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Air Asia Indonesia Lost Contact from Surabaya to Singapore

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Air Asia Indonesia Lost Contact from Surabaya to Singapore

Old 29th Dec 2014, 06:32
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A320 Max Rec alt FL39800'


-low cost carrier checks in 162 soles at Asian weights of 73kg (circa), but more like 100kg each... (after all its Christmas)


-2Hr flight with alternate, maybe distant due SIN Wx.


-Bit of extra fuel added.


-On this day and early in the flight, Max Rec probably about FL385.(but possibly lower)


.... so heavy


-ISA +


-Request for climb FL380 (according to media reports)


-ITCZ activity (normal for this region)


-Probably a couple more slices of Reason cheese.. (late finish, early start,
probes iced up ..or some other factor that we are yet to find out about)


-Some speed brake (Airbus people will understand) use, then ..VLS ... V@prot.. AP disco ..Vmax ...thrust lock... etc


Equals = Classic jet upset probably with incorrect recovery technique.


(A320 does not like going high, near Max Rec)
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Old 29th Dec 2014, 06:52
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There are similarities with the weather case of flight AF447 and QZ8501 but she continued to send HF ACARS engineering data telegrams including cockpit warning codes which were released to the press shortly after her disappearance. It will be interesting to see how this airline inter reacts with the press who will undoubtedly pile huge pressure to release information which could mislead and give false hope to those loved ones in already in despair as we saw in the aftermath of MH370.
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Old 29th Dec 2014, 06:53
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Was there any confirmation that the plane was followed by the primary radar?
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Old 29th Dec 2014, 06:55
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Just a comment...

Hey WingNut60, considering you live in Balikpapan and "know a bit about the area" I am surprised you don't take account of tropical rainstorms. Here in the middle of Singapore we have been seeing near daily rainstorms for the last week or two where you can't see more than thirty or forty feet in front of your face. So it wouldn't surprise me at all if no-one at sea level saw anything.
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Old 29th Dec 2014, 06:56
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Interesting.

EMERGENCY AIRWORTHINESS DIRECTIVE 2014-0266-E_1 NOVEMBER 2014

An occurrence was reported where an Airbus A321 aeroplane encountered a blockage of two Angle Of Attack (AOA) probes during climb, leading to activation of the Alpha Protection (Alpha Prot) while the Mach number increased. The flight crew managed to regain full control and the flight landed uneventfully.

When Alpha Prot is activated due to blocked AOA probes, the flight control laws order a continuous nose down pitch rate that, in a worst case scenario, cannot be stopped with backward sidestick inputs, even in the full backward position. If the Mach number increases during a nose down order, the AOA value of the Alpha Prot will continue to decrease. As a result, the flight control laws will continue to order a nose down pitch rate, even if the speed is above minimum selectable speed, known as VLS.

This condition, if not corrected, could result in loss of control of the aeroplane.
This is not only interesting, but essential, but only if the lower part of that EAD is mentioned:

To address this unsafe condition, Airbus has developed a specific AFM procedure, which has been published in AFM TR 502. For the reasons describe above, this AD requires amendment of the applicable AFM to advise the flightcrew of the emergency procedures for abnormal Alpha Prot.
Although it's early, most contributors would speculate (it's a rumour forum) in some sort of upset scenario in conjunction with CB or icing. So now the multi million question is:

- Were the pilots aware of and trained in this emergency directive?

Another question to ask yourself: Re-read the directive carefully and ask yourself if you would step into your car, if a similar chilling warning about its driving characteristics would be issued.
I guess not! You would rather leave it in the garage and sue the manufacturer.

It begs the question how any public transport machine gets the absolution by the regulators with such emergency directives, especially in regions perfectly prone to such weather phenomena.
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Old 29th Dec 2014, 06:56
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Originally Posted by CDN ATC
Perhaps something more than severe

I've taken probably over 100 severe turbulence reports, in all instances the crews were able to communicate.
That's why I did put severe/extreme You stick to ATCing and I'll stick to flying big airliners... As I said -during MY encounters with severe we were not able to transmit during the event; only after the turbulence had lessened!
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Old 29th Dec 2014, 06:59
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Some new details from AirNav Indonesia:

06:12

- QZ8501 requests left deviation from airway. Deviation approved.
- Pilot then requests climb from FL320 to FL380
- ATC asks pilot to standby, due to nearby traffic and to coordinate with next sector (Singapore)

06:14

- ATC calls QZ8501 to approve partial climb to FL340
- No response received after 2 or 3 further attempts to contact
- ATC requests help from nearby aircraft to contact QZ8501

06:16

- ATC still cannot reach QZ8501
- Aircraft still observed on radar screen

06:17

- Radar contact lost
- Last reported altitude: FL290
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Old 29th Dec 2014, 07:08
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I have a big red button on my VHF comm radio on my boat and if I press it every vessel within range will have their radio set off a loud alarm and my vessel name and location will be displayed on their radio
Pilots also have the option of doing the same thing with the ELT. There is a red guarded switch in the cockpit for manual activation. However, it wouldn't be difficult to imagine reasons why the pilots wouldn't have had the presence of mind to activate it (if it was part of their procedures) with the buffeting/g-forces, possible decompression, loss of power, wiring damage, manuals (& hot beverages) flying around the cockpit, etc.

Where is the battery for your boat's VHF? Where is the antenna? What happens if the boat overturns or breaks up before you have the chance to push the red button? On a boat, do you put on your life jacket before or after pushing the red button? Sometimes immediate self-preservation takes priority over long term preservation.
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Old 29th Dec 2014, 07:11
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something missing,
Is the area covered by SSR and ADSB?
seems -yes.
If aircraft stalled ,Transponder would work.
There is no info ( other the last post that anyone noticed descent )
If it is SSR covered and aircraft stalled than ATC will see aircraft fall ( albeit I pray to Good to save us of such views ) all the time ,or at least until radar coverage lower limit. Lower limit could be anything but it should be at least FL 100.
So If it was stall, ATC would see FL 330,FL327..... FL100....

If it is desintegration ,intentional turn off comms and transponder than it might happen FL 330,FL327 and than nothing without any frequency warning or similar.

i think that the same is applicable for flightradar and other modern applications ...
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Old 29th Dec 2014, 07:12
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Just a comment

Yes, it's a bit damp here too.


But please read it again.
I did mention regarding the weather and associated difficulties.
Most probable cause of no reports would be because the weather is keeping the ketintings (teng-tengs over your way, I believe) on the beach.


Just because the tops are going through 50,000 ft does not mean that there is anything coming out the bottom.


And there is so much traffic through that area that I am still surprised at lack of reports.
North-South traffic through the Sunda Straits and East-West traffic from Singapore to Kalimantan, etc.
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Old 29th Dec 2014, 07:15
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Airbubba mentioned some earlier PPRuNe discussion on WX radar training, and that contains a link to another PPRuNe discussion where Archie Trammell, who is considered a bit of a guru when it comes to WX radar, has written an article in a 1987 issue of Business and Commercial Aviation.

For ease of reference (and to enable printing it off or for easy storage), that article is here: Weather Radar (Archie Trammell)
Thanks for sharing this, I remember Archie saying to always look for ground return on the other side of a cell to make sure more weather was not hidden by attenuation. The Southern Air 242 crash had occurred a few years earlier.

There is more than one kind of "Dark" in aviation in this part of the world. One is when the sun is down. The other is when all cockpit windows are covered by newspapers and blankets while the pilots watch movies or play games on their IPADs.

I have been waiting for this accident to happen. I am only surprised it took so long.
And it's not just 'Asian' crews. Some of the folks I fly with still think it is an entitlement to play video games and watch movies on their tablets while at the controls. After NW 188 overflew MSP five years ago and the feds pulled the pilots' tickets some of this stuff died down but now it's getting worse, not better in my observation. The hotwire plug to somehow play the movie sound over the ground interphone channel has resurfaced.

I did a no kidding low vis takeoff in a widebody recently, crosswind, about a light and a half visible on the centerline, sanded ice on the runway. As we start to roll, my coworker in the other seat whips out his iPhone to video the event. I started to say something but it was a long trip ahead and some of these folks act like you've taken away their birthday if you mildly imply that the captain is in command. I guess it's a generational culture thing.

Anyway, I could sure see a scenario where the pilots are distracted by portable electronic devices and realize late in the video game that they need to avoid severe weather.
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Old 29th Dec 2014, 07:17
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Originally Posted by In_Transit
Literally zero
There was a 747 that went down after lightning struck its wing and the wing failed in 1976, although it was after cruise altitude.
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Old 29th Dec 2014, 07:18
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Originally Posted by Gretchenfrage
Interesting.

EMERGENCY AIRWORTHINESS DIRECTIVE 2014-0266-E_1 NOVEMBER 2014

An occurrence was reported where an Airbus A321 aeroplane encountered a blockage of two Angle Of Attack (AOA) probes during climb, leading to activation of the Alpha Protection (Alpha Prot) while the Mach number increased. The flight crew managed to regain full control and the flight landed uneventfully.

When Alpha Prot is activated due to blocked AOA probes, the flight control laws order a continuous nose down pitch rate that, in a worst case scenario, cannot be stopped with backward sidestick inputs, even in the full backward position. If the Mach number increases during a nose down order, the AOA value of the Alpha Prot will continue to decrease. As a result, the flight control laws will continue to order a nose down pitch rate, even if the speed is above minimum selectable speed, known as VLS.

This condition, if not corrected, could result in loss of control of the aeroplane.
This is not only interesting, but essential, but only if the lower part of that EAD is mentioned:

To address this unsafe condition, Airbus has developed a specific AFM procedure, which has been published in AFM TR 502. For the reasons describe above, this AD requires amendment of the applicable AFM to advise the flightcrew of the emergency procedures for abnormal Alpha Prot.
Although it's early, most contributors would speculate (it's a rumour forum) in some sort of upset scenario in conjunction with CB or icing. So now the multi million question is:

- Were the pilots aware of and trained in this emergency directive?

Another question to ask yourself: Re-read the directive carefully and ask yourself if you would step into your car, if a similar chilling warning about its driving characteristics would be issued.
I guess not! You would rather leave it in the garage and sue the manufacturer.

It begs the question how any public transport machine gets the absolution by the regulators with such emergency directives, especially in regions perfectly prone to such weather phenomena.
Not applicable to the A320-200
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Old 29th Dec 2014, 07:29
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ADs issued

Just for the record airbus have issued three ADs related to replacement of conical plates and sensor as well as ammended test procedures. 2014-0266E being issued to ammend the AFM to cover an inflight upset and what to do.
There is now another AD thats related to flight information collection, that being replacement of pitot probes 2014-0237.

But in this instance of this sad event I would still doubt that any of these could have been responsible for this. Just have to await the out come from the investigation. But my splerb above is for the press to read so they have another angle and story to spout on CNN.

Come on CNN do your best to rag this one out
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Old 29th Dec 2014, 07:50
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BBC has reported that the aircraft never climbed to FL380 because ATC didn't give the clearence due to traffic..so I can suppose that they were in the "****" already and remained there a couple of minutes too much without the chance to climb immediately......
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Old 29th Dec 2014, 07:55
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Sydney radio 2GB has just reported that an Aust aircraft in the search area has reported sighting "objects" floating in the search area....

Aust has a P - 3C on task.

More to follow I would imagine....
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Old 29th Dec 2014, 08:00
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Channel 7 news reporting the same

An "Official" at Surabaya airport says
An Australian plane has spotted wreckage in the sea, as planes search for the missing air asia plane
interesting tech in that Orion
Missing AirAsia plane: the RAAF Orion plane hunting for jet
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Old 29th Dec 2014, 08:04
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Do not want to denigrate in any way the search assets of any country but the Aussies do seem to be very effective when it comes to SAR. (Assuming this breaking news is true).

Edit: Sadly there will probably not be any AR in this case.
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Old 29th Dec 2014, 08:19
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The ADF is refusing to comment on the claim by an Indo official that the Australian P3 Orion has spotted wreckage this afternoon (Indo time). So, the claim is just as likely to be grandstanding by the official.
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Old 29th Dec 2014, 08:23
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it is reported however that the item spotted by the Orion is some 700 nm [over 1000kms] away from the last known position....
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