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sunchaser 03-12-2019 10:19 AM

Boeing 737 MAX
 
The latest MAX crash has certainly generated some concern. Friends and relatives who fly and maintain the plane seem uncertain as to whether it is design, training or maintenance related. As details emerge on Ethiopia tragedy there are statements from ground observers as to mid-air plane breakup and strange noises.

Any thoughts from TF flight professionals?

Ski in NC 03-12-2019 11:14 AM

Won't really know until they download the recorders. Probably already done due to the pressure to sort this out.

Could be the same MCAS (??) thing that took out the Lion Air Max-8. Anti-stall goes haywire and pilots did not know to turn the system off. Flick a switch then fly the plane. Got to know to flick the switch, though.

Boat 03-12-2019 11:52 AM

Too many crashes to ignore. But the cause may be as simple as a pilot in a wrestling match with a stick shaker.


https://leehamnews.com/2018/11/07/bo...-air-accident/

BruceK 03-12-2019 05:34 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Ski in NC (Post 748012)
..Could be the same MCAS (??) thing that took out the Lion Air Max-8. Anti-stall goes haywire and pilots did not know to turn the system off. Flick a switch then fly the plane. Got to know to flick the switch, though.

And where the switch is.
The plane is banned from operating into/out of Australia pending a fix. Many other countries too, though not Canada and USA, according to news this morning. For us, it seems to only affect Fijian Airlines,and Singapore`s Silkair subsidiary,the latter has alternative aircraft, Fijian with a small fleet will be in trouble.

AlaskaProf 03-12-2019 05:47 PM

2 Attachment(s)
Quote:

Originally Posted by BruceK (Post 748089)
And where the switch is.


The switch (switches, actually, it's a redundant system)is right where it's been on every 737 since Lufthansa got the first one in 1968.


In this pic, on the center console just above the big red #2 engine fire handle

AlaskaProf 03-12-2019 06:40 PM

BTW:


Ethiopian co-pilot had 200 hours total flight time. I doubt he could even find the "Runaway Trim Checklist", let alone the Memory Items.


Not his fault, I suppose, someone must have told him he was qualified.


'Prof

Lou_tribal 03-12-2019 06:45 PM

I have a flight planed in 4 weeks aboard one of these, if I survive I will tell you if it is flying well lol :)

L

Screaming04 03-12-2019 06:58 PM

Perhaps if Boeing had some indicator that there was a system over-riding pilot inputs (didn't exiist in 1968) it would give pilots a fighting chance. Kinda like the traction control light in my car...

AlaskaProf 03-12-2019 07:13 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Screaming04 (Post 748107)
Perhaps if Boeing had some indicator that there was a system over-riding pilot inputs (didn't exiist in 1968) it would give pilots a fighting chance. Kinda like the traction control light in my car...

Actually, they are writing a patch as we speak to provide an MCAS alarm, but I think an uncommanded pitch down should be alarming enough...Kinda like your car drifting sideways makes the light redundant.

Screaming04 03-12-2019 07:18 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by AlaskaProf (Post 748112)
Actually, they are writing a patch as we speak to provide an MCAS alarm, but I think an unconnected pitch down should be alarming enough.

Good to hear. It's a shame that a system designed to solve one problem created another.

AlaskaProf 03-12-2019 07:55 PM

Lion Air had similar uncommanded pitchdown events on six consecutive flights, almost certainly initiated by a failed AOA sensor In the preceding five, the crews responded, in accord with the required procedure. What kind of company would continue to dispatch this flawed aircraft until it found a crew not up to the challenge?

psneeld 03-12-2019 08:25 PM

Whoa....probably still more to the story.
But so far from what I have read is the least trained are the issue...no aircraft is perfect even years after hard use.


Uncontrolled flight and the crew doesn't secure the autopilot? Wouldn't let them row my dingy to shore.

tiltrider1 03-12-2019 08:29 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by AlaskaProf (Post 748120)
Lion Air had similar uncommanded pitchdown events on six consecutive flights, almost certainly initiated by a failed AOA sensor In the preceding five, the crews responded, in accord with the required procedure. What kind of company would continue to dispatch this flawed aircraft until it found a crew not up to the challenge?


This is the first question that one has to answer. The second question is how did the pilots loose situational control of an autopilot? Poor training? The max is not a new aircraft, its an upgrade to an existing certificate of air worthiness and even if the latest incident is related it comes back to training.

GFC 03-12-2019 08:45 PM

When we go to and from AZ we fly Allegiant Air out of our local airport. Allegiant has gotten rid of it's aging 737 fleet and has moved to an all new fleet of jets from those "other guys" over in Europe who make Airbus planes.

Screaming04 03-12-2019 08:57 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by GFC (Post 748134)
When we go to and from AZ we fly Allegiant Air out of our local airport. Allegiant has gotten rid of it's aging 737 fleet and has moved to an all new fleet of jets from those "other guys" over in Europe who make Airbus planes.

Allegiant had md80’s

Screaming04 03-12-2019 09:00 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by psneeld (Post 748127)
Whoa....probably still more to the story.
But so far from what I have read is the least trained are the issue...no aircraft is perfect even years after hard use.


Uncontrolled flight and the crew doesn't secure the autopilot? Wouldn't let them row my dingy to shore.

Lion air pilots were completely innocent in my opinion. Boeing added this feature to the aircraft, wasn’t included in training nor in the acft documentation. The aircraft doesn’t tell the pilots it’s over riding their commands and it happens with autopilot OFF. Since then, a circular has been put out to all operators.

Delfin 03-12-2019 09:07 PM

A fundamental difference between design philosophies for Airbus and Boeing is that Boeing has always defaulted to pilot control in crisis situations, where Airbus prefers automatic systems. From what I have read, when Boeing decided to upgrade the 737 rather than white sheet a new design, they selected engines whose weight and size required changing the placement of the wings on the fuselage. That changed how the aircraft would respond and made it slightly more likely to pitch up during climb out, although I have no clue why that would be. Hence, the need for a system that corrects what amounts to an artifact of a bit of a kludge to accommodate new engines. The black box data should provide lots of insights, so until then, no one knows for sure what happened. However, it is possible we will never get a definitive answer that is made public. I say that based on a conversation I had with a fairly drunk Boeing technician in first class (free drinks) who was put in charge of replacing all the pylons on 747s worldwide. I asked him if he worked for Boeing because he had a whopper 3 ring binder with Boeing on the cover, and the flight we were on was returning to Seattle.

He said he did, and about 5 drinks later we got to talking about the crash of TWA 800 off New York. Many witnesses said that they observed a rocket hitting the aircraft and bringing it down, but the official explanation was an explosion in the fuel tanks. The tech confided to me - and you can take this or leave it as truth - that it was that crash that had occupied his time for the last two years. I asked why, and after pausing, he said it was because the design of the engine pylons was the actual cause. According to him, these were originally designed to break away from the wing if a bird strike or other catastrophic event damaged the turbine, which causes the engine to vibrate so much the concern was wing damage. He said that what happened to TWA 800 was a bird strike on the port outer engine. The engine broke loose as it was designed to do, but had sufficient fuel in the lines to keep burning for a few more seconds. The result was that the engine became a missile, and looped back and impacted the fuselage just forward of the wings, bringing the plane down and explaining why so many were convinced a land fired missile caused the crash.

I have no way of knowing whether this was fact or fiction, but I did verify after I got home that Boeing had, in fact, replaced all pylons on all 747s after this crash so it has the ring of truth. I mention this in context to this most recent crash because grounding the entire fleet would be almost as disruptive to air travel, world commerce, etc. as grounding all 747s would have been, which never happened. So, if I had to guess, these crashes will be put down to pilot error, but Boeing will fix whatever caused the issue and we will never get a comprehensive explanation.

Delfin 03-12-2019 09:10 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Screaming04 (Post 748138)
Lion air pilots were completely innocent in my opinion. Boeing added this feature to the aircraft, wasn’t included in training nor in the acft documentation. Since then, a circular has been put out to all operators.

I believe that is incorrect. The system was not called an MCAS in the training manual, but its existence is explained, as well as the fix, which is simply flipping a switch to turn off auto trim. All modern aircraft have automatic trim capability, and all pilots should understand how to turn it off. What is new with this aircraft is the need for a response from the auto trim system when it is detected that the nose is pitching up, but not the auto trim.

BruceK 03-12-2019 09:29 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by AlaskaProf (Post 748103)
BTW:


Ethiopian co-pilot had 200 hours total flight time. I doubt he could even find the "Runaway Trim Checklist", let alone the Memory Items.


Not his fault, I suppose, someone must have told him he was qualified.


'Prof

What were the Captain`s accrued hours to date of death?

Screaming04 03-12-2019 10:00 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Delfin (Post 748142)
I believe that is incorrect. The system was not called an MCAS in the training manual, but its existence is explained, as well as the fix, which is simply flipping a switch to turn off auto trim. All modern aircraft have automatic trim capability, and all pilots should understand how to turn it off. What is new with this aircraft is the need for a response from the auto trim system when it is detected that the nose is pitching up, but not the auto trim.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lion_Air_Flight_610

Read the aftermath section about “difference training” and the changes to the flight manual.


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