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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 13th Jan 2015, 13:47
  #1921 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
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Originally Posted by Derfred View Post
I've followed this entire thread and there is one point that seems to have been missed about Inmarsat supposedly offering free tracking for airlines.

Narrow body aircraft such as the A320 and B737 do not have satellite coms as standard equipment. It is a customer option (read: expensive). Most airlines do not order it. Perhaps it is standard equipment on wide bodies but that would not have helped in this incident.

So to suggest that as a cheap option for narrow body airliners is ignoring a glaring fact.
But in this case the aircraft although over water was in good line-of-sight (LOS) of land with VHF and therefore VHF Data Link (VDL) . Most of ACARS is done over VDL whenever in LOS of ground stations. The tracking could be done on VDL.

Oceanic areas are starting to mandate FANS (ADS-C, CPDLC) via SATCOM I suspect that most oceanic areas will mandate FANS within a few years and that any aircraft flying out of LOS of land will be required to be fitted with FANS/SATCOM. There are a surprising number of single-aisle aircraft flying transatlantic.
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Old 13th Jan 2015, 13:53
  #1922 (permalink)  
 
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Am I the only one that is having issues imagining how you can make a detachable, floating recorder be:

A) Strong enough to survive the same impacts as the current design
B) Light enough to float without a huge amount of flotation aid
C) Installable in the aircraft without significant and expensive redesign and recertification.

Surely, to make it crash resistant, it needs to be made to the same standard as the current design. And that means heavy.
The heavier it is, the more aid it needs to float.
The more aid it needs to float, the bigger the overall package will be.
Assuming of of course the technology exists to make a material than can float, yet withstand significant impact forces and damage.

If it's just a small recorder in a fibreglass or carbon fibre shell filled with foam, it's just not going to survive and will ultimately be useless.
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Old 13th Jan 2015, 13:54
  #1923 (permalink)  
 
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SAR costs and triviality

Ian W ...

Good point about the search costs! I am doing calculations in that field. Quite complex, because quite a few assets and resources have multiple uses and applications.

Against that we have the relatively cheap fixes for the problem which from an engineering viewpoint are trivial.

A prudent design approach for commercial aircraft, in my view ( based on my experience ), is to start with saying that "nothing in the design of commercial aircraft is trivial". Even very small and apparently insignificant changes can be very or even extremely costly. There are thousands of examples for that. You do not add anything until you can really make a case, and make that case to 'all specialist directions' and 'stakeholders'.
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Old 13th Jan 2015, 14:00
  #1924 (permalink)  
 
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Look. Both Recorders have been found

The plane itself would have to be found sooner or later for a couple of reasons, both for humanity and for investigation.

The only real super mystery , no black box, no plane situation is MH370 and we may find that in time.

AND EVERYONE WANTS TO CHANGE EVERYTHING> I think mainly because people can't watch TV news anymore.

I'd rather spend the money on overlapping doppler wx radar from the ground on ATC radar and sending ground wx radar to planes for pilot evaluation.
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Old 13th Jan 2015, 14:31
  #1925 (permalink)  
 
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I'd rather spend the money on overlapping doppler wx radar from the ground on ATC radar and sending ground wx radar to planes for pilot evaluation.
That's the best suggestion in 98 pages
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Old 13th Jan 2015, 14:32
  #1926 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
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@nieuport28 "Considering all the advances being made in Battery Technology. Has there been any discussions on using a battery that could go, say, 60-90 days?"

There already seems to be a reasonable level of adoption of 90 day batteries in ULBs - see:

RJE International - Aviation - Underwater Locator Beacons

Also it seems that there are new regulations (tso-c121b and ED112A ULB) that seem to imply that 90 day battery life for ULBs will be the norm after March 2015 with older 30 day batteries going out of use after that date. I don't know if the rules will require all batteries to be replaced by 90 day ones or if only new installations will require them, but it does seem that the use of 30 day batteries will become a thing of the past.

There seems to be a long European regulatory amendment document at http://www.easa.europa.eu/system/fil...PA-2013-26.pdf which seems to imply on page 10 that "Mandate that the ULDs of all crash-protected flight recorders have a transmission time of 90 days by 1 January 2020"
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Old 13th Jan 2015, 14:43
  #1927 (permalink)  
 
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Good point about the search costs! I am doing calculations in that field. Quite complex, because quite a few assets and resources have multiple uses and applications.
AO283 a quick question:

How do you separate out the true costs for a search?

Take almost ANY crash as an example. The day before the crash all the men and women in the crash investigation were employed by their various countries and companies.

However on the day of the crash they are quickly seconded to a new job for a few days, weeks or months. But they are still getting paid, for the most part, by their countries and companies.

On a more narrow focus take, for an example, the guy sitting in the engine room of a Coast Guard ship. He gets paid the same if the ship in training or searching for sunken ferries or airplanes. Right? The only true costs of the engine room guy doing a search is if he has to work longer shifts and gets some overtime.

When media talks about the tremendous costs for searches I am hesitant to believe. Perhaps if they were to include ONLY the the cost of over-time or fuel for extra hours of operation then it would be more realistic.
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Old 13th Jan 2015, 15:40
  #1928 (permalink)  
 
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Do you mean that for example the tens of millions of dollars that the Australian Defence Force has spent looking for MH370 would have been spent otherwise and anyways in training rather than real world SAR?
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Old 13th Jan 2015, 16:13
  #1929 (permalink)  
 
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Would the duplicates need to be 'duplicates' as such?

That is would they need to be fully armored (and so heavy) if they were
for ejecting over water surrounded by a floatation device...
For some applications I use NIJ Class III armor (7.62 FMJ NATO) that floats (density <1).
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Old 13th Jan 2015, 16:30
  #1930 (permalink)  
 
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Once again, in response to a tragic hull loss with appalling loss of life, so-called "professional pilots" are proposing the industry spends vast amounts of money on more gadgets and widgets to ensure more rapid or guaranteed location and recovery of the DFDR and CVR.

As reluctant SLF and related to others, I would prefer the money to be spent on better training, so that me/my relatives/friends don't end up in the water in the first instance.

Anyone who has spent any time in aviation will realise the hardware option will take loadsa time and money before anything is agreed, designed, developed, flight tested, certified and finally installed in ALL 'frames.

If this accident turns out to be flight deck HF related, as per AF447, then I think that PREVENTION is better than WRECKAGE LOCATION.

If this 'bus has bunted over and dived for the earth as per the recent AD, with the possibly unaware pilot(s) applying full aft stick, then surely the solution lies elsewhere and not in the fitting of investigative aids?
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Old 13th Jan 2015, 16:42
  #1931 (permalink)  
 
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Algol: I did not ask for the return to the older radars, what would be the point? You demonstrate that modern pilots would not be able to use it anyway.
The older generation couldn't either mate, as was demonstrated time and again.

If I am coming up on a large area of activity and need to find the best way through (and I don't have the luxury of a super-airliner like you obviously fly so cannot go over it)
What are you flying? DC-3's?
The aircraft involved was an A320.

I could, using the old equipment, find the route I wanted. Since you don't know what I am talking about there is no point my explaining it to you as to how to go about this, but believe me it was possible.
.

I know very well what you are talking about. You are talking about outdated equipment and your skill in the black art of using it. Bully for you.
Modern radar makes all those decisions for me and for a modern pilot that is fine and dandy. Quite often though, the modern radar is wrong.
It's all wrong, if you use it wrongly. But the modern gear is easier to use. So less often dangerously wrong.

I'll lay a penny to a pound that (if this was indeed a cb encounter) it came down to pilot decision making, not equipment shortcomings. And by the way - by pilot decision making I refer to the kind of hard choices forced on pilots every day, when ATC refuse course deviations.
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Old 13th Jan 2015, 16:53
  #1932 (permalink)  
 
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ATC refuse deviations que! ATC or CB ? Mayday I'm deviating. Having said that I have never been refused point blank.
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Old 13th Jan 2015, 17:02
  #1933 (permalink)  
 
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Shock and fire resistance no longer mean heavy since the advent of Kevlar, Carbon, honeycombes and foams. Current commercial combined recorders are only a couple of Kg.

Deployable Combined Data Recorders have been used successfully and usefully by the US Navy since 1993.

The NTSB(US) recommended in 1999 that two Combined data Recorders should be used, on separate power grids, both with RIPS. One should be deployable, both should be spatially separated (eg tail and nose). The FAA(US) is still thinking about it having been given 3.5 million to do so.

The SAFE act mandating the NTSB proposal has been introduced 4 times to Congress, most recently in March 2014.

Basically Airbus has said it will implement this proposal on their wet long range new builds A350 and A380. The proposed recorder performance massively exceeds current legal requirements, I do not see a big problem with certification and if Airbus did they would probably not have released the info. If EASA green lights it, I do not see how the FAA can object especially as they have a 15 year old NTSB recommendation for it.

As to uploaded ground based weather radar data, this is as I understand it already available using ADS-B. NextGen and Single European Sky would probably mandate it.

BUT! a lot of this applies to North America/Europe. Other airspaces may have to comply in order to fly to and over the US/Europe but for example in the case of MH370, just because they physically can do ACARS over satellite, does not mean they feel like paying to do so. Even the Marshall Islands have their own, technically independent, CAA.
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Old 13th Jan 2015, 17:04
  #1934 (permalink)  
 
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"The signal needs to be of just the right strength to be partially reflected thus showing the WX. The snag is the weaker beam also suffers attenuation."

This is not true. All radar beams suffer attenuation. A stronger beam can make it through the precip when weaker beams may not. The radar processes the echo after the beam has been transmitted, so a stronger beam will always produce a stronger echo.
I said exactly the same, right up to that highlighted line. I can't agree with that.
Maybe this is a misunderstanding. What do you mean by 'stronger'? More amplitude?
What is being debated is frequency band. That's where the systems have changed notably.
If you have a land or ship borne system you may be able to produce enormous beam amplitude, but on an aircraft you don't have that luxury. Varying the frequency band varies beam penetration for a given power output/amplitude.

Radars also attempt to compensate for the attenuation (your mileage may vary).
but this is what boofhead detests. Raw data is best! For him.....

A mention has been made here of radar and super-cells. Super-cells are rotating thunderstorms that are unlikely at ITCZ latitudes - they are what produce most tornadoes, especially in the US midwest. Super-cells may have a bounded weak echo region (a rapid updraft with a weak radar echo). I don't think that's what's going on here.
I mentioned the ITCZ in West Africa. In relation to a severe incident/near accident caused by ancient WX radar. It was NASA who charecterised the CB as a super-cell in the incident report (based on WX sat data).
Having seen the aircraft after the event, and spoken with my colleagues, it was no ordinary CB. NASA commented that the flight probably only penetrated the outer edges before they turned/got spat out. They also speculated that further penetration would almost certainly have resulted in a breakup.

I have no opinion on the severity of the storm involved in the AK crash. We don't know.
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Old 13th Jan 2015, 17:07
  #1935 (permalink)  
 
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IcePack ATC refuse deviations que! ATC or CB ? Mayday I'm deviating. Having said that I have never been refused point blank.
Then I assume you never fly in China airspace.

In extremis, yes of course, a PAN or even MAYDAY may be your last resort. But most pilots are reluctant to do that, rather than attempt to negotiate a compromise with ATC.
Because 'going nuclear' might cost you your job and/or your freedom in some parts of the world. Hard choices for sure. That's why we get paid such BIG BUCKS.
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Old 13th Jan 2015, 17:33
  #1936 (permalink)  
 
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As reluctant SLF and related to others, I would prefer the money to be spent on better training, so that me/my relatives/friends don't end up in the water in the first instance.
and......
If this accident turns out to be flight deck HF related, as per AF447, then I think that PREVENTION is better than WRECKAGE LOCATION.
Even though this guy is clearly BARKING MAD, I completely agree with him!

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Old 13th Jan 2015, 17:41
  #1937 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Algol View Post
As to MH370 - I'm starting to feel they've given up on it and we'll never find out the truth.
Heck, they found AF 447 and there is some question about the entire "truth" of that event due to only parts of the CVR being released (per standard practices).

@ glendalegoon: Amen Deacon! (in re wx radar information flow)

BARKINGMAD:
If this accident turns out to be flight deck HF related, as per AF447, then I think that PREVENTION is better than WRECKAGE LOCATION.
Likewise inclined. Suggest training and cockpit culture is the area most helpful in such prevention efforts.
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Old 13th Jan 2015, 18:13
  #1938 (permalink)  
 
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Likewise inclined. Suggest training and cockpit culture is the area most helpful in such prevention efforts.
In order to help find out that where the problem was, and propose solutions, and possibly adopt them (if not too expensive), and suggest that non EU/US CAAs adopt them too ... and prevent the problem ...

you need to find the wreckage and the data recorders.

Which is why the NTSB recommended deployable data recorders in 1999!
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Old 13th Jan 2015, 18:36
  #1939 (permalink)  
 
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Barkingmad:
If it helps to reassure a bit, the airline I work for has been focused on stall recognition/recovery for the last six months of recurrent training/checking in the simulator. All our pilots have now been exposed to this and we are acutely aware of the problems that AF447 encountered. I'm sure my Company is not alone in this, I'm sure many others will have taken the same approach, even before this accident (if stalling/unreliable airspeed is involved, of course). The industry is generally good at learning from incidents/accidents.
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Old 13th Jan 2015, 18:52
  #1940 (permalink)  
 
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Algol, Yep still wouldn't fly through a T/S. & have had no problems (deviating) on the odd occasion (very Few) that I have been in Chinese airspace.
It is worrying then that ATC are now putting aircraft at risk. I wonder if this fact will be a factor in this instance. If only the SLF realised what aviation has come too.
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