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EgyptAir 804 disappears from radar Paris-Cairo

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EgyptAir 804 disappears from radar Paris-Cairo

Old 23rd Jul 2016, 07:39
  #1161 (permalink)  
 
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A known potential fire source are the windshield heater connectors. Will they receive through consideration? See ATSB (Australian Transport Safety Board) report AO-2009-027 Guam accident, applicable to A330 and A320 a/c (of a certain date). The Lethbridge has apparently completed her work, are we to learn if she retrieved the windshield heater connectors?
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Old 23rd Jul 2016, 07:42
  #1162 (permalink)  
 
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An Egyptian aviation official said the voice recorder from the cockpit indicated that the mood there was relaxed in the minutes before the plane veered off course.
Crew members were playing music and chatting amiably when the pilot, Capt. Muhammad Shoukair, 36, suddenly said there was a fire on board and asked the co-pilot, Muhammad Mamdouh Assem, 24, to get an extinguisher. That was the last human sound the recorder captured.
Information from the flight data recorder — as well as a series of automated alerts that were sent by the plane to a maintenance base on the ground — suggests that, in the minutes before radar contact was lost, heavy smoke was detected in a lavatory as well as near the cockpit. Investigators have also retrieved blackened pieces of metal from the front of the plane that indicate a high-temperature fire.
Still, the source of such a fire remains unclear.
http://www.nytimes.com/2016/07/23/wo...rash-fire.html
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Old 23rd Jul 2016, 10:50
  #1163 (permalink)  
 
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The little information available appears to point to a very limited search area from the start. Also to extensive fragmentation but floating debris apparently being rather limited. With 3-4 relatively close debris fields on the sea floor. There was no surface search of long duration with multiple vessels over a wide area.

This still appears to point to a rather steep and fast entry. So if there was an inflight breakup it would have been very late, so not midair. Even then you would expect vertical tail, rudder or ths sections being recovered and reported on.

Fire cases show that it can take a while to discover that you actually have a fire - example Swissair SR111 fire in the cockpit ceiling on the boundary of the cockpit and toilet areas. Accidents stats show a 15-30 minute 'ordinairy' fire can bring a plane down. So if it was much less than 10 minutes you would expect something that boosted the fire in a very short time in that area - for example oxygen system involvement. The Egyptair Neferteti case gives an impression of what kind of effect that might have.

The lack of information in this case, even including skipping the standard 30 day interim ICAO report (we are now past day 60), makes that less lessons can be learned from this case. For some people and purposes a good accident report will be enough. For others a detailed docket with proper data is a minimum requirement.
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Old 23rd Jul 2016, 19:10
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Please correct me if I'm wrong, but the conclusions (or inferences) reported in the NY Times article seem rather contradictory, given what I recall regarding previous crashes of large commercial planes under a wide variety of circumstances.

In true mid-air breakups, my recollection is the bodies tend to be comparatively intact. For example, the Iranian A300 mistakenly downed by a US missile in 1988, which also occurred over a body of water.

Perhaps that is partly due to the speed (energy) at impact of a powered, aerodynamic plane versus a less aerodynamic, and unpowered free-falling human body (whether by itself or strapped to a seat or seat row). Providing that does not conflict with general principles of gravity for falling objects.

Plus, when a body falls separate from the plane, there isn't all the metal (and other objects) that on impact contribute to (uh, I think we all know what, no need to be more graphic).

Relatively large pieces of debris also tend to be found, especially those that break away and 'float' down (so to speak). Physics of terminal velocity.

Whereas the 'shredding' (of remains and plane parts) - which the NY Times article suggests happened here - tends to be consistent with a high speed impact of a relatively intact aircraft, whether in water or swamp (eg, ValueJet in the Everglades) or otherwise.

The one way I can attempt to reconcile the seeming contradiction is if the Egyptian source is trying to say something broke off the plane (such as a vital control surface), which then caused the plane -- still relatively intact and with the occupants still inside -- to impact the water at high speed/steep angle of entry.

That might possibly explain the 'shredding' and (partly) the lack of large floating objects such as the vertical stabilizer, or other large relatively flat-buoyant objects one might expect to find in a true mid-air 'breakup' (especially when search aircraft were up and boats searching not too long after the crash, and presumably would have spotted those objects if floating).

Note: as I finished typing this, AO283 also seems to have noted some seeming inconsistencies with a true 'mid-air breakup.'

Last edited by Passenger 389; 24th Jul 2016 at 02:13.
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Old 23rd Jul 2016, 21:11
  #1165 (permalink)  
 
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There are a lot of suppositions in this latest news. Considering the sources are "unnamed officials" and "speaking on condition of anonymity", I would be skeptical of reports suggesting anything outside of what the DFDR and CVR and evidence from the debris provides.

The Times stated the Lav detector reported "heavy smoke". Sorry, but as far as I know, detectors in commercial aircraft are binary - smoke = 1, no smoke =0, with no discriminatory precision to assess the degree or 'thickness' of smoke.
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Old 23rd Jul 2016, 22:43
  #1166 (permalink)  
 
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I'm trying to think of an in-flight breakup (or even a large section of the plane falling off) that resulted from a fire in or near the cockpit. I can't remember any. Am I alone in thinking that this seems unlikely?
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Old 24th Jul 2016, 00:56
  #1167 (permalink)  
 
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"unnamed official" = journalist making up an inventive story on a slow news day.
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Old 24th Jul 2016, 05:30
  #1168 (permalink)  
 
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Hi,
So all is going well in the cockpit (CVR)
Suddenly the cdt asks the second pilot a fire extinguisher as there is fire
So probably no smoke alarm or other alarm but a flame perceived by the cdt
In these conditions .. electronic bay fire seems discarded ....
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Old 24th Jul 2016, 07:47
  #1169 (permalink)  
 
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That is what struck me as well. Pretty unusual that there is no smell or smoke long before open fire is identified. Together with the short time span between detection and LoC of the aircraft this rather points to intensive open fire. Remains the question what fuelled it?
- Oxygen generators?
- LiIon/LiPo batteries?
- Flammable liquid?
- Anything else?
Being at 37kft with the thin air Oxygen generators would still be my prime suspect. The other sources would have difficulties destroying an aircraft in that short time span and at high altitude when cabin is depressurised (was it btw?)
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Old 24th Jul 2016, 08:21
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For what it's worth....

To my recollection, two persons have survived mid air break ups of aircraft.

Juliane Koepcke, 1971, an Electra break up, around 3000 metres.
Vesna Vulovic, 1972, a DC-9 that probably exploded about 10000 metres up.
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Old 15th Dec 2016, 12:56
  #1171 (permalink)  
 
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Sky News reporting explosive traces on victims of MS804

Traces of explosives found on bodies of EgyptAir crash victims
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Old 15th Dec 2016, 14:22
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Also now being reporterd on the BBC - see EgyptAir crash: Explosives found on victims, say investigators - BBC News
"A criminal investigation would now begin into the crash of the Airbus A320, Egypt's civil aviation ministry said in a statement."
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Old 15th Dec 2016, 15:00
  #1173 (permalink)  
 
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All the more worrying given that the point of departure was from where we may consider a "safe" European airport.


Many years ago, an ex partner working in CDG (as was I ) described to me the celebrations taking place on the apron by "certain" baggage handlers whilst 9/11 was in progress, and how (in that era ) catering trucks just breezed through security checkpoint onto the apron/aircraft. . . . wonder how much has changed in any of the above respects.
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Old 15th Dec 2016, 15:27
  #1174 (permalink)  
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Interestingly a French newspaper( Le Figaro) says today the contrary : the French Administrative experts involved in the investigation ( so not the BEA) says there were absolutely no traces of explosives on the body parts recovered , and are still going for a "technical cause".
Vol Egyptair: traces d'explosifs sur les victimes?
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Old 15th Dec 2016, 16:34
  #1175 (permalink)  
 
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Confused on lack of information

I must admit, given the great number of similar aircraft in service, why we haven't heard anything remotely useful for so many months related to this crash?

I realize there is a sensitivity for the Egyptians and the idea that this was terrorism related, but if it wasn't, and it was a technical malfunction of some kind, wouldn't knowing what that issue was be rather helpful for all other A320 operators?

Given the wall of silence, I was trending towards an assumption that is was terrorism, and the Egyptians were hoping we might all forget about it, but now I see some reporting suggesting explosive residue and other rejecting this.

So, back to a state of confusion.
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Old 15th Dec 2016, 16:40
  #1176 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by ATC Watcher View Post
Interestingly a French newspaper( Le Figaro) says today the contrary : the French Administrative experts involved in the investigation ( so not the BEA) says there were absolutely no traces of explosives on the body parts recovered , and are still going for a "technical cause". Vol Egyptair: traces d'explosifs sur les victimes?
They would say that, wouldn't they? What possible (political) motive would anyone in French government have for taking the position that there were explosives on the plane when it left Paris?
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Old 15th Dec 2016, 18:02
  #1177 (permalink)  
 
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Or admitting a technical fault on an AirBOOOS


Rock & a Hard Place for the French then. . . . . . .
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Old 15th Dec 2016, 18:10
  #1178 (permalink)  
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Lonewolf :
What possible (political) motive would anyone in French government have for taking the position that there were explosives on the plane when it left Paris?
Do we have evidence of that, if explosives there was, they were loaded on board in CDG and not in a previous leg for instance ?. But I honestly think that in 2016 the " political motives" are more in the Egyptian camp than in France.
Because if it is after all a " technical issue" Airbus could be in the hot sit too.
So either way is bad.

Le Monde newspaper this evening ( serious news normally) says that experts from the BEA also are stating that there were no explosive traces on victims.
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Old 15th Dec 2016, 21:47
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I asked that since one of the security vulnerabilities for any aircraft is during ground handling between sectors. (See the Metrojet, which took off from Sharm? Pan Am and Locherbie?)


Would the French officials want to dampen or amplify perceived lapses in Paris? That said, and considering the Flt 990 investigation and Egypts version versus NTSB version, maybe I should give the French authorities the benefit of the doubt.
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Old 16th Dec 2016, 07:54
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This morning I messaged Peter Beaumont, who wrote this story for the Guardian, summarizing PPRuNe's detective work on MS804. I also contacted the Guardian. I'll let you know if either replies.
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