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Thread: Missing Malaysian Airlines B777

  1. #31
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    Any chance someone mistakenly shot it down, and is keeping mum?

  2. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by hawkdriver05 View Post
    Nothing "fits" really. This one is a puzzle.
    Agreed; what we have is an aircraft with a near perfect safety record, an airframe with no previous major incidents to its name (bar a ground collision at the wing-tip 1.5 years ago) and one of Malaysia's most experienced captains.

    I do think the Malaysian's are looking in the wrong area completely. They should stop the search to the west and pool resources into looking further south and east, just my two cents anyway.

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  3. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Multirole View Post
    Any chance someone mistakenly shot it down, and is keeping mum?
    It is possible.

    This is getting more mystifying by the minute so I suppose any scenario might be considered.

  4. #34
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    The fact that they have decided to search at the Malacca strait suggests they know something more than they are letting be known in public. This is getting very mysterious now. If the aircraft exploded mid-air, I would have thought there would be some debris field spotted by now. I was also thinking along the lines of a possible shooting down too, any idea if there were any naval exercises in the area at the time?

  5. #35
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    Does anyone know the depth of water in the presumed loss location. If the flight data recorder is lying at that depth and is still in working order what would be the range of its locator beacon able to be picked up by a surface ship equipped with suitable detection equipment for the 30 day period it is designed to activate on contact with sea water?

    I would be surprised if the break up at 35,000 feet was not witnessed by someone at sea. Possibly fishermen for example who could still be at sea unaware of the enormity of the bright light in the sky.

  6. #36
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    Why can't radar determine where the aircraft went?
    When the Pan Am Lockerbie 747 went down the debris field was tracked on radar.

  7. #37
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    How feasible is it for the flight data recorder to send data via satellite link to some on-shore location where it can be stored, kinda like a cloud based solution? This would really help and get away from the constant need to find the flight data recorder, especially in challenging locations. I'm sure with current technology this could be done.

  8. #38
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    It's being reported that after Malaysian air traffic control lost radar contact with the jet at 01:22 local time, they asked a company 777 (MH88 bound for Narita) that was about 30 minutes ahead of MH370 and flying over Vietnamese airspace to try and establish radio contact with MH370 and relay messages.

    At 01:30 (8 minutes after radar contact was lost), the pilots of flight MH88 managed to establish a link. However, after relaying the message asking if they had passed into Vietnamese airspace yet the reply they received was just unintelligible mumbling made worse by the static of the radio. After this, the radio link was lost.
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  9. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by mrtotty View Post
    It is possible.

    This is getting more mystifying by the minute so I suppose any scenario might be considered.
    I've been wondering about this being a shoot-down as well.

    But at typical cruiding altitude >30,000ft, I don't suppose a MANPAD has the range and also, any bad guys would need radar at night time to know where to shoot.

    As MH370 was approaching Vietnamese coast, other alternative would be a Vietnamese SAM, but presumably they should not mistake a commercial passenger jet on a well-known route.

    Would civilian ATC radars detect a SAM launch?

    I'm thinking a shoot-down, accidental or deliberate is unlikely...
    As Theodore Roosevelt said:
    "Talk softly, but carry a big stick"

  10. #40
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    Hong Kong's air traffic control centre has confirmed that a Cathay Pacific flight flying from HKG-KUL reported seeing a large field of debris at 17:30 local time on Monday 10th about 80 miles south east of Ho Chi Minh City in the South China Sea.

    A civilian cargo ship in the area was requested to re-route to the location for a follow up investigation. This ship has reportedly found a large amount of debris believed to be from the aircraft. A Vietnamese search and rescue ship is currently enroute.

    http://ww2.nationalpost.com/m/wp/blo...ow-for-efforts
    Last edited by Matt-100; 11th March 2014 at 01:05.
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  11. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alpha Bravo View Post
    How feasible is it for the flight data recorder to send data via satellite link to some on-shore location where it can be stored, kinda like a cloud based solution? This would really help and get away from the constant need to find the flight data recorder, especially in challenging locations. I'm sure with current technology this could be done.
    depend on the amont of data you want to send, and the cost you want to pay.
    The Chinese Beidou SatNav system do have a text uplink available, most ships in China now have two-way terminals and the system has reportedly saved lot's of ships out of trouble.

    It would be feasible for aircraft to automaticly upload simple text data in emergency, like time, location, air speed, altitude etc.

  12. #42
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    I'm sure something more substantial could be implemented, what with the internet now being introduced onto airliners, as well as the substantial data feeds that can be achieved using UAV systems like real time video feeds. A few key parameters (e.g. engine readings, GPS location, air speed, heading, altitude, AoA etc) along with voice data from the cockpit could easily be sent via sat link, and stored. Would save on having the need to constantly search for the flight data recorder. What size of data is recorded by those things anyway, is it in the terabyte range or lower?
    Last edited by Deano; 15th March 2014 at 13:15. Reason: COC RULE 14

  13. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by Multirole View Post
    Any chance someone mistakenly shot it down, and is keeping mum?
    "Any chance someone mistakenly shot it down?" Very unlikely.

    "and is keeping mum?" F... yeah! Without going into tin-hat country, planes flying at 30,000 feet don't disappear from radars instantaneously.

  14. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by hampden98 View Post
    Why can't radar determine where the aircraft went?
    When the Pan Am Lockerbie 747 went down the debris field was tracked on radar.
    I don't know anything about the radar coverage in these areas, but ATS today usually rely on secondary surveillance radar utilizing active transponders aboard aircraft. A primary surveillance radar would be needed to transmit and receive actual radar waves which may reflect off objects such as aircraft regardless of transponder units.

  15. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alpha Bravo View Post
    I'm sure something more substantial could be implemented, what with the internet now being introduced onto airliners, as well as the substantial data feeds that can be achieved using UAV systems like real time video feeds. A few key parameters (e.g. engine readings, GPS location, air speed, heading, altitude, AoA etc) along with voice data from the cockpit could easily be sent via sat link, and stored. Would save on having the need to constantly search for the flight data recorder. What size of data is recorded by those things anyway, is it in the terabyte range or lower?
    Voice data would massively increase the bandwidth required for transmission, therefore information might not be able to get sent before it's damaged in crash.
    At current stage I would assume its only feasible (also cost wise) if only text information gets updated in every few minutes, and a burst transmission when **** happens.
    Won't help much for investigation I guess, but will defiantly help the search and rescue missions.

  16. #46
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    Latest news suggests the two individuals with stolen passports were of Iranian origin, and the Malaysian military supposedly tracked the aircraft to the Malacca Straits. However, Interpol are saying there is no terrorist connection. This is becoming even more mysterious, why would the aircraft divert such a significant way to the Malacca Straits for no good reason? If there was a problem, shouldn't it have been heading back to the closest runway? Furthermore, if the Malaysian military tracked the aircraft, shouldn't that have raised alarm bells, a commercial flight deviating significantly from its original flight path, and forced them to scramble some fighter jets to intercept and make contact with it?

    Although there may not be any terrorist connection, it doesn't exclude the possibility these two individuals may have hijacked the aircraft for other political or asylum reasons, for example, similar to the case of the Afghan airliner being hijacked around 1999/2000, and being flown all the way to UK in the end , IIRC.
    Last edited by Alpha Bravo; 11th March 2014 at 12:29.

  17. #47
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    At least we know why they're looking in the Malacca Strait now, the military tracked them all the way over northern Malaysia to the Strait flying at low altitude. Residents of a small port town in north eastern Malaysia have also reported a low flying jet (~1,000ft) over the island in the early hours of March 8th - although these sightings have yet to be confirmed.

    The big question for us if it does turn up in the Malacca Strait is why? If there was an on board emergency you'd divert back to the nearest airport and send out a mayday. As for the Iranians, modern cockpits are pretty much impenetrable for anyone outside - it's highly improbable they were able to storm the cockpit.

    So regrettably we must now focus on the crew, could they have intentionally downed the aircraft? It's happened before. I've been researching all I can on the pilots and cabin crew from various tribute news articles and websites and they all seemed very "normal" and looked professional, certainly nothing from their Facebook pages and pictures to suggest they were about to commit suicide with the lives of 238 others.

    This really is turning out to be a great mystery of our time.
    Last edited by Matt-100; 11th March 2014 at 14:13.
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  18. #48
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    If it was the Iranian passengers, they could have simply threatened some of the passengers or other crew members in forcing the pilots to open the cockpit door. However, if it was something to do with the pilots themselves, and if at least one of them intended to down the aircraft, why fly all the way across the Malaysian peninsula to do so? Even if their was a struggle between the pilots, it couldn't have lasted long enough for the aircraft to be diverted such a long way without at least some form of communication being made. And the question still remains why the Malaysian military didn't respond in any way if they could see what was happening on their radars. Mystery indeed.
    Last edited by Deano; 15th March 2014 at 13:15. Reason: COC RULE 14

  19. #49
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    One theory I've seen suggested on PPRUNE and elsewhere is a major electrical failure disabling many systems including the communications and the cabin pressurisation system. The pilots turned back and descended but were overcome by hypoxia and the plane just flew on until it crashed. Any thoughts about how likely that is?

    As to why the Malaysians didn't respond to the plane changing course, it could just simply be that they didn't realise what was happening, its unlikely we'll ever know until they find the crash site.

  20. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by RN Phantom View Post
    One theory I've seen suggested on PPRUNE and elsewhere is a major electrical failure disabling many systems including the communications and the cabin pressurisation system. The pilots turned back and descended but were overcome by hypoxia and the plane just flew on until it crashed. Any thoughts about how likely that is?
    That is very plausible, although the flight deck's oxygen supply can last for 30+ minutes - more than enough time to make an emergency descent down to 10000 feet. I also read a theory on the Telegraph website that said if the aircraft had had a complete and catastrophic electrical failure that meant all electrical inputs were down they could have been without GPS and basic flying instruments such as Altimeter and Air Speed.
    Knowing they were in deep trouble the pilots' plan may have been to track the coast down the Malacca Straight at low altitude back to KUL in the south of the peninsular where they could have made flybys (dipping the wings etc) before landing and hoping not to hit anyone.

    I don't buy it though, flying blind like that is unheard of and I'm pretty sure the secondary/back-up instruments are analogue and mechanical so shouldn't be affected by electrical failure.
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  21. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by Matt-100 View Post
    At least we know why they're looking in the Malacca Strait now, the military tracked them all the way over northern Malaysia to the Strait flying at low altitude.
    Matt - just to be clear - I don't think the military have confirmed any low altitude, have they, other than to say the aircraft was last observed at 30,000' over Pulau Perak?
    Charlie

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  22. #52
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    Sorry, you are correct, I misinterpreted an update on the Aviation Herald.
    Last edited by Deano; 15th March 2014 at 13:16. Reason: COC RULE 14
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  23. #53
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    Why no ELT signals?
    There are two sides to every story. The truth is usually somewhere between the two.

  24. #54
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    This is the weirdest airliner incident I have ever heard of. Not only is the series of events inexplicable, but we are at day five, and only now are we being told the plane made a complete course change into another body of water? We have dozens of international ships and aircraft searching the wrong side of Malaysia for days.
    Last edited by Multirole; 11th March 2014 at 19:22.

  25. #55
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    I have just read on Facebook, of all places ! That all relatives of the passengers who have tried calling the passengers mobile phones have got ringing tones ????? most bizarre ??

    Keith
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  26. #56
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    Even if you believe that these passengers or their phones have survived the crash somewhere, modern smart phones don’t tend to last 5-6 days without a charge. It might be an issue with this phone company.

    If the Air force did see the aircraft flying over Straits of Malacca, it might have gone on to overfly Sumatra towards the vast south Indian Ocean. Perhaps never to be seen again.
    Last edited by Deano; 15th March 2014 at 13:16. Reason: COC RULE 14

  27. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by keithnewsome View Post
    I have just read on Facebook, of all places ! That all relatives of the passengers who have tried calling the passengers mobile phones have got ringing tones ????? most bizarre ??

    Keith
    I saw this too Keith, albeit from a different source.

    Thing is, with all the latest technology that is around is there no way that anyone could use the signal from these phones to pinpoint a possible location somehow, even if it were only to help by narrowing the size of the search area?

  28. #58
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    According to the source where I read the story that was apparently being investigated. However I think the veracity and accuracy of the story is also being checked.

    It is hardly surprising that the longer there is no answer to the riddle the more wild stories and conspiracy theories will gain credence. Facts and nothing else is what the investigators need.

  29. #59
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    Unless the Malaysians were lying.

    Just guessing:
    What if the aircraft turned around without com/transponder due to system failure or hijack, and the Malaysian shot them down because there was no responce?
    And now they are just trying hard to cover up?

  30. #60
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    If the phones have survived then that would suggest the aircraft came down over land (otherwise the water damage would have killed them, and besides I doubt they'd have signal over water). However I find it improbable it's come down over land, so I'd probably question the sources.

    I certainly don't believe that would be the case starikki, any shoot down would have to come from the Malaysian prime minister himself, and given the aircraft wasn't flying to any specific target (eg Kuala Lumpur) at the time it's unlikely. I heard here in the UK, priministerial protocol suggests a known hijacked aircraft needs to come within 30 seconds of central London before the go ahead is given. It really is a last resort.

    The Telegraph is reporting that Boeing sent out an airworthiness directive to all 772 operators in November to look out for fatigue cracks (after a 16 inch crack was found in one aircraft) under the SATCOM antenna in the fuselage. The directive went onto say that these fatigue cracks could result in sudden decompression or mid-air "break up".
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worl...weak-spot.html
    Last edited by Matt-100; 12th March 2014 at 01:44.
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