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B737 @ Aberdeen

Old 5th Dec 2021, 11:58
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Hopefully we can all learn lessons from the incident, once the full report is published. Probably worth including relevant actions in the approach brief when operating into airfields with particularly low MAAs…ESSA comes to mind, but I’m sure there are many others (perhaps not directly relevant to this incident, but an example of a situation which requires a little thought).

The sad reality is that anything out of the ordinary has a tendency to catch us out, regardless of experience.
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Old 5th Dec 2021, 12:10
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Banana Joe

Unless you are in IMC, I fail to remember a time when I have left the autopilot in that low, I always disconnect roughly 1000agl, regardless of the wind/wx, it helps you get a 'feel' of the aircraft, I know some companies don't like you disconnecting too early but 350ft......

This type of go around is always going to be an issue, light aircraft, low level off etc, although its easy to criticise the crew of this, we all could have been there.

In recent years, I have had the pleasure of flying many times with a low landing weight 737, I find during the brief discussing the G/A Power setting helpful. In this case where I would break off an approach, I would find the old philosophy of Automatics in or Automatics out more helpful, I would be much happier setting the power manually. but then I am a dinosaur.
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Old 5th Dec 2021, 20:33
  #23 (permalink)  

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Easy to sit back in one’s armchair & pontificate.
An unusual G/A which was probably never encountered before on the 737. Probably just read about it in the dim and distant.

One thing to bear in mind is that once TOGA is pressed the single channel AP disconnects and you are now handing flying, with increasing thrust and pitching up which needs to be controlled with application of forward trim.
Flap 15 retraction to say F5/F1/UP with pitch down resulting. This is particularly noticeable from F1 to flap UP. Significant back pressure is necessary with trim in a timely manner. Lack of scan with low situational awareness.
Unless this is regularly practised, it doesn’t come as any great surprise that it catches inexperience pilots out. No mention who was PF. I would speculate the FO…?? Add to this the lack of flying. Was the PM monitoring effectively….? Also caught out…
Emirates SOP (was?) leave the flaps at F15 until platform altitude. Then retract having ‘bugged up’.
Reduce the workload by timely reengagement of the AP once trimmed.
All easier said than done in the comfort of the armchair.

What will be interesting is the response of the Training Dept…

Last edited by parkfell; 6th Dec 2021 at 07:09. Reason: syntax
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Old 5th Dec 2021, 20:54
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The problem for the training department is satisfying the requirements of the LPC. A "test" that is so out-dated it is not fit for purpose. It hasn't been relevant for about 30 years or more. I went to a training conference just after the 787 went into service. A photo of a 787 flight deck with HUD was presented next to that of a DC-3. The one thing they had in common was the check schedule to revalidate the type rating. Until the regulators get their heads out of their arses mishaps like this will continue to happen. Anyone out there ever actually had to hand fly a single engine ILS and G/A for real? Yet we will all do it hundreds of times in a career in the sim. A total waste of time.
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Old 5th Dec 2021, 21:05
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Well, some years ago my company (a particularly garish one) realised, possibly following a similar incident, that the most commonly cocked-up manoeuvre was the two-engined medium level go-around. hardly surprising as it was only ever practices once on type conversion and afair never seen again - and here is that very same manoeuvre cocked up...
I seem to recall that Mr Boeing built some pitfalls into this seemingly simple execise though my menory is clouded with subsequent Airbus time and which procedure was which.

My 737 training emphasised rigidly that a/t was NEVER to be used a/p out - either both in or both out. You either flew manually or automatically, one or the other - and the other one was to learn to fly 'through' the f/d if you got in a pickle. Fluffing your mode selections and/or failing to read FMAs could be very distracting indeed and it was necessary to learn to fly manually while ignoring the flight director.
I wonder how many are taught that today?

But then, I was taught the see-saw runaway trim detail that could just (perhaps)have saved the Max crews too, had they been aware, or rather awake enough by use of basic airmanship never to have gotten into the problem so deep that they neeed it..

Last edited by meleagertoo; 5th Dec 2021 at 22:02.
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Old 5th Dec 2021, 21:09
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Originally Posted by Uplinker View Post
Why Boeing have still not introduced FBW or decent autopilots and auto-thrust that can handle all flight phases to the 73, baffles me. They could even have brought in FBW just in pitch, which would have made a huge difference enabling auto-trim, and things like bigger engines and MCAS would have been very easy and safe to implement.
Two words: type commonality.

To be honest, yes, 737 has lots of issues, but on the other hand, a go-around at 2000ft AAL on ATC request should hopefully be a non-event for a professional crew in any airplane type. There's plenty of time to discuss the actions, verify missed approach altitude and go about it nicely, slowly and methodically.

It's the pushing of TOGA for dear life when there's no immediate threat that gets people in trouble.
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Old 5th Dec 2021, 21:16
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Airline I worked for until a couple of years ago had an enterprising individual who would sell you a copy of the TRE notes for the Sim session. You would always know exactly what was going to happen.
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Old 5th Dec 2021, 21:22
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FlyingStone

Whilst I don’t disagree with the theory, recent events (this incident, the French Bee A350 at ORY - and others) would seem to suggest that non-standard GAs are not “non-events” for experienced crew. So I think one of the questions we need to ask is : WHY ?
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Old 5th Dec 2021, 21:27
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FlyingStone

No easy solutions... many training departments try to take away the grey areas by simplifying the procedures and having one GA procedure regardless of where you initiate it. As we've seen; this is particularly pertinent on the Boeing where it's not necessarily easy to get out of approach mode
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Old 6th Dec 2021, 00:18
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Why single-channel AP on the ILS?
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Old 6th Dec 2021, 07:07
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Originally Posted by MissChief View Post
Why single-channel AP on the ILS?
Flying a CAT 1 ILS with conditions above minima for CAT1…

As previously stated, a dual channel AP approach (CAT3) results in autotrimming up at around 350’RA.
You could fly Dual CH, remembering to discount prior to this trimming, or dealing with an out of trim ac below this point once the AP is disconnected.
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Old 6th Dec 2021, 10:41
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QUOTE=FlyingStone;11151846]Two words: type commonality..[/QUOTE]

Fifteen words: Trying to maximise profits rather than improve their aeroplane and bring it up to date.

I agree with your other point though, I cannot remember the Boeing 737 FCOM now, but surely a discontinued approach from well above DA need not employ TOGA; just a level off then a gentle climb and clean up.
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Old 6th Dec 2021, 10:56
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Yes you can certainly use vertical speed above a height which I no longer remember as I have used it in earlier days on a 737 discontinued approach. I expect Denti will know.

Last edited by lederhosen; 6th Dec 2021 at 11:22.
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Old 6th Dec 2021, 11:18
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Dual channel autopilot go-around isn't available on the 737 unless both autopilots are engaged and FLARE armed is announciated, which won't be until after the self-test is completed below 1500ft RA.
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Old 6th Dec 2021, 11:53
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Question for the 737 pundits - can avoiding using the toga button for aborting an approach, cause complications for the FMC logic/legs/route sequencing?
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Old 6th Dec 2021, 12:34
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No, one of the conditions to sequence to the missed approach segment is a RoC above a certain value specified in the FCOM.
​​​​​​Just disconnect the AP, ask the PM to recycle flight directors and engage LNAV or HDG SEL and LVL CH. Around 75% N1 with 7,5° nose up attitude should establish the aircraft in a gentle and manageable climb with flaps 15 and gear up and gives the PM time to rebuild automation.






Last edited by Banana Joe; 6th Dec 2021 at 13:49.
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Old 6th Dec 2021, 12:52
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Thanks. I guess that's what it was - we stayed in VS to gently capture the MAA, either from above or below, and I momentarily had problems joining the route up for another approach in the FMC (I forget how we got around it, or maybe it was fat finger syndrome; it just had me scratching my head for a moment).
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Old 6th Dec 2021, 13:00
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Originally Posted by Banana Joe View Post
No, one of the conditions to sequence to the missed approach segment is a RoC above a certain value specified in the FCOM.
​​​​​​Just disconnect the AP, ask the PM to recycle flight directors and engage LNAV or HDG SEL and LVL CH. Around 75% N1 with 7,5° nose up attitude should establish the aircraft in a gentle and manageable climb with flaps 15 and gear up and gives the PM the time to rebuild automation.
Thanks for that. Fairly new to the 737 (about 300 hours over 22 months thanks to Covid and furlough) but that’s what my thought process was. TOGA making things far too exciting in that scenario. One potential gotcha that occurs to me with the relaxed go-around though, is missing the normal sequence, eg
‘Go-Around. …Flap.(if appropriate)‘
’Positive Climb’
’Gear Up’
Similar to a wind-sheer escape where we brief that once clear (obviously without changing configuration) we will then make the ‘Go-Around’ ‘Flap 15’ call to get into that mindset and ensure we don’t forget to raise the gear etc.
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Old 6th Dec 2021, 13:49
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Why take the autopilot and A/T out?

De tune ILS freq, (A/P will revert to CWS P and R)
Press HDG SEL
V/S +700 ft per minute
Don't forget a appropriate speed in the IAS window
The automatics should take care of everything else

Its the old KISS priciple
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Old 6th Dec 2021, 14:05
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Originally Posted by Brian Pern View Post
Why take the autopilot and A/T out?

De tune ILS freq, (A/P will revert to CWS P and R)
Press HDG SEL
V/S +700 ft per minute
Don't forget a appropriate speed in the IAS window
The automatics should take care of everything else

Its the old KISS priciple
Did it once on a Classic and the behaviour was not as advertised, the autopilot disconnected. I may give it a try again the next time.
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