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Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...
23

Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

(OP)
This is a continuation of the original thread since it was getting a bit long and slow.

The original thread can be found at:

https://www.eng-tips.com/viewthread.cfm?qid=515241

John R. Baker, P.E. (ret)
Irvine, CA
Siemens PLM:

The secret of life is not finding someone to live with
It's finding someone you can't live without

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

(OP)
When will it end...

Boeing Plane Found To Have Missing Panel After Flight From California To Southern Oregon

Airport officials say a Boeing 737-800 was found to have a missing panel after a United Airlines flight arrived at its destination in southern Oregon.


https://www.huffpost.com/entry/boeing-airplane-mis...

An excerpt from the above item:

A ground crew discovered a missing panel on a Boeing 737-800 that had just arrived at its destination in southern Oregon on Friday after flying from San Francisco, airport officials said.

United Flight 433 left San Francisco at 10:20 a.m. and landed at Rogue Valley International-Medford Airport in Medford shortly before noon, according to FlightAware. The airport’s director, Amber Judd, said the plane landed safely without incident and the external panel was discovered missing during a post-flight inspection.


Must be something about flying over Oregon...

John R. Baker, P.E. (ret)
Irvine, CA
Siemens PLM:

The secret of life is not finding someone to live with
It's finding someone you can't live without

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

(OP)
When reading this headline, I'm not sure that this is good news or not:

No, Boeing Issues Aren’t Actually On The Rise This Year, NTSB Data Shows

Experts also say there’s no reason for panic despite the widespread scrutiny of the aviation company.


https://www.huffpost.com/entry/boeing-safety-issue...

An excerpt from the above item:

The number of accidents and incidents involving Boeing commercial planes, at least during the first 55 days of this year, is relatively the same as 2023, federal data shows.

There have been 19 incidents, accidents and occurrences involving Boeing planes globally as of Feb. 24, according to the most recent data available from the National Transportation Safety Board’s Case Analysis and Reporting Online tool (CAROL). For comparison, the NTSB documented 23 such events during the same 55-day period last year.

John R. Baker, P.E. (ret)
Irvine, CA
Siemens PLM:

The secret of life is not finding someone to live with
It's finding someone you can't live without

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

That panel missing in Oregon sounds more like a United issue than Boeing.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Sounds like it was a wing-to-body fairing panel. Big whoop of nothing.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

It looks like a non-structural fairing near the landing gear. One of those composite over honeycomb constructions.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Quote (hokie)

That panel missing in Oregon sounds more like a United issue than Boeing.
On a twenty-five year old plane, you are probably correct, hokie.

--------------------
Ohm's law
Not just a good idea;
It's the LAW!

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

It's getting a bit silly the reports that are becoming headline news.

On a good news front EASA did an audit last week and said they were happy with the progress.

And there was very little chance of reciprocal certification being withdrawn for manufacture.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Just to note on door seals.

They are inflated using bleed air gas some doors.

And the seal mounting grip is Al.

So stringy solid muck in the system is not very healthy.

Not there will be alot of it. But it may lift an edge.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

It's a bit like doing a building investigation once a crack in noticed. They start looking for more cracks. I've encountered new cracks with cobwebs in them.

-----*****-----
So strange to see the singularity approaching while the entire planet is rapidly turning into a hellscape. -John Coates

-Dik

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

I suspect the QC and paper work failures have cobwebs.

But they are justified findings.

The bad wiring looms to the spoilers are major as well. An UN commanded full one sided spoiler deploy at cruise speed up in coffin corner would be not nice and may overstress the wing.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

I concur... I didn't mean to suggest otherwise. It's just that once you start looking for cracks...

-----*****-----
So strange to see the singularity approaching while the entire planet is rapidly turning into a hellscape. -John Coates

-Dik

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

True I thought you meant the everyday tech item issues which seam to be headline news. Were cob webs.

What we going to get next. rear toilet out of service due vacuum pump broke and on the MEL for 10 days.

Pax in terror as seat belt signs kept on untill 15000ft meaning a 2 min delay going for a pee.



RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

No... there were actual cob webs in the 'new' cracks.

-----*****-----
So strange to see the singularity approaching while the entire planet is rapidly turning into a hellscape. -John Coates

-Dik

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

In defense of spiders, they are pretty fast workers. You know. 8 legs, 8 eyes, lift an equivalent 20T load, silk stronger than steel, jumping 400 ft and all. You've seen Spider Man, yes?
And they're making robot dogs. ponder

Older aircraft are making up more and more of the fleets. That's the bad news. What used to get sold off to South America, et al, are still in major airline service these days. If B can't deliver, that's going to get a whole lot worse before better. But there are probably better places to hide the fyntenol.

--Einstein gave the same test to students every year. When asked why he would do something like that, "Because the answers had changed."

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

To be realistic Airbus can't deliver either in the volume required that the market needs.

I would say it time for people to sit down and talk about a government funded single isle replacement by Boeing.

The Airbus systems need a look at as well for human factors.



RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Government funded? They can't hardly even manage to fund THE government.
But in any case, someone mentioned nationalisation just this week.

--Einstein gave the same test to students every year. When asked why he would do something like that, "Because the answers had changed."

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Whenever you think air travel absolutely cannot get any more unpleasant, somehow they find a way :)

The problem with sloppy work is that the supply FAR EXCEEDS the demand

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Thanks 1503... was aware of that... these were 'old' webs. Not a matter of a couple of days. It just that finding something occasionally prompts others to look for similar issues.

-----*****-----
So strange to see the singularity approaching while the entire planet is rapidly turning into a hellscape. -John Coates

-Dik

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Interesting article get which spells out the issues quite well I think.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-68573686

Remember - More details = better answers
Also: If you get a response it's polite to respond to it.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Speaking of spiders, it is getting a bit creepy with the whistle-blower death.

--Einstein gave the same test to students every year. When asked why he would do something like that, "Because the answers had changed."

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Yeah, my money is on a NJ mob hit rather than suicide.

The entire BoD and C-suite execs need to be replaced.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Reminds me of the Clinton body count. This guy retired at an unusually young age. It's probably wise to be skeptical about all of your assumptions here. Drug addiction is very likely.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

If the BoD and C-suite execs are replaced, who will do the interviews? Certainly not the spineless underlings they hired to keep them out of the loop. It would also be bad if anyone who thought they were suitable were to find similar people, so scratch HR.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Well the front line managers do what the upper managers want them to or they may be gone.
And the upper managers do what the senior executives want them to do or they may be gone.
The top executives do what the BoD wants them to do or they may be gone.
The Board of Directors do what the majority stock holders want them to do or they may be gone.
I have thought for some time now that Boeing won't change until ownership changes.
A $2.5 Billion fine apparently was not enough to change the company culture.
Too Big to Fail or Too Big to admit Failure?

--------------------
Ohm's law
Not just a good idea;
It's the LAW!

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

If loss drove change then Musk would be an entirely different person. If a $25B personal writedown isn't enough to question ones's choices, nothing will.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

I just said it was creepy. Let's don't take the character defamation route just yet. High stress has been known to occasionally cause untimely death.

Right. Fines and penalties are not going to make them flinch. 471 is a pretty big number too and that didn't even produce a "Geeze we're sorry".

Extreme sociopaths have their hands running a lot of stuff that they shouldn't even be let to go have a look at. They are always right, no matter what the damages are.


--Einstein gave the same test to students every year. When asked why he would do something like that, "Because the answers had changed."

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

https://youtu.be/Z76YpCz9N2Y?si=Oxpi3Mi6or-tbA4x

I have seen some opinions posted strongly pointing to errors of the Ethiopian Air pilots. Certainly, there may be some errors that can easily be pointed out in hindsight, but this Frontline report says to me, engineering choices were made to minimize the presence of MCAS and minimize required pilot training to preserve business plans. In the chaos of a runaway plane the pilots tried to regain control over a system that was surreptitiously implemented and later revealed only by necessity and its full power was not truly revealed. The FAA was ineffective in their oversight of the Boeing development process by not being given knowledge of the MCAS system, and by being too cozy with Boeing employees assigned to be FAA representatives. The failures at Boeing are not by the make up of the staff. Boeing's failures are quality and design lapses driven by business choices and direction by the senior management (many who are engineers) and abetted by lax oversight by the FAA. Boeing has been working the regulatory loopholes and the additive errors compound.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Pilot error has been pretty much totally discounted. So far its following the BP narrative just about to the letter. But first the innocent must be punished to divert attention from the number of golden parachutes touching down in the lush green meadows.

The consensus so far is that Stock market opium "OPM", the most powerful drug out there, is what caused this.

--Einstein gave the same test to students every year. When asked why he would do something like that, "Because the answers had changed."

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Other People's Money . . . very powerful and useful if you can get it and control it.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

The Ethiopian captain was 2000 pic and over 9000 hours total.

He was young but not inexperienced.

The first officer was fresh out of school and new on type and wouldn't be much use trouble shooting something like that.

There is a group that do still put forward it was pilot incompetence. But it's way passed that now in certification and regulation authority.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

That supposition was just a tad too convenient for far too many reasons. Not the least was it came, was it just an hour after it happened?, or was it before, and they just printed and mailed it afterwards?

--Einstein gave the same test to students every year. When asked why he would do something like that, "Because the answers had changed."

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Brian, look at the FDRs. The Ethiopian pilots were provided a game plan that said, if there is a stall warning, but no stall, do not retract the flaps, turn off the autopilot and the autothrottle, set pitch and power and return to land.

This was obvious from the Lion Air preliminary report roughly 4 months before the ET-302 crash.

They were also to follow the stall warning procedure - also shut off autopilot, disable autothrottle. They turned on autpilot and did not disable autothrottle.

Their performance got worse from there. There is no indication they were panicked, they simply had not bothered to prepare, nada. The only thing they recalled was to disable the trim motor, but they forgot that the step before that is to trim the airplane and before that to disable the autopilot and the autothrottle. Aside from that their performance was perfect. But wait - there was a highlighted instruction in the FCOM and Emergency AD - never re-enable the trim motor if it's been disabled. They did that. Because they wanted to get the autopilot operating. The autopilot they are supposed to disable during a stall warning, which has been the case for over 30 years and has nothing to do with the MCAS software.

Had this happened 20 years after Lion Air and no intervening crashes or incidents, sure, people forget. This was 4 months. Hubris, stupidity, over confidence, they thought Boeing and the FAA were lying about "memory items". Personally that Emergency AD should have been taped to their leg until the promised software update was released, but they decided to try to wing it. The first officer was the one who recalled the switch; a recall that ultimately killed them.

The PIC should have known both the stall warning and the trim problem procedures without hesitation. He did not know them at all. Why did he think he was safe to fly? Why did the chief pilot think he was safe to fly? Why did their CAA think they were safe to fly? Why did the airline management think they were safe to fly?

There is a reference to training, but the CAA certainly would not want to take blame for their failure. I recall the conditions of the captain's training were suspiciously vague. There was no evaluation of how, if he was trained, the training failed so badly that in a few months there was zero retention of the material.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

They said the same thing about the rudder hard over.

It's a well trodden road for dealing with any design fault.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

3D Dave,

You have been very consistent in your view over the second 737 crash and the pilot actions, but this ignores the results of the later simulator tests that Alastair referred to some time back where they took a selection of pilots trained in different parts of the world and ran the same scenario, also apparently the FAA director. Most of them also crashed apparently.

Trying to blame the pilots for not reacting to a plane which was going mental, with alarms, over speed clackers, movement up and down would be a whole heap different to reviewing this later from the comfort of our living rooms with plenty of time to decide what the root cause was. Remember this was only the third incident in many many flights and the whole point is that the system was set up to fail the pilots. IMHO.

Also as far as I know there are no instances of any flight actually happening where this system failed and where the pilots managed to control the aircraft back to base, other than the very first one where they were very fortunate that they had a third independent pair of eyes and arms to assist them. Even then they didn't know why the plane had reacted that way. This was an incredibly serious error by Boeing and the FAA. Blaming the pilots doesn't work for me.

Remember - More details = better answers
Also: If you get a response it's polite to respond to it.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

3DDave, you see the details as you see them. I see Boeing should not have been able to implement a flight control system that has such extreme control and power over a plane's behavior without having a detailed description in the original operations manuals/instruction and training and prominence in the diclosure to the FAA. Their FMEA and risk analysis for this highly critical system (that relied on the input from a single AOA sensor) seems poorly planned/weighted and the original decisions made seem driven more by minimization of disclosure of the new flight control system rather than concern for passenger safety and ease of pilot awareness. MCAS and the plug door debacle (and every other issue the media puts in the news, whether truly Boeing-specific or not) are going to test Boeing to re-engineer their quality, production, and engineering practices. The FAA has some oversight retooling in order, too.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

To note it was Boeing who wanted the SIM sessions outcomes silenced.

I can't find any details about that first crew that survived.

There have been other situations and crashes where a third set of eyes has saved the day in a cockpit.

The ability to only process the information displayed and not have to think about the flying is a collosal capacity increase.

There isn't alot of detail what went on on that first flight. I suspect a captain's foot was applied to the trim wheel which was applied by the pilot in the jump seat. Getting your hand near the 737 trim wheel when it's running takes some "balls" to be honest.


RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

The first flight I think they managed to control the trim by the switches, but then 5 seconds later it went into another dive. It took the jump pilot to see what was happening and I think he actually disabled the trim motors once the plane got nearly level. Not sure how they managed to deal with all the other alarms etc going off due to the incorrect AoA indicator. Think they just went with whichever side was showing the correct altitude etc and not stick shaking.

Remember - More details = better answers
Also: If you get a response it's polite to respond to it.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

No details were released on what was attempted in the simulator. Nothing at all says Boeing wanted the sim results silenced. Friend of a friend on the internet isn't a source.

The only possible test would be the last 10 seconds, after the pilots had fully stuffed it up. Competent pilots would know not to force autopilot on and would disable autothrottle. There is a difference between getting to a situation that is unrecoverable and avoiding one that is entirely avoidable.

The last 10 seconds of PIA 8303 and AF447 were also unrecoverable. The first due to Airbus hammering pilots 99% of the time that they cannot ever be stalled, and the latter from failure of CRM. Sure AF447 was also because Air France and Airbus had not issued an order to ground all the planes they knew had defective airspeed sensors, but that was corporate greed in action right there. They already had a safer replacement part, but chose to risk lives for corporate profits while they slowly rolled out the fix to a failure they had rushed into production with.

The overspeed clackers came long after they failed to perform the stall warning procedure. It's the sound of rods being shot from an engine 20 minutes after the oil light comes on. If they cannot think anymore about anything at all when a warning goes off they should not be in those seats. Or maybe no plane should ever have warnings so as to not cause the pilots any undue stress.

The second flight was under control until a failure in CRM and experience differential led the captain to turn over control to his newbie. That crew did follow the stall warning memory item list as did the first and did not overspeed in level flight.

Note that the first flight went 90 minutes with the stick shaking and stall warning. They even re-enabled the trim in cruise, got another MCAS increment, and immediately shut it back off - hence the guidance to never re-enable the trim motors. They used the hand cranks that "didn't work" for pilots in the sims because in the sims they let trim go a great departure from trim before going to manual. The possible "third set of eyes" was essentially the report that the Ethiopians had in hand when going over the Emergency AD and FCOM update.

The MCAS risk management was based on having the same response to a failed motor driver that would not shut off. Different cause, same symptom, hence same response. If that isn't true, then there should not have been the trim motor cutout switches.

"They said the same thing about the rudder hard over." Sure, because they didn't know the actual cause of those crashes and initially found nothing wrong with the post-crash hardware. All in spec, all functioned on the bench as required. Here all the control equipment was 100% functional the entire time. Nothing prevented the pilots from controlling the aircraft. The procedure was handed to ET-302 on a silver platter. No one investigated why their training failed, which is why two external agencies wrote independent sections that the Ethiopian CAA did not include in their report.

"There isn't alot of detail what went on on that first flight. I suspect a captain's foot was applied to the trim wheel which was applied by the pilot in the jump seat. Getting your hand near the 737 trim wheel when it's running takes some "balls" to be honest."

What the hell is that about? It's hardly a coherent sentence. The first one didn't require anyone putting a foot on the trim wheel. The second one didn't involve anyone grabbing the trim wheel as the trim was still functional and the Captain used it, just essentially unused by the FO. The third one might have but, again, they stuffed up every step so it didn't matter.

The capper is this - everyone could see the Lion Air report and decide if their pilots could follow the simple directions that came out of that or not. That decision was made by the airlines and the pilots and the various CAAs.

At that point, Boeing had committed to a software change.

If you own a product and you see someone in the news was killed while using it but the maker announces a replacement part that will prevent that happening who does the responsibility belong to if you use the product before that new part is installed? Not one pilot said one thing about the FCOM update or the Emergency AD before ET-302. It was accepted and it 100% worked because it had already been used successfully. No pilots quit, or refused to fly. Do we trust the thousands of experienced pilots to know their ability to cope and their CAAs and their Chief Pilots or is Boeing supposed to be a mind reader?

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

I came across this article on AF477 which makes fascinating reading and have copied a couple of key paragraphs.

https://hbr.org/2017/09/the-tragic-crash-of-flight...


"Loss of control typically occurs when pilots fail to recognize and correct a potentially dangerous situation, causing an aircraft to enter an unstable condition. Such incidents are typically triggered by unexpected, unusual events – often comprising multiple conditions that rarely occur together – that fall outside of the normal repertoire of pilot experience. For example, this might be a combination of unusual meteorological conditions, ambiguous readings or behavior from the technology, and pilot inexperience – any one or two of which might be okay, but altogether they can overwhelm a crew. Safety scientists describe this as the “Swiss cheese” model of failure, when the holes in organizational defenses line up in ways that had not been foreseen. These incidents require rapid interpretation and responses, and it is here that things can go wrong.

Commercial aircraft fly on autopilot for much of the time. For most pilots, automation usually ensures that operations stay well within safe, predictable limits. Pilots spend much of their time managing and monitoring, rather than actively flying, their aircraft.

Automation provides massive data-processing capacity and consistency of response. However, it can also interfere with pilots’ basic cycle of planning, doing, checking, and acting, which is fundamental to control and learning. If it results in less active monitoring and hands-on engagement, pilots’ situational awareness and capacity to improvise when faced with unexpected, unfamiliar events may decrease. This erosion may lie hidden until human intervention is required, for example when technology malfunctions or encounters conditions it doesn’t recognize and can’t process."


I'm not in a position to criticise the pilots and decide whether they are "competent" or not. In many cases trying to reengage the autopilot is probably a good idea as many things are made worse by manual intervention. It's interesting on the AF incident that even without the A/P on, the reckoning is that the plane would have kept going relatively flat and level, but trying to correct a small roll with a small joystick and not much controllability at high altitude and high speed created a worse condition. Loss of anti-stall functionality didn't help, nor other issues like the stall warning hooter dropping out due to lack of forward speed...

As I recall the second flight, the aircraft was trimmed nose down and the second pilot was finding it hard to keep the nose up with all that trim. So he tried something which didn't work.

Runaway trim as a single issue is almost certainly a lot easier to figure out and the trim motors get cut out if you pull against it normally, but not in MCAS. So one taught method was now not correct.

And yes, to a certain extent Boeing is supposed to be a mind reader to figure out design and software that makes sense, doesn't go against previous "rules" of flying a B737 and can recognise faults or put in place features which prevent it destroying the aircraft. All the actual things they did later were inherently quite sensible and you have to wonder how come no one thought of this during the design and review process. Or maybe they did but it was too costly or too late to modify it. But failure to modify MCAS before selling the aircraft cost Billions and hundreds of lives.

Not ensuring QA procedure to allow four piddly bolts to not be fitted - more billions, thankfully no one got sucked out, but that was a lot more luck than design. Failure at 35,000 ft with people actually seated next to the door - nothing would stop you going out that huge hole. Probably 5-15 people out the plane is my guess.

Remember - More details = better answers
Also: If you get a response it's polite to respond to it.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

"In many cases trying to reengage the autopilot is probably a good idea as many things are made worse by manual intervention."

Autopilot is not a stall recovery system. If the plane is giving a stall warning, real or false, the autopilot isn't to be used.

"Runaway trim as a single issue is almost certainly a lot easier to figure out and the trim motors get cut out if you pull against it normally, but not in MCAS."

Yes, and the second step is that if it doesn't stop from pulling, disable the motors, which is why those switches are right there and the Emergency AD emphasized that fact.

"As I recall the second flight, the aircraft was trimmed nose down and the second pilot was finding it hard to keep the nose up with all that trim. So he tried something which didn't work."

The second accident flight - it was trimmed nose down because the captain did not trim back to neutral before the F/O had the bright idea to shut off access to the simple to use trim button. They didn't monitor any instruments, at least not in any effective way. As airspeed steadily increased no one noticed the engines were still at full take-off thrust even though they were in level flight. Whatever they learned it was in one ear, out the other, likely because the autopilot did all the flying for them.

The MCAS is a variation of how Speed Trim works. An automatic movement of the horizontal stab to feed back to the pilots. Since MCAS is to discourage pilots from pulling harder on the controls, it cannot cutout when pilots pull harder on the controls. This may have caught out the Lion Air crash pilots; it did not catch out the captain from keeping the plane stable. It was emphasized to the Ethiopian crew.

No one said, inside Boeing or outside, "What if a pilot just ignored their training and did all steps the opposite of the manual? Would that cause a problem?" No kidding. It causes a problem when pilots do that.

Boeing employees human beings. Pilots are human beings. How would Boeing employees know more about pilots than pilots do?

As soon as the Emergency AD was issued it became not-a-Boeing responsibility. What made things complicated was the airline and CAA saying the ET-302 pilots followed the Emergency AD instructions perfectly, no mistake was made. A lot of people believed that statement. That Boeing and the FAA had produced a procedure that failed. We don't know if it would or not because ET-302 didn't try it.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

To note the trim system is different on the max to the NG.

On the NG there are two switches, one allows you to kill the automatic systems input to one motor , the other the electric power to both screw jack motors. No power your into turn the trim wheel manually.

Max both switches are wired in series and kill the power to the one and only trim motor. Use either of them and your into manual mode.


No sim session does 10 seconds of flight, it will have been dead aircraft on the ramp, start up, taxi out and departure and at some point something will have happened.

Anyway the subject is pretty much dealt with now. Public opinion isn't going to change the process.

I am extremely doubtful they will get the MAX 10 certified any time soon in the next 5 years.

Littleinch your grasping the edges of the human factors side of things when something happens.


RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

"On the NG there are two switches, one allows you to kill the automatic systems input to one motor , the other the electric power to both screw jack motors. No power your into turn the trim wheel manually."

This is not worth mentioning as the guidance on the NG was to always disable both rather than for the pilots to puzzle out which was the problem source.

"No sim session does 10 seconds of flight, it will have been dead aircraft on the ramp, start up, taxi out and departure and at some point something will have happened."

Already discussed and I think you don't know anything about software. There is no reason the sim software cannot be initialized at any possible condition if the makers of the sim software make that function available. But, even if it starts at the ramp, the real "test" can be to do all the same stupid things that were done up to the last 10 unrecoverable seconds.

Unless the point is that no pilots will ever follow procedures. That is scary.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

As I said before 3D Dave, you have been pretty consistent in your views - it's just I don't agree with them so not much point saying the same things.

The issue is that when you read the AD it continually emphasises set the trim switches to cut out. Only right at the end it say you "can" use the trim switches to stabilise the airplane, not that you MUST or even SHOULD. But it say set the trim switches to CUT OUT seven times , all of them in CAPITALS.

Also doesn't mention Auto throttle at all.

If this was ever going to be a "memory" item that's what would stick in my mind. Hence why lots of people said the pilots did (at least initially) exactly what they were asked to do by the AD and the plane still crashed. Also the "trim the aircraft manually" turned out to be physically impossible because they had reduced the size of the trim wheel, plus doing it at higher speeds needed more force than they could physically apply. Hence the AD was asking them to do something which couldn't be done in many circumstances. Not to mention that it would take something like 100+ turns to get it back toneutral trim.

I also think as the 737 grew over time, the control surfaces of the trim system could over power the elevators, which wasn't true of the first 737s or even possibly the NG.

Boeing are supposed to know more about the airplane than pilots do and have a duty to design their airplane not to do things which cause pilots to lose control. In my opinion and others, they failed in that duty. You clearly have a different opinion and that's fine. We have a MCAS/DISAGREE.

Remember - More details = better answers
Also: If you get a response it's polite to respond to it.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Jumping into this with perhaps an overly simplistic POV, but this has been a raging topic for a long time now.

It is not supportable to argue that a crew is inadequate to the task if they perish in a rare cockpit scenario, especially in a novel technology scenario. The mere fact that there are so few occurrences does not clear nor assign the fault automatically. By definition, it is novel, so it bears investigation with a clear conscience and no bias.

The tried and true practical inquiry would run a slathering of crews through a simulation and see how the spaghetti sticks to the wall. If your typical crew response is a negative outcome, then your choices are 1) poor fleet training, or 2) poor technology.

As an outsider looking it, this has all the smell of a technology failure--which redounds to the manufacturer and regulator as primary responsibility to deliver an end product which the 99th percentile of trained crews can operate without negative consequence.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

"As an outsider looking it, this has all the smell of a technology failure--which redounds to the manufacturer and regulator as primary responsibility to deliver an end product which the 99th percentile of trained crews can operate without negative consequence. "

If it was not, this whole problem would have been cleaned up and flying quite a while ago.

--Einstein gave the same test to students every year. When asked why he would do something like that, "Because the answers had changed."

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

because the sims are wired to the actual hardware you can't jump in on a level D sim...

You can get it to the point of the weight on wheels moving everything to air mode then slew.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

BTW there are heap of issues with the fact that they took the piss with the NG certification. Which they grandfathered to the MAX,

The electrical system is causing issues with certification.

And now the level D sims need actual MAX hardware and software... Its really not pretty.

Has Boeing paid out for the sim training requirement? I am told in EASA its now 16 hours to fly it. And that's at 5000$ an hour for 2 crew plus trainer not including wages. 1 sim every 12 months on the NG and MAX every 12 months to stay current.

A220 level D is 5 million and a new airframe is 60 million to give you a price comparison.

to note I have zero clue what my boss has bought the next 30 A220 airframes we are getting. A220 SIMs are like rocking horse shit with a 3 year lead time from ordering.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

3
If you can't SIM it, you can't train it. If you can't train it, you can't fly it.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Brilliant post AZ, and utterly spot on...

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

What is the first sentence of the AD?

Use Main Electric Trim as required.

"Auto throttle" is part of the stall warning procedure, which happened before they reconfigured to enable MCAS.

They passed the Bridge Out sign, drove around the Bridge Out barrier, and gave it the beans right into the ravine.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

As soon as you turn off one of the isolation switches on a max it kills the power to the stab trim motor. Which there is only one of instead of two on a Ng...

3 seconds later it's over 25kg out of trim.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

"because the sims are wired to the actual hardware you can't jump in on a level D sim..."

Really. So if I cycle power mid flight, the actual hardware will be unable to operate the plane? Not only is that terrifying but I don't believe that for a second about computer hardware. You wake it up, give it inputs that it is at 550 knots, 5000 feet, and full nose down trim. What is that hardware going to do about that? Complain there wasn't a pushback?

Again - it doesn't matter. If they follow a crap script to get to an unrecoverable situation then that does not represent what a pilot should have done to not get to that unrecoverable situation.

There is so much straw in that argument it is becoming a fire hazard.

This is suggesting that since Eastern put a plane into a swamp over a failed light bulb that the present state of pilots is so much worse that given a simple script to follow it is acceptable to not only not follow the script but to make even worse ad libs to it?

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

A full power recycle in flight I have zero clue about.

We have the DC battery's and RAT. It's down below 7th redundancy level.

I have zero training or knowledge below what happens after the RAT is out and the electrics go.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Btw on the Ng and max you only have level
4 redundancy which is one of the many certification issues on the post Ng 737.

We need level 6 min because of the electric brakes.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Btw the computer hardware on an A220 is single thread single core 486 processor

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

"If you can't SIM it, you can't train it. If you can't train it, you can't fly it."

This is true. Ethiopia had 2 Max simulators with which to try the Lion Air scenario against the AD. AFAIK there is no separate input to the simulator for alpha, so they would know they could not train for it, but decided to fly anyway. They could have requested and then awaited an updated sim software that would allow for a deviation in the AoA sensor reading from alpha or waited for Boeing to produce new flight software.

That is an airline and CAA decision. They made a financial and political decision to fly their national pride of the skies in a way reminiscent of the Teacher in Space Shuttle launch that the US President planned a speech around leading to the management ignoring the danger of a cold-soaked launch.

They could also have re-calibrated an AoA sensor on an actual plane, just like Lion Air had, and prepared to pull power to the SYMD associated with it to return function to the autopilot by automatic fail-over, but they did not do that either.

They didn't try to train. There is no record they held classes, meetings, in-person reviews, spot tests to see if they recalled the memory items. They put a new guy as FO when the previous accident aircraft went down because a new guy FO didn't trim the plane.

They could even have just disabled the electric trim and hand cranked the flights until the new software arrived.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

I agree nobody is faultless.

Its always the case with an accident.

I don't think you can plan to hand crank the trim for the whole of the flight due to the MEL and the other things that need to be running under the MEL. There will also be operational limitations to do with rvsm airspace.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Five years ago Forbes looked into their 🧙‍♂️crystal ball.


--Einstein gave the same test to students every year. When asked why he would do something like that, "Because the answers had changed."

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

"They didn't try to train. There is no record they held classes, meetings, in-person reviews, spot tests to see if they recalled the memory items. "

That might well be true, but how many other airlines actually did do that?

Also "What is the first sentence of the AD?
Use Main Electric Trim as required."

Err no, the complete sentence says "Disengage autopilot and control airplane pitch attitude with control column and main electric trim as required."

So the clear main instruction is to control the pitch using the control column. The "as required" bit makes this an optional thing to do the way I read it.

The big thing they don't tell the pilot is that if this is a MCAS runaway, the control column won't cut out the trim command in the same way as runaway trim does. To me its a very confusing directive, but the clear instruction is set the trim switches to CutOut. The fact you're then trying to control an aircraft with loads of force on the column isn't really considered.

For me they missed a big change not emphasising that the thing to do was use the electric trim FIRST, then set cutout switches within 5 seconds of getting nearly level flight.

It would be interesting to know if using manual trim is something that has fallen out of favour or fashion given that the FCC / trim system seems to use it all the time. So is that something the pilots forget they could do and just lets the autopilot or trim system control?

Remember - More details = better answers
Also: If you get a response it's polite to respond to it.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

"That might well be true, but how many other airlines actually did do that?"

It's an EMERGENCY AD and a Memory Item update to the FCOM.

If they chose to ignore it in spite of the relation to a recent fatal accident it does not fall on Boeing.

All the airlines looked at it and all of them accepted it as did all the pilots and all the CAAs - because it had worked. Demonstrably. In recent memory, so one would think they would examine it carefully.

The reason these instructions don't tell them that pulling back may not stop the trim (aside from it being plainly obvious when it does stop trim, and only works -during- some particular trim event and ) is that this is not a procedure solely for MCAS. It why it refers to "relaxing the column" and not puling back.

This is a procedure for the control fault of runaway stabilizer - which could be caused by a wire breakthrough or switch failure providing unexpected power or control signal that would also not respond to pulling back, or a melted relay or a software fault other than MCAS; maybe due to a dead transistor in a memory chip. There would be no "5 seconds" for a mechanical or electrical fault, so no need to mention it. It might be intermittent or it might be continuous.

The pilots are there to deal with symptoms - the symptom is "runaway stabilizer" not "MCAS due to SMYD/..."

The pilots, the airlines, the CAAs also did not push back on the term "runaway stabilizer" but I've seen too many who claim it cannot be "runaway" if it stops after some interval. "That's not runaway, it stops after a while" they write, as if it matters. Since there is a stop at the end of the jackscrew, by that definition, there can never be trim runaway.

Maybe it should have been called "excess trim force on the control wheel"

Do pilots need a kindergarten class on how to trim a plane? Maybe they do, as the Captain in ET-302 did apply the electric trim but did not trim the plane. Should it be explained as if to a five year old instead of a multi-thousand hour Captain?

"Initially, higher control forces may be needed to overcome any stabilizer nose down trim already applied.
Electric trim can be used to neutralize control column pitch forces before moving the STAB TRIM CUTOUT switches to CUTOUT"

Does that not say what is to be done? It said "Electric trim can be used to neutralize control column pitch forces" and that was true - electric trim continued to function. "neutralize control column pitch forces" is that unclear as the reason to use the electric trim? "neutralize control column pitch forces before moving the STAB TRIM CUTOUT" is what is to be done "before" cutout.

When the Captain read these new instructions what did the Captain think it meant? We don't know because his airline never asked him or the FO (first officer.) We also don't know because there is no record his Chief pilot or the CAA had talked to them either.

From the FDR it is clear this crew was beyond desperate to get the autopilot running even during the non-MCAS related event for which they are trained and given clear instructions to disable the autopilot and autothrottle. ET-302 was gaining altitude and was in a stable climb, when they decided to try to re-engage the autopilot. They turn on the thing they are told to turn off and keep off to try the autopilot and, when that failed, they left turned on the thing they are told to turn off and keep off.

It was that experimentation that lost them all control of the plane. Per the FDR, until they tweaked the trim switch to see if the trim motor worked, MCAS had issued no recent trim commands and MCAS stopped moving the stab the instant any electric trim command was used.

It is more imperative to find out why the training failed so miserably and why their airline and CAA failed to ensure they were capable of handling what is a trivial physical action. Planes can be examined to see if the software is good, but what of the thousands of pilots who may be just as poorly trained?

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

try 100's of thousands, of pilots.

These information letters are a weekly if not daily downloads on to the ipad. You can and do get saturated with all the updates. Especially when you have been on vacation for a couple of weeks.

You do get tick tests with a few questions after reading them but in reality how long retention they have is debatable. For me they don't sink in until there is an exercise in the sim. And I am lucky I get an extra 4 hours bring it up to 16 hours from 12 which is the legal min per year.

"It is more imperative to find out why the training failed so miserably "

100% agree on this one and the issue has been known about as long as I have been flying. But its all part of this risk matrix and cost analysis.

But if the 737 MAX risk matrix V training required is increased V other types then the aircraft type is as dead as a dodo.

I think you would be surprised how little we actually manually trim the plane outside the sim. Its maybe a couple of dips of the trim switch after the AP is out for landing and that's it per flight. In nice weather months I won't touch it for weeks.











RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

3DDave, what's motivating the ferocity of argument? The detail with which the analysis is broken down and rebutted indicates some strong feelings on the matter, as though an egregious wrong has been committed by the pilot/airline while the manufacturer and regulator have met their burden. Is that the essence of the argument?

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

There has been no rebuttal. There has been taking the initial ET-302 claims at face value.

The putting of sole blame has moved from MCAS to the Board room, but not a single analysis has looked at the step by step operations in the cockpit as recorded on the FDR.

The maker met their burden with the Emergency AD.

Would anyone here would accept a situation where a minor malfunction of a piece of equipment, an adequate and already proven adaptation is given, and subsequent use by an informed operator that ignores every part of that adaptation resulted in an unwanted outcome is blamed on the maker?

And the "startled" excuse looks really weak compared to the door departure response. Alistair is apparently pulling to have pilots that are feinting goats.

When I say they failed to follow the stall warning procedure - where is the breakdown and rebuttal?
When I say they failed to follow the stabilizer runaway procedure - where is the breakdown and rebuttal?
When I say their Chief pilot did not ensure the pilots under his care understood with absolute clarity how those procedures were to be followed - where is the breakdown and rebuttal?
When I say their CAA did not ensure the pilots in that country did not ensure the pilots understood with absolute clarity how these procedures were to be followed - where is the breakdown and rebuttal?
When I say the false stall warning is the initiator - where is the breakdown and rebuttal?

The rebuttal has been "it's the fault of greed" Yeah - the pilots were greedy and wanted to fly. The airline was greedy and wanted to sell tickets. The CAA and government were greedy for political power and wanted to operate their national pride and joy; their President said operating this particular brand new top-of-the line jet would be a way to provide a slap in the face to Western powers who he claimed said his country was incapable.

Had concentration been placed on pilot performance as the core factor gets to the underlying problem that crashed PIA 8303 and AF 447 and many others. Even after Lion Air, when the core of the report and the resulting AD said that the crash was preventable by simply understanding how to trim and how to use a switch, the ET-302 crew said - naw, we're so good we don't have to read it. I am not sure Alistair is getting Emergency ADs and updated FCOM pages for memory item procedures every day - but his attitude towards them is a problem.

Anyway, reducing the complex sequence of events to "Boeing Bad" doesn't offer a way to preventing future problems.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Is the grounding of the aircraft warranted?

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

You have made your point, Dave.
Most here do not agree with you.
If, as your position seems to imply, we must choose between;
A. Boeing Bag.
and
B. Pilots Bad.
Most will choose to disagree with you and vote for "A. Boeing Bad."
But the world is not that simple and those are not the only choices.

--------------------
Ohm's law
Not just a good idea;
It's the LAW!

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

If that's the conclusion it's incorrect.

My position remains, Boeing had a flawed development that missed a critical problem, but it was a problem that could be overcome by the pilots; Boeing incorrectly evaluated pilot training. But for pilot inaction or incorrect action the planes still allowed full control and both crashes were entirely avoidable and needless. The FAA and all airlines said the Emergency AD was sufficient.

All bad.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

To the extent that I understand, 3DDave has made his arguments much better than those who just want to bash Boeing.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Conspiracy Alert:

China is making major developments with its COMAC C919. Perhaps they are pushing all of these smaller stories of failures in our media in an attempt to destabilize Boeing.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Quote (who just want to bash Boeing)


Boeing's motive was profit at any cost!

-----*****-----
So strange to see the singularity approaching while the entire planet is rapidly turning into a hellscape. -John Coates

-Dik

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

So your a fan of COMAC? Because they work directly for the government they can produce the safest airplane as profit is no longer an influence on design?

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

C919 uses a lot of western components. Engines, avionics, etc. I’ve met some of the COMAC engineers; they seemed pretty capable.

Sadly Boeing is doing a fine job of looking bad all by themselves.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Not going to a labor camp because they missed delivery targets might be a more adverse incentive.

Looks at China's tofu cities.

Have to wait and see.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

3DDave is not wrong.

The startle effect is a lot more powerful than he realises though. Older aircraft types had more issues and you were conditioned to deal with it. These modern ones hardly ever throw up time critical situations.

You could argue the point that airbus and JAR/EASA set things up with pilot training to ensure that pilots were not setup to flying this type of machine competently. Its been a steady process since the 1990's

We just don't have the GA infrastructure to get the hours in on basic aircraft types. The rest of the world followed EASA because it was cheaper and they just didn't have the number of pilots to meet demand. The stats showed accidents were not increasing in fact they have decreased.

A multi pilot license they only fly around 60 hours in an aircraft before hitting the sim on a multipilot jet. And those training aircraft are FADEC EFIS equipped.

There was a lot of dirty practises occurred when the A320 came to the market by both sides.

And they have continued to this day with the stupidity surrounding the A220. There will be loads out there giving pay back.

But realistically stretching a 1960's design to the MAX was a pretty stupid idea and playing the certification rules so that they never moved it forward with the alerting system has really bitten them.

I see it as an information overload while trying to diagnose what the hell is happening. The FBW protections not being there and the reliance on human memory items to fix things is flawed. Which is why the 777 and 787 don't have them for this issue. modern types you only have put the oxygen masks on.

I can't think of any other commercial aircraft that doesn't have a central annunciator panel for faults. Which is the basic system which has been in aircraft since the 70's. The latest ECAM fire up the relevant checklist and warn you if you have misconfigured the aircraft. But changing to that would have triggered a separate type rating for pilots so they just left it with the 1960's system. To be fair that was driven by the airlines as well not wanting to pay additional training costs.



RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

There are two basic design philosophies I like to follow.
1) Just because you can do it, doesn't necessarily mean you should.
2) If there is a safer way to do something, you probably should be doing it that way.

Alistair points those out.
"But realistically stretching a 1960's design to the MAX was a pretty stupid idea and playing the certification rules so that they never moved it forward with the alerting system has really bitten them."

But Alistair, I don't see any need to be fair. "But changing to that would have triggered a separate type rating for pilots so they just left it with the 1960's system. To be fair that was driven by the airlines as well not wanting to pay additional training costs." Customers always want their say every day. The Engineers job is to say yes sir, until they cross the line. Not wanting to pay training costs is one of the poorest excuses I've ever heard. Do training costs need to be included in the price of the aircraft to make it more acceptable to CEOs with private equity backgrounds to buy them? Paying 100s of millions for technology you can't operate because training is expensive is not an effective strategy. It's just short sightedness and false economics. It's not all about ROI. This is just the same failure principle adapted for the airlines business. The approach should be, Hey, if you can't afford the training costs, maybe we should go over there and have a look at that one. Yeah, it's not as bright and shiny as this one, but you won't spend hundreds of dollars on training costs. (Now I see the reason I have to pay extra to sit together. It's FU.) Once again we find the Engineer is sales driven and not taking the role of protecting his customer.

3DDave, you're paddeling upstream. Everything B did with the max was to avoid running off "Bad decision Road". This undercurrent runs the entire length of the river and we're still nowhere the ocean.

--Einstein gave the same test to students every year. When asked why he would do something like that, "Because the answers had changed."

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

The to be fair bit, was that it wasn't just Boeing MBA's its was also Airline MBA's.

The big issue was the post MD merger put the MBA's in charge of the product. They sectioned the design to prevent the engineers talking to each other. There was nobody with a big picture view by plan. Even the test pilot community weren't given the big picture.

I suspect the MAX 10 and 7 are going to be 2027 or even 2030 before certified.

All the piss taking they did on the NG certification has now been found out.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

BTW my boss is a pilot and oh Leary of Ryan Air is one.

Its the best airline I have every worked for Maint.

Ryan Air is well known to be solid when it comes to pilot training and SOP's. And its maint has also got an extremely good reputation and they don't fly on the MEL. It gets fixed ASAP like my boss insists on.

BTW the airlines in the USA with similar reputation for maint and pilot standards are all cargo. Run by pilots as the CEO.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Ryan needs massive customer relations improvement. I guess there's always something. Their "Reduced ac deliveries means higher ticket price" narative of late is not helping. Makes them look very greedy. Its bad enough having to pay extra to sit together. I expect having to pay extra to sit will be next.

--Einstein gave the same test to students every year. When asked why he would do something like that, "Because the answers had changed."

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

It has many faults, but the maint and the pilot training and ops is not one of them.

Personally I would only ever fly single sector without baggage with them. But its a business model that works for them.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

I agree with 3DDave that the accident pointed out a lack of pilot ability to fly the plane. I don't believe they did anything correctly when trying to handle the situation. I'm not impressed with the "blame it all on Boeing" stance that has happened since that stance is ignoring the other faults in the path between the plane type being designed and two of them torpedoing into the ground.


Quote:

Boeing's motive was profit at any cost!

Same as the airline motive...

In hindsight, Boeing continuing to concentrate on a 737 replacement instead of trying to make the 737 a neo competitor would have been the smart move.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Question hasn't been answered: is the grounding warranted?

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Is what grounding warranted? As far as I know no planes are grounded.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

I presume they meant the type certification being withdrawn between March 2019 and December 2020. Resulting in all 737 MAX aircraft being grounded for 20 months which is the recorded for a type being grounded by its original certifying authority.

And BTW I think they could have left it flying in the USA. Although what the insurance situation would have been I have no clue. But when the FAA found out how much they had been lied to they had zero chance.

Plus its an international market. It only being legal in one country makes it worth less. Plus your pax are more media led.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Well with approx 30,000 commercial aircraft in active service, there must be something like 150,000 or more active pilots (google say > 300,000) in the world.

To get that many and to replace an aging pilot population figure show the industry needs something like 25,000 a year. Quite a lot of the increase will be in Asia and Africa.

The reliance therefore on automation and probable lack of direct flying experience is completely different to what existing in the 1960's when the 737 started flying. The 737 MAX design was, IMHO, fatally flawed with this MCAS addition and introduced an unacceptable level of jeopardy and over reliance on "memory" functions and flying ability which could not be assumed with todays pilot population.

So did the pilots of ET-302 get it badly wrong - evidently yes.
The odds though were being stacked against them by a deficient design which had not properly considered all the possible outcomes from a single sensor failure and a barely believable assumption of the pilots doing something within 3 seconds of being hit by multiple alarms, airplane movement and with no central alarm panel.

I go back to the issue over the silence about the SIM sessions with a variety of pilots not being made public. If 99% of times those pilots managed to control the aircraft and get it back to base then I'm pretty sure we would have heard about it by now...

Remember - More details = better answers
Also: If you get a response it's polite to respond to it.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

normal crewing is at least 5 crews per aircraft. With a crew needing 2 pilots.

Which is where the > than 300 000 comes from.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

2
Was Boeing to fault?
Boeing made the decision to lie in order to avoid proper training of pilots.
Boeing made the decision to implement MCAS.
Boeing did not make Max sims available, and this is related to their decision to avoid sim training.
The FAA was complicit with Boeing.
The airlines shared Boeing's cost priorities and were complicit with Boeing.
Were the pilots to blame?
Did they wake up that morning and decide;
"I'm going to die today and take a lot of people with me."
It is pretty obvious that the pilots were not properly trained, and the training that they did receive was inadequate.
Did the pilots make mistakes?
Definitely they made mistakes.
They probably should have been sent for retraining, had not death intervened.
Their mistakes demonstrate their inadequate training, and the fault of that goes back to Boeing, the FAA and the Airline.
The pilots could have done better, but faced with imminent death, they did the best that they could.

Quote (3DDave)

But for pilot inaction or incorrect action the planes still allowed full control and both crashes were entirely avoidable and needless. The FAA and all airlines said the Emergency AD was sufficient.
The FAA and all airlines said the Emergency AD was sufficient.
The main responsibility falls on Boeing.
The FAA and the Airlines may be viewed as contributors or enablers, but their responsibility is based Boeing's original actions and Boeing's withholding of information.
Were the pilots to blame or where the pilots victims of corporate greed and inadequate training.

If this is true, Dave:

Quote (3DDave)

The FAA and all airlines said the Emergency AD was sufficient.
THEN WHY THIS?

Quote (Alistair)

I presume they meant the type certification being withdrawn between March 2019 and December 2020. Resulting in all 737 MAX aircraft being grounded for 20 months which is the recorded for a type being grounded by its original certifying authority.
The grounding seems like an extreme step for what you characterize as "Pilot Error".
Contrast the AD with the grounding of a type for 20 months and I will suggest that an inverse ratio may be appropriate to assess the pilots responsibility.
That is, the pilots share some responsibility, but in comparison, very little.




--------------------
Ohm's law
Not just a good idea;
It's the LAW!

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

"Boeing made the decision to lie in order to avoid proper training of pilots."

There's a couple of problems with that statement.

No one in Boeing, so far as evidence has come up, ever identified the case where the AoA sensor would feed bad values into the system that would result in an uncontrollable condition; the symptom was the 30+ year old stabilizer runaway. Nothing about that aspect of training changed. There's no separate training for "Stuck trim switch" and "rat ate a wire and shorted a signal to the trim motor control" and "the computer RAM has a transistor that was dodgy." They don't have separate training for that because it is the symptom that needs to be dealt with, not the cause.

MCAS itself was not a feature the pilots would ever be aware of in normal flight; even the conditions for which it was intended lie far outside the envelope a passenger jet would be used in revenue service. They didn't train for "Speed trim goes wrong" either, even though the first crew speculated to the maintainers that it was speed trim going wrong.

The 20 months was for two reasons.

The first is that everyone was told that a bullet-proof procedure totally failed, and failed in an even higher-energy way than the crash the procedure was based on. This no doubt led to a huge investigation as to how it failed. Of course that investigation would not find anything because the procedure was not used. Turns out, one can look for a long time to find a needle that isn't in a haystack.

The second is that they eventually found the procedure was not only not used, the pilots subverted the procedure at every possible opportunity, meaning that they had to design a system resistant to sabotage. That seems like something that is more difficult to manage a solution for.

"Did they wake up that morning and decide..."
not to review the FCOM or the Emergency AD. Yes, they did decide that. They also decided not to read and walk through the Lion Air crash preliminary report. They also decided not to speak to each other about this possible situation at the gate and which would handle each part. They also decided not to talk to their Chief Pilot. There was a long list of things the pilots decided every morning for the 4 to 5 months from the time all that was issued and the day they welcomed people aboard. None of what they decided appear to be preparing for what they knew could happen.

Or maybe they did skim it, though I cannot see how. Pretty simple - the report laid it out. If there is a stall warning when the plane is not in stall conditions and it's a one-side warning, so probably the AoA subsystem. You are supposed to turn off the autothrottle and set pitch and power and the autopilot goes off because it cannot operate on faulty data. Retracting the flaps fully is the last gate to start MCAS. The Lion Air team made this 100% clear. Is this sequence impossibly difficult to recall?

Between 120 and 150 mornings of deciding they did not need to have any concern about stabilizer runaway following the fatal crash of the same type aircraft, the one they were informed was going to require a software update before the Emergency AD was lifted. They knew the plane had a defect, knew from the Lion Air report it was manageable, but only if they did the stall warning procedure as required for the last 30+ years. Which they decided not to do.

"...Boeing's withholding of information."
As of the Lion Air preliminary report there was no information withheld. The ET-302 crew had far more information available to them than the successful Lion Air crew, and that crew even managed to give it a controlled experiment, similar to ET-302, but the Lion Air crew was prepared to cut it off the instant it misbehaved; and they did.

"Boeing did not make Max sims available"
Ethiopian Air owned at least one Max simulator at the time of the crash.
https://corporate.ethiopianairlines.com/Press-rele...

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Quote (Their mistakes demonstrate their inadequate training, and the fault of that goes back to Boeing, the FAA and the Airline.)


You missed 'the government', a big part of the problem.

-----*****-----
So strange to see the singularity approaching while the entire planet is rapidly turning into a hellscape. -John Coates

-Dik

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Its hardly a bullet proof procedure, it relies on human reaction times and diagnosis.

That went out the window in the 80's because its well known it doesn't work most of the time.

Its more likely that some one that had a clue about human performance got a vote.

I also think the FAA director going into the sim with it had a huge effect. Along with the other generic pilots.

I checked with some one at Ryan Air and it was a Boeing gag order about what went on with those pilots. Which maybe the reason why Boeing stopped fighting the grounding.

Anyway it was grounded and there are a whole raft of mods in the process before the 10 gets certified. The 8's and 9's also have loads of mods to go through once the 10 is finalised.

Its looking like a new type would have been cheaper to develop and take less time and they would have been setup up for the next 30 years.

For some every accident is the pilots fault, to be honest most of the time they are right. These two its one of the few that the system is stacked against them.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Gov: Remove two old regulations for every new one.

One step forward, two steps back.

--Einstein gave the same test to students every year. When asked why he would do something like that, "Because the answers had changed."

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

the problem they have is its not USA regulations its international.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

"No one in Boeing, so far as evidence has come up, ever identified the case where the AoA sensor would feed bad values into the system that would result in an uncontrollable condition;"

I really don't think that is correct though. They identified this, but decided, based on the ORIGINAL MCAS operation that the likelihood of AoA failure was low but so was the action - initially it was a high speed low angle movement of the trim system. They also decided, like you have done, that existing "memory" procedures would kick in after three seconds and decided this warranted a hazard level below catastrophic. Then the operation of MCAS changed to be a a much higher movement assuming a near stall condition, but AFAIK, they didn't change the evaluation of the fault operation. It is clear that there was an overriding desire to avoid having to have pilots do type certification training and this coloured any discussions.

The other issue being that the original 737 design allowed the elevator to overcome even full trim down operation (I think), but as the plane got larger and larger, this slowly reversed.

Operation of the trim button on the control column for any length of time at higher speeds results in quite violent movement of the aircraft. It's not surprising that the pilots stopped doing this.

The faulty AoA generated a significant number of alarms and issues which helps to mask the trim issue. The biggest issue I see is that when it went off, previously the plane should have been relatively stable, although A/P would have been kicked out. With MCAS, after a small pause, the plane suddenly nose dives without warning. Not surprisingly the first action is to pull on the control column and raise the nose. After that trying to figure out what is happening is far from straightforward. Any pause in operating the electric trim for > 5 seconds and it repeats.

You go on about the original Lion Air flight, but conveniently forget that they had a crucial extra, very experienced pair of eyes who could study all the inputs without having the requirement to fly the plane who actually figured it out. In essence he was the missing central ECAM.

Remember - More details = better answers
Also: If you get a response it's polite to respond to it.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

2

Quote:

It is clear that there was an overriding desire to avoid having to have pilots do type certification training and this coloured any discussions.
The AD as training was lacking in the checks on comprehension and retention.
AFAIK there were no comprehension nor retention check components to the AD and the pilots had not been trained in a MCAS sim.

--------------------
Ohm's law
Not just a good idea;
It's the LAW!

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Quote (LittleInch)

They identified this, but decided, based on the ORIGINAL MCAS operation that the likelihood of AoA failure was low but so was the action - initially it was a high speed low angle movement of the trim system. They also decided, like you have done, that existing "memory" procedures would kick in after three seconds and decided this warranted a hazard level below catastrophic. Then the operation of MCAS changed to be a a much higher movement assuming a near stall condition, but AFAIK, they didn't change the evaluation of the fault operation

Can't comment on whether or not that is true but, if it is, it serves as a stark reminder that failure modes, failure tolerance and a myriad of other things (like EMC) can all be different in a system that is ostensibly a form, fit and function replacement for its predecessor. If I had a pound in my pocket for every time I've seen that neglected, I'd struggle to walk in a straight line.

A.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

waross, I gave you a link to Ethiopian that claimed they had trained on this procedure in the MAX sim they owned.

Any example verbiage of "checks on comprehension and retention" beyond what every FCOM requires? I'm stunned to hear that pilots are expected to behave as a 13 year old might.

---

"Operation of the trim button on the control column for any length of time at higher speeds results in quite violent movement of the aircraft. It's not surprising that the pilots stopped doing this."

The operation of the trim button would have allowed them to relax the load on the control wheel at the same time. They were maintaining trim by the elevators. It would not have resulted in a violent movement because the trim load on the plane would remain unchanged.

"The faulty AoA generated a significant number of alarms and issues which helps to mask the trim issue."

The trim issue did not become a trim issue until after they failed to deal with the stall warning alarms. The captain did respond to the first MCAS trim in a half-measure way.

"You go on about the original Lion Air flight, but conveniently forget that they had a crucial extra, very experienced pair of eyes who could study all the inputs without having the requirement to fly the plane who actually figured it out. In essence he was the missing central ECAM."

Yes - and learning of this was what was written into the Emergency AD and the FCOM and the Lion Air Preliminary report. You don't need a third person if you understand what you are looking for. All they recalled was "turn off the trim motors." Pretty poor example of what they spent their 120 mornings not doing.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Just think of happy thoughts and you’ll fly. -- Peter Pan

--Einstein gave the same test to students every year. When asked why he would do something like that, "Because the answers had changed."

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

The risk of pilots not doing something should be in the risk analysis.

As there were two fatal accidents over the same issue the analysis used was proved wrong.

I don't think there was a proper risk analysis for the eventual mcas system.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Those could be some interesting documents.

--Einstein gave the same test to students every year. When asked why he would do something like that, "Because the answers had changed."

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

There was one for the original mcas but they didn't do one for the uprated system.

Also reading the wiki I hadn't realised that the screw jack was slipping due to the control force in both accidents.

"In February 2016, the EASA certified the MAX with the expectation that pilot procedures and training would clearly explain unusual situations in which the seldom used manual trim wheel would be required to trim the plane, i.e. adjust the angle of the nose; however, the original flight manual did not mention those situations.[82] The EASA certification document referred to simulations whereby the electric thumb switches were ineffective to properly trim the MAX under certain conditions. The EASA document said that after flight testing, because the thumb switches could not always control trim on their own, the FAA was concerned by whether the 737 MAX system complied with regulations.[83] The American Airlines flight manual contains a similar notice regarding the thumb switches but does not specify conditions where the manual wheel may be needed.[83]

Boeing's CEO Muilenburg, when asked about the non-disclosure of MCAS, cited the "runaway stabilizer trim" procedure as part of the training manual. He added that Boeing's bulletin pointed to that existing flight procedure. Boeing views the "runaway stabilizer trim" checklist as a memory item for pilots. Mike Sinnett, vice president and general manager for the Boeing New Mid-Market Airplane (NMA) since July 2019, repeatedly described the procedure as a "memory item".[84] However, some airlines view it as an item for the quick reference card.[85] The FAA issued a recommendation about memory items in an Advisory Circular, Standard Operating Procedures and Pilot Monitoring Duties for Flight Deck Crewmembers: "Memory items should be avoided whenever possible. If the procedure must include memory items, they should be clearly identified, emphasized in training, less than three items, and should not contain conditional decision steps."[86]

In November 2018, Boeing told airlines that MCAS could not be overcome by pulling back on the control column to stop a runaway trim as on previous generation 737s.[87] Nevertheless, confusion continued: the safety committee of a major U.S. airline misled its pilots by telling that the MCAS could be overcome by "applying opposite control-column input to activate the column cutout switches".[88] Former pilot and CBS aviation & safety expert Chesley Sullenberger testified, "The logic was that if MCAS activated, it had to be because it was needed, and pulling back on the control wheel shouldn't stop it."[89] In October, Sullenberger wrote, "These emergencies did not present as a classic runaway stabilizer problem, but initially as ambiguous unreliable airspeed and altitude situations, masking MCAS."[90]

In a legal complaint against Boeing, the Southwest Airlines Pilot Association states:[91]

An MCAS failure is not like a runaway stabilizer. A runaway stabilizer has continuous un-commanded movement of the tail, whereas MCAS is not continuous and pilots (theoretically) can counter the nose-down movement, after which MCAS would move the aircraft tail down again. Moreover, unlike runaway stabilizer, MCAS disables the control column response that 737 pilots have grown accustomed to and relied upon in earlier generations of 737 aircraft."

So it was already known it wasn't like a trim runaway in 2016 and the thumb trimming was ineffective

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

"Southwest Airlines Pilot Association" " A runaway stabilizer has continuous un-commanded movement of the tail"

Already dealt with. All trim runaway stops when the jack screw hits the stops, therefore there cannot ever be runaway because the movement is not continuous, per this definition.

"MCAS disables the control column response that 737 pilots have grown accustomed to "

That response is intermittent. As soon as force is relieved the trim will run again.

Anyway, it's a legal complaint, not an engineering or other assessment. It's goal is to convince uneducated people on a jury, not present truth.

"The EASA certification document referred to simulations whereby the electric thumb switches were ineffective to properly trim the MAX under certain conditions."

Always good to leave out what problem they are talking about.

"Also reading the wiki I hadn't realised that the screw jack was slipping due to the control force in both accidents."

What "wiki" claims the "screw jack was slipping"?

The wiki on ET-302 notes that, for a plane that had an Emergency AD, they thought a pilot with only 207 hours on type was thought a suitable choice.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

"These emergencies did not present as a classic runaway stabilizer problem, but initially as ambiguous unreliable airspeed and altitude situations"

In that case the pilots would set pitch and power. They did not. They also had a stick shaker, which they knew from the Emergency AD was a symptom that, combined with flap retraction, would cause nose-down trim requiring the cutout of the electric trim system.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

"Engineers Sylvain Alarie and Gilles Primeau"

They alone claim this. "In reference to the Ethiopian Airlines flight, Alarie noted that without receiving a command from the MCAS or the pilots, the jackscrew slipped, and then slipped again as the aircraft accelerated and dove" (slipped being a translation of the original French.)

Then that should be clear from the FDR, from which you should be able to point to the time stamps. But there won't be any proof that anything slipped because there isn't a monitor of the turning of the jackscrew motor, unless you are claiming the jackscrew threads sheared off completely.

The wiki took it from this article:

https://ici.radio-canada.ca/nouvelle/1382157/boein...

Quote:

And what Gilles Primeau wants is the implementation of the usual precautions put on Fly-by-wire aircraft, on which software batteries are active. For example, sensors and monitoring software that would have detected abnormal movements of the cylinder and could potentially have blocked them.

So, there wasn't anything to actually detect this movement.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

A bit more detail from that article:

" At the start of the flight, they managed to counter the MCAS. MCAS goes off again, they manage to counter it again, but in the end, it's not enough. There is a very clear change in regime. The horizontal stabilizer suddenly begins to unscrew, unscrew and put the plane into a dive , observes Sylvain Alarie."

It "unscrews" at the end because MCAS is driving the screw and the pilots allowed. It's not being back-driven. Which is why this observation wasn't part of either final report.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

ok fair enough on that one,

I wasn't going to go through 143 refs.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

No need to reaqd 143 refs - almost every statement in a Wikipedia page will have a reference; in this case the reference:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maneuvering_Characte... only referred to [97]

One of the complaints made about Wikipedia is that people can just write whatever they want; the counter to that is that unreferenced claims are either questioned or deleted.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Well the rest of it looks pretty reasonable in relation to the lack of revision process. And risk analysis.

I am happy now that people that do know what they are talking about are now in charge of the certification. Plus required training.

And it's nothing like the original certification.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

https://www.cnn.com/2024/03/23/business/united-air...

That's actually quiet a big deal for an airline and a very embarrassing restriction.

Quote (united pilot council member)

Members of Council 150,
We, your elected ALPA Representatives, feel it is our unfortunate responsibility to draw attention to several very concerning items. These issues have, thus far, been inadequately addressed. They pertain to the very core nature of our chosen profession. Simply put, our Safety Culture is under attack and enough is enough. We can not, in good conscience, continue to wait for our Flight Operations Management team to choose safety over anything else. While their words make for great PR, their actions have not matched those words and have directly led to the unfortunate circumstance in which we presently find ourselves. The “United Next” growth plan has seen a staggering 30% growth in just a few short years. However, that growth has come with strings attached. It has come hand in hand with an orchestrated erosion of our Safety Culture and our profession’s input into it. The FAA has similarly witnessed this and recently stepped in to take substantial action against United Airlines. We have lost the ability to approve new Line Check Pilots, issue type ratings, and have regulator-imposed restrictions on our ability to operate and grow our airline. We will also see an increased FAA presence in our daily operation. We are concerned of the damage already done, and this will be long lasting without an immediate and dramatic course reversal.
Who could’ve seen this coming?
Well, for starters, nearly every pilot. We are the ones who have “skin in the game” on every flight. We are the ones with a pulse on the operation. Our concerns have been continuously brushed aside in favor of activities such as Net Promoter Score modules in CQDL, Pilot Professional Development classes with an emphasis on Company feel-good slides, and APU policing. We’ve had these discussions on our flight decks nearly every trip, along with topics like “forced” Captain upgrades, and the continually decreasing flight experience levels of Captains, including instructors and Line Check Pilots.
Unfathomably, in the midst of our latest issues, a VP of a PR related department chastised one of our Captains via United’s “Bravo” recognition app for providing a safe and successful flight. Why? Because our Captain chose to use his time focusing on his crew, preflight duties and preparing for a safe flight, rather than coming out to the aisles to give his departure announcement. This is, in a nutshell, the root of the issues we face.
While Flight Ops Management has allegedly spoken to the individual to assure that doesn’t happen again, it is indicative of a much larger issue. This individual appeared to be less concerned about the safe operation of a flight, than whether the Captain was contributing to that flight’s NPS score, and likely this individual’s bonus.
When we were made aware of this occurrence, the indignation expressed amongst ourselves was loud and clear. Change is needed. It must come with safety as the primary, if not ONLY focus. Exampled by recent actions, Management seems inclined to continue down their path of removing pilot influence from Flight Operations. No longer do we have the SVP of Flight Ops position. Long serving Chief Pilots are leaving their offices and being replaced with Base Directors or whatever they call them now. Make no mistake, this is a prelude to further removing pilots from managing pilots. Human Resources and Labor Relations have never been as far reaching into pilot disciplinary events as they are today, sometimes bordering on harassment of our pilots.
Where does this leave us? Well, for starters, it leaves us as pilots under more scrutiny than ever before. We all need to reinvest in our Safety Culture and do so with vigor. Encourage each other on the flight decks to STOP when rushed, do your best to limit distractions. WHATEVER IT TAKES.
As professionals, we are great at what we do. None better. However, with new risks, comes a need for increased vigilance on each flight. 99.99% success is simply not good enough. Visitors on the flight deck before departure? Maybe ask the FAs to have them stop up afterwards if you’re not completely finished with your preflight duties. Self evaluate and ask if you’re truly ready to be an LCP or a new CA, or are you just chasing a paycheck? A few weeks at TK and OE will not make you ready if you aren’t already. Communicate with each other openly. Don’t skip probationary reports nor merely check the boxes with “great job”. Insist on good debriefings of appropriate items. These are key elements and tools to defend against risk and maintain a safe operation. Refocus on mentoring not just our new pilots, but each other. We are a half step away from the crisis that has been marching steadily towards us. Its now on our doorstep.
The members of your MEC are engaged with Flight Ops Management. We have provided suggestions for restoring our Safety Culture, though it ultimately remains to be seen if they are finally acted upon. The rapid execution of United Next and its promise of financial windfall has been blindly setting us up for this failure, despite our warnings to them which have previously been brushed aside. Hopefully, the FAA action will open some of their eyes and ears to the pitfalls within the changes they steadfastly pursue. Meanwhile, we all need to manage the new risk environment we operate in. The media, the FAA, and our passengers now have their attention focused upon us, the pilots of United Airlines. Every minor issue will be heavily scrutinized. Stay safe and stay out of the headlines.”

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

3DDAve,

You are persistent I'll give you that, but some things need comment here IMO.

"Already dealt with. All trim runaway stops when the jack screw hits the stops, therefore there cannot ever be runaway because the movement is not continuous, per this definition."

Come on, "Runaway" just means it keeps going without stopping, not that it continues to the end of the earth. Even a "runaway" train hits the end of the tracks at some point. The key factor is that at the stops, the stabiliser had grown over the different variations to be so much bigger that even full back movement of the elevator could not fight it and the plane simply kept on nose diving. To somehow say this wasn't trim runaway is not accurate IMHO..


"They also had a stick shaker, which they knew from the Emergency AD was a symptom that, combined with flap retraction, would cause nose-down trim requiring the cutout of the electric trim system."

The AD makes NO mention of flap retraction being a start point of MCAS activation. That only came out during the investigations as the details slowly emerged.

Quite why Boeing decided to make the STAB trim switches in series (essentially just duplicating the same function) compared to the previous dual switch where you could turn off the auto trim, but still keep the thumb switches alive I either can't remember or it was never explained. There went one of the Swiss cheese holes...

Remember - More details = better answers
Also: If you get a response it's polite to respond to it.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

(OP)
I guess this was inevitable...

Boeing CEO to step down in broad management shake-up as 737 Max crisis weighs on aerospace giant

https://www.cnbc.com/2024/03/25/boeing-ceo-board-c...

An excerpt from the above item:

Boeing CEO Dave Calhoun will step down at the end of 2024 in part of a broad management shake-up for the embattled aerospace giant.

Larry Kellner, chairman of the board, is also resigning and will not stand for reelection at Boeing’s annual meeting in May. He will be succeeded as chair by Steve Mollenkopf, who has been a Boeing director since 2020 and is a former CEO of Qualcomm. Mollenkopf will lead the board in picking a new CEO, Boeing said.

And Stan Deal, president and CEO of Boeing Commercial Airplanes, is leaving the company effective immediately. Moving into his job is Stephanie Pope, who recently became Boeing’s chief operating officer after previously running Boeing Global Services.

The departures come as airlines and regulators have been increasing calls for major changes at the company after a host of quality and manufacturing flaws on Boeing planes. Scrutiny intensified after a Jan. 5 accident, when a door plug blew out of a nearly new Boeing 737 Max 9 minutes into an Alaska Airlines
flight.


John R. Baker, P.E. (ret)
Irvine, CA
Siemens PLM:

The secret of life is not finding someone to live with
It's finding someone you can't live without

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

2
So they have another accountant as a replacement....

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Quote:

So they have another accountant as a replacement....
May we hope that this accountant will look at the ten years (or more) in the past, and the ten years (or more) in the future
rather than focusing on the next quarter share price and dividend.
I know.
I'm a dreamer.

--------------------
Ohm's law
Not just a good idea;
It's the LAW!

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Maybe the accountant will ask how come four bolts cost a few billion dollars...

Remember - More details = better answers
Also: If you get a response it's polite to respond to it.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

" "Runaway" just means it keeps going without stopping"

But it does stop. If it now means it keeps going but also stops then either it isn't runaway or there is a time limit. How great a time is defined for "runaway?"

"The AD makes NO mention of flap retraction being a start point of MCAS activation."

Sorry. That was part of the release of the Lion Air preliminary report, 120-150 mornings before they crashed. So it was information they knew, or should have known, or their Chief pilot knew or could have known, or their CAA knew, or could have known, were it not for the sins of greed and sloth.

I wondered in both incidents why a pilot, in a plane that is having what appears to be an aerodynamic problem of stalling that is stable and under control, would they decide to alter the aerodynamic configuration that is lower lift and unknown response.

"Quite why Boeing decided to make the STAB trim switches in series (essentially just duplicating the same function) compared to the previous dual switch where you could turn off the auto trim, but still keep the thumb switches alive I either can't remember or it was never explained. "

The explanation was that they did not want pilots to be diagnosing the failure rather than dealing with the symptoms. Since the trim switches 100% stopped the actions of MCAS during the use of the wheel trim that was not a problem.

What was a problem, aside from the ET-302 pilots never knowing what the word "neutral" meant, was they ignored the part that said "stay in the CUTOUT position for the remainder of the flight."

Recall the CUTOUT wasn't used on the Lion Air crash aircraft, so that meant nothing. On the ET-302 crash aircraft they re-enabled trim but only test that the electric trim worked before then trying to re-enable the autopilot which they were trained to disable when there was a stall warning, which was continuous on that flight.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

They want to get rid flaps so they don't over speed them.

It can be quite a narrow window between stall and over speed with slats out.

The trim wheel motion on a 737 is pretty constant. It staying still for 3 seconds would be more noticeable than it moving for 5-10 seconds.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

"They want to get rid flaps so they don't over speed them."

This is accomplished by - setting pitch and power. Didn't ET-302 over-speed the plane anyway? Like nearly double the normal speed for that altitude?

What is noticeable is when the trim force on the wheel continues to go up and up and up and up and up and the pilots are like, "I have big biceps and no thumb."

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Apart from the fact that it takes 15 seconds for the power to come off and if your nose is below 5 Deg nose up you will through flap limit in under 5 seconds.

I would be surprised if they didn't.

But can't remember the flow or what configuration they were in.

But the after departure clean up is pretty automatic. So to forget to break that flow is an unsurprisingly human factor mistake.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

BOEING CEO, COB AND COMMERCIAL VP LEAVING BY EOYr

--Einstein gave the same test to students every year. When asked why he would do something like that, "Because the answers had changed."

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Yes, yes. With a stick shaker rattling and a stall horn blaring, the ability to just shut those out and act as if nothing is going on is the sign of a well seasoned professional.

Oh, look, what the NTSB mentions about the flaps:

Quote:

The NTSB acknowledges that information about the flap position required for
MCAS to activate did not appear in Boeing’s FCOM bulletin and the Federal Aviation
Administration’s airworthiness directive in response to the Lion Air flight 610
accident. However, Boeing provided that information in a multi-operator
message (MOM-MOM-18-0664-01B), which was sent to all “737NG/MAX Customers,
Regional Directors, Regional Managers and Boeing Field Service Bases” on
November 10, 2018
(after the Lion Air accident but before the Ethiopian Airlines
accident). Although the EAIB appended Boeing’s multi-operator message to the final
report, the EAIB failed to mention that the flaps information appeared in that
document; thus, this finding is misleading.
https://www.ntsb.gov/investigations/Documents/Resp...

Quote:

We propose that the probable cause in the final report present the following causal factors to fully reflect the
circumstances of this accident:
• uncommanded airplane-nose-down inputs from the MCAS due to erroneous AOA values and
• the flight crew’s inadequate use of manual electric trim and management of thrust to maintain airplane
control.
In addition, we propose that the following contributing factors be included:
• the operator’s failure to ensure that its flight crews were prepared to properly respond to uncommanded
stabilizer trim movement in the manner outlined in Boeing’s flight crew operating manual (FCOM)
bulletin and the FAA’s emergency airworthiness directive (AD) (both issued 4 months before the
accident) and
• the airplane’s impact with a foreign object, which damaged the AOA sensor and caused the erroneous
AOA values.
https://www.ntsb.gov/investigations/Documents/US%2...

The EAIB really didn't want any other answers. Example:

Quote:

Further, the draft report states that, because the EAIB did not participate in the testing in person,
it cannot comment on the observations. However, Collins invited the EAIB multiple times to
participate in the simulation testing and live demonstration of the testing, but the EAIB did not
accept these invitations.

Quote:

2.3 The EAIB draft report incorrectly states (in several locations) that the MCAS made control of the airplane
“impossible” but neglects to state that, if the crew had manually reduced thrust and appropriately used
the manual electric trim, the airplane would have remained controllable despite uncommanded MCAS
input.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Everyone please breathe, and then do it a few more times.

https://xkcd.com/386/

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Even with a perfectly trained crew, none of this makes me feel any better. Somebody comes to me and says, 5 seconds to make life or death decisions. I say, Get out of my office.

--Einstein gave the same test to students every year. When asked why he would do something like that, "Because the answers had changed."

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

It's not 5 seconds to life or death. There are five seconds to reach for a switch that is already in place before anything else can happen, and even 7-8 seconds isn't enough to be a threat. What is a threat is to let multiple failures to act build up. Or treating the study material as if it is for a final one will never take.

If you are nervous about that time, consider what happens on a crowded road if you close your eyes for 5 seconds while driving. For the USA types, on the highway, that is more than the length of a football field (the ovoid version, not the black and white sphere) that will be covered.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Maybe if the pilots had experienced a simulated MCAS attack in a sim, they would have been better prepared.
Wait, they couldn't do that.
Boeing misled the FAA so as to intentionally and specifically avoid sim training.
Yes, the pilots made mistakes.
That is a not unexpected outcome of inadequate training.
How much responsibility falls on the pilots and how much on Boeing?
After the first crash, Boeing issued an AD.
After the second crash, the type was grounded for 20 months.
I suggest that the pilot's responsibility compared to Boeing's responsibility is in the ratio of an AD, versus a 20 month grounding of a fleet.
Pilots; BAD.
Boeing; BADDER.

--------------------
Ohm's law
Not just a good idea;
It's the LAW!

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Low bar design. Low bar fab. Low bar patch.
Oh, that's 3 Strikes.

--Einstein gave the same test to students every year. When asked why he would do something like that, "Because the answers had changed."

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Not worried - NTSB agrees with me. The rest I've already given evidence to counter.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Well thankfully it's all history now they have changed the system so it can't happen again. Not relying on pilot perfection.


And the uncertified variants are getting looked at properly. Hence them not getting certified any time soon. Some think it may never get certified.

And the type is now dead thankfully.


Btw there is a hard core of experienced 737 pilots in Europe who also have the same view it's purely crew and the grounding should never have happened. 3 of which I know personally failed the A220 type rating in the LHS and have left to fly in Africa.

Next big question is how badly this lack of aircraft is going to effect the US airlines.

Airbus doesn't seem to be that interested in increasing the production in the USA.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

That particular source can't, but the remaining causes laid out by the NTSB stand loud and clear.

So, experienced 737 pilots have trouble changing to an entirely different platform? Shocked.

Not mentioning what the trouble was is just the icing on that particular cake. Was it the transition from a platform that allowed control with either hand in either seat to one in which the less dominant hand might be the only one to use, sometimes?

How does the other direction go?

"Airbus To Correct A220 Autothrottle Imperfection
Thierry Dubois September 08, 2023

LYON—Airbus is working on improving the A220’s autothrottle design, after several reports of crew errors that could have led to a tail strike or more serious incidents.

The aircraft’s autopilot will be modified, too. In the meantime, procedures are temporarily added in the takeoff phase."

Huh. I thought Airbus didn't skimp. Guess that was wrong. And Airbus doesn't depend on pilots recalling procedures. Also wrong. What is the world coming to?

Here's the link: https://aviationweek.com/special-topics/crossover-...

Nearly put it into the ground from pilots mishandling the plane following a failure of the A220 much-vaunted automation.

Quote:

Such a situation can be avoided by design, the airframer’s engineers have determined. To prevent autopilot engagement during the takeoff roll, the Primary Flight Control Computer will be upgraded to inhibit autopilot engagement until six seconds after liftoff. The improvement will be introduced in the second quarter of 2024.

As for the autothrottle, its disconnect logic is being updated. The issues that caused it to disconnect during the takeoff roll will be addressed, Airbus says, falling short of giving a time frame.

That's how many months of risking passenger lives when Airbus should ground the plane? And no idea on how long to fix the underlying problem.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

I have posted about the A220 AT issue.

There is a software fix in Q3 this year I think.

Again it's pilot error which causes it.

Currently if it comes out before 60knts you abandon the takeoff. Once thrust hold is active at about 70 knts you continue. And it's a mandatory item every SIM check. You engage it above 400 again with the AP in.

The fix will make it impossible for the AP to be engage below 400ft rad alt.

I will admit the thrust system is quite sensitive to rates of movement of the levers. To fast or a shove against the servo once it's grabbed it and it thinks it's a system fault.

In the air if you grab them and haul back to reduce thrust which doesn't actually speed up the power coming off it thinks it's control fault and you get a double automatic engine shut down as soon as you touch down. Again it's linked to previous aircraft type methods.

Personally I gently push forward at less than the speed the servo increases at, It then takes it away from your hand and zero issues.

It's mainly an issue with previous other type pilots that getting it to grab was more agricultural in engagement. See the 777 crash in Dubai. If you don't ram it forward it just ends up sitting there at about 80% N1.



RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Oh my - Embraer as well, Nov. 6, 2019:

https://aviationweek.com/business-aviation/safety-...

The trim switch was installed upside down so when the pilot in command went to pitch forward, it pitched back. He kept trimming and the plane got worse. The plane had been checked multiple times for pitch trim problems, eventually traced to a safety wire pigtail impinging on the harness causing a short circuit.

Should there be a "safety wire short circuit with trim switch installed upside down training" or would it rather be the pilot exercise some CRM and ask, as he eventually did, for the co-pilot to try his side?

On top of which, before the flight "The switch was reinstalled and placarded as inoperative."

Surely EICAS would save the day? Not if pilots don't bother reading it:

Quote:

Safety investigators discovered that the Engine Indicating and Crew Alerting System (EICAS) provided a “PITCH TRIM SW1 FAIL” advisory message on the morning of this incident.

Did Embraer ground all the aircraft to redesign the switch so it could not be installed upside down? That doesn't appear to be the case. The airline did inspect and found 9 other planes with similar impingement and cutting of insulation. Was there a worldwide stop to examine all switches to ensure they could not be installed in the reverse direction? Was there a grounding to check all Embraer aircraft wiring to ensure this and every other location were not being cut by the same carelessly applied safety wire? Nope.

EICAS - failed. Placard - failed. Maintainers - failed. Pilot - failed. Aircraft manufacturing - failed. Aircraft QA failed. Aircraft designers - failed.

I bet we could blame the CEO of Embraer if this had killed "important" people for not being focused on safety. After all, what pilot hasn't ignored EICAS and a placard? There is even a separate cutout for each pilot's trim switch that could have been set to cutout at the gate to fully inop the switch.

What is peculiar is MCAS is mentioned in part 3 without mentioning that CUTOUT has been there for just such reasons for decades. Yeah, the first line on NG and Classic is to pull back. The second line didn't cease to exist; if pull back failed, use cutout.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

"I have posted about the A220 AT issue" Must have missed the thread for that.

Have you talked about the rotten to the core software development or the profit depraved management of Airbus?
It cannot be pilot error that causes it. It's only failed design.

Congrats on flying A220s after all the time in the Dash 8. What else are you qualified for?

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Nothing but the A220 these days.

EASA (JAR at the time) deemed your type ratings dead after 3 years. And if you wanted to fly them again it was a new type rating.

Single engine piston was an abridged ppl course.

The accident stats showed pilots jumping back into a type, carried a collosal risk.

Don't have a clue what the rest of the world has done on the subject.

I wouldn't like to fly the Jetstream again without doing it's system theory or sim again. And I flew that for 15 years.

I didn't do that much in the Q400 2500 hours which I will have more than on the A220 end of next month flying it since COVID started.

Big difference is number of approaches. Jetstream average flight length was 45mins, Q400 1 hour. A220 it's 2:50 min.

Your modern straight to jet pilot has a fraction of the takeoffs and landings that an ex turboprop pilot has.

I have 11.5k hours total.

In that time I have seen communication and human factors be the cause of over 99% of issues and incidents where I have worked. If you leave a hole open for pilots to screw it up they will do it.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

No don't know much to be honest about real Airbuses. But know the none moving power leavers needed fixed in the 90's.

The pilots that have flown them say the A220 and the biz jets that use the same system stand far ahead of it and it's logic.

But it will be the same stagnation issue Boeing has no bonuses for that sort of progress.

Honeywell are playing a similar game with the A220 there is a firewall penalty point. There have been issues since the A220 release date which haven't been fixed. We expect them only to be actually be fixed when it starts costing them money

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Just as an example of pilot screw up.


I used to work for this company and know the captain. He was a trainer and examiner. And also previously he was a test pilot for BAe for the aircraft type.


I always deice if there is a hint of frost on the flight surfaces and have the cowl anti ice on below 5 degs on the A220.

The clean aircraft of ice has been known about since WW2

It's mandatory winter ops training every year... That pilot even instructed my first winter ops course as a new FO on my first type...

I suspect it was the use of type 4 previously with no cleaning afterwards. But a squirt with type 1 as was indicated by wx would have warmed it up.





RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Do you ever fly anywhere Dave?

You must be the most nervous passenger alive given that all aircraft are badly designed, pilots don't know how to fly planes with faults or deal with incidents and no one is listening to you....

The Max should never have been certified as essentially the same aircraft as the NG needing only the famous one hour I pad training (would other tablets work)? It never was and isn't now. Short cut established training and safety systems and crashes will happen.

Remember - More details = better answers
Also: If you get a response it's polite to respond to it.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

I find the endless smug hypocrisy to be annoying, that every other maker but Boeing is unblemished when the fact is they are all crap.

There was no training that can fix bad piloting.

As said before, bring a fact, not an emotional supposition, if there is a discussion to be had. Care to comment on

"safety wire short circuit with trim switch installed upside down training"

because that appears to not have been a considered requirement. Why wasn't that in the simulators?

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

I'm not nervous as long as I stay off European based A220s.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Well with the amount of dirty nonsense that Boeing has tried to pull off over the years it's no wonder some are getting pay back enjoying this.

Personally I am not because the world needs two large aircraft OEMs at least.

But the original design was utter stupidity.

It's not just the A220 you need to worry about...

There 30-40 pilots trained by me flying the line and 2 in the USA in a variety of aircraft types.







RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

"Boeing" isn't suffering, no matter how gleeful anyone gets. The people who made the decisions are long since retired. They aren't suffering. The only people who are suffering either had nothing to do with it or have no influence over it.

Enjoyment in the face of that is sadistic.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

I agree completely.

I suspect thought they are not all retired.

The nonsense with the A220 which spectacularly back fired was less than 10 years ago.

The ones from the 90's will mostly be gone

I suspect alot of people don't actually realise the repercussions from the max. If it does take another 5 years plus to get the 10 through don't be suprised

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

They are not all retired. Calhoun was on the board when all the decisions were made. And you misread me entirely. I'm not at all gleeful about Boeing's troubles. I'm totally disgusted. It was a pride of America and now its sh!t and its not alone. Who else here has a Boeing cap? I'm embarrased to ware it, but still haven't burnt it. What the hell still works in the good ole USA anyway. But I have hope. The sooner their current management packs up and gets the hell out, the better. Lord only knows why they have to EOY. Maybe it looks too bad, if it can look any worse, if they take the redeye back to wherever it was they came from. And, if you want to fly, best not build rocks and paint them silver.

--Einstein gave the same test to students every year. When asked why he would do something like that, "Because the answers had changed."

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

No comments on the new CEO? A BA in accounting and leader of the Employee Resource Group, a diversity and equity program...

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

The bad decisions were about the AoA system and the SMYD (stall management, yaw damper) that reported inaccurate AoA readings and made the false stall warning. That was decided multiple decades ago and approved by the FAA and all using airlines. The all agreed that pilots depending on that potentially false information was acceptable.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

70 years ago conceptually. Do we still build new cars to the same standards as 60 years ago?

Can a 21 year old today jump into a 1970's car and be expected to deal with it as his great grandad could?.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Quote (tug)

No comments on the new CEO?

Its problems are base level technical. She is as much use as an engineer dealing with human factors and human physiology reaction to over load.

But she is the CEO of Boeing Commercial Airplanes, a DIVISION of Boeing. Still think though they should go back to technical leadership of all technical divisions.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Jumping into any plane - obviously not. But, right or wrong, they need to be capable of flying that plane type or else they shouldn't be in the cockpit.

The bad on Boeings part is the decision to shelf the development of a new plane to replace the 737 back around 2010.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

its capacity and flexibility in a pilot. Both of which require exposure to similar "shit"

And I fully agree "they need to be capable of flying that plane type"

But if the training requirements/experience base is vastly more than other types its dead...

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

The training was the existing stabilizer runaway training. Exactly the same. If anyone is hurt that no one explained what "runaway" meant, they still haven't. Deal with it.

As mentioned - no one complained there wasn't "safety wire short circuit with trim switch installed upside down training." That was also a case where the trim failure was intermittent, but that was because the pilot using the trim switch that was placarded out and the EICAS reported a problem, was doing so intermittently, yet it appeared to that pilot that the stabilizer was out of control.

What every pilot needs is startle-goat training. And the FCOM needs to be written in "Explain like I'm five-years old" formatting.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Some of us they do try and do startled goat training.

The fo it's done by killing the captain. And making them deal with something single crew.

And yes the manuals need to be pretty simply worded and written in an international basic English method.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

I think a skilled instructor should give us engineers a write-up of how "stabilizer runaway" should be done.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

more than half the issue is realising what's going on.

oh and been reading about the ejet trim issue.

That does appear to be a mess by the certification authorities.

Both Jetstream and Q400 used trim tabs not whole tail elevator driven pitch changes for trimming. I never had one flying either and thinking about it I can only remember twice doing trim runaway in the sim on both. And the forces were low enough you could just manually fly it and manually trim it. And no reports of it occurring on either. The q400 it used to beep at you if the motor was running more than a couple of seconds.

I really have zero clue about the 737 QRH. I know its an absolute brick of a book. The trim runaway memory item on the MAX is the same as the one issued in 1967 on the original 737.

Sitting on the jump seats and an occasional job interview sim there is a hellava lot going on constantly in a 737 on departure all the way up to cruise.

A220 not a lot happens even flying it manually, gear up. 400ft the autopilot can go in. If not you just accelerate, a blue bug is on your speed tape showing you the speed the plane is trimmed to. You just adjust it as you go faster, clean up the flaps and then climb away. We don't have a manual trim wheel.

If the computers are out you don't get a blue bug, but the stick is neutral when at trim speed and you need constant input if not. But as everything is powered surfaces wise there is no requirement to brute force anything. The only force is the spring on the stick.



RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

"The training was the existing stabilizer runaway training." That was one of the key issues - the runaway stabiliser in previous versions of the 737 could be halted by pulling back on the control column to stop the stabiliser movement. Also you could disable the trim system commands separately from the trim switches. In MCAS it didn't work like that and nowhere in the emergency AD does it tell you that regardless of what you do with the control column, the trim keeps moving unless you hit the cut out switches. It doesn't tell the pilots that moving the trim buttons is the ONLY way to stop the system moving the trim.

For classic runaway trim the trim would start to move as soon as you released pressure on the control column. MCAs worked differently. It commanded nose down trim for up to 10 seconds. That's a hell of along time while the pilots are suddenly confronted with an airplane heading for the brown stuff and desperately pulling back on the control column. Nor does it say that even if you trim it back using the trim buttons and get level flight, you think it's all going well and 5 seconds later it nose dives again. Again not written into the emergency AD.

All this was designed to happen.

The upside down switch wasn't - that is poor QA and poor CRM to somehow use something marked an inoperative. Massively different.

Remember - More details = better answers
Also: If you get a response it's polite to respond to it.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

"That was one of the key issues - the runaway stabiliser in previous versions of the 737 could be halted by pulling back on the control column to stop the stabiliser movement."

That was step 1. If that failed, as it did, there was step 2. No one seems to remember there was step 2.

"For classic runaway trim the trim would start to move as soon as you released pressure on the control column."

Since pulling the column did not stop the movement, then using "start to move as you release pressure" has nothing to do with diagnosing the problem, but the requirement is that if it did not stop one was to trim to neutral and use the CUTOUT switch.

The guy with 154 hours on type was not so ingrained as to have been taken by surprise. The captain certainly had not had so many stabilizer runaway events as to only recall step 1.

"All this was designed to happen."

No, it wasn't. It was never "designed" to operate with an invalid AoA sensor that was given the OK signal by the SMYD. This is called "oversight" or "mistake."

The`10 second stop was a fail-safe. It was assumed that the pilot would return the plane to a lower AoA and keep it there. 5 seconds is following the pilot input to the trim system.

"The upside down switch wasn't - that is poor QA and poor CRM to somehow use something marked an inoperative. Massively different."

Continuing to confuse cause with symptom and response. It doesn't matter what the cause was; deal with the symptom. The symptom was stabilizer trim changing and those calling for some specific cause to be addressed miss the point that the cause is immaterial to the pilot response. Want "MCAS training"? Require training for every possible cause; maintenance f'up is a pretty common. By-design the switch was allowed to be installed upside down. By design the maintenance procedure did not use the related trim cutout.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Doesn't the DOT do inspections of airplanes? Don't the mechanics do inspections? So why would this be a Boeing issue and no one else?
Where is the head of the DOT on the values there inspectors bring?

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Crankie where i am they can do but tend not to because they don't have anyone licensed to take panels off and a few other things. You need approval via the airlines QA system to document things so its not just the case of going in and having a look and leaving it how you found it. It needs to be signed off that it is and the DOT don't have those approvals.

Yes technicians/mechanics do inspections, there is daily checks, weekly checks etc etc all documented by approved individuals.

The findings are passed to the regulators via the QA system, anything major and a mandatory occurrence report needs to be generated. And to the OEM's but that side of things I have no clue about.

Aircraft these days speak to the OEM's digitally. And its not unheard of for phone call from Canada for us on the A220 to the continuing airworthiness maint officer (CAMO) to occur and the plane is grounded next time it comes back to base.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

I don't think they are having anything special with the fleet size that they have.

Its just every little event is in the media especially if its a Boeing.

It does seem to happen in groups of stuff in most company's you can go for weeks with zero Aircraft on Ground and then there is three or four of them go on the same day.

And I know this sounds very unscientific and none engineering.... I tell ya full moon is a time of incidents both pax related and equipment.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Is it worth having another thread on general issues?

Seems things are moving away from 737 singular issues.


Oh and the human performance characteristics from the 50's which have been used by Boeing will be officially out the door in 6-12 months apparently. According to EASA real pilot types that are guinea pigs forming the new ones. They also have groups from the other cultural groups and world wide training areas including FAA.

30 seconds recognition seems to be banded about min. With 60 seconds the norm without pilot input to rectify. There are discussions about pilot lockouts on some features. And also the use of AI

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Quote (Alistair Heaton)

… There are discussions about pilot lockouts on some features. And also the use of AI

I'm sorry, Dave. I'm afraid I can't do that.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Yes, but its already here to be honest.

In the old days we used to have switches we could turn off the engine temperature and torque limitations and decide to make it the last use of them.

Only used it once on the jetstream. Turned out that you can run garretts at 108% torque with no effect...

These days the FADEC is in control of all that with no override. I am not bothered by that though.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

this is the reason for the pilot testing

Quote (NTSB)

Consistent with this philosophy, the NTSB notes that FAA certification guidance in
AC 25.1309-1A that allows manufacturers to assume pilots will respond to failure conditions
appropriately is based, in part, upon the applicant showing that the systems, controls, and
associated monitoring and warnings are designed to minimize crew errors, which could create
additional hazards.16 While Boeing considered the possibility of uncommanded MCAS operation
as part of its functional hazard assessment, it did not evaluate all the potential alerts and indications
that could accompany a failure that also resulted in uncommanded MCAS operation. Therefore,
neither Boeing’s system safety assessment nor its simulator tests evaluated how the combined
effect of alerts and indications might impact pilots’ recognition of which procedure(s) to prioritize
in responding to an unintended MCAS operation caused by an erroneous AOA input.17 The NTSB
is concerned that, if manufacturers assume correct pilot response without comprehensively
examining all possible flight deck alerts and indications that may occur for system and component
failures that contribute to a given hazard, the hazard classification and resulting system design
(including alerts and indications), procedural, and/or training mitigations may not adequately
consider and account for the potential for pilots to take actions that are inconsistent with
manufacturer assumptions.

Thus, the NTSB concludes that the assumptions that Boeing used in its functional hazard
assessment of uncommanded MCAS function for the 737 MAX did not adequately consider and
account for the impact that multiple flight deck alerts and indications could have on pilots’
responses to the hazard. Therefore, the NTSB recommends that the FAA require that Boeing
(1) ensure that system safety assessments for the 737 MAX in which it assumed immediate and
appropriate pilot corrective actions in response to uncommanded flight control inputs, from
systems such as MCAS, consider the effect of all possible flight deck alerts and indications on
pilot recognition and response; and (2) incorporate design enhancements (including flight deck
alerts and indications), pilot procedures, and/or training requirements, where needed, to minimize
the potential for and safety impact of pilot actions that are inconsistent with manufacturer
assumptions.

Further, because FAA guidance allows such assumptions to be made in transport-category
airplane certification analyses without providing applicants with clear direction concerning the
consideration of multiple flight deck alerts and indications in evaluating pilot recognition and
response, the NTSB is concerned that similar assumptions and procedures for their validation may
have also been used in the development of flight control system safety assessments for other
airplanes. Therefore, the NTSB recommends that the FAA require that for all other
US type-certificated transport-category airplanes, manufacturers (1) ensure that system safety
assessments for which they assumed immediate and appropriate pilot corrective actions in
response to uncommanded flight control inputs consider the effect of all possible flight deck alerts
and indications on pilot recognition and response; and (2) incorporate design enhancements
(including flight deck alerts and indications), pilot procedures, and/or training requirements, where
needed, to minimize the potential for and safety impact of pilot actions that are inconsistent with
manufacturer assumptions.

Seems there is a load of stuff on Pprune as well basically saying any talk of it not being completely pilot error for the second one is just a political attack on the USA trying to destroy Boeing,

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

https://www.theguardian.com/business/article/2024/...

At this rate people will start falling down stairs or out of windows in high rise buildings....

Remember - More details = better answers
Also: If you get a response it's polite to respond to it.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Just reading an industry essay which is looking at the quality issues in spirit.

It was pointed out that airbus has quite alot of production at spirit but yet doesn't seem to be having QA issues with what's delivered.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Quote (It was pointed out that airbus has quite alot of production at spirit but yet doesn't seem to be having QA issues with what's delivered.)


It might depend on what their QA/QC agreement with Spirit may have been...

-----*****-----
So strange to see the singularity approaching while the entire planet is rapidly turning into a hellscape. -John Coates

-Dik

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

There is major talk about the production in Northern Ireland and a few others places which isn't involved with Boeing.

The majority view is that Boeing would play silly games if they had control of it.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Part of the quality difference may be that Airbus hasn’t pushed their suppliers for cost reductions as hard as Boeing did with their “Partnering for Success” program meaning lets screw them over on price while we babble on about “partnerships” BS.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

That Spirit accepted the conditions is a problem. Can't push what won't move.

For a while my wife was in procurement and got pressure to get a supplier to reduce prices in view of a competitor. The supplier said thanks, but no, and to feel free to go with the competitor. So they did. In a year of getting garbage products and garbage performance and garbage product support, they came back to the original supplier who kept the same price he had before, same service he had before. He said he hadn't been worried in the slightest as he knew the trouble the other company was to deal with and now the org my wife procured for did too - and that was worth it.

I figure there were bonuses on the Spirit books for meeting cost goals whether Boeing was involved or not.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

The Belfast plant the discussions are centring around virtually nil investment since it was bought from Bombardier.

And Airbus wanting money to take it onboard. Which I presume will mean eventually they will be given it. There is a load of pension debts as well and also huge shutting down costs if it goes that far 4000 employees plus site sterilisation back to nature.

You might wonder why I have an interest in that plant. I know 3 people that work there but not closely. Don't have any inside gossip.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Alistair - isn't that the old Shorts Brothers plant? And didn't it get sold to Spirit when Bombardier had to be rescued by Airbus?

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

yes it is, I believe. Although the timing of the sale I have no clue about.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

https://www.theguardian.com/business/2019/oct/31/b...

Found this. Didn't realise it was a recent purchase by spirit.

Maybe why the QA issues haven't formed yet. Although it will be an EASA regulated site

Think the C series was sold in 2017-2018.

The site though has collosal historical issues if it ever gets change of use. Wouldn't be surprised if there is a load of WW2 munitions buried under it.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

(OP)
This may not end well...

Boeing may be prosecuted after breaking safety agreement that prevented criminal charges for 737 crashes, US DOJ says

https://www.cnn.com/2024/05/14/business/boeing-jus...

An excerpt from the above item:

The US Justice Department on Tuesday notified Boeing that it breached terms of its 2021 agreement in which the company avoided criminal charges for two fatal 737 Max crashes.

After a series of safety missteps earlier this year, including a door plug that blew off an Alaska Airlines flight shortly after takeoff in January, the Department of Justice said Boeing is now subject to criminal prosecution.

“For failing to fulfill completely the terms of and obligations under the [deferred prosecution agreement], Boeing is subject to prosecution by the United States for any federal criminal violation of which the United States has knowledge,” the Justice Department said in a letter to US District Judge Reed O’Connor in Fort Worth, Texas, who oversaw the prior agreement.

John R. Baker, P.E. (ret)
Irvine, CA
Siemens PLM:

The secret of life is not finding someone to live with
It's finding someone you can't live without

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Sounds like a bunch of hot air. If you want to make a difference you must prosecute the individuals involved.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

I was just following orders.
The workers followed the line managers' orders.
The line managers followed the senior managers' orders.
Senior management was directed by the CEO.
The CEO followed direction from the board of directors.
The board of directors followed the owners wishes; profit at any cost.
So if the ultimate responsibility falls back on the owners, how do you punish the owners?
Charge and fine the company and hit the owners in the pocket book.
Noting that many of the owners may be large groups such as pension funds and mutual funds, it will be an incentive to the individuals and groups to be more careful in their choices and expectations of fund managers.

--------------------
Ohm's law
Not just a good idea;
It's the LAW!

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

It's interesting in the Dali grounding, many complain about the prehistoric rules used by the maritime industry such as general average. However, it's rare for an individual to put cargo on a ship. It's usually large logistics companies that make the arrangements. With general average and shared responsibility it puts some burden on the logistics organizations to verify the quality of the shippers they are utilizing. The logistics companies that have to share the cost of a loss under general average are a lot like pension and mutual funds that have to share the losses from bad corporate policy.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

You won't make a difference going for the technical individuals.

You need to be able to go for the bonuses and individuals that set the policy who are almost impossible to prosecute. They have things set up so anything gets pushed to the relatively low paid technical staff.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

I've said in the past that I say things to be controversial but when you go after bonuses of the shareholders you're not really doing any damage. The shareholders can live without one or two bonuses. If you go after the people physically doing the shoddy work, that will be a career ender for them. It will make a strong deterrence against others performing the same shotty work for their benevolent leaders.

This works quite well in smaller industries. Our operators' careers are on the line if there is a failure that causes an accident (See MV Dali). It's not that they'll be fired, they lose their government issued license to operate so they can't even go elsewhere. If they feel there is an issue they will sure as hell tell us they're not operating that vessel until the problem is resolved.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Most of these QA issues they are having are not being performed by licensed individuals.

The old Jetstream built in Prestwick Scotland was basically wired by all the local TV repairers when production started.

The licensed side of things becomes more defined and aggressive when the aircraft is handed over and starts operating. Before that the OEM QA system is meant to track it all.

Its not the shareholder bonuses they should be going after its the management and financial controller bonuses.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Going after bonuses isn't sufficiently damaging... Give them the bonus is they succeed but take away more than the bonus if they fail. This will make the world much more conservative.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

that's the thing they haven't succeeded in real life, but on paper they have.

They need to recover all the bonuses from the start of this fiasco.

4 billion it has cost Boeing in the 1st quarter this year.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

And the shareholders can afford that. This is why you need to go after the parties that can't. Someone, other than the shareholders, made the actual decision to look the other way or pencil whip paperwork. The shareholders didn't tell someone to do that. Someone in a lower management position did the deed for their own self-protection or advancement.

Remember, shareholders are usually completely disconnected from their investments and that's why we despise them so much. They make money off our decisions with little to no real input.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

The financial types that have been driving the behaviour are the ones I am suggesting the bonuses should be recovered from and taken through a legal process.

In fact they should be licensed to be able to operated in safety critical industries. Not just a MBA and start making bonuses.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Is it illegal for a shareholder to go to a project manager and ask them to reduce costs by whatever means necessary? No.

Is it illegal for a project manager to falsify records in order to reduce costs? Yes.

The problem with companies like Boeing is that they pay their engineers well enough that the engineers are willing to take that risk for fear of losing their high paying job.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

(OP)
So if you paid them less, they would be more careful...

John R. Baker, P.E. (ret)
Irvine, CA
Siemens PLM:

The secret of life is not finding someone to live with
It's finding someone you can't live without

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

It's a double-edged sword. Need to pay highly enough to attract high quality engineers, but the high pay also attracts imposters.

See most green energy projects for examples. Most of these projects fail to pass even the most basic scrutiny yet engineers are more than happy to participate because it pays well.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

(OP)
Our oldest son works for a company which has a reputation for paying very high salaries to its best people, because the owner (the company, despite being one of the largest in the hospitality industry, is NOT a publicly-traded company) believes in keeping employees who contribute the most to success of the company and the best way to do that is to pay them so much money that they'll never feel like they have to go somewhere else to make more money. He admits that it sometimes locks you into a bad situation, like the crap that he had to take for years from his immediate boss. However, he retired at the end of last year and his new direct boss is much easier to work with, so he's glad that he stuck it out.

John R. Baker, P.E. (ret)
Irvine, CA
Siemens PLM:

The secret of life is not finding someone to live with
It's finding someone you can't live without

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

John,
Would you mind my quoting that post in the Language/grammar skills forum as an example of one of my pet peeves ?
A.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

(OP)
In what context? That being said, if it helps you make a point and it's not done in a denigrating or demeaning manner, I guess it's OK. I'll be watching for how you use it.

John R. Baker, P.E. (ret)
Irvine, CA
Siemens PLM:

The secret of life is not finding someone to live with
It's finding someone you can't live without

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

I'm going to guess it has something to do with changing antecedents...

When one this sentence into the German to translate wanted, would one the fact exploit, that the word order and the punctuation already with the German conventions agree.

-- Douglas Hofstadter, Jan 1982

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

(OP)
I think I see now what zeusfaber spotted, and if that's it, yea, I got a bit sloppy in how I was referring to different individuals.

John R. Baker, P.E. (ret)
Irvine, CA
Siemens PLM:

The secret of life is not finding someone to live with
It's finding someone you can't live without

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Post is up now. Let me know if you're not comfortable with it.

A.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

(OP)
Yep, that's what I thought you'd noticed winky smile

John R. Baker, P.E. (ret)
Irvine, CA
Siemens PLM:

The secret of life is not finding someone to live with
It's finding someone you can't live without

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Quote (So if you paid them less, they would be more careful...)


So you can pay them less and less, for more and more until pretty soon they will do everything for absolutely nothing...

-----*****-----
So strange to see the singularity approaching while the entire planet is rapidly turning into a hellscape. -John Coates

-Dik

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Just don't let MBAs make decisions about anything important...

When one this sentence into the German to translate wanted, would one the fact exploit, that the word order and the punctuation already with the German conventions agree.

-- Douglas Hofstadter, Jan 1982

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Maybe, but saying no to MBAs is not how engineers get to higher paying positions.

Unless the MBA commanded an engineer to violate their ethical duties, any ethical violations are on the engineer.

I guess one could argue that MBA's are bullies? How do they have so much power over us?

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Don't forget to recognize often the MBAs also have engineering degrees. To cloak the malfeasance at Boeing/Spirit with a blanket statement of 'evil MBAs' or 'accountants' or 'bean-counters' is ignoring just having an engineering degree does not make one immune to the lure of financial gain or status or power. Certainly, engineers are often more analytical than average but the same skill/talent for engineering also allows for an understanding of possible areas for exploitation of confidence and safeguards.


]

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Actually, I just found out Dennis Muilenburg does not have an MBA from Kettering even though they name-drop him in their pitch. Regardless, I stand by my assessment that being an engineer does not make one immune to making decisions based on finances that may be counter to the goals of good engineering.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Jack Welch of GE, (BsE, PhD, Chemical Eng.) has a checkered legacy for how he mixed business decisions with engineering goals. His portfolio simplification strategy was great for GE's bottom line but it left countless changes in the prestige and position of engineers at various divisions that were reorganized or sold off.

Sorry, putting Jack Welch in this thread is off-topic: Jack Welch made business decisions affecting engineers but I don't think he ever made financial decisions that affected safety when at odds to prescribed/recommended engineering practices.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Quote (Don't forget to recognize often the MBAs also have engineering degrees.)


Yes, but do they have 20 years of engineering experience to go with them?

-----*****-----
So strange to see the singularity approaching while the entire planet is rapidly turning into a hellscape. -John Coates

-Dik

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Comment was made relative to the profound changes in culture at Boeing between when it was an engineering organization prior to MD and became something very different post MD.

When one this sentence into the German to translate wanted, would one the fact exploit, that the word order and the punctuation already with the German conventions agree.

-- Douglas Hofstadter, Jan 1982

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Quote:

Yes, but do they have 20 years of engineering experience to go with them?

That's moot; neither an engineering degree, nor experience, immunizes anyone from making bad, or self-serving decisions.

I've had, obviously anecdotal, experiences with engineering managers that were utterly sleazy; one engineering manager who became the general manager clearly had one objective in mind in all his decision making, "how do I keep my position or get promoted within six months?" since that was the longevity of GMs at our division at the time. That one cut all R&D projects and killed a bunch of steady income earners by forcing last-time buys. He got promoted almost exactly 6 months tenure into a much higher profile position. He was extremely engineering smart, but utterly ruthless.

Quote:

Jack Welch made business decisions affecting engineers but I don't think he ever made financial decisions that affected safety when at odds to prescribed/recommended engineering practices.

Welch's legacy, nevertheless, is a company that's a shadow of its former engineering powerhouse.

TTFN (ta ta for now)
I can do absolutely anything. I'm an expert! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BKorP55Aqvg
FAQ731-376: Eng-Tips.com Forum Policies forum1529: Translation Assistance for Engineers Entire Forum list http://www.eng-tips.com/forumlist.cfm

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Quote:

Comment was made relative to the profound changes in culture at Boeing between when it was an engineering organization prior to MD and became something very different post MD.

But, there's an implication that MD was the cause of the Boeing's downfall; I would contend that Boeing was well on its way downhill when it decided to grow by acquisition, rather than by organic growth. Moreover, there's an implication that MD was not engineering oriented, but MD was much more of a defense company, and they had a crazy strong systems engineering organization and disciplines in St. Louis prior to their acquisition by Boeing.

Boeing's supposed engineering prowess in the late 90s and 00s was largely a sham; they won a bunch of contracts based on their supposed systems engineering expertise, but while they talked the talk, they really couldn't walk the walk, because systems engineering is more than just a process, it requires SMEs and know-how to do the requirements and architectures to meet the mission requirements. They crashed and burned on FCS because their systems engineers had little experience in ground tactical systems and so they did a poor job of flowing requirements from the ORD to the FCS system requirements. Even into CDR phase there would be major requirements changes, which caused further overruns. They would flow, for example, self-protection requirements down and then find out that implementation of such requirements would nullify the operational requirements.

TTFN (ta ta for now)
I can do absolutely anything. I'm an expert! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BKorP55Aqvg
FAQ731-376: Eng-Tips.com Forum Policies forum1529: Translation Assistance for Engineers Entire Forum list http://www.eng-tips.com/forumlist.cfm

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Having worked with both McDonald Douglas and Boeing in the 1990's, with their DoD folks, I will add this. In the 1990's, McDonald-Douglas was primarily a defense contractor and Boeing was an aircraft manufacture.

I was not impressed with either company compared to other major defense contractors I had worked with.

My time with MacDac was before the 1996/7 merger, and my time with Boeing was after the merger, when Boeing won the Lead System Integrator Contract for Ballistic Missile Defense.

Defense Contractors frequently under perform in cost, schedule and performance categories. Where as in the Elon Musk World, under performing is not an option.

After the merger, odds are a lot of the late 1990's defense folks at Boeing were just old MacDac employees or managers?

Writing an excellent proposal to win a government contract, frequently has a lot more to do with proposal writing skills, and not the ability to perform, after contract is awarded. Technical is only one small part of all the factors that goes into evaluation of proposals for defense systems, and then there is the Washington DC wildcard that can over ride whatever the proposal evaluation team determines.

Edit: Let me add my experience with MacDac in early to mid 1990's was solely based upon working with MacDac on one DoD system. Same goes for Boeing in late 1990's. The only difference is the MacDac system was small in the scheme of things, compared to the massive LSI Contract for Integration of Missile Defense Systems!



RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

(OP)
Since I collect a monthly pension from Boeing, despite never having worked for Boeing (worked for McDonnell Douglas from 1980 to 1991), I just hope that they've fully funded their pension program winky smile

John R. Baker, P.E. (ret)
Irvine, CA
Siemens PLM:

The secret of life is not finding someone to live with
It's finding someone you can't live without

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

John, I also hope my pension keeps coming too, but in today's changing world, nothing is a sure thing anymore...........

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

But, there's an implication that MD was the cause of the Boeing's downfall; I would contend that Boeing was well on its way downhill when it decided to grow by acquisition At least for Boeing Commercial, this statement is COMPLETELY WRONG. I was at Boeing Commercial until 1999. The MD management tong basically destroyed the commercial aircraft engineering culture after the merger. Every program has been late and way over budget since then; and the quality culture issues are not coming to light.

The military side of both companies is a different matter, and both had issues, and they have only gotten much worse.

I just hope that they've fully funded their pension program LOL, there probably isn't a single large corporation in the US with a fully funded pension fund.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Quote:

I just hope that they've fully funded their pension program

It's likely that the pension has already been raided and replaced with some sort of annuitized instrument; which, in some respects, is a good thing, since insurance companies are not in the business of losing money, and the fact that they don't have to account for inflation and pay for the longer longevity of current employees makes it that much easier.

The insurance companies are way better at understanding actuarial tables and playing with stock options than the typical company. When I look at the lump-sum equivalent of my pension as offered by my company, it's actually pretty tiny, since most of the growth needed to fund a long retirement is from the other recipients dropping dead along the way.

Only way to stick it to the "man" is to outlive the table predictions.

TTFN (ta ta for now)
I can do absolutely anything. I'm an expert! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BKorP55Aqvg
FAQ731-376: Eng-Tips.com Forum Policies forum1529: Translation Assistance for Engineers Entire Forum list http://www.eng-tips.com/forumlist.cfm

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Quote:

At least for Boeing Commercial, this statement is COMPLETELY WRONG.

Possibly you were lucky; note that even in the 80s and 90s, much of Boeing production was already outsourced to people like Northrop, thereby removing a large amount of oversight necessary for maintaining high quality production. Northrop at the time was already run by people chasing the bottom line.

TTFN (ta ta for now)
I can do absolutely anything. I'm an expert! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BKorP55Aqvg
FAQ731-376: Eng-Tips.com Forum Policies forum1529: Translation Assistance for Engineers Entire Forum list http://www.eng-tips.com/forumlist.cfm

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

(OP)
Actually, my Boeing/MDC pension is being paid by the Metropolitan Life Insurance Company. Now this was a traditional defined benefit pension which I was required to start drawing when I turned 65, which was in 2012.

And my HP/EDS pension is coming from Prudential. Now I know that this pension is a lifetime annuity purchased using funds from a cash account that had been established by EDS and into which they had been making contributions, and paying a monthly interest, while I was still employed by EDS, but only the interest after they sold our division to a consortium of venture capital companies in 2004. Since this was not a traditional defined benefit pension, and since it was still earning a minimum 5% annual interest, to maximize my eventual monthly payout, I could defer collecting the pension until whenever I wanted to start, which wasn't until I retired from Siemens in 2016.

Note that since I had worked long enough at both MDC and EDS, both of these pensions have a 100% survivors benefit, which if I predecease my wife, she'll continue to be paid the full amount until her death. And Siemens had no pension program for their American employees, rather they offered a 401k plan, to which they matched a certain portion of what was put into the account by the employee.

John R. Baker, P.E. (ret)
Irvine, CA
Siemens PLM:

The secret of life is not finding someone to live with
It's finding someone you can't live without

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

In the 80s and 90s all wing main box production was in house, as was all final assembly, including fuselage assembly into barrels and joined.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Quote (Oops409)

Defense Contractors frequently under perform in cost, schedule and performance categories. Where as in the Elon Musk World, under performing is not an option.

The performance from SpaceX on the NASA's Artemis Missions suggests that he's not really doing better than Boeing, when it comes to aerospace contracts.

https://oig.nasa.gov/wp-content/uploads/2024/02/IG... shines light on both Boeing and SpaceX in their work for NASA's SLS & HLS contracts. In particular, Starship HLS is years behind schedule, and I believe significantly over-budget:



(Not all of the delay may be down to SpaceX.)

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Self-drive and the Boring Company have both been incredible failures as was the Hyperloop evacuated train. Now Neuralink is failing badly. The purchase of Twitter looks like it will endanger Tesla. Quite a string of success.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Nothing to do with technical or safety issues, but my recent experiences with Boeing and Airbus rides has leaned in favor of Boeing each time. Same airline, but may be related to fitout choices by that airline for the two planes, in this case B787 and A350.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

787 is meant to be an extremely nice machine.

Its pressurized to a much lower altitude than other aircraft. And the air your breath is external air not taken from the bleeds from the engine.

Never been on one but the guys that fly them say its better that the A330 and 777.

The A350 is just a rehash of the A330 with 1980's airbus systems.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

Quote (Murph9000)

The performance from SpaceX on the NASA's Artemis Missions suggests that he's not really doing better than Boeing, when it comes to aerospace contracts.

Schedule posted was dated Dec 2020, and there is no details on NASA milestones that are comparable to SpaceX milestones. That one snapshot of apples to oranges does not provide any information other than both have scheduled a launch in Q1 of FY2025, which would be a date that the government would have established for both systems.

Not that I agree with the quote, but it more than likely should be re-worded to say "not really doing any worse"........

Edit: Note that the chart is provided from NASA OIG or Office of Inspector General. There is also a note saying SpaceX schedule does not reflect impacts from bid protest, which shows some of the outside factors driving schedules. Further this indicates NASA/Boeing had been at work longer than Musk......

What is required is an over all schedule from the day NASA started till present, and same for when Musk came on board to present with comparable milestones.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

One thing that I have noticed is there is always a single engineer behind a strong company. See Charles Kettering at General Motors, Kelly Johnson at Lockheed, or John Browning at Winchester. These are special people that elevate these companies and they are not replaceable. Without them, the companies wallow until their next genius comes along.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

787 is very nice to fly on, as is the A350.

Re: The A350 is just a rehash of the A330 with 1980's airbus systems. nope, the A350 is an all new design, with lots of CFRP primary structure. It is larger than the A330.

RE: Alaska Airlines flight forced to make an emergency landing (Part II)...

I was more on about the systems and logic.

Although it is pressurised to a lower level like the 787.

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