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  #41  
Old 12 March 2014, 03:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ali Infree View Post
A bad Steward Payne scenario.

Ali
Payne Stewart's plane didn't suffer a catastrophic decompression, though. It simply lost cabin pressure. The NTSB never determined with certainty why it lost pressure. It could have been a leaking valve or never fully pressurized in the first place. The military planes sent to track it reported no integrity issues with the plane of the type one would expect in a catastrophic event.

~Psihala
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  #42  
Old 12 March 2014, 05:55 AM
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That article's a bit out of date on the stolen passports - it seems to be confirmed that there's no terrorist link and they were just being used to make it easier for the passengers to get into Germany
"Not likely" and "inclined to conclude" isn't concrete confirmation, though, and it does seem a bit early to know for sure, given that we still don't know what happened to the plane. Hopefully Interpol has more solid information than just the word of a mom and a friend (which I'm pretty sure Dzhokhar Tsarnaev had).
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  #43  
Old 12 March 2014, 03:26 PM
Singing in the Drizzle Singing in the Drizzle is offline
 
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A news article that has more detailed information of what they know and why they are having problems finding the airplane.

Q. and A. on the Disappearance of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370

Quote:
The disappearance of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 has left investigators, aviation experts and the authorities in several countries at a loss to explain what happened. As the search and inquiry continue, Matthew L. Wald, a correspondent for The New York Times, answers a few basic questions:

Q. How could a Boeing 777 simply vanish? Aren’t they always tracked by radar or satellites?

A. Radar coverage is not universal, especially over water. In areas without radar, pilots are generally required to radio in their positions at fixed intervals, mostly to assure that air traffic controllers can keep aircraft out of one another’s way. Between intervals, something could go wrong.
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  #44  
Old 12 March 2014, 04:45 PM
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has anyone else started seeing the "Invisible Missing plane is a diversion to prevent you from thinking about USA vs Russia war" memes going on?
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  #45  
Old 12 March 2014, 04:50 PM
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Oil rig worker saw Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 go down: report

"I believe I saw the Malaysia Airlines plane come down. The timing is right, the man said in the email. I tried to contact the Malaysian and Vietnam officials several days ago. But I dont know if the message has been received."
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  #46  
Old 12 March 2014, 05:09 PM
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Originally Posted by Not_Done_Living View Post
has anyone else started seeing the "Invisible Missing plane is a diversion to prevent you from thinking about USA vs Russia war" memes going on?
As if that's not better achieved by a celebrity nipple slip.
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  #47  
Old 12 March 2014, 05:39 PM
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Even the Star and Bones Council of the Elders of the Lobster Templar Illuminati likes a bit of variety now and then.
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  #48  
Old 12 March 2014, 05:51 PM
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Originally Posted by Chloe View Post
As if that's not better achieved by a celebrity nipple slip.
Nah, we're too jaded - that's why they released the video of Bieber-wiener, and very few people seemed to care.
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  #49  
Old 12 March 2014, 06:05 PM
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Originally Posted by Sooeygun View Post
Oil rig worker saw Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 go down: report

"I believe I saw the Malaysia Airlines plane come down. The timing is right, the man said in the email. I tried to contact the Malaysian and Vietnam officials several days ago. But I dont know if the message has been received."
This was quite a ways to the east of the projected flight path and last known position. Coupled with the evidence that the craft had veered substantially to the west, if this guy is right, then the plane could have gone into a long circling path, perhaps by auto pilot put on when whatever knocked out the transponder and apparently cut all further communications occurred.
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  #50  
Old 12 March 2014, 06:11 PM
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Airplane

While it definitely should be investigated, I wouldn't put that much stock in what a single witness says. From what I understand eyewitness accounts are notoriously unreliable. This part stood in particular stood out to me:

Quote:
Michael McKay describes what he believed to be a plane burning at high altitude
That is pretty much *the* stereotypical eyewitness statement from someone who saw (or thinks they saw) a plane crash. Witnesses quite frequently tell investigators they saw the plane on fire before it crashed, even though the wreckage shows no physical signs of a fire. Their brain fills in the details with what they believe a crashing plane should look like based on how it's portrayed in Hollywood movies.
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  #51  
Old 12 March 2014, 06:21 PM
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Originally Posted by WildaBeast View Post
That is pretty much *the* stereotypical eyewitness statement from someone who saw (or thinks they saw) a plane crash. Witnesses quite frequently tell investigators they saw the plane on fire before it crashed, even though the wreckage shows no physical signs of a fire. Their brain fills in the details with what they believe a crashing plane should look like based on how it's portrayed in Hollywood movies.
At that hour, from that distance, about all a person could see without a telescope would be something glowing as if on fire. I was thinking a meteorite (or space debris?) at a fairly steep angle might be what he saw. But then that fits one of my pet theories, that something like a meteorite or space debris entered the atmosphere and hit the plane. Incredibly long odds for that, but if a thing is possible to happen, in enough time it will happen.
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  #52  
Old 12 March 2014, 07:32 PM
Singing in the Drizzle Singing in the Drizzle is offline
 
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There were theories that meteorite hit TWA flight 800 going around at Boeing by the engineers that worked on the plane crash. Their biggest question at the time was how to prove it, because it would leave very little evidence. The other problem is that it would have to be big enough to have enough energy to cause and explosion and might mean it could be picked up on radar.

As I understand it from what I read from astronomers meteorites that land tend to be cold and very cold at that.
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  #53  
Old 12 March 2014, 07:40 PM
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Also, a meteorite that hit a plane would either damage it so that it had to land immediately (at which point the pilots would be radioing like mad) or cause it to break up instantly. The latter would leave a huge swath of debris and the former would mean we'd already know.

ETA: It might be that the meteorite would have taken out all the radios, but the electronics bay in an 777 is below the flight deck. A meteorite that was big enough to take out all the radios would probably destroy the rest of the electronics and kill or cripple the pilots, resulting in a sudden loss of control which would probably result in a crash at high speed that would cause the aircraft to disintegrate, also leaving a massive swath of debris.

ETA2: I wonder if it hit a swamp. IMS, ValuJet Flight 592 crashed into swampy ground at high speed and most of it disappeared completely aside from scorch marks.

Last edited by GenYus234; 12 March 2014 at 07:48 PM.
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  #54  
Old 12 March 2014, 08:53 PM
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How difficult would it be for airlines to equip their aircraft - specifically those which fly long distances over water - to have a satellite transponder and regularly zip off a simple status via a satellite signal? Something like a time, GPS location, and status of the flight? Would this require so many satellites that it would blot out the sun?
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  #55  
Old 12 March 2014, 09:01 PM
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Originally Posted by Hero_Mike View Post
How difficult would it be for airlines to equip their aircraft - specifically those which fly long distances over water - to have a satellite transponder and regularly zip off a simple status via a satellite signal? Something like a time, GPS location, and status of the flight? Would this require so many satellites that it would blot out the sun?
That is basically how the GPS works already, so it would not take all that many to provide connectivity. I would be very surprised if the capacity was not already in place, if it is not being done even now. I know one of the mysteries here is that the transponder on the jet suddenly stopped transponding.
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  #56  
Old 12 March 2014, 09:09 PM
jimmy101_again jimmy101_again is offline
 
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Originally Posted by Hero_Mike View Post
How difficult would it be for airlines to equip their aircraft - specifically those which fly long distances over water - to have a satellite transponder and regularly zip off a simple status via a satellite signal? Something like a time, GPS location, and status of the flight? Would this require so many satellites that it would blot out the sun?
You really wouldn't need a satellite system, radio works just fine from aircraft out over the Pacific back to land based radio stations. Commercial aircraft already have GPS so sending location and basic status would be trivial. Indeed, Air France Flight 447 automated maintenance system was in communication with automated receivers before its crash out in the middle of the Atlantic. (But, IIRC, that system didn't report position, just maintenance info.)
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  #57  
Old 12 March 2014, 09:28 PM
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Am I misunderstanding GPS? I thought it went the other way - the satellites broadcast time and position information, and the devices receive that and use it to calculate their own position. Nothing is sent from the device to the satellite. That wouldn't be scalable at all - the satellites would suddenly become overloaded just because everybody bought a new smartphone and the traffic multiplied hugely.

The fact that the planes know where they are through GPS says nothing at all about whether anybody else knows where they are. There isn't a "GPS central" that knows. (eta - I guess that's not really what people were saying above, but it does seem to be a big part of why people in general are surprised that it's not just known).

When people are tracked by the position of their mobile phones, it's nothing to do with GPS - the phone does register with each nearby tower, and so you can use those records to triangulate the phone's approximate position. They might well be better off looking at phone records when trying to track the plane, if they thought it went near land. Early on I did read that somebody had successfully phoned one of the passengers at a point earlier in the flight, and investigators had been repeatedly trying to ring the same phone since then. I assume it wasn't because they were going to call all the search boats and say, "Hush, it's ringing! Listen!"...

Last edited by Richard W; 12 March 2014 at 09:33 PM.
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  #58  
Old 12 March 2014, 09:34 PM
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The Malaysian Air Force is saying the transponder was off for several hundred miles while the plane changed it's route. The article quotes an analyst:
Quote:
"The most likely probability is that a human hand turned that off. Then you get into the logic tree of who and why and there aren't that many channels in that tree."
He added, "This is beginning to look very, very much like a hijacking."
http://www.cnn.com/2014/03/12/world/...html?hpt=hp_t1

Last edited by Little Pink Pill; 12 March 2014 at 09:35 PM. Reason: Added info
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  #59  
Old 12 March 2014, 09:37 PM
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The COSPAS-SARSAT system is designed to receive emergency beacon signals which can include GPS data. The ELT that is located in the tail of MH370 would be sending a signal to it if it had crashed on land. But I don't think the satellite system could handle the bandwidth of repeated non-emergency location updates.
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  #60  
Old 12 March 2014, 09:37 PM
jimmy101_again jimmy101_again is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Richard W View Post
Am I misunderstanding GPS? I thought it went the other way - the satellites broadcast time and position information, and the devices receive that and use it to calculate their own position. Nothing is sent from the device to the satellite. That wouldn't be scalable at all - the satellites would suddenly become overloaded just because everybody bought a new smartphone and the traffic multiplied hugely.

The fact that the planes know where they are through GPS says nothing at all about whether anybody else knows where they are. There isn't a "GPS central" that knows.

When people are tracked by the position of their mobile phones, it's nothing to do with GPS - the phone does register with each nearby tower, and so you can use those records to triangulate the phone's approximate position. They might well be better off looking at phone records when trying to track the plane, if they thought it went near land. Early on I did read that somebody had successfully phoned one of the passengers at a point earlier in the flight, and investigators had been repeatedly trying to ring the same phone since then. I assume it wasn't because they were going to call all the search boats and say, "Hush, it's ringing! Listen!"...
The plane has GPS so the plane knows where it is at any instance to an accuracy of a couple feet. The plane has radio(s) that can (and often are) automated. Easy enough to take the GPS data and send it out through the existing radio systems. No need for the plane to be transmitting to something so esoteric as a satellite. GPS receivers are so cheap that the radio system could have its own GPS, which might reduce the regulatory burden since that particular GPS is just for the position reporting system and not for the aircraft's navigation system.
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