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Boeing pilot involved in Max testing is indicted in Texas

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Boeing pilot involved in Max testing is indicted in Texas

Old 27th Jun 2022, 23:43
  #201 (permalink)  
 
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ICAO is also due a score card on how the bureaucratizing of aviation is coming along
Does a UN agency ever achieve anything? Sully has handed in his notice after six months.
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Old 27th Jun 2022, 23:45
  #202 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by WideScreen View Post
Yep, that's why I say, to move away from these vague certification criteria. The moment you can use a ruler to check on certification compliance, you give management far fewer chances to cheat on these things.
That may sound great in theory, but in practice it's nearly impossible to implement. Engine failure at V1 must be controllable, and it's demonstrated during cert. But there is a certain probability that a sub-par pilot will botch it when it happens to them in real life. Does that mean we can't certify unless we somehow 100% eliminate the possibility of a V1 engine failure? Better ground the worldwide fleet because no one knows how to do that.
How do you quantify 'controllable' with hard and fast 'ruler' requirements? Hence the requirements are sprinkled with terms like 'unusual pilot skill'. We try to design for the lesser skilled pilots, but you need to draw the line somewhere or we'll never be able to certify a piloted aircraft.
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Old 28th Jun 2022, 01:16
  #203 (permalink)  
 
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Montreal

Well, it's nice to know that I've been living under a rock . . . . had not previously seen news of Amb. Sullenberger's resignation.

In fairness to ICAO - I mean as an organization or entity, and also a place where many dedicated people at all levels devote much effort - it predates the UN. The Chicago Convetion of 1944, its Annexes, the SARPs and much more, have contributed greatly to the safety, efficiency, and overall vitality of civil aviation sectors in many countries (I mean, Member States) and internationally. Of course it's within the UN umbrella today, but that shouldn't be the reply to all interest in its work or proceedings.

I have no idea why, exactly, the Ambassador has tendered a resignation. Perhaps it is because within the past several years, the Organization has seemed captivated, or maybe "captured, occupied and indentured" is more accurate, to certain aspects of climate change orthodoxy - while at the same time proving feckless against actual present-day aviation matters (RyanAir diversion, Ukrainian Int'l shootdown, MH17, to name some prominent cases). Plus it evidently is lacking anything like cutting-edge, insightful developmental work on preparing to cope with the coming onslaught of en masse cockpit automation (and ATM automation, and higher airspace traffic and usage, and AI . . . .) at least as well as global civil aviation coped with, say, the arrival of the Jet Age, the arrival also of wide-body aircraft (massive traffic growth) and two-engine overwater ops, you know, the pre-Instagram stuff.

This isn't to say that dealing with concepts, and terminology or phrasing within formal certification regulations, about levels of aviation skills, knowledge and abilities would be a subject matter where ICAO could or should take the lead. But at the same time, I think if and when a solution, at least a workable solution from an operational as well as engineering standpoint, finally is found, it would be better by far if ICAO and its various outputs were in alignment.

Cognescenti will recognize the source for this line, but I'm exercising caution in stating attribution; an airline enmeshed at the time in a matter of international civil aviation diplomatic controversy claimed its operations were "the business of freedom." There is something to that notion. Maybe a lot of something. Anyhow, and much to this attorney-and-SLF's disappoinment, the upcoming Assembly in Montreal just won't be the same without the class, eminence and integrity brought to the role of U.S. Permanent Rep.

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Old 28th Jun 2022, 02:22
  #204 (permalink)  
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We try to design for the lesser skilled pilots, but you need to draw the line somewhere or we'll never be able to certify a piloted aircraft.
I agree that "average", "must not require unusual skill" and the like are very difficult to quantify. But there has to be a starting point somewhere. For my experience, if the pilot assessing the handling characteristic has any doubt about compliance, the first thing he/she does, is discuss it with the team, including the certifying authority. This would be the opposite of murmuring to one's self that it's "probably okay" and saying nothing, knowing that doing so steps the certification process along.

I have certainly trained pilots on airplane types which I knew to be totally benign, and the pilot had a terrible time with it - it was the pilot! And, I own a certified single engine GA type, which is so demanding of skill, it is actually actually requires a type rating in other countries. In my opinion, it does demand unusual skill, and type specific training, but it was certified "normally".

In any case, like anything in certification, if in doubt, report and discuss (then probably have another pilot assess, with the concern in mind).
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Old 28th Jun 2022, 03:34
  #205 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by tdracer View Post
That may sound great in theory, but in practice it's nearly impossible to implement. Engine failure at V1 must be controllable, and it's demonstrated during cert. But there is a certain probability that a sub-par pilot will botch it when it happens to them in real life. Does that mean we can't certify unless we somehow 100% eliminate the possibility of a V1 engine failure? Better ground the worldwide fleet because no one knows how to do that.
How do you quantify 'controllable' with hard and fast 'ruler' requirements? Hence the requirements are sprinkled with terms like 'unusual pilot skill'. We try to design for the lesser skilled pilots, but you need to draw the line somewhere or we'll never be able to certify a piloted aircraft.
I agree, it's not 100% avoidable to have some vagueness, in the end, flying is (for the foreseeable time) a human driven process.

However, striving to minimize the amount of vagueness could be very useful.

Engine failure at V1 controllable can be specified in maximum flight-path/3D-position/energy deviations vs. time, given a maximum amount/reaction-time of control input.

Compare this with EGPWS. EGPWS effectively creates a dynamic multidimensional "virtual-path", where it is safe to fly. As long as the aircraft stays within these multidimensional boundaries, the aircraft is safe. Move outside this virtual-path and the dangers start adding up, sometimes very quickly.

For the V1 failures, a similar virtual-path can be defined and used as a certification requirement. Define the maximum amount of correction required, vs. the reaction time, and things do get quite deterministic. This would immediately wipe out the possibility that an outright dangerous aircraft will pass the certification tests (because with the vague certification criteria, an ace could save the aircraft certification). This way, you create "a ruler" to be used for the certification. When the current certification criteria were established, technology wasn't available to specify and/or measure this type of specifications, so, one did water down these certification criteria to "average pilot", etc. Nowadays, math, computational power as well as sensor capabilities are an order of magnitude better and a different, less vague, approach to certification would be feasible.

And, because the aircraft certification gets deterministic, the pilot certification can also become more deterministic. Still not perfect, though getting better than the vague "average" qualification.
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Old 28th Jun 2022, 03:42
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Originally Posted by Pilot DAR View Post
I agree that "average", "must not require unusual skill" and the like are very difficult to quantify. But there has to be a starting point somewhere. For my experience, if the pilot assessing the handling characteristic has any doubt about compliance, the first thing he/she does, is discuss it with the team, including the certifying authority. This would be the opposite of murmuring to one's self that it's "probably okay" and saying nothing, knowing that doing so steps the certification process along.

I have certainly trained pilots on airplane types which I knew to be totally benign, and the pilot had a terrible time with it - it was the pilot! And, I own a certified single engine GA type, which is so demanding of skill, it is actually actually requires a type rating in other countries. In my opinion, it does demand unusual skill, and type specific training, but it was certified "normally".

In any case, like anything in certification, if in doubt, report and discuss (then probably have another pilot assess, with the concern in mind).
The bold part is the problem. As long as one is dealing with honest people, things are fine. The moment greed sets in, we get what happened to the MAX. Have less vague certification specifications and the amount of cheating will be reduced.

Initially, this sounds pretty bad for aircraft designers, though looking further into this, it makes their life a lot easier. Engineers/Technical designers want to have clear criteria of what they need to achieve, and makes preparing for the certification a lot easier. Not to say, for example, the whole car-industry works on these principles. Turn the vague marketing level requirements into technical requirements and create the technical design from there. Once the technical options are exhausted, work with the marketing to update (maybe water down) the marketing goals for that specific item. Since cars are produced in massive amounts, this working mechanism is mandatory to avoid disaster designs.
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Old 28th Jun 2022, 16:57
  #207 (permalink)  
 
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Just as an aside, I’ve never forgotten that many (MANY!) years ago as an IFALPA rep at an ICAO Airworthiness Committee meeting, I worked with a terrific character named Thomas (Tom) Foxworth who was the relevant ALPA committee chairman. We were discussing reaction time for accelerate-stop certification and apropos what “quality” of pilot should be fed into probability models etc, Tom used the phrase “least competent of the competent” to encompass both the pilot who regularly just scraped by on all training, and the one who did pretty well but was at the low end of e.g. fatigue on the day.
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Old 30th Jun 2022, 08:43
  #208 (permalink)  
 
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In a very safe, yet still evolving industry, the processes required to maintain the highest standards also have to change. The difference between the old and new views of safety (human error) is a simplified example.

Outwardly the FAA and Boeing holds the old view, ‘blame and train’. Build systems assuming that it is possible to sufficiently train people - change human nature - to manage foreseeable situations; thus taking the greatest credit for human performance in system operation - malfunction. (Outwardly Airbus appears to differ - safety attitude - integrated systems; EASA less convincing?)

With evolution, safety depends on recognition that human activity and particularly training is limited, with increasing uncertainty in outcome. Certification decisions via requirement and consensus must now be seen as soft judgements which accommodate the widest range of views and (unforeseen) situations. This in part represents the new view; complex operations depend on human activity, the human is an asset, but limited by the situation.
Certification processes in complex system need greater focus on assumptions and ambiguities, on the situational uncertainties which crews are expected to manage; aviation is slowly adapting, but perhaps not as fast as other industries. 20 yrs ago aviation was the benchmark, HF, CRM, risk management; nowadays aviation appears to lag other transport systems and medical care. In many ways aviation is complacent, slow to change, reluctant to view the world differently.

Note the references below; a wide view, evaluation teams, task orientated.
Human Factors in Risk Assessment
https://www.hse.gov.uk/humanfactors/...assessment.htm
note embedded links and also see links and resources
https://www.hse.gov.uk/research/rrpdf/rr679.pdf
https://webarchive.nationalarchives....ctors-guidance
and ‘Reducing Error And Influencing Behaviour hsg48’

“It is our knowledge — the things we are sure of — that makes the world go wrong and keeps us from seeing and learning.” Lincoln Austin Steffens
“We know more than we’re able to explain that we know.
And I call this inarticulate knowledge — the knowledge that I’m not able to articulate to somebody.
And I have inarticulate knowledge about a lot of things, including other people.
I could have tacit knowledge of why I trust somebody that I couldn’t explain to you. If you asked me to give you specific things, I wouldn’t be able to point to that, “Oh, there’s that one time when we were hanging out together,” because it’s probably not any one particular thing. It’s probably a series of things, call it a gut feeling. I just have that.
And I have the same thing for mistrust. Right? And I think that this kind of tacit knowledge and articulate knowledge is undervalued in our society. It’s undervalued because we always want to be able to explain the science and give the hard reasons for it. But a lot of life doesn’t work like that.”
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Old 1st Jul 2022, 03:12
  #209 (permalink)  
 
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Boeing hasn’t delivered a 787 in more than a year and now the latest kick in the arse

[QUOTE][[color=#222222]The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) Office of Inspector General (OIG) has announced plans to audit of the FAA’s oversight of Boeing 737 and 787 production. According to a memorandum released by the OIG, the audit will focus on the FAA’s process for “identifying and resolving production issues and addressing allegations of undue pressure within the production environment.” The audit is expected to begin in July./QUOTE]

You would think that by now Boeing execs would have made sorting the production process issues a high priority starting with getting serious about encouraging a robust safety reporting culture, yet the steady drip drip of own goals continues. I think that sadly, Boeing is too broken to fix….
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Old 1st Jul 2022, 04:14
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Originally Posted by megan View Post
Does a UN agency ever achieve anything? Sully has handed in his notice after six months.
6 months....hm. I feel that ICAO isn´t what it used to be. Doesn´t seem to have enouth people, resources and attention by politicians who expect it to play it´s vital role in aviation. Check this out:
https://www.icao.int/annual-report-2...2021-2022.aspx
Quote:
The budget is a Zero Nominal Growth (ZNG) budget, developed by maintaining the average Assessment of Member States for the next three years at the 2019 level, while retaining all important existing activities and providing additional resources for priorities such as aviation security, Carbon Offsetting ((( plus plus plus....)))
Easy to see that ´´traditional´´ ICAO work is put on hold to cater for fancy (though needed) new projects. However, we need a solid basis for Aviation.... Echos of the Boeing management mess ??
Whatever, I can understand Sully.

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Old 1st Jul 2022, 13:06
  #211 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by Big Pistons Forever View Post
You would think that by now Boeing execs would have made sorting the production process issues a high priority starting with getting serious about encouraging a robust safety reporting culture, yet the steady drip drip of own goals continues. I think that sadly, Boeing is too broken to fix….
Boeing corporate has been single-minded in doing nothing much to reverse the rot that arose from the MDD invasion of TBC. If they didn't get the message over the tanker debacle, the B737 ring frame saga, the 787 section joints, the Max, and production in the Carolinas, along with the tanker fuel debris etc... apparently the lads are inured to "signs". Moses, they ain't. Boeing doesn't however need a prophet, they need a leader that places quality higher on their agenda than bloated profits (prophets?) They have had more than a few hints to amend their ways, but seem to have the pioneer spirit to keep on in spite of common sense.,

Time to dislodge the board.
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Old 2nd Jul 2022, 07:15
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Originally Posted by fdr View Post
Boeing corporate has been single-minded in doing nothing much to reverse the rot that arose from the MDD invasion of TBC. If they didn't get the message over the tanker debacle, the B737 ring frame saga, the 787 section joints, the Max, and production in the Carolinas, along with the tanker fuel debris etc... apparently the lads are inured to "signs". Moses, they ain't. Boeing doesn't however need a prophet, they need a leader that places quality higher on their agenda than bloated profits (prophets?) They have had more than a few hints to amend their ways, but seem to have the pioneer spirit to keep on in spite of common sense.,
I think, it is dangerous to insist on "quality", since this emphasizes "paperwork", which is already available in large quantities at Boeing, though watered down (because of the sheer volume), by those in charge to control the operations are performed according "the books".

What Boeing needs is the reverse to the concept of technical excellence as a leading item. And the understanding that long-term profits only come from the fruits of this technical excellence.

Originally Posted by fdr View Post
Time to dislodge the board.
I don't think, that is enough, there are far too many managers below that level, who simply miss the capabilities and/or drive for the technical excellence.

But, hey, this is how all big companies in the end start to fail.
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Old 3rd Jul 2022, 05:05
  #213 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by WideScreen View Post
I think, it is dangerous to insist on "quality", since this emphasizes "paperwork", which is already available in large quantities at Boeing, though watered down (because of the sheer volume), by those in charge to control the operations are performed according "the books". What Boeing needs is the reverse to the concept of technical excellence as a leading item. And the understanding that long-term profits only come from the fruits of this technical excellence.
Boeing produces both products and services. The client for any of their output makes a determination on the output based on quality and price, which is the basis of economic differentiation in the marketplace. The term Quality in that sense is not the narrow view of a QA program, it is what the output is considered by the purchaser to be fit for, and it occurs in a comparative space. If the alternative is an AN-2, then the B7XX may be attractive, warts n all. If Boeing is being compared to another competent provider, say one starting with the first letter of the alphabet, then when the products seem to be messed up in the kitty litter routinely, and over 25 years of the input from MDD manglement, it appears this is business as usual or business as desired. That's the quality matter that a purchaser looks at. Price can always be made so attractive that the purchaser's shareholders will have kittens (who don't mind the kitty litter surprises) if the customer doesn't take advantage of the short term gains in discounted products. The OEM's QA department is a part of the quality case, but is just a part. Not caring about your product certainly makes pricing a factor, like the AN-2.

Originally Posted by WideScreen View Post
I don't think, that is enough, there are far too many managers below that level, who simply miss the capabilities and/or drive for the technical excellence. But, hey, this is how all big companies in the end start to fail.
Gotta start somewhere, and that means probably at the top, they are the ones with the remit to take action. It is conceivable that the engineers and machinists and QA staff of the company could stage a mass walkout, but then it is quite possible that the mgt would care less, they probably can book an improved balance sheet due to the reduction in labor costs, grab their stash 'o cash and retire.

There was a time when we used to be proud of driving Boeing aircraft. Boeing still made hashes occasionally, like JAL 103, but then so did everyone, (DC-10 door locks... L-1011 CWS... Airbus rudder limiter design... vertical stab secondary structure...) Would be nice to have pride in their product.


PS: the AN-2 is actually a pretty neat plane in its own right,
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