Skip to comments.Missing MH370 Baffles Local Aviation Experts
Posted on 03/14/2014 1:23:26 AM PDT by nickcarraway
The events leading to the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines (MAS) flight MH370 from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing in the early hours of March 8 baffles local aviation experts.
What more when there was no distress call and the pilots seem to have full control of the Boeing 777 before it suddenly disappeared from the Department of Aviation's (DCA) radar.
"Ok roger, good day" was the last communication from Capt Zaharie Shah with Subang Air Traffic Control (ATC) at 1.30 a.m. before all voice communication were lost and 70 minutes later the plane vanished off from the radar screens.
However, US invesigators believe the plane may have flown for hours after it dropped of from the radar and could have veered as far as the Indian Ocean.
Datuk Ismail Ibrahim, a former Royal Malaysian Air Force technician and now an instructor with the Advanced Technology Training Centre's (ADTEC) Aircraft Maintenance Department told Bernama even if there was an emergency on board, the pilot would have informed the ground control or send a distress signal.
However, it is mystifying that flight MH370 with 227 passengers and a crew of 12 neither made any distress call through the radio nor its transponder emit any codes indicating emergency on board.
WHAT COULD HAVE HAPPENED
Ismail added that the Boeing 777-200 is a new generation plane that boasts for sophisticated avionics and communication systems and therefore it is impossible that the pilots remained incommunicado with ground control during emergency.
Then what had stopped the pilots from communicating with the ground? Another senior expert from the Malaysian Institute of Aviation Technology (MIAT) Ahmad Maulan Bardai believed the communication breakdown was due to a catastrophic problem or failure on board.
Maybe a sudden explosion had occurred onboard knocking down communication equipment and other onboard flight instrument.
This is why the pilots lost contact with the ground, he said adding that this is only one of the possibilities.
Nonetheless, the loss of communication with Flight 370 is dumbfounding as even in many of the previous fatal air crashes the crew had communicated with the ATC even up to the final moments," he said.
LOST FROM RADAR
And asked on why only after 70 minutes of silence the plane vanished from the radar screens, Ismail who was with the air force for 16 years said it has to do with the plane's transponder.
"In this instance, it appears that the transponder may have been deactivated," he said.
When the transponder is activated, it emits signals to the ATC on the aircraft's altitude and position that can be seen on the ground controller's radar screen.
There is no reason for the pilot to deactivate the transponder during flight.
Asked on the number of transponders available on a plane, he said there could be up to three depending on the type of the plane.
FACTORS THAT COULD LEAD TO A CRASH
Asked on what could bring down such sophisticated plane, the former head of Universiti Putra Malaysia's Aerospace Department Prof Dr Ahmad Samsuri Mokhtar said such catastrophic even is often due to structural failure, engine failure, pilot error and even sabotage.
"Aircraft accident statistics indicate about 91 percent of the accidents involving aircraft happen during take-offs and landings," he said adding that MH370 was at a cruising altitude when it vanished.
Elaborating further, Dr Ahmad who is also an Aerospace Engineering Consultant noted that every possibility has to be looked into.
Also the plane's maintenance records have to be gleaned through to look for any anomalies in its systems and structural integrity.
"Maintaining a plane is not like maintaining a car with every component replaced has to be recorded, even when a screw is replaced," he said.
At this juncture he said only the black box and the flight data recorder could shed light on what had transpired on the fateful flight MH370.
The search for the MH370 had entered day seventh day today with a multinational search team involving ships and aircraft extending their search up to the Indian Ocean.
Not good in any case.
...And Captain Zaharie was said to be so keen to maintain his high professionalism that he had even set up a flight simulator in his own home.
If he was practicing a terrorist act on his company flight simulator, the company would know about it, and ground him. Luckily, he has one at home. I hope they have impounded this flight simulator and computer, because any practice runs may still be saved.
This Captain Zaharie could have been practising landings and take-offs (touch-and-go's) on short jungle runways for a year or two, preparing for this complex operation.
Zaharie must know how to fly a Triple 7 in his sleep.
Question is--where are the hostage-passengers sequestered (if alive)?
“This Captain Zaharie could have been practising landings and take-offs (touch-and-go’s) on short jungle runways for a year or two, preparing for this complex operation”
If you do a touch and go, then you did neither a short field landing or a short field take off.
There is no such thing as a short field take off or short field landing in a B777. Please show me in the B777 checklist or aircraft flight manual such a technique.
You are correct.
Touch-and-go's are neither complete landings or complete take-offs--I should have added "complete landings & take-offs" to Captain Zaharie's practice sessions.
As to "B777 checklist or aircraft flight manual" on short runways"--I must remind you that this airborne kidnapping is not being done "By the Book."
Maybe high Malaysian officials are being paid an astronomical amount of money to look the other way so the plane can be stolen, to hinder or impede investigations, to misdirect.
Something tells me some high level people are in on this, too many fishy stories saying where is, was or could be.
They are just buying time.
Part of that simulator software included water landings by flying boats. Thats what I read somewhere.
I can just picture a James Bond techno thriller, SPECTRE builds this high speed flat strip of a deck with arresting nets, its one of those type of surface effect mega boat/planes like the Russians built but its sole purpose is to match the landing speed of a 777 at sea, the plane lands, fake containers are erected, plane is taken to an off loading facility.
Yeah its just fantasy, but anything is possible if you throw enough money at it.
Current flight simulators have reached an amazing level of sophistication--available to any computer system.
Re a Tom Clancy-type plot unfolding--a script could be written where MA370 is flown to a remote island in the Indian Ocean; lands on an old WWII airstrip; unloads and quarters passengers in old decaying barracks; tops off the B777 fuel tank and flys over open water to any Muslim point of the compass.
Two possible endings: World fascination and outrage as ransom demands are made and friendly forces try to figure out how to save the hostages; or, some of the 239 passengers finally overwhelm the cockpit and the big bird plunges into the Indian Ocean.