Pop Mechanics: What Really Happened Aboard Air France 447

Creasy Bear

gorgeousness and gorgeousity made flesh
Donator
Mar 10, 2006
49,588
37,744
628
In a porn tree
#1
Fuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuck. This is just bananas.


http://www.popularmechanics.com/pri...ppened-aboard-air-france-447-6611877?page=all

Two years after the Airbus 330 plunged into the Atlantic Ocean, Air France 447's flight-data recorders finally turned up. The revelations from the pilot transcript paint a surprising picture of chaos in the cockpit, and confusion between the pilots that led to the crash.

02:13:40 (Robert) Remonte... remonte... remonte... remonte...
Climb... climb... climb... climb...

02:13:40 (Bonin) Mais je suis à fond à cabrer depuis tout à l'heure!
But I've had the stick back the whole time!

At last, Bonin tells the others the crucial fact whose import he has so grievously failed to understand himself.

02:13:42 (Captain) Non, non, non... Ne remonte pas... non, non.
No, no, no... Don't climb... no, no.

02:13:43 (Robert) Alors descends... Alors, donne-moi les commandes... À moi les commandes!
Descend, then... Give me the controls... Give me the controls!

Bonin yields the controls, and Robert finally puts the nose down. The plane begins to regain speed. But it is still descending at a precipitous angle. As they near 2000 feet, the aircraft's sensors detect the fast-approaching surface and trigger a new alarm. There is no time left to build up speed by pushing the plane's nose forward into a dive. At any rate, without warning his colleagues, Bonin once again takes back the controls and pulls his side stick all the way back.

02:14:23 (Robert) Putain, on va taper... C'est pas vrai!
Damn it, we're going to crash... This can't be happening!

02:14:25 (Bonin) Mais qu'est-ce que se passe?
But what's happening?

02:14:27 (Captain) 10 degrès d'assiette...
Ten degrees of pitch...

Exactly 1.4 seconds later, the cockpit voice recorder stops.
 

Neon

ネオン
Donator
Mar 23, 2008
51,820
18,545
513
Kingdom of Charis
#2
Disorientation in flight is a killer. I remember sitting in on an IFR flying lesson in a Cessna once, and they put sun visors on the windows so the pilot has to use his instruments. At one point the instructor realized the pilot fucked up, and he pulled the sun visor away to reveal that we were pointed straight down at the ground. Neither the pilot or me had any clue that was happening. You can completely lose your sense of spatial perception. It was fucking scary.
 
Jun 2, 2005
15,516
4
0
Dallas
#3
I would hate to fly a commercial airliner. Their thrust to weight ratio is so minuscule that if it even hints at a stall all you can do is dive to gain speed.
 
Sep 28, 2010
3,331
32
98
#4
Yeah I'll just stick to xplane.
 

Pigdango

Silence, you mortal Fuck!
Donator
Jun 22, 2004
77,023
49,628
788
#5
Disorientation in flight is a killer. I remember sitting in on an IFR flying lesson in a Cessna once, and they put sun visors on the windows so the pilot has to use his instruments. At one point the instructor realized the pilot fucked up, and he pulled the sun visor away to reveal that we were pointed straight down at the ground. Neither the pilot or me had any clue that was happening. You can completely lose your sense of spatial perception. It was fucking scary.
Good against remotes is one thing. Good against a living? That's something else

 

Neon

ネオン
Donator
Mar 23, 2008
51,820
18,545
513
Kingdom of Charis
#6
Good against remotes is one thing. Good against a living? That's something else

Yeah, they use those too (it's a long curving visor that lets you see the instruments but not out the window), but in the one I was in, the guy just used one of those elastic visor things you put over your windshield on a hot day.

EDIT: Here's one:

 

Jambi

Infidel
Nov 29, 2006
3,452
374
523
FL
#8
There's a great episode of Nova on this. Pretty sure I watched it on Netflix streaming. I now know what pitot tubes are and how important they are to air travel.

edited to add: http://www.netflix.com/WiMovie/70148706
 

Neon

ネオン
Donator
Mar 23, 2008
51,820
18,545
513
Kingdom of Charis
#9
There's a great episode of Nova on this. Pretty sure I watched it on Netflix streaming. I now know what pitot tubes are and how important they are to air travel.

edited to add: http://www.netflix.com/WiMovie/70148706
Yup. Pitot tube problems cause some horrific air crashes. Any pilot with half a brain checks those pitot-static ports 8 fucking times before takeoff. I remember one air crash where a mechanic covered up the pitot-static ports with duct tape during repairs or whatever, but he used silver duct tape to improvise, and didn't remove it. On inspection, you look for the bright red thing hanging from it and if you don't see, many times you assume the port is open, especially when the duct tape is the same color as the fuselage. Oopsie.
 

Hate & Discontent

Yo, homie. Is that my briefcase?
Aug 22, 2005
15,794
1,347
693
#10
Yup. Pitot tube problems cause some horrific air crashes. Any pilot with half a brain checks those pitot-static ports 8 fucking times before takeoff. I remember one air crash where a mechanic covered up the pitot-static ports with duct tape during repairs or whatever, but he used silver duct tape to improvise, and didn't remove it. On inspection, you look for the bright red thing hanging from it and if you don't see, many times you assume the port is open, especially when the duct tape is the same color as the fuselage. Oopsie.
Actually, that bright silver tape is pretty typical for use in aviation. We used it all the time to cover static ports when checking the pitot-static system (what tells the plane it's altitude and air speed). One port was hooked into the test system, the other sealed with tape. It was a big fucking deal when I was trained on it to make damn sure that tape was completely removed after the test.
 

Neon

ネオン
Donator
Mar 23, 2008
51,820
18,545
513
Kingdom of Charis
#11
Actually, that bright silver tape is pretty typical for use in aviation. We used it all the time to cover static ports when checking the pitot-static system (what tells the plane it's altitude and air speed). One port was hooked into the test system, the other sealed with tape. It was a big fucking deal when I was trained on it to make damn sure that tape was completely removed after the test.
What kind of aircraft did you work on? I remember this incident involving a big passenger jet, so the pilot's pre-flight inspections are done from the ground with a flashlight, so you can miss them pretty easily. I think in those cases they use something brightly colored as opposed to silver, but I can't remember exactly. I saw that thing a while ago. My dad got a pilot's license and I was right there with him learning a ton about aviation, and we became huge fans of those air crash investigation shows. NTSB investigators are the shit. That is some real life CSI they pull sometimes.
 

Hate & Discontent

Yo, homie. Is that my briefcase?
Aug 22, 2005
15,794
1,347
693
#12
What kind of aircraft did you work on? I remember this incident involving a big passenger jet, so the pilot's pre-flight inspections are done from the ground with a flashlight, so you can miss them pretty easily. I think in those cases they use something brightly colored as opposed to silver, but I can't remember exactly. I saw that thing a while ago. My dad got a pilot's license and I was right there with him learning a ton about aviation, and we became huge fans of those air crash investigation shows. NTSB investigators are the shit. That is some real life CSI they pull sometimes.
Relatively small, single-engine. A lot of our preflights were done in near darkness, so the shiny tape actually wasn't always a bad thing when you're checking a bird out with a flashlight.

Here's the funny thing - even if one port is sealed on the pitot-static, it shouldn't disable the entire system. Our small bird had 2 pitot tubes and 2 static ports. One of each could be inop and you would still get readings, they would just be less accurate. It wasn't something we willing let a plane fly with, but if one became blocked or failed mid-flight, it wasn't catastrophic, as long as the pilots had their shit together.
 

Neon

ネオン
Donator
Mar 23, 2008
51,820
18,545
513
Kingdom of Charis
#13
Relatively small, single-engine. A lot of our preflights were done in near darkness, so the shiny tape actually wasn't always a bad thing when you're checking a bird out with a flashlight.

Here's the funny thing - even if one port is sealed on the pitot-static, it shouldn't disable the entire system. Our small bird had 2 pitot tubes and 2 static ports. One of each could be inop and you would still get readings, they would just be less accurate. It wasn't something we willing let a plane fly with, but if one became blocked or failed mid-flight, it wasn't catastrophic, as long as the pilots had their shit together.
I have too much anxiety to be doing something like that. I'd be constantly worried that I missed something.
 

Hate & Discontent

Yo, homie. Is that my briefcase?
Aug 22, 2005
15,794
1,347
693
#14
I have too much anxiety to be doing something like that. I'd be constantly worried that I missed something.
Institutional paranoia, and having someone else (or several of them) back checking your work are pretty standard. I wasn't working on commercial aviation, so things were a little different for us. Plus, I mainly worked on non-critical components, so my biggest risk was getting my ass chewed, not getting a crew killed.
 

steve500

Registered User
Oct 20, 2008
4,520
2,099
368
35,000 ft
#15
The one you're referring to, Aeroperu 603, was one of those examples of why you need to Bobo-level-idiot proof everything. The air carrier I'm with has used colored, textured, pain/dirt resistant masking tape for decades, and it's a shame that they were using something that blended right in - honestly I can definitely see why the captain had not noticed it.

Good read:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aeroperú_Flight_603

Earlier that year, there was also Birgenair 301, which suffered a similar fate due to both pitot tubes being clogged. In that case, it was due to the fact that the plane was sitting unused for 21 days and some dipshit didn't put covers on the pitots. Some wasps built a nest in them, and the 757 went into the drink shortly after takeoff

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Birgenair_Flight_301
 

Neon

ネオン
Donator
Mar 23, 2008
51,820
18,545
513
Kingdom of Charis
#16
The one you're referring to, Aeroperu 603, was one of those examples of why you need to Bobo-level-idiot proof everything. The air carrier I'm with has used colored, textured, pain/dirt resistant masking tape for decades, and it's a shame that they were using something that blended right in - honestly I can definitely see why the captain had not noticed it.

Good read:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aeroperú_Flight_603

Earlier that year, there was also Birgenair 301, which suffered a similar fate due to both pitot tubes being clogged. In that case, it was due to the fact that the plane was sitting unused for 21 days and some dipshit didn't put covers on the pitots. Some wasps built a nest in them, and the 757 went into the drink shortly after takeoff

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Birgenair_Flight_301
Yup, that's the one. Thanks for the info. Now it's all coming back to me. That thing was like a nightmare. They were getting contradictory warnings in the cockpit and they couldn't figure out where they were, or how high or fast they were. Horrifying.
 

DrewDown

All are welcome
May 3, 2010
10,508
5,818
363
Ohio
#17
What really happened aboard air france 447...fez?
 

Hate & Discontent

Yo, homie. Is that my briefcase?
Aug 22, 2005
15,794
1,347
693
#18
The one you're referring to, Aeroperu 603, was one of those examples of why you need to Bobo-level-idiot proof everything. The air carrier I'm with has used colored, textured, pain/dirt resistant masking tape for decades, and it's a shame that they were using something that blended right in - honestly I can definitely see why the captain had not noticed it.

Good read:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aeroperú_Flight_603

Earlier that year, there was also Birgenair 301, which suffered a similar fate due to both pitot tubes being clogged. In that case, it was due to the fact that the plane was sitting unused for 21 days and some dipshit didn't put covers on the pitots. Some wasps built a nest in them, and the 757 went into the drink shortly after takeoff

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Birgenair_Flight_301
Yep. We were practically religious about the port covers. Some of them had to wait for the appropriate part to cool (air intake for the engine, pitot tubes, AOA probes) before the covers went on. The rest went on as soon as the bird was shut down and we knew it wasn't flying for at least a day.
 

THE FEZ MAN

as a matter of fact i dont have 5$
Aug 23, 2002
42,897
9,784
848
#19
I have too much anxiety to be doing something like that. I'd be constantly worried that I missed something.

just one of the reasons i dont fuck with planes, i have enough trouble remembering to put all the bolts back into a car.