Malaysian airliner feared lost..

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous' started by MANT!, Mar 8, 2014.

  1. Locutus of Bored

    Locutus of Bored Co-Founder of ISIS Moderator

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    I tuned in to find out about the Chilean earthquake, and they spent the entire forty-five minutes or so I had it on in the background talking about finding the plane. It's been a ratings bonanza for them, so they won't stop talking about it regardless of having absolutely nothing to report, even for another major story. They're such a joke. What's even the point of 24 hour news if it's only covering one story for most of that time?

    I finally just flipped on the local news when it came on, and the Chilean earthquake was their top story.
     
  2. Trekker4747

    Trekker4747 Boldly going... Premium Member

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    I would think any system that would make them float might compromise the level of near indestructibility they have. They'd have to find a way to to get both without compromising either. If it floated it would still, largely, stay near the wreckage just based on how ocean currents and such work. It'd also be easy to find since I suspect its transmissions would be easier to detect.

    Which, you'd think, that it'd be possible for the signals from the things to be more detectable from satellites even if the boxes are at the bottom of the ocean. But that, again, goes back to any such system maybe compromising the heartiness of the devices.
     
  3. Captrek

    Captrek Vice Admiral Admiral

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    You don't need to make the black boxes themselves float. Just a GPS unit with a radio transmitter. As soon as it hits the surface it would start broadcasting its position. That would give an almost exact position for the sea floor wreckage, no matter how much the transmitter drifts once on the surface.
     
  4. T'Girl

    T'Girl Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Problem with that is the recorder is somewhat buried inside the airplane's structure, even if it did float the structure would pull it down as the plane sank.

    I wonder if Jon Benet Ramsey's killer was on the plane?

    :)
     
  5. Miss Chicken

    Miss Chicken Little three legged cat with attitude Admiral

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    When a plane crashes at sea it usually shatters into many pieces so something design to float might end up being free to float to the surface.
     
  6. Starkers

    Starkers Admiral Admiral

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    You have to wonder if this isn't going to end up an unsolved mystery. Although I've heard it mentioned that if the black box has dropped into colder water this might extend the battery life of the pinger, given they still don't seem sure exactly where the plane went down this may not help very much
     
  7. JRS

    JRS Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I believe it will be solved, but not necessarily quickly.
    I mean it took almost two years to find the main wreck(and the black boxes) of Air France flight 447, even if they had bodies plus floating pieces found before. Its been barely a month with this search, so the whole thing has really just begun.
    I would hope speedy result though, for the sake of the families and so on.
     
  8. Starkers

    Starkers Admiral Admiral

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    With the Air France flight they at least knew roughly where the plane had gone down though and the area wasn't as inhospitable. I guess the trouble is, even if they find the wreckage and the black box it won't neccesarily explain what happened.
     
  9. Mr Awe

    Mr Awe Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I've heard ideas about the plane ejecting a pinging buoy upon hitting the water, or about to. The actual data recorders don't need to float.

    Mr Awe
     
  10. Captrek

    Captrek Vice Admiral Admiral

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    In the case of MH370, if the plane had been equipped with such a system it would not have made a difference because it would surely have been disabled. But it would have sped up the search for Air France 447.
     
  11. Trekker4747

    Trekker4747 Boldly going... Premium Member

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    I think the "idea" is it'd be part of a recovery system for the flight recorders that could not be turned off.
     
  12. Captrek

    Captrek Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I'm not sure how feasible it would be to engineer it so that it cannot be disabled. Assuming it can be done, what will we do with it? Go back in time and install it on Flight 370? When do you think this situation is going to come up again?

    (I feel kind of uneasy saying that, because it could happen again tomorrow. AFAIK, no measures have been implemented in the past few weeks that will prevent an immediate recurrence. But we're not talking about an immediate solution.)
     
  13. Trekker4747

    Trekker4747 Boldly going... Premium Member

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    Um, it'd be pretty easy. You just don't put an "on/off" switch between the device and the power-source. The only way to deactivate it would be to mess with the fuses/breakers which wouldn't be easy or even always possible to do.

    And, no, it wouldn't help in this situation but why if something isn't going to retroactively solve a problem a reason to not do it? The idea to prevent this from happening again as there's been a handful of time planes have crashed and searched for the flight recorders have stretched on for very long times when certainly means exist to make them more traceable.
     
  14. farmkid

    farmkid Commodore Commodore

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    Yeah, it wouldn't be hard at all. Perhaps the best way to do it to make it so, and to protect it from being damaged by the crash is to mount it externally on the plane somewhere and make it fully self contained. I'm picturing something on the tail that employs the same technology found in airbag systems in cars. It would have some sort of sensor to detect high g force or impact and the same explosive system found in airbags. It would be powered by a battery and have no connection whatsoever to any of the plane's systems.
     
  15. Ar-Pharazon

    Ar-Pharazon Vice Admiral Premium Member

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    ^ And put it somewhere it could only be accessed from the outside of the plane...and hard wire it into the power system so no fuses could be pulled, except from the unit itself, which would be inaccessible.

    And make the flight recorder do more than 2 hours, but the entire flight. Like was mentioned earlier, there's no reason to limit it anymore. Digital is the way to go.

    And maybe have a tamper resistant video recording system in the cockpit, to go along with the voice recorder.
     
  16. Mr Awe

    Mr Awe Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Really, no planes will crash over water again? Plane crashes in general are 1 in a million, but we still have data and voice recorders.

    It's clear they need some improvements to this system. Easier to find underwater and harder/impossible to disable yet addresses safety concerns of not being able to switch off.

    Mr Awe
     
  17. J.T.B.

    J.T.B. Rear Admiral Premium Member

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    You can't have something in your aircraft's power system without a fuse or a breaker, unless you want to run the risk of a fire in that circuit burning your plane up.
     
  18. Captrek

    Captrek Vice Admiral Admiral

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    The subject under discussion is the necessity of designing a locator buoy so that it cannot be disabled. That's not necessary for typical crashes over water. It's only necessary when a plane that has been lost is deliberately crashed into water by a pilot who is trying to prevent the plane from being found.

    This has happened I think twice in history. The holes in the system will presumably be addressed, hopefully with reasonable alacrity, so that it won't be so easy for a malicious pilot to disappear in the first place. (For example, a simple solution may be having the ACARS frequently update its position.) So this is an extremely rare event that might never happen again.
     
  19. EmoBorg

    EmoBorg Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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  20. Captrek

    Captrek Vice Admiral Admiral

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    And then stopped as suddenly?