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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 30th Dec 2014, 01:59
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Has anyone got any updates/details about whether there are signals from the FDR pinger locator - seems to be ignored in this thread ?!
Not really ignored but only becoming relevant now with specialized ships capable of detecting them just arriving in the area.

The civilian 37.5 kHz Undewater Locator Beacon (ULB) has a very limited range, usually only about 3 nm, maybe a bit more if sea conditions are favorable.

Mind you, the search area is now over 50,000 square miles -- roughly the same size of Greece! So comparatively you'll almost have to be "on top" of an ULB to hear its ping.

Often ULBs are more useful in locating the "black boxes" after the general crash area has been found by other means (side-scan sonar, debris, oil slick, etc.)

Some military aircraft have low-frequency beacons (8 to 10 kHz) which can be detected from 5 to 10 miles; however, they are not yet standard on civilian aircraft.

The Java sea is shallow, so at least the helps in the logistics of hearing ULBs. (Although there is sometimes more interference in shallow water).
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Old 30th Dec 2014, 02:12
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Re: timeline

A regular poster in another forum who works in some aspect of Indonesian aviation safety has stated that from his inside information, the plane went "from 32000 to 36300 and down again to 24000ft or so (in) just over a minute."

He hints that the people who have looked at the radar data believe that the plane must have broken up or lost control surfaces, quote: "it ain't a pretty picture".
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Old 30th Dec 2014, 02:12
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mickjoebill,

Totally with you on that. 3 deployable EPIRBs which transmit GPS location on impact and or separation from aircraft in the water. One on each wingtip and one in the tail. Technology already available at your local marine supplies shop.
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Old 30th Dec 2014, 02:14
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Sorry gents, those epirbs won't survive the crash in the first place.
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Old 30th Dec 2014, 02:33
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A regular poster in another forum who works in some aspect of Indonesian aviation safety has stated that from his inside information, the plane went "from 32000 to 36300 and down again to 24000ft or so (in) just over a minute."
16000ft of vertical space in a little over a minute? Could it have been a descent to 34000, instead of 24000? I ask because it seems quite a feat to climb at 4000ft/min at that altitude anyway, much less do so and then drop 12000 feet afterwards in the same time span. Wouldn't it have to manage a 6000+ ft/min climb to FL360 just to have the time to free fall 12000 ft. (assuming a breakup, as stated)?
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Old 30th Dec 2014, 02:44
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Those rates of climb would be no problem if caught in the updrafts of a large thunderstorm.
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Old 30th Dec 2014, 02:51
  #467 (permalink)  
 
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Sorry gents, those epirbs won't survive the crash in the first place.
I hear where you are comming from, but neither you or I know this about any particular crash with 100% certainty.
Accidents are chaotic.
Installing a large number of devices hoping one will survive is not an unreasonable approach. I say this from a backgound of installing cameras in explosive environments, including three aircraft frames that were destroyed.

In any event if an aircraft so fitted goes missing without further contact it serves to reinforce the prospect that passenger survival is remote, which adresses the context of my original post relating to relatives of passengers and crew.
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Old 30th Dec 2014, 03:00
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Sorry gents, those epirbs won't survive the crash in the first place.


It is amazing what items survive a crash and what does not - any cell/mobile phones working from MH17 after impact?


Those rates of climb would be no problem if caught in the updrafts of a large thunderstorm. Correct it only hurts when spat out of the cell.
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Old 30th Dec 2014, 03:08
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Epirbs, ELTs etc...

While I understand the impulse to come up with a solution to the lost airliner problem, adding more portable ELTs isn't it. The more portable ELTs in the field, the more false alerts.

I believe the industry is heading toward an ejectable floating ELT similar to a distress buoy deployed by submarines, but that will take a couple of years worth of regulation, engineering and retrofitting. Even if the industry had started to get serious about this the day after MH370 there would have been no new beacons installed by now.

On mayday calls: what added information do you think the crew could have reasonably transmitted? The only advantage would have been a faster search, but that should have been almost instant anyway.
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Old 30th Dec 2014, 03:16
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Of course every crash is different. In MH17 for example a lot of lightweight items were thrown out of the plane at altitude, fell at a relatively low terminal velocity, and hence survived.

How much impact forces can a typical EPIRB withstand? 100Gs? 200Gs?

Consider that an airplane hitting the ground at a "mere" 270 kts has an impact force of 3,400 Gs -- which is the basis for blackbox requirements.
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Old 30th Dec 2014, 03:31
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I specifically asked survival of cell/mobile phones in on or outside MH17 for a reason. Most/many phones are u/s when falling more than 10 feet. many worked after MH17 to the point the death cert was not required to block the phones. As far as ELB/T g force survival on g force there are none but many/most are solid sate. And can withstand a lot (seems except aviation approved hand held ones). I don't know if more on an aircraft would help, but I know here if you wish to carry your own on an airline it is not permitted generally but can get a approval if wanted but about the same as carrying a firearm on an aircraft.
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Old 30th Dec 2014, 03:35
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Maday call... or not?

Rather than a "Help me please because I'm helpless" call, I'm wondering if one of the ATCO's could let us know if there is a significant difference in initiation timing between an Uncertain Phase and Distress Phase of SAR both with and without a Mayday notification?
It would seem to me that a Mayday call (simultaneously notifying AND declaring an emergency exists) would remove any ambiguity that might possibly exist with observing (e.g. just the loss of txpdr return). In this case perhaps the crew did and the message failed to get out. We shall await the evidence.
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Old 30th Dec 2014, 03:49
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The high water content ice which is normally associated with convective weather could have caused a engine flame-out . This could have been one of the factor which contributed to the crash

AERO - Boeing Assistance in Airplane Recovery

http://easa.europa.eu/system/files/d...ort_4-2011.pdf
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Old 30th Dec 2014, 03:58
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Re: 8/8ths q -

With a mayday call and 7700 squawk you would see a distress phase in place immediately, would mean phonecalls being made, SAR launched, positions noted, and possibly involving nearby aircraft immediately to gather whatever information may help.

With loss of comms in my neck of the woods you are looking at an uncertainty phase within 15 mins of the unanswered call, then upgrading the phase as the situation deteriorates.

I dare say though that if this occurred in my FIR where the loss of comms coincided with loss of radar contact (and if shown to be true) aircraft not maintaining level, then you would jump straight to an alert phase..
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Old 30th Dec 2014, 04:01
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From available information, a likely scenario is that the wreckage will be found not far from the last reported position - which if I understand things correctly was 24,000 feet altitude at 322'1.58"S 10941'28"E and headed down at many thousand feet per minute. The plane would be expected to have gone below Indonesian primary radar's horizon at about that altitude. So this is about as good as it will get when it comes to knowing where a plane went down in the open ocean. Live satellite streaming of coordinates might not provide better resolution than what we have here.

On the first day's search there was rain and gail force winds at the surface and not many resources were available. No surprise it wasn't found. Yesterday the search was again mostly from the air and the water would have still been murky from the storm. So again, there's no surprise it wasn't found if the hull remained more or less intact limiting the amount of debris.

I suspect that today there will be ships searching the bottom with sonar in a 15 mile or so radius around 322'1.58"S 10941'28"E and that will be how the wreck site will be found - unless miracle of miracles, the ULB functions as it is supposed to and a ship with a 37.5 kHz sonar receiver is available.

If this were a time of calm seas and sunshine, an aircraft would probably have spotted it by now in the 150 foot depths it rests in (this is world class scuba diving territory in good weather.)

There will be capable SAR ships on scene today. I'll be surprised if it isn't found today.
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Old 30th Dec 2014, 04:09
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Originally Posted by peekay4
Consider that an airplane hitting the ground at a "mere" 270 kts has an impact force of 3,400 Gs -- which is the basis for blackbox requirements.
G-force depends on the specific location inside the airplane and on materials surrounding the object. If you have enough "padding" that braking from 270 kts to zero is spread over the distance of, say, 5 meters, mean g-force over this distance is merely 200G.

As for smartphones, they are usually not designed with shock tolerance in mind. They can fail in all sorts of easily preventable ways, usually with cosmetic damage. Devices which are designed for shock tolerance (so-called "rugged" devices) can handle a lot of stuff that would leave mass-market devices in shreds. A standard test for a rugged laptop/tablet is being able to withstand a drop from 4 foot height onto plywood-covered concrete onto any edge or corner without damage.
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Old 30th Dec 2014, 04:41
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In reply to FlightDream111's post:

DRS Technologies, Inc. - Deployable Flight Incident Recorder Set (DFIRS)
http://www.drs.com/Products/C3A/PDF/DFIRS.pdf
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Old 30th Dec 2014, 04:47
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Local media report sighting of about 10 pieces of debris resembling cabin door, emergency slide, 10-20km east of last known position. The debris was sighted from an airplane; a helicopter is now being dispatched to the site to assess further.

Probably nothing, but most hopeful lead so far.

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Old 30th Dec 2014, 04:53
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Air Asia Indonesia Lost Contact from Surabaya to Singapore

Reports of debris 105nm from last position near South Borneo
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Old 30th Dec 2014, 05:16
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More photos of possible debris:

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