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AF 447 Search to resume

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AF 447 Search to resume

Old 27th Sep 2010, 20:55
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BEA

It is almost the end of September, and I guess that since no report has been mention here, no word from the BEA on any further search effort has been forthcoming. Anybody giving odds?
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Old 27th Sep 2010, 21:06
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wes wall

Callous to take bets on such an important issue, my friend. But you are right, and I remain cynical in the extreme, believing all here (and elsewhere) who have tried in every way to goad BEA into action have failed. The final is most predicatable, but will most likely even more favor, protect, hold harmless, etc. those who have a financial interest in keeping aviation subject to easily avoidable catastrophe.

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Old 29th Sep 2010, 03:39
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Wes...

I believe BEA will undertake another search within the next few months, as there is immense pressure to do so. What form that will take is anyone's guess, as this accident has already had a severe effect on BEA's budget.

I also believe there needs to be a change in the funding for search / recovery for accidents such as this. That could be accomplished through a special ICAO fund and / or an insurance carriers fund. The insurers end up paying out in the end anyway, so it makes sense that a structure be devised wherein certain amounts could be freed up if and when necessary (i.e. in cases like this where the crash occurred in "international territory" and great effort is required to locate and then recover the aircraft remains).

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Old 29th Sep 2010, 11:39
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there needs to be a change in the funding for search
I concur completely. If memory serves (not as good as it once was) I seem to recall an initive was suggested quite sometime back, at the time, via the IATA framework, but was abandoned for whatever reason. I wonder if any new thought process is occuring now. If so, you can be assured it will take a lot of time to accomplish. And, I hope you are correct re BEA search activity.
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Old 29th Sep 2010, 15:26
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With respect, I believe the obstacle is not lack of money. The authority has the influence to garner far in excess of what has been expended to date. Further, given the Political will, and an honest format, this accident would not be subjected to complaints of lackluster searching.

Once proffered, conclusions take on the ring of "Truth" to most, and when any further evidence might challenge the "results", the excuses start................

bear
 
Old 29th Sep 2010, 18:18
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The difficulty for BEA is that, given the known facts, several perfectly viable but dissimilar scenarios describing the event and, more importantly, its cause cannot be ruled out. These range from a (simple) mechanical failure leading to upset (pitot blockage) to super turbulence/shear and the hand of God knocking the aricraft from the sky (unusual attitudes and airspeeds causing pitot disagree). Each of the viable scenarios implies different "parties at fault or blame" and each implies the application of differing safety measures and industry recommendations.

Unless BEA is in possession of significant information not placed yet in the public domain (and discussed in this exaustive forum), they need more data to reach a conclusion that will satisfy the community; best, of course, the CVR and FDR to tell them in detail what the pilots and the aircraft went through at 0210 on June 1, 2009...

France is obligated by international treaty to "solve" this mystery and can't just bail out of the search for AF447 wreckage because it's too expensive. This is not a third-world country and France would suffer a world-wide loss of face, especially for a country that prides itself in underwater exploration and technical prowess.

So the promised early September announcement from French Secretary for Transport, Dominique Bussereau, about continuing the search is delayed. From BEA, no updates since May. Time will not sweep AF447 under the rug and out of the world's eye, so patience is required while the authorities scramble to get their ducks in a row and their financing in place. Only if the search is called off and BEA presents a slippery conclusion will the conspiracy theories begin. I, for one, can't see that happening.

GB
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Old 30th Sep 2010, 22:17
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Only if the search is called off and BEA presents a slippery conclusion will the conspiracy theories begin. I, for one, can't see that happening.
Me neither.
They wouldn't be that stupid....

Moreover, the uncertainty about what happened cannot be in the interest of Airbus either.
It implies there is an unresolved risk of an Airbus plane to be knocked out of the sky.
Only if they know (and everyone knows that they know) what happened they can credibly make sure and also clear to the public that it won't happen again.
As long as the real cause remains somehow unclear they can't make this claim...
So there must be also a vested interest of AI to find the recorders as well.
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Old 30th Sep 2010, 22:45
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BEA is of course not stupid, we must look elsewhwere for the apathy and ignorance. It lays with the flying public, and cowed pilots. Even the pilots threw in when AB flipped in the new pitots.

I think it is most unlikely the pitots were at fault. At cruise, especially that high, they would not ordinarily drown in air laden with super cooled Water.

If it was the pitots, it most certainly involved an excursion into a cell. This brings up an even more unacceptable trail of fault.

BEA will satisfy as many as they can (it will be a majority), and lay off any residual doubts on weather, Radar, Training, Radio vacuum, etc. until all but the most stalwart acquiesce. I have seen this too many times.

Oh, and the dead Pilots. (They have the "answer", the pitots).

cheers, bear
 
Old 1st Oct 2010, 17:52
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I think it is most unlikely the pitots were at fault.
Bearfoil,

I wouldn't necessarily say they were not involved at all.
But I fully agree they can't be the only reason for the accident.
Although there were incidents with the pitots in the past, a really simultaneous freezing of all three appears rather remote to me.
I'm sure the path to the accident was way more complex and just replacing the pitots is not a satisfactory answer to the mystery.

Making sure it won't happen again can only be achieved by knowing more about how it happened.
And BEA and AI know that.
And that's what makes me confident we haven't seen the last search for the recorders yet.

regards,

henra
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Old 1st Oct 2010, 19:11
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henra

I can't disagree, your statements are logical and appropriate. My points I make knowing that the investigation is polluted by human nature. All human endeavour is subject to an agenda. Isabella didn't floor Columbus hoping to enrich the Global culture or invent Anthropology.

And there is nothing 'wrong' with this. Without motive, humans would die a lethargic extinction for want of desire.

Here, the motive should be Safety, alone. We all know Safety is a result of analysis; the safest a/c might be a 380 carrying six passengers with eject seats and Mars surveyor air bags. Any economic decision is based in this way. My point is that if the search were a bit more energetic (read expensive), the long term effect on aviation would bolster bottom lines everywhere, even for carriers who do not deserve the windfall. Any excursion into parochial interest diminishes any endeavour. Short sightedness did not get aviation to where we are today (here I mean progress). At some point, the effort must career into Safety alone, if only for the positive effect on business. (I too am human, and despise short term selfishness, all too evident here in this accident). I rue the environment of quick "buckitis", it destroys "vision", something in short supply, imo.

cheers,
bear
 
Old 1st Oct 2010, 21:07
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Perhaps the following is relevant here: (from AF447 2nd int.rept. p.58):
1.17.6.4 Continuing airworthiness
(...)
1.17.6.4.1 Obligations of the manufacturer, holder of a type certificate
Article 21 A.3 of Part 21 stipulates that:
1) (...)
2) (...)
3) for any deficiency that may reveal a dangerous or catastrophic situation, the manufacturer must look for the cause of the deficiency, report the results of its investigations to EASA and inform it of any action that it undertakes or proposes to undertake to remedy this deficiency.
regards,
HN39
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Old 4th Oct 2010, 11:52
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Ominous signs?

Originally Posted by GreatBear
So the promised early September announcement from French Secretary for Transport, Dominique Bussereau, about continuing the search is delayed.
Mr Bussereau has announced his resignation at the upcoming reshuffle (remaniement) of the french government. BEA's response to the minister's statement has disappeared from the BEA site.

regards,
HN39

Last edited by HazelNuts39; 4th Oct 2010 at 12:03.
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Old 4th Oct 2010, 12:05
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PBS Documentary

Does anyone know if the upcoming PBS documentary is a rehash of the BBC work or something new?

NOVA | Crash of Flight 447
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Old 5th Oct 2010, 20:59
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Mr Bussereau's earlier press release where he said an announcement on a new search would be made following the commencement of a review in September shouldn't be dismissed out of hand. Le Point.fr reported on 17 September 2010 the following:-

On the night of 31 May to 1 June 2009, Air France flight AF447 disappeared between Rio de Janeiro and Paris. On board the Airbus A330-200 F-GZCP were 216 passengers and 12 crew members, who perished when the aircraft crashed into the sea. More than a year after the crash, many mysteries remain. To know the causes of the accident, the recovery of the wreck and especially that of the two flight recorders, is essential.

But after three search phases that led to the recovery of bodies and floating debris, and in an unequalled interest in the investigation; the investigation has made little progress. To revive the investigation, the Civil Aviation Bureau of Investigation and Analysis (BEA) has undertaken an inventory phase of all actions since the crash. Databases were created to classify all the evidence gathered since June 1, 2009, by ships, aircraft, underwater vehicles and even satellites for a year. "There is an enormous task of sorting. This should enable us to determine which areas have been fully explored, those where there is no hope, lastly, those already searched where further research/searching could still be done," said John Paul Troadec, director of the BEA, speaking to Le Point.fr. "Then we can define the strategy of a fourth phase of searching."

The BEA is expected to complete its investigation in October. The budget will then be determined. Without public funding, a new call to Airbus and Air France is possible for an expense that should be less than (euro) five million. Technical resources - specialized ships, robots, sonars and their operators - particularly in high demand by the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, should then also be available.
A further article on 29 September in Le Point.fr reaffirmed the October decision date, and I doubt a reshuffling of the political "deck chairs" is going to change the ultimate outcome.

mm43
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Old 5th Oct 2010, 23:43
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Bearfoil;
BEA will satisfy as many as they can (it will be a majority), and lay off any residual doubts on weather, Radar, Training, Radio vacuum, etc. until all but the most stalwart acquiesce.
, and,
My points I make knowing that the investigation is polluted by human nature. All human endeavour is subject to an agenda.
I agree the pressures are there and that it is human nature to carry agendas but I think the pressures to determine the factors which led to this loss of control are greater than those pressures which would in any formal, final response, lead "all but the most stalwart" down the memory hole.

I believe this for two straightforward reasons:

1) A transport aircraft is not caused to fall vertically without substantive reason,

and,

2) Failed pitots do not cause an airliner to lose flying ability.

The study of the ACARS messages has been exhaustive but is a dead-end as to pin-pointing those factors from which loss of control originated. There is nothing in the ACARS necessitating LOC - Attitude information and engine power information was not entirely lost.

Any final report must account for the loss of control without the use of "sky-hooks" to bridge unknowns. If you will, any final report must rely solely upon "cranes" to do the heavy explanatory lifting.

All anyone, including the BEA, can say at the moment is, the aircraft crashed. There is not even agreement that it was intact, although there is no evidence in the wreckage found of a high forward speed impact with the sea nor is there strong evidence for a high-altitude in-flight break-up; the vertical compression of disparate sections of the aircraft exhibit similar effects of high-vertical 'g' impact.

As you say, the BEA is not stupid. At obviously great risk of losing all credibility in the broader community, (which acknowledges loss of credibility with some already), any explanation of the accident must necessarily coherently explain these two steep improbabilities. That cannot be done without skyhooks, with the present level of knowledge of the flight and accident sequence.

Therefore I think the pressure to find the recorders is greater than the pressures to avoid same. But we'll see.

PJ2

Great Bear;

I should have read more carefully as I see you have covered these thoughts very well. Obviously I concur with your views. I post not in disagreement with Bearfoil as I have also seen enough of this industry to know it happens. The stakes are very high regardless, so we'll see what comes of plans for the next search.

Last edited by PJ2; 6th Oct 2010 at 02:41. Reason: Add comment to Great Bear
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Old 6th Oct 2010, 04:36
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Databases were created to classify all the evidence gathered since June 1, 2009, by ships, aircraft, underwater vehicles and even satellites for a year. "There is an enormous task of sorting. This should enable us to determine which areas have been fully explored, those where there is no hope, lastly, those already searched where further research/searching could still be done," said John Paul Troadec, director of the BEA, speaking to Le Point.fr. "Then we can define the strategy of a fourth phase of searching."
Aaah, mm43, some news! If the CVR and FDR are indeed recoverable and readable after 16 months at depth, I can't see another few months at sea making a difference. This is time well spent organizing and expertly weighting the data and forcing the highest search probabilities to percolate to the top. Likely a Bayesian approach. Good science. Proven results.

Bearfoil -- it's far too premature to propose conspiracies or complain of bias; not too early, though, to wish for more transparency and better public relations on the part of BEA, particularly because there is "an unequalled [worldwide] interest in the investigation." A Report from BEA describing the data sorting algorithms used and outlining precisely how Phase 4 search areas were chosen would be in line with good PR.

PJ2, John Paul Troadec does seem to have his arms properly around this mystery, and it sounds like a Phase 4 search will take place!

Cheers,

GB
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Old 11th Oct 2010, 13:09
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The decision will be made in November.

A decision could be taken in November at the launch of a fourth-year search of the wreckage of the Airbus A330-200 Air France , disappeared on June 1, 2009 in the Atlantic Ocean during a flight to Rio Paris. After the failure of the third season in May, the Bureau of Investigation and Analysis (BEA) has decided to return all data collected since the accident, analyze and assess which areas were covered how, with what tools etc.. . This analysis should be completed in early November. At that time, BEA and its main partenaires_ - Air France and Airbus - will have all the elements in hand to assess the technical feasibility of a fourth phase of research, a quote and make a decision. Objective: To locate the wreckage, hoping thereby to find the famous black boxes if they are not too damaged, could deliver information about the reaction of the airplane and the words in the cockpit. The financial aspect should not be an obstacle. "If that's the price of truth, we will pay," said a close case. Air France et Airbus ont déjà contribué à hauteur de 13 millions d'euros à la troisième campagne. Air France and Airbus have already contributed 13 million euros in the third season.
Vol Rio-Paris AF 447 : de nouvelles recherches pourraient être lancées - L'EXPRESS
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Old 11th Oct 2010, 13:50
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Just a note:

"... le Bureau d'enquêtes et d'analyses (BEA) a décidé de reprendre toutes les données collectées ...."
does not mean
"... the Bureau of Investigation and Analysis (BEA) has decided to return all data collected ..."
but
"... the Bureau of Investigation and Analysis (BEA) has decided to examine anew all data collected ..."

Just to avoid confusion from a less-than-adequate translation.

CJ

PS "fourth-year" in the first sentence is also a mistranslation of "quatrième" which simply means "fourth".
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Old 11th Oct 2010, 15:58
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ChristiaanJ
Thank you for that.
My apologies I should have made it clear that it was a google translation.
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Old 11th Oct 2010, 17:11
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Originally Posted by John47
ChristiaanJ
Thank you for that.
My apologies I should have made it clear that it was a google translation.
John,
No apologies needed!

There were enough details to indicate already it was a Google translation, but those Google translations have improved so much the last couple of years (compared to the ancient 'babelfish'...), that nearly everything was perfectly clear even if the grammar was less than perfect. - which is all I ask of a machine translation!

It was only the "return" that was less than clear and made me go back to the original.

CJ
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