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Boeing 737 Max: The Upgrade
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      I may be too trusting, but I generally accept upgrades. Several months ago, I willingly accepted an iPhone operating system upgrade, and lost all the Notes I had stored on my phone. These notes contained bank and credit card details, passport details, and other useful things which I have to consult from time to time, mostly when travelling. The real eye-opener is that I had stored these notes on my phone rather than the cloud, assuming they were more secure and more private because they were restricted to the hardware in my pocket, mine and mine alone. Not so. I was taught a lesson: Apple has the keys to what is in effect my portable office, and can destroy my arrangements at will, or by mere insouciance. They can decide what is best for me.

      We are now in the public discovery phase of examining why two new planes have fallen out of the sky, with pilots struggling to stop them diving into the ground. US pilots reported the problem anonymously (as shown above), and the inadequacy of the manual and training was already known. The crashes have happened to foreign airlines, but an unknown risk has been revealed for all passengers to see.

      Thank you for the comments on my previous post, particularly those which have found additional material from other aviation sources, and gone into the history of the development of the 737 series. Thanks also for the videos on the general principles of flight. General principles are the foundations of understanding.

      I think I was probably looking at aviation websites in November, just after the Lion Air crash on 29 October, and formed the opinion that there was something wrong with the anti-stall system, and told people about it. I might have told anyone willing to listen in November, but I know I discussed this with a test pilot on 22 December 2018. We both recall the discussion, and family members who were present remember the basic points being made. Philip Tetlock ( http://www.unz.com/jthompson/the-tetlock-forecast/ ) will tell you, absolutely correctly, that predictions have to be as specific as possible before they can even be assessed. So, further disclosure: I think I argued the case solely on air-speed indicators, not angle of attack indicators, and did not know or did not include anything about the design change history of the 737 Max series, simply that the Lion Air crash suggested an anti-stall system problem.

      This story has it all: the complexities of operator/machine interfaces (mostly a cognitive issue), the intricacies of modern aircraft (mostly a scientific issue with some cognitive aspects) and the compromises involved in the aircraft industry, concerning safety, operating and training costs, and competition between manufacturers (economic and political issues).

      My focus is on the cognitive task of flying a plane, and forming an understanding of how systems work and how they must be managed in emergencies. I am also interested in the cognitive aspects of maintaining a plane, fault reporting and correcting. Psychology has a part to play in the discussion of cognitive tasks. For example, what is the natural thing to do when, shortly after take-off, a plane starts diving into the ground? Read a manual? Recall from memory, as the plane lurches ever downwards, what needs to be done? Call to mind the checklist of tasks required to disengage a system which unknown to you has been fooled by an unreliable angle-of-attack indicator? My view is that a cockpit is no place for badly designed IQ test items. Systems have to be adapted to human information processing limitations, and must fit in with startle responses and standard pilot reactions and conventions.

      Using James Reason’s explanatory framework (Human Error, 1989), pilots flying the Boeing 737 Max 8 and encountering the opaque workings of MCAS (manoeuvering characteristics augmentation system) are carrying out intentional but mistaken actions: they are trying to pull a plane out of a dive. The plane is in fact climbing away from an airport after takeoff, but a failure in an angle of attack indicator has convinced MCAS that it is in a stall condition. (For extra money, you can buy a second angle of attack indicator, and apparently these two airlines did not do so. For safety, two should be standard at no extra cost). Accordingly, MCAS puts the nose of the plane down to avoid the stall. The pilot reacts by pulling back the yoke so as to resume upward flight, cognizant of the plain fact that unless he can gain height he is going to die, together with his passengers. His action satisfies MCAS for a short while, and then it comes in again, helpfully trying to prevent a stall (because pulling on the yoke is not enough: the whole tail plane has to be “trimmed” into the proper angle). Pilots are doing what comes naturally to them.

      MCAS is diligently doing as instructed, but is badly designed, relying as it does in this case on a single indicator, rather than two which could identify and resolve discrepancies, and has no common sense about the overall circumstances of the plane. The pilots know that they have just taken off. MCAS, as far as I know, does not “know” that. Again, as far as I know, MCAS does not know even what height the plane is at. (I know that this is not real Artificial Intelligence, but I used it as an illustration of some of the problems which may arise from AI in transport uses). The pilots respond with “strong-but-wrong” actions (which would be perfectly correct in most circumstances) and MCAS persists with “right-but-wrong” actions because of a severely restricted range of inputs and contextual understanding. Chillingly, it augments a sensor error into a fatal failure. A second sensor and much more training could reduce the impact of this problem, but the inherent instability of the engine/wing configuration remains.

      Using Reason’s GEMS system, the pilots made no level 1 slips or lapses in piloting. They had followed the correct procedures and got the plane off the ground properly (once or twice a pilot forgets to put the flaps down at take-off or the wheels down at landing). I think they made no level 2 rule-based errors, because their rule-based reactions were reasonable: they considered the local state information and tried to follow a reasonable rule: avoid crashing into the ground by trying to gain height. They could be accused of a level 3 error: a knowledge-based mistake, but the relevant knowledge was not made available to them. They may have tried to problem-solve by finding a higher level analogy (hard to guess at this, but something like “we have unreliable indicators” or “we have triggered something bad in the autopilot function”) but then they must revert to a mental model of the problem, and think about abstract relations between structure and function, inferring a diagnosis, formulating corrective actions and testing them out. What would that knowledge-based approach entail? Either remembering exactly what should be done in this rare circumstance, or finding the correct page in the manuals to deal with it. Very hard to do when the plane keeps wanting to crash down for unknown reasons shortly after take-off. Somewhat easier when it happens at high altitudes in level flight.

      At this point it needs to be pointed out that there is some confusion about how easy it was to switch off CMAS. All the natural actions with the yoke and other controls turn if off, but not permanently. It comes back like a dog with a stick. Worse, it will run to collect a stick you didn’t throw. The correct answer from the stab trim runaway checklist, is to flick two small switches down into the cut out position. Finding them may be a problem (one does not casually switch things off in a cockpit) and for those not warned about the issue, the time taken to find out the required arcane procedure may be insufficient at low altitudes, such as after take-off. Understandably, pilots did not understand the complexity of this system. They had a secret co-pilot on board, and hadn’t been told.

      This is the figure I generally depict as slices of cheese with holes in them which sometimes line up.

      Safety depends on understanding risks and providing protection in depth. No protective filter is perfect, so several are placed in sequence in the hope that they will trap all but the very rarest events. What is curious about MCAS is that it was given power to assume command. It was not so much defense in depth, but an attempt to overcome an intrinsic defect. It is a slice of cheese placed very early in the defensive array, despite having a massive hole in it, in that it prioritizes one vulnerable indicator, and then operates independently, and against pilot wishes. A chain of engineering and economic decisions led to the 737 Max series, and CMAS might have worked if there had been redundancy in angle of attack and airspeed indicators, and a way of integrating the inputs, and most of all, a way of communicating to pilots what the system was trying to do, and for what reason. The chain of command should have been that the pilot made decisions, and CMAS made suggestions, and asked for permission.

      Some of the comments were about the race of the pilots. I do not avoid race differences in intelligence as explanations for human behaviour, but I don’t see that as the most likely explanation in this case. If a system is opaque and not properly communicated to pilots then it is a liability for all pilots. Properly selected pilots should be much alike in this regard. However, I know that airlines differ in safety records, in maintenance standards, and in the reporting and correcting of faults. In my view, Lion Air did not deal with a faulty indicator properly. A friend in UK air traffic control tells that the best airlines deal with issues quickly, and other airlines (often low cost ones) are more likely to log them but fix them later. They tolerate errors and, mostly, nothing much happens. In sum, it would be good to look at the safety profiles of the airlines. Ethiopian Airline is considered reasonably safe, and Lion Air less so, but assessing those issues means looking carefully at pilot capabilities and the general quality of maintenance. (A surrogate may be to look at deaths per road mile traveled in the countries concerned. All this is for another day).

      Although the current focus is quite rightly on Boeing, the same general principles apply to Airbus and to all transport systems. For example, cars have safety systems, but do not yet take over control without permission (or at least not until a collision is imminent). Cars could advise, given road and weather conditions, what speed was prudent, or what the current speed meant in terms of stopping distances. A well explained warning system can be helpful, like those that assess the alertness of the driver, and display a warning. Good. They do not take over the steering wheel or put on the brakes.

      Flying is safe, which paradoxically makes these crashes even harder to bear. Boeing has an MCAS upgrade in the pipeline. Despite the compromises in the design of the Max series which affect the centre of gravity, the improved system might work, probably by using several sensors provided as standard.

      On the other hand, passengers might not be convinced. They may feel they were taken for fools by an arrogant company, and decide to shun the 737 Max, if only to give manufacturers a very clear message: build safety into the design, and keep the controls simple, stupid.

       
      • Category: Economics, Science • Tags: AI, Airlines, Boeing 
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      1. Biff says:

        On the other hand, passengers might not be convinced.

        Not at all, because it’s not an airplane, for the same reason a boat that rolls over and sinks to the bottom is not a boat – it may have a stern, and starboard/port side, but if it don’t float, it’s not a boat. The 737 max8 will eventually nose up; stall, and then fall to the ground. It may have wings, but it ain’t an airplane, and I will not climb aboard – please cancel my ticket.

        • Agree: FB
        • Replies: @Mr McKenna
        , @Wally
      2. Comments regarding your last sentence:

        They [passengers] may feel they were taken for fools by an arrogant company, and decide to shun the 737 Max, if only to give manufacturers a very clear message: build safety into the design, and keep the controls simple, stupid.

        Passengers may not even need to make that decision. Governing aviation authorities in other countries that had previously trusted the FAA almost blindly now understand, as does the informed public, that the FAA has become corrupted. Note yesterday’s article in the Seattle Times, which reveals detailed whistleblower information – that had been available to the publication prior to the Ethiopian jet crash but was apparently withheld for at least a week.

        Flawed analysis, failed oversight: How Boeing, FAA certified the suspect 737 MAX flight control system

        https://www.seattletimes.com/business/boeing-aerospace/failed-certification-faa-missed-safety-issues-in-the-737-max-system-implicated-in-the-lion-air-crash/

        It points to clear evidence of willful criminal negligence and conspiracy, even though the article didn’t stress the fact that the physical design itself (awkward engine placement) should not have been approved in the first place. There is also new information in the article pertaining to the allowed angles of stabilizer adjustments, which significantly exceeded what the FAA had allegedly been aware of.

        Aviation authorities outside the USA now have an obligation to assert themselves and would be justified in not allowing those 737 MAX jets to fly over their airspace ever again, even with the upcoming software upgrades. They owe this responsibility to the public.

      3. Ronnie says:

        Thank you for the logic and deduction that has been reviewed here plus all the good suggestions and discussion. The problem is probably solved in theory. I would like to point out a few other considerations. There is a language factor for foreign pilots speaking good English but obscure first languages, as the complexity of the test increases. That is obvious. Complex reading materials and updates may not be appreciated equally by different pilots with lack of native English ability. Speaking English at the cockpit level and reading English are two different areas. The cognitive abilities of the pilot and flight simulator performance are also factors which has surely already been considered, although specific simulators for the 737MAX are not yet available. Understanding aerodynamics and understanding/memorizing procedures is another metric. More importantly, under stress, pressure or anxiety we often perform at an impaired level. This is especially notable in older people over 55. The effects of stress can be significant in patients with very early dementia which might not be detectable under normal circumstances. There is often a very senior older pilot and a young inexperienced colleague flying the plane. Appropriate psychological testing should be considered in the case of any older pilot who shows evidence of cognitive or psychological change.

        • Replies: @El Dato
      4. @Been_there_done_that

        Thanks for the link. I am astounded at what I have read. The MCAS does not even check the angle-of-attack indicator while taxiing before takeoff, which should read zero. If it does not, then it is wrong, and you would be able to identify that immediately, and not take off.

      5. republic says:

        Aviation authorities outside the USA now have an obligation to assert themselves and would be justified in not allowing those 737 MAX jets to fly over their airspace ever again, even with the upcoming software upgrades. They owe this responsibility to the public.

        That plane may never fly again. Quite possible certain countries will not re certify it for many reasons.

      6. res says:

        I thought it was worth giving further references for James Reason’s explanatory framework (Human Error, 1989).

        The book: https://www.amazon.com/Human-Error-James-Reason/dp/0521314194

        Here is a paper from 2000: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1117770/
        I think the summary there is worth repeating.

        Summary points

        – Two approaches to the problem of human fallibility exist: the person and the system approaches
        – The person approach focuses on the errors of individuals, blaming them for forgetfulness, inattention, or moral weakness
        – The system approach concentrates on the conditions under which individuals work and tries to build defences to avert errors or mitigate their effects
        – High reliability organisations—which have less than their fair share of accidents—recognise that human variability is a force to harness in averting errors, but they work hard to focus that variability and are constantly preoccupied with the possibility of failure

        There is a brief overview of Reason’s GEMS system at (notice the context): https://www.skybrary.aero/index.php/Generic_Error-Modelling_System_(GEMS)

        Does anyone have a link to a more detailed look at it?

        P.S. Now I understand the earlier Swiss cheese graphic. Perhaps I was a bit slow on the uptake there.

      7. Fooled by cheese. There is a book in it for someone. Add me in as an exhibit. List of cognitive errors follows in due course.

      8. This is idiotic.
        How difficult is to limit the function of anti stall system to cease its action when the plane reaches its horizontal position??????????
        Is everybody here retarded?????????
        And it should be automatic and not left to the pilot.

      9. @James Thompson

        The MCAS does not even check the angle-of-attack indicator while taxiing before takeoff, which should read zero.

        I don’t know how fast these guys taxi, but those vanes are fairly heavy and I’m not sure 25 knots* across them will get them lined up with the relative wind. It wouldn’t necessarily read 0 anyway, but some value of angle of attack at deck angle o.

        That article, Mr. Thomson, should have been written by an ATP who can write well, rather than this Dominic Gates guy who keeps on about “swiveling the tail”. Just write “pivoting the horizontal tail surface” and explain that it’s called stabilizer trimming ONE TIME and GET IT OVER WITH! He’s similarly at the level of complete amateur writer all over that article, while he purports to be the aerospace correspondent. Geeze, is the Seattle Times completely out of money?

        I do thank you for follow-up article which is a nice coherent description of this story, and thanks, as you wrote, to your commenters for the input from under the last one. Here are a few general comments:

        1) These FAA/Boeing discussions may open up your and lots of others’ eyes to what happens with a big bureaucracy. The onerous paper-work and minute rule-following can lead to a situation in which not enough people on either end are actually looking at the big picture. I will tell you that, upon an inspection of a small charter airplane, I realized after going through this, that there could have been a foot-long gash in the belly of the plane, and the inspector would not have known. He was busy worrying about a lack of paperwork for the installation of radios that had been in the plane 15 years! Welcome to the bureau-party, Pal!

        2) You can now see, though lots of your anti-Western Commie-taters here would be loath to admit, that the Airbus principles are very much the same as what went on here, but on steroids. In this case, the lack of training to emphasize this major difference in this MAX variant, bit these 2 crews in the ass.

        3) That 2.5-degree vs. 0.6-degree amount of MCAS down-trim HAD TO be written about during the flight-test program. I would be amazed if they didn’t do tests on this new “feature” during the qualification flying.

        4) About 1 vs. 2 angle-of-attack vanes. I am amazed at this. I know all sorts of airliners, and almost all have one set of sensors for one side (i.e. one for the Captain’s-side instruments and air-data-computer, and one for the F/O’s). It is indeed nutty to have this anti-stall system work on one alone, though the operators may not have known about this.

        5) As a follow-up to (4), the system could have had inputs from various other sources as checks, say the airspeed, and deck angle. However, it is still the angle-of-attack that relates directly to imminent stall, so this may have been done this way to keep it from becoming TOO complicated. Either way, this goes back to the Airbus philosophy: “The plane is always right. Pilots, you don’t know what the computer knows, so sit back and relax ….” Just as you wrote, Mr. Thompson, there should always be a way for pilots to easily overcome the automation and just fly.

        .

        * Taxi ground speed is supposed to be “a brisk walk”, haha, per the FAA, but 25 kt is reasonable unless you are a SouthWest Airlines pilot. Still, we’re talking airspeed anyway, so it depends on the wind. There are probably some ways the 2 vanes could be calibrated, but maybe not every flight until > 50 knots on the T/O.

      10. @Ilyana_Rozumova

        Not everyone here is retarded, but that comment comes awful close to having us wonder about you.

        Hey, you do know that a plane can stall at any deck angle, and even any airspeed, don’t you? Recovery from a stall in a swept-wing jet requires a major change in pitch. It’s just that it should only be done WHEN THE AIRPLANE IS ACTUALLY STALLING!

        And it should be automatic and not left to the pilot.

        It WAS, and that’s why all those people are dead.

        Please, Mrs. Rozumova, I’ve liked your comments under iSteve, but you should learn more about this specific field of aeronautics before that kind of comment.

        • Replies: @Ilyana_Rozumova
      11. @Ilyana_Rozumova

        You are very free with your insults. That is a pity, since it does not improve any discussion.

        Determining the angle of attack of the wings depends on having reliable indicators. Without those indications (angle and speed) neither pilots nor automated systems can be sure that the plane is in a “horizontal” position. Dealing with potential stalls is not trivial in those circumstances.

        Also, the problems we are discussing here are the difficulties which arise when decisions are automated and not under the control of the pilot.

      12. Sparkon says:

        Boeing has had what must be called some very good luck over the years. I recall a sign hanging in my high school’s locker room: “The harder you work, the luckier you get.” That would certainly apply to Boeing’s decision in the early 1950s to build the Dash 80 as a flying showcase and demonstrator for potential customers in both civil and military aviation.

        Before showing the airplane to potential passenger airliner customers, Boeing fitted the Dash 80 with the flying boom for aerial refueling used on its operational KC-97, derived from the B-29. Boeing didn’t have much experience or success building passenger aircraft, but it had a lot of experience and success building heavy bombers, one of the trump cards of WWII, and the only weapon the United States would not provide to the Soviet Union under Lend Lease. The Soviets got their hands on B-29s that had to divert while on bombing missions over Japan, and copied the airplane bolt for bolt as the Tu-4 “Bull.”
        .

        By the late 1940s two developments encouraged Boeing to begin considering building a passenger jet. The first was the maiden flight in 1947 of the B-47 Stratojet. The second was the maiden flight in 1949 of the world’s first jet airliner, the de Havilland Comet. Boeing President Bill Allen led a company delegation to the UK in summer 1950, where they saw the Comet fly at the Farnborough Airshow, and also visited the de Havilland factory at Hatfield, Hertfordshire where the Comets were being built. Boeing felt it had mastered the swept wing and podded engines which it saw as key technologies that would enable it to improve on the Comet.
        […]
        Boeing decided the only way to overcome the airlines’ suspicion of the jet – and of itself – was to show them a completed aircraft
        […]
        The Dash 80 fuselage was wide enough at 132 inches (3.35 m) for five-abreast seating; two on one side of the aisle and three on the other. The fuselage diameter for the production KC-135 was widened to 144 inches (3.66 m) and Boeing originally hoped to build the 707 fuselage with that width. By the time the Boeing company committed to production, the decision had been made to design the production model 707 as a six-abreast design, with a larger 148-inch-diameter (3.76 m) fuselage, after C. R. Smith, CEO of American Airlines, told Boeing he wouldn’t buy the 707 unless it was an inch wider than the then-proposed Douglas DC-8 passenger jet. This decision did not unduly delay introduction of the production model since the -80 had been largely hand-built, using little production tooling.
        […]
        In 1954 USAF’s Strategic Air Command (SAC) held a competition for a jet-powered aerial refueling tanker. Lockheed’s tanker version of the proposed Lockheed L-193 airliner with rear fuselage-mounted engines was declared the winner in 1955. Since Boeing’s proposal was already flying, the KC-135 could be delivered two years earlier and Air Force Secretary Harold E. Talbott ordered 250 KC-135 tankers until the Lockheed’s design could be manufactured. In the end, orders for the Lockheed tanker were dropped rather than supporting two tanker designs. Lockheed never produced its jet airliner, while Boeing would eventually dominate the market with a family of airliners based on the 707.

        –Wikipedia

        So, Lockheed won the competition, but Boeing built the tankers — and ultimately many of the jet airliners — because the Dash 80 was flying while the Lockheed entry was still on the drawing board. Nice competition.

        Speaking of competition, the Dash 80 first flew in 1954, the same year de Havilland’s pioneering Comet suffered two disastrous apparent mid-air breakups with the loss of all aboard: BOAC Flight 781 in January 1954, and South African Airways Flight 201 in April.

        Both of these doomed Comet flights had originated at Rome, Italy’s Ciampino airport, which was also the site of the Comet’s first hull loss in October 1952, when a BOAC comet failed to become airborne and ran off the end of the runway.

        “Once is happenstance. Twice is coincidence. Three times is enemy action.”

        Auric Goldfinger, Goldfinger, 1958, Ian Fleming

        Cui bono?

      13. nik1975 says:
        @Ilyana_Rozumova

        hi Ilyana

        said so poetically but you obviously have not got a pilots license (I have ppl heli)

        systems are different in EVERY SINGLE TYPE of craft

        each craft needs its own differences training

        commercial airliners are buggers to fly…

        you have no idea how difficult it is to design these things

        • Replies: @sailor1031
      14. A German air-travel law professor Elmar Giemulla/TU Berlin said in the daily Die weLT, that the two deadly MAX crashes might become be extraordinarily expensive for Boing and might even make government subsidies necessary.

        Whether or not Dennis Muilenburg or another Boing official will be held responsible in a courtroom is another interesting question. – Will all this end like the 2008 financial meltdown, with not a single of the big players accused let alone imprisoned?

        The new design of the MCAS system might work. But even then: Whether or not the markets will allow Boing to build newly designed 737 MAXes, is an open question. Let’s assume, they would fly nicely: As soon, as a few of those upgraded planes are in the air worldwide, customers will accept them – that would be my guess.

        (But I say this as someone who hasn’t flown but two times altogether in well over half a century of his life.)

        • Replies: @Biff
      15. @Been_there_done_that

        Dominic Gates again. I must say for a guy whose job (presumably) depends on having a lot of Boeing access, he’s writing stuff that will be uncomfortable boardroom reading.

        Two more of his pieces, slightly OT in that they’re related to Boeing’s outsourcing decisions (the wing , the wing box which supports it, and the forward fuselage of the 787 is built in Japan, a world leader in carbon fibre – for the 777 they are coming back in-house).

        Writers like Eamon Fingleton have been very critical of Boeing’s historically recent conversion to outsourcing, which some trace back to the McDonnell Douglas merger.

        https://www.seattletimes.com/business/boeing-shares-work-but-guards-its-secrets/

        Not quite so if you read all the way through…

        https://www.seattletimes.com/business/boeing-aerospace/boeings-key-suppliers-in-japan-want-an-upgrade/

        Subaru is a vital Boeing supplier. In the city of Handa, close to Nagoya, it makes the key structural boxes within the central fuselage that support the wings of the 777 and the 787. It will supply the same piece for the 777X.

        “Next time, Boeing will not be able to make any big airplane without us,” joked Yasuhiro Hamanaka, vice president of production at Subaru’s aerospace division.

        • Replies: @MEFOBILLS
      16. El Dato says:

        Excellent writing!

        Could be published anywhere, just subsitute ethniticy for race and you are good to go.

        A friend in UK air traffic control tells that the best airlines deal with issues quickly, and other airlines (often low cost ones) are more likely to log them but fix them later. They tolerate errors and, mostly, nothing much happens.

        A bunch of contacts continually being closed and opened by random events, connecting a 5V source to bunch of high-fan-in AND gates in a fundamentally unknowable way, with the AND outputs merging into a single OR gate controlling power to a big sign saying “YOU DUN GOOFED” comes to mind.

        You don’t want to keep too many of the inputs energized for long lest the random events actually manage to hit the combination that lights that sign.

      17. El Dato says:
        @Sparkon

        Three times is enemy action.

        More like it’s bad root cause analysis.

        Twice is coincidence.

        Twice is “you have a big problem”.

        NASA dropped the Shuttle after two fuckups and rightly so. They knew it was an unfixable deathtrap (possibly due to the fact that it was also overdesigned for – now completely obsolete – military “fast shipment to orbit invisible to the Soviets” missions or so I have heard). The fact that the bureaucratic decision processes led to the same outcome twice in the same way (aka “it worked so far, so these outliers are probably not a problem”) in spite of having been overhauled was … I don’t know … the cold hand of inescapable destiny told to you by a fortune teller in a fair stall 30+ year ago?

        • Replies: @Sparkon
      18. MehEhMeh says:

        The issue is that Trump already called bogus national security reasons for tariffs on steel so there’s no real reason for third party country to care much for how much different Airbus is, even if one just takes public relations into account regarding how successful it is to regain trust of air travelers after two catastrophic crashes.

        I support having the EU make Boeing buy back their planes from EU airlines like the US made VW buy back their cars although I don’t have my hopes up. I’m pretty sure there’s a case of collusion between the FAA and Boeing like there was with the emissions scandal.

      19. TG says:

        Sounds a little like what engineers used to call “AI Hubris.”

        Animals have sophisticated nervous systems, but their bodies are also sophisticated. The muscles, joints, tendons… they are tuned to want to work correctly, even without top-down control. For a time the engineers building robots thought they could ignore this, and just use brute-force motors and simulated elasticit etc. in software. It turned out not to be such a great approach – you can’t make any piece of junk work smoothly and efficiently via software alone.

        Now the military has built intrinsically unstable planes that can only be flown with sophisticated fly-by-wire controllers, and that seems to work – but these are specialized, high-performance low-usage machines. To take an intrinsically unstable airframe and try to hack it into controllability with software, for routine civilian use, well, perhaps not such a great idea. Maybe planes should be first designed to want to fly, and then the fly-by-wire is added later…

        • Agree: annamaria
      20. Biff says:
        @Dieter Kief

        Will all this end like the 2008 financial meltdown, with not a single of the big players accused let alone imprisoned?

        Yes, and yes if history has anything to say about it. If this happened in China there would be executions, but in America there will be Christmas bonuses. That’s why trust in government is dichotomous.

      21. Sparkon says:
        @El Dato

        The Comet was grounded by BOAC after the first accident, and permanently after the 2nd accident with a Comet that departed Rome’s Ciampino.

        On 10 January 1954, 20 minutes after taking off from Ciampino, the first production Comet, G-ALYP, broke up in mid-air while operating BOAC Flight 781 and crashed into the Mediterranean off the Italian island of Elba with the loss of all 35 on board. With no witnesses to the disaster and only partial radio transmissions as incomplete evidence, no obvious reason for the crash could be deduced. Engineers at de Havilland immediately recommended 60 modifications aimed at any possible design flaw while the Abell Committee met to determine potential causes of the crash. BOAC also voluntarily grounded its Comet fleet pending investigation into the causes of the accident.

        During the investigation, the Royal Navy conducted recovery operations. The first pieces of wreckage were discovered on 12 February 1954 and the search continued until September 1954, by which time 70 percent by weight of the main structure, 80 percent of the power section, and 50 percent of the aircraft’s systems and equipment had been recovered. The forensic reconstruction effort had just begun when the Abell Committee reported its findings. No apparent fault in the aircraft was found, and the British government decided against opening a further public inquiry into the accident. The prestigious nature of the Comet project, particularly for the British aerospace industry, and the financial impact of the aircraft’s grounding on BOAC’s operations, both served to pressure the inquiry to end without further investigation. Comet flights resumed on 23 March 1954.

        On 8 April 1954, Comet G-ALYY (“Yoke Yoke”), on charter to South African Airways, was on a leg from Rome to Cairo (of a longer route, SA Flight 201 from London to Johannesburg), when it crashed in the Mediterranean near Naples with the loss of all 21 passengers and crew on board. The Comet fleet was immediately grounded once again and a large investigation board was formed under the direction of the Royal Aircraft Establishment (RAE). Prime Minister Winston Churchill tasked the Royal Navy with helping to locate and retrieve the wreckage so that the cause of the accident could be determined. The Comet’s Certificate of Airworthiness was revoked and Comet 1 line production was suspended at the Hatfield factory while the BOAC fleet was permanently grounded, cocooned and stored.

        — Wikipedia

        (my bold)

        But wait, there’s more.

        According to de Havilland’s chief test pilot John Cunningham, who had flown the prototype’s first flight, representatives from American manufacturers such as Boeing and Douglas privately disclosed that if de Havilland had not experienced the Comet’s pressurisation problems first, it would have happened to them.

        Which turns out to be a rather curious statement, as commenter “Mr.” notes:

        It is important to realize that Boeing, Douglas and Lockheed were building pressurized aircraft in the 30’s and 40’s. The Lockheed Constellation was in production before WWII, Douglas Dc-6 was pressurized,The Boeing B 29 and 377 passenger liner were in production long before the 50’s. The Convair B 3 flew to 50,000 feet and was pressurized. Possibly the US was behind great Britain in Jet technology, but NOT pressurization technology, which had been around since the 30’s.

        https://aerospaceengineeringblog.com/dehavilland-comet-crash/

        So I guess those guys from Boeing and Douglas sharing their commiserations with Cunningham were just being, you know, good sports about de Havilland’s bad luck with the Comet.

        I can’t find an exact number, but in all, I think well under 100 Comets of all marks were built, while the type experienced 26 hull loss accidents.

        Boeing went on to build over 1,000 707s, 154 720s, and over 800 KC-135s. The aerospace company followed up with 1,800 727s, 1,000 757s, 1,200 767s, and now over 10,000 737s, in addition to newer models: 777 and 787.

        The aerospace giant has been lucky. And good.

      22. @Achmed E. Newman

        Well?
        Lets leave it to the final report and recommendations. Than we can talk again.
        In the mean time how do you justify the laconic conclusion of French investigators?

        • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
      23. @James Thompson

        Come on! You speak like the pilots cannot rely in anything. And like pilots have no training. And experience does not count. And like pilots have no tendency to push the plane to the limit.
        It does look like US pilots are more cautious.
        There was a funny comment somewhere that suggested that pilots should have commercial building level gauge under the seat. Actually your body can feel the increased incline or decline.
        The key problem is the drive of the jack screw…………..Period.

      24. 9593 says:

        Pardon me, please for not reading all of the discussion. BUT, an airliner should fly straight and level in calm air while the pilot is hands-off of the controls. What Boeing appears to have done is pursue the General Motors’ rule by the accountancy, to produce, say, a diesel V-8 on the gasoline engine foundry casting – or seat belts that anchored on the doors.

        The day may be coming when automobile lane-keeping software will be relied upon instead of bothering with elaborate designs of sway bar, camber, caster and toe-in for straight down the road stability.

        If the airplane configuration is unstable, don’t build it.

      25. @Ilyana_Rozumova

        The gauge part of your comment will stick in my head.

        (It might turn out to be an argument of the type which gets routinely rejected on the basis of a remark like: It can’t be that easy).

        • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
      26. AceDeuce says:
        @James Thompson

        My understanding is that these aircraft do have dual AOA transmitters, but Boeing only uses one of them as an MCAS input.

        • Replies: @James Thompson
      27. AceDeuce says:
        @James Thompson

        Isn’t there a separate discrete AOA readout that the crew can see?–in any event, supposedly MCAS doesn’t come alive until the flaps are up-i.e. after takeoff.

      28. @Ilyana_Rozumova

        In the mean time how do you justify the laconic conclusion of French investigators?

        Which crash?

        • Replies: @Ilyana_Rozumova
      29. @Dieter Kief

        No because deck angle does not equal Angle of Attack and engineers are not stupid. You all are making comments based on bad physics and the assumption that engineers don’t know any either. They do, and spend a lot of time using these laws of physics to make things work (and fly!). Crimeny!

        (Oh, for Miss Rozumova, your body can feel accelerations which can be a function of linear acceleration, a rotation rate, and lots of things that do not help you understand your attitude. In fact, one’s inner ear is an ENEMY of proper instrument flying, as, once you are at a given bank angle for 15 seconds or so, your inner ear will tell you that you are back level. This is why one must resort completely to the basic instruments when hand-flying with no horizon in sight and specifically IGNORE your body’s cues. The seat-of-the-pants cues are one thing that ARE helpful, as during visually approaches, your body can feel vertical accelerations that the instruments take a lot longer to show you.)

      30. Anonymous[375] • Disclaimer says:

        Planes already have stall warnings that loudly repeat “STALL!” in the cockpit when it senses a stall. It doesn’t take over the controls and put the plane in a dive, but expects the pilot to do so. Isn’t this perfectly adequate? A stall warning that went off shortly after takeoff in low altitude as the plane was still climbing would suggest to the pilots that there was a faulty indicator or some other malfunction, and they would respond appropriately by not putting the plane into a dive into the ground. What is the point of MCAS over traditional stall warnings?

      31. @Achmed E. Newman

        I cannot get really serious until somebody will tell me if Jack screw has one drive or two drives.

        • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
      32. @Achmed E. Newman

        This one the last one which we are discussing. Ethiopia.

      33. El Dato says:
        @Ronnie

        specific simulators for the 737MAX are not yet available.

        Really?

        Isn’t this just shoddy release policy?

        • Agree: Herald
        • Replies: @James Thompson
        , @res
      34. renfro says:
        @Been_there_done_that

        From the article:

        ”The black box data provided in the preliminary investigation report shows that readings from the two sensors differed by some 20 degrees not only throughout the flight but also while the airplane taxied on the ground before takeoff.

        No training, no information

        After the Lion Air crash, 737 MAX pilots around the world were notified about the existence of MCAS and what to do if the system is triggered inappropriately.

        Boeing insists that the pilots on the Lion Air flight should have recognized that the horizontal stabilizer was moving uncommanded, and should have responded with a standard pilot checklist procedure to handle what’s called “stabilizer runaway.”

        If they’d done so, the pilots would have hit cutoff switches and deactivated the automatic stabilizer movement”

        Why they didn’t deactivate the auto stabilizer was my first thought.
        And unless Boeing has changed policy every pilot flying a Boeing goes to training classes for the aircraft they will be flying if they have no previous experience. I know this for fact because my friend, a Boeing pilot, became a trainer for Boeing .He travels overseas to train pilots in Boeing planes.
        This is a giant FUBAR for Boeing, heads will roll.

        • Replies: @Ilyana_Rozumova
      35. @Sparkon

        Nitpick…. Do you really mean cui bono in the traditional sense of “who benefits?”. If so, who are you pointing a finger at?

        • Replies: @AB_Anonymous
      36. @Biff

        The 737-800 was stretching the platform to the absolute limit, and this was apparent (I thought) to all and sundry. The MAX is nothing more than a monument to greed.

        • Replies: @Sbaker
      37. Anon[424] • Disclaimer says:

        I am affraid that the Boeing 737 MAX will be the Chernobyl of the USA

      38. JR says:

        Zerohedge mentioned an incident with the Lion Air during a flight preceding the crash. If true it is weird that this was not reported and flagged for flight safety immediate action to the rest of the fleet.

        “According to Bloomberg, the ‘dead-head’ pilot on the earlier flight from Bali to Jakarta was able to explain to the crew how to disable a malfunctioning flight-control system by cutting power to a motor driving the nose of the plane down. ”

        If I understand this correctly the MCAS wasn’t shut down but presumably a circuit breaker was used to prevent the MCAS actions to take effect.

        https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2019-03-19/duty-pilot-saved-doomed-lion-air-737-nosedive-day-deadly-crash

      39. @Achmed E. Newman

        Right Achmed! Only one but, if you please – I have no problem at all to understand both parts of the argument: That a gauge can be helpful when flying – but only at times. Thanks for explaining the counter-intuitive part of the whole affair. The field of counter-intuitive arguments is not only important as far as communication is concerned (this part asks for good teachers, comes to my mind), but also very interesting in itself, because here, language helps the mind of the reader, to create the whole (= the in the end correct) picture.

        So even if the gauge-aspect had been erroneous altogether (which you point out, it is not), it would have helped, to understand what’s going on. – The lay-ehh -women’s perspective can be very helpful to understand things properly – especially for laypersons (and all of us are- in almost any case).

        • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
      40. SafeNow says:

        Boeing took the hit for the Flight 800 missile strike. The government’s indulgent treatment of Boeing regarding the Max might be payback; it seems otherwise to be inexplicable. In any case, I thought of the MAX recently when I took my blood pressure. I use a stethoscope and cuff, not a digital device. I fly the blood pressure. Works better.

      41. Wally says:

        Interesting take on this here:

        Off-Duty Pilot Saved Doomed Lion Air 737 From Nosedive Day Before Deadly Crash
        https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2019-03-19/duty-pilot-saved-doomed-lion-air-737-nosedive-day-deadly-crash
        ex.:
        By showing the active pilots how to do an override:
        “An off-duty pilot hitching a ride in the cockpit jumpseat of a doomed 737 Max 8 last October reportedly saved the plane just one day before it crashed off the coast of Indonesia while being operated by a different crew, killing 189 onboard.”

        Check it out.

      42. @Anonymous

        Isn’t this perfectly adequate?

        It is perfectly adequate in a normal passenger jet, but given the inherently flawed physical design of the 737 MAX – the heart of the issue and the original scandal, which Wall Street Journal, Seattle Times, and New York Times have obfuscated in their respective reports over the past few days in order to focus on the symptom rather than the cause in an effort at damage control – this particular airplane would be stalling far too often, especially upon take-off, during tight turns or instances of turbulence (pilots were not supposed to even notice the MCAS system activation, were not even told about it), and dealing with those occurrences manually every time would soon become an annoyance for pilots, who would eventually refuse to fly it and get their unions to boycott this unworthy plane.

        Boeing’s actions to cover up their physical design flaw at multiple levels were criminally fraudulent.

        Looking forward, a universal boycott of the 737 MAX is exactly what ought to happen. So long as a 737 has that oversized engine attached to its wings, it should not be permitted to ever fly again by civil aviation authorities throughout the world. Alternatively, airlines that own them now should refuse to fly them and try to get their money back, even though they deserve some blame for having been stupid enough to have ordered them, which, by contrast, most European airlines refused to do. As a backup, in case this does not happen either, unions representing pilots and flight attendants should boycott the flawed configuration and not set foot in one. Also, individual airports could refuse landing and take-off permission, or ground crew unions could refuse servicing them. As a last resort, passengers could refuse to board these jets.

        • Agree: FB
        • Replies: @FB
        , @CanSpeccy
      43. @AceDeuce

        Correct (my understanding too). US airlines paid to have CMAS monitor both instruments, not just the one it was designed for.

        • Replies: @VagabondTheElder
      44. @James Thompson

        Also, the problems we are discussing here are the difficulties which arise when decisions are automated and not under the control of the pilot.

        Artificial decision making is the box of pandora, assuming AI systems are used in aviation.

        An AI is just as intelligent as its creators, or dumb, a computer isn’t intelligent at all.
        These networks learn, but they will never make ethical decisions and can’t have sort of the human life experience.

        A human pilot might know from experience, that in certain conditions, the theoretical threshold is either too low or too high, which might be crucial to make a proper decision, while an AI has a margin threshold, and if some parameter matches the alert condition, the thing decides based on pure algorithms.

        The question is, not only in aviation, but also in the heavily promoted self driving cars and other areas.
        Do we really need artificial intelligence, if we have already interfaces to the human brain enabling controlling machines by thought?
        Do we really want to have an AI nanny, that makes decisions for us?

        • Agree: Vojkan
      45. @El Dato

        There was a two hour training video on iPad.

      46. George says:

        Are Boeing+FAA criminally liable? Manafort appears to be going to the can for failing to file a paper. Shkreli is in jail for mouthing off. Boeing+FAA killed 150 people then did it again. And they tried to keep the planes in the air still. And they tried to get hold of the black boxes which the Ethiopians wisely sent to France.

      47. Tom Welsh says:

        “For extra money, you can buy a second angle of attack indicator, and apparently these two airlines did not do so. For safety, two should be standard at no extra cost…”

        Exactly. It’s like selling a car and charging extra for seatbelts or airbags.

        • Replies: @Anon
      48. onebornfree says: • Website
        @Been_there_done_that

        Been_there_done_that says: “It points to clear evidence of willful criminal negligence and conspiracy, even though the article didn’t stress the fact that the physical design itself (awkward engine placement) should not have been approved in the first place. There is also new information in the article pertaining to the allowed angles of stabilizer adjustments, which significantly exceeded what the FAA had allegedly been aware of. ..”

        “Everything government touches turns to crap” Ringo Starr

        Get the government entirely out of all transport regulation and the regulation of how planes, cars, etc etc are built. The FAA is a criminal scam- always was, always will be. It’s just another part of the larger criminal scam known as the US government

        “Because they are all ultimately funded via both direct and indirect theft [taxes], and counterfeiting [central bank monopolies], all governments are essentially, at their very cores, 100% corrupt criminal scams which cannot be “reformed”,”improved”, nor “limited” in scope, simply because of their innate criminal nature.” onebornfree

        Government doesn’t work” Harry Browne

        “Taking the State wherever found, striking into its history at any point, one sees no way to differentiate the activities of its founders, administrators and beneficiaries from those of a professional-criminal class.” Albert J. Nock

        “The kind of man who wants the government to adopt and enforce his ideas is always the kind of man whose ideas are idiotic” H.L.Mencken

        Regards, onebornfree

      49. Vojkan says:

        “but the inherent instability of the engine/wing configuration remains.”

        That a problem in hardware design on a commercial passenger aircraft has to be solved with software is simply preposterous. People who have certified the 737 MAX belong in jail.

        • Replies: @Germanicus
        , @Wizard of Oz
      50. Tom Welsh says:
        @Ilyana_Rozumova

        “There was a funny comment somewhere that suggested that pilots should have commercial building level gauge under the seat. Actually your body can feel the increased incline or decline”.

        That turns out not to be the case. When an aircraft turns, for example, it banks – resulting in acceleration towards the outside of the bank (the original course). All sorts of aerial manoeuvres at high enough speed produce completely misleading “senses” of where “up” and “down” are. And your level gauge would be fooled in exactly the same way.

      51. Tom Welsh says:
        @onebornfree

        Good quotations!

        I’ll throw in one more: Tom Clancy (rather surprisingly).

        “What the government is good at is collecting taxes, taking away your freedoms and killing people. It’s not good at much else”.

        • Replies: @annamaria
      52. Since 1995 Boeing and Airbus have had backdoors installed on their planes computer control systems that allow a ground control to take control of the plane away from the pilots who then cannot override this and the ground controller has full control over the plane!

        This can be used in flying the plane into a designed crash and depending on who is on the plane may well have been done!

        • Replies: @TT
      53. Sbaker says:

        I’ll go with the retired Navy Pilot’s assessment below, not the lawyers fueling the media storm to line their pockets with lawsuits based on frivolous lies: From a retired Navy pilot.

        ••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••

        737 MAX… THE REST OF THE STORY…

        For those interested in the recent spate of accidents involving Boeing’s newest 737 variant, the real story of what is going on behind the scenes is largely not being reported.

        [MORE]

        It was interesting to note that President Trump alluded to the problem in a round about way, but unless you are a pilot you probably missed the point. In essence, President Trump was saying that technology is a poor substitute for a qualified pilot in command.

        One of the most basic skills a pilot learns from day one is energy management of the airplane. If the plane is too slow, it will literally drop from the sky. Too fast and the wings/airframe can come apart with disastrous consequences.

        In the history of commercial aviation in the US and western countries, the first crop of pilots to enter commercial service were the post world war two pilots. Those guys were the real deal and not only hand flew almost all of their hours but also in some of the most demanding conditions. The second wave were the airport kids who just fell in love with the idea of being a pilot and scrimped and saved to take lessons. Both categories of pilots were skilled in the art of aviation.

        With the explosion of second and third world travel, there were not even close to the number of skilled pilots to fly the thousands of new generation planes coming out of airbus and boeing. Unline Cathay Pacific, a Hong Kong airline that was almost exclusively piloted by british pilots, the new asian airlines wanted asian pilots to man the cockpits…often with disasterous results. Asiana flight 214 crashed in SFO in 2014 because the pilots did not know how to hand fly the plane when the ground-based approach ILS was out of service.

        Boeing, the FAA and worldwide aviation agencies track not only accidents, but also INCIDENTS…crap that was going sideways but didnt result in a crash. The number of unqualified pilots from asia and africa was plain to see in the number of errors being committed on a daily basis.

        To make a long story short, airbus saw this eventuality decades ago and implemented automatic safety systems in anticipation of unqualified aircrews. Boeing resisted for a lot of very good reasons…but after the Asiana crash, the chinese government basically told Boeing to “idiot-proof” the 737 as china would end up being the biggest purchaser of that model. Since Boeing had opted not to add automated control systems (which often override pilot’s inputs) they were forced to apply a band-aid solution which, unfortunately was not done well. Only one sensor was driving some very complicated algos which worked against the pilot’s decision-making inputs.

        The fact that the asian and african pilots were essentially unqualified is highly embarrassing to the respective governments and boeing kept it quiet. When ALPA, the pilot’s union reps found the system was added without informing the pilots, they went insane…

        However, what they DON’T know, is that the MCAS system can be enabled or disabled per plane, and can be done remotely on a real time basis via uplink. The US airlines management, due to the superior training and piloting skills opted NOT to activate MCAR…but the asian/african carriers DID. That is why most of the “ crappy” airlines self grounded while all the major US airlines are still flying without a problem.

        Its a very PC issue, but basically comes down to 30-40% of the global pilot population are really not qualified to be pilots, but more just data input managers.”

        • Replies: @Wally
        , @TT
        , @TT
        , @acementhead
      54. @renfro

        Sorry that simply does not work. It would leave the stabilizer in the last position.
        Before shutting of the automatic control the stabilizer must be brought to neutral position.
        If the system is lacking this feature, than system is faulty.

      55. @Ilyana_Rozumova

        I thought for a minute you meant Jack STRAW, from Wichita . I don’t know who Jack Screw is.

        Oh, a piece of hardware in the tail of any plane with a fully-movable-for-trim stabilizer? Unfortunately, the mechanism itself cannot NOT be a single-point-of-failure. If you have 2 screw mechanisms in parallel, then one failing can lock up the stabilizer. If you have a break-out pin or something to let one keep moving if the other locks up, than how will you make sure the break-out feature doesn’t work on the wrong screw?

        If you have them in series, then a run-away of one of them is still just as much of a problem, depending on the position of the other. The run-away problem is usually electrical/electronic, right, so it’s not like the motor can’t move back the other way? It just didn’t happen in time, or at all – see all the arguments here – to save the plane, so it was found in the full stabilizer-leading-edge-up, A/C nose-down position.

        I would think there’s be 2 motors, one of which can power the screw if the other fails. If the other fails by completely locking up at its bearings or something, then what? You may be better off with on super-reliable on, but I don’t know on this.

        There’s trade-offs between reliability and redundancy – they don’t always increase together.

        Here’s the guy I though you were talking about:

      56. @Dieter Kief

        Hey, Dieter, sorry to sound so pissed-off. The thing is that when a guy like that Feynman(?) (re: the 1st Space Shuttle explosion) showing a simple thing like “hey, these O-rings get cold and don’t work” gets the public thinking that the engineers are idiots, it’s not the real story. Just like with this 737-MAX thing, engineers know about all the details. It’s a matter of trade-offs, and then later-on, politics.

        Like I said whatever engineers work with the power-screw mechanism for trim on most jet airplanes, they know so much more than anybody here, including me, that any suggestion by us would have been thought about long ago (whether “that is just stupid because …” or “some guys looked at doing that 10 years ago, BUT ….”) That goes the same for the AOA sensors and any damn other thing involved. What management decides to do, especially with regard to this lack of communication and training about MCAS, is a different story.

        • Replies: @Ilyana_Rozumova
      57. Sbaker says:
        @Mr McKenna

        Your comment sounds straight out of the legal shyster’s handbook.

      58. Arby says: • Website

        Boeing is arrogant?!! If that was the only problem we’d be fine. The monsters running Boeing would be fine.

      59. One would think that after you turn the autopilot off, you are now in COMPLETE control of the aircraft. If MCAS wasn’t integrated into the autopilot to save time or expense, some heads need to roll.

      60. People should start thinking long and hard about how many diversity hires Boeing now has relative to 50 years ago, and the same with the FAA. The reason? Minorities cannot possibly maintain the same level of quiet brilliance that is required to create a good design of a new aircraft. Indicators for both IQ and quality education have been severely dumbed down in order to pretend that minorities are tabula rasa just as capable as “white privileged” America. Of course, everybody has been trained like Pavlov dogs to be afraid to even start to think about investigating such issues, instead they’re going to whistle past the graveyard as the US continues to lose any and all competitive technological edge, leading eventually to non-functional indoor plumbing.

        As but one minor example, not too long ago there was a new bridge in Florida that came crashing down, proudly designed by a wise Latina and (almost) completed by a diversity construction company, killing six people….

        https://www.miamiherald.com/news/local/community/miami…/article212571434.html

        US society is running on the fumes of capital built up over 200 years including technical capital, financial capital, social capital, and especially traditional moral capital. All of it was created and maintained by white Christian males, who also knew how to lead their women and keep minority influence to an absolute minimum. However, today all of that is almost gone. For any society, there is a minimum below which it dares not go in order to successfully maintain itself, let alone make further reality-based progress. Quite obviously, we have already passed it.

        My predictions:
        – Boeing will be financially hit by a world-wide refusal to fly the 737-MAX, and will also be unable to design anything new and better. It will fall further and further behind Airbus Industries.
        – US defense companies will be unable to keep up with technological innovation relative to the Russians and Chinese. As soon as China thinks the time is ripe, they will successfully lob some hypercruise missiles at a US carrier somewhere in the Taiwan straits. The US response will be to tuck its tail between its legs and leave Taiwan to its own devices, which will be for all of about four weeks.
        – No Republican will ever be elected President again starting from 2020. The left, smelling absolute victory in the air, will speed up its control of anything and everything that even hints at opposing its secular morality and fantasy narratives. Gulags and bullets to the brain will start to occur in secret locations, but the media will duly ignore all of it.

      61. @Achmed E. Newman

        For Gods sake. if you answer to my comment please at least read it. I did not talk about two screws.
        I was talking about two motors on one jack shaft which can be engaged or disengaged by clutches.

        • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
      62. anon[381] • Disclaimer says:

        The problem is simply runaway trim. Runaway trim has long—for decades—been an emergency checklist item in the many, many aircraft with electrical trim actuators. Any competent pilot can quickly recognize and stop a runaway trim problem.

        Third-worlders aping the capability of competent pilots, not so much; hence, two third-world crashes from runaway trim. Don’t fly with intrinsically incompetent pilots. All men aren’t created equal.

        • Disagree: Bruce County
      63. @Achmed E. Newman

        Probably you still will not able to get my hint, so here it is.
        The second motor will only serve to bring the stabilizer to neutral position.
        That can by controlled by simple limit switches.

      64. Wally says:
        @Sbaker

        Good points.

        Two tragedies out X amount of planes, flights, and who it is doing the piloting needs to seriously be looked at, or probably has, but as you said, it’s a PC issue.

        More will be revealed.

        • Replies: @Sbaker
      65. Wally says:

        Ron, your ‘preview comment’ feature is not working.

      66. @Ilyana_Rozumova

        You aren’t an engineer, so just STOP!

        • Replies: @Ilyana_Rozumova
      67. @Ilyana_Rozumova

        Because you used the ambiguous phrase “one drive”, it was not at all clear you were asking about one or two motors. Like you’d have read if you read my comment, I don’t know. Disengagement via clutches makes for more failure modes, does it not?

        Maybe someone on here does know the answer to your question, or you could do some searching.

        • Replies: @Ilyana_Rozumova
      68. Anonymous[224] • Disclaimer says:

        Ah, the “free solo” world of deregulated capitalism, where a crash of any kind is always imminent. Of course, most capitalists have never experienced a single day of personal “free solo” reality, coddled from cradle to grave. No, the real no-safety-net experience is for the 99%, where they are experimented on like guinea pigs to test self-driving cars, self-flying jets, 5G “smart grid” cancer be damned! Technocracy has always been the goal:

        “The technotronic era involves the gradual appearance of a more controlled society. Such a society would be dominated by an elite, unrestrained by traditional values. Soon it will be possible to assert almost continuous surveillance over every citizen and maintain up-to-date complete files containing even the most personal information about the citizen. These files will be subject to instantaneous retrieval by the authorities.” ~ Zbigniew Brzezinski’s book, Between Two Ages, 1970

        BETWEEN TWO AGES – Democracy to Technocracy

      69. @onebornfree

        Good stuff, man. Now, just on the off chance that you didn’t read my long comment up above, here is how it tends to work when Big-Gov gets so involved, as it is in the airline and aerospace industries:

        These FAA/Boeing discussions may open up your and lots of others’ eyes to what happens with a big bureaucracy. The onerous paper-work and minute rule-following can lead to a situation in which not enough people on either end are actually looking at the big picture. I will tell you that, upon an inspection of a small charter airplane, I realized after going through this, that there could have been a foot-long gash in the belly of the plane, and the inspector would not have known. He was busy worrying about a lack of paperwork for the installation of radios that had been in the plane 15 years! Welcome to the bureau-party, Pal!</blockquote

      70. AaronB says:

        1) Runaway trim is something pilots know about and train for and is part of a simple checklist every pilot must memorize.

        2) On the doomed Lion Air flight, the flight before the crash had the same problem. It appears the main pilots did not remember their training, but a third passenger pilot did and saved the day with a simple switch. The airline did not fix the problem and the plane crashed on the next flight.

        3) It remains extremely puzzling that after the Lion Air flight, a trained Ethipian Air flight crew could not remember their training and initiate the simple procedure needed to avert disaster. Boeing sent out bulletins after the Lion Air crash.

        4) Boeing seems to have counted on the extreme unlikelihood of there being a malfunction, together with any malfunction resembling a problem familiar to pilots who train extensively for it (runaway trim), combined with an extremely simple procedure to deal with it that all pilots memorize, to provide sufficient layers of safety.

        Boeing erred in this. While understandable, as a passenger I am not satisfied. I want pilots to have to exercise their training under stress as little as possible.

        5) Boeing designed a plane that was less aerodynamically stable under certain extreme conditions unlikely to be encountered, then compensated with software. This is not an extreme deviation from accepted safe practice, as planes are frequently designed this way with compensations built in – the unusual feature here is the software patch.

        Boeing erred again, but clearly were not engaging in some unprecedented dangerous behavior that is far from anything that has been done before.

        Progress comes from extending in slight increments accepted practice. In this case, the extension was not well done.

        6) Boeing implemented the system poorly. Attached to one sensor, it was hardly a system with built in redundancy.

        7) Boeing seemed to have treated the issue as lightly as it did because runaway trim is a simple fixable problem that trained air crews should be able to deal. So even if that one sensor fails, it won’t be catastrophic.

        8) This raises the troubling reality that many air crews, especially in poor countries, cannot really be relied on to deal with simple emergencies despite having trained for them, and that we are not seeing more crashes mostly because planes themselves have become so much more reliable.

        9) Boeing clearly erred in judgement and implementation – but was also clearly extending the envelope of accepted practice using an understandable reasoning process that proved flawed. Progress occurs in incremental extensions of this kind. It was carried out poorly here.

        10) A very human tragedy from all parties concerned. Boeing’s reasoning was human and understandable, but was flawed and overly complacent. The pilots probably had grown complacent from the safe and automated nature of flying these days.

      71. @Achmed E. Newman

        Your nose is too far up, so you need some automatic trim system.

      72. @Achmed E. Newman

        If you do not understand something it does not automatically means that is ambiguous.

      73. Can someone clear this up for me?

        On the one hand, we’re saying that the computer software malfunctioned. On the other, I’m hearing about “runaway trim”, and how fixing this would have saved the aircraft.

        Anyways, from my very basic understanding:

        – Nose-down software malfunctioning/overcompensating
        – 3rd world pilots don’t know how to disable it
        – Crash

        • Replies: @anon
      74. Kapyong says:
        @James Thompson

        Hmmm … doesn’t the AoA sensor require significant air-flow ?

      75. @AaronB

        Very good general summary, Aaron.

        • Replies: @AaronB
        , @Ilyana_Rozumova
      76. nsa says:

        Boeing is commonly referred to locally as “The Lazy B Ranch”. They are the most subsidized outfit this side of USPS. Half of their gross is “cost plus” military boondoggle contracting. Uncle Sugar has even created the Import-Export Bank just to finance Boeing civilian plane sales. All of the Seattle tech community know the most incompetent engineers and code scribbler hacks end up working over at the Lazy B Ranch gravy train……their stupidity is beyond legendary. Yet, Boeing to this day remains the crown jewel of what is left of American enterprise. Pilots……do not turn off your MCAS as an update and patch is being applied………..

        • Replies: @Sbaker
      77. Sbaker says:
        @Wally

        Wally, don’t misunderstand, I can’t take credit for what a very professional, retired Navy pilot wrote about the topic as a friend. He has the knowledge about pilot training and experience. My experience extends only to flying a couple of cessnas that were already airborne–pathetic ain’t it? Driving the whole discussion is not just pilot incompetence but the lawyers finding the next deep pocket to pick.

      78. @Achmed E. Newman

        System itself is an overkill. It should be simple warning to pilot that attack angle is too steep and pilot would only lift up the flaps a little bit. Pilot should have full manual control of the aircraft, until it reaches cruising height. Any other philosophy is nonsensical.
        Pilot should not be a repairman of the system in flight.

        • Replies: @Raviolli Frivolli
      79. Sbaker says:
        @nsa

        It would be interesting to know what kind of legendary stupid work you are qualified to do? Can you share that tidbit or is it too embarrassing? I lived in Washington state for a couple of years and have a close cousin living in Seattle for several decades. Oddly nobody I know is aware of Boeing’s “legendary stupidity” with the possible exception of union socialists–is that your source?

        Here’s a tip for you, flying at close to the speed of sound in a 100,000 lb aircraft is not without risk. Tip 2, nothing is 100% safe.

        • Replies: @Jim Christian
        , @Hibernian
      80. res says:
        @El Dato

        Isn’t this just shoddy release policy?

        Sounds like it. Only I would leave out the “just.” If true that seems like a big deal. Any idea what the norm in the industry is?

      81. @Monotonous Languor

        US society is running on the fumes of capital built up over 200 years including technical capital, financial capital, social capital, and especially traditional moral capital. All of it was created and maintained by white Christian males, who also knew how to lead their women and keep minority influence to an absolute minimum. However, today all of that is almost gone. For any society, there is a minimum below which it dares not go in order to successfully maintain itself, let alone make further reality-based progress. Quite obviously, we have already passed it.

        Pretty succinct. Gets right to the nuts.

        • Agree: Jim Don Bob
      82. @Achmed E. Newman

        Your critique of the Seattle Times article is not bad at all. Of the 15 or so articles on the internet that I have read I thought it was clearly the best of the lot.

        I am not sure what to make of that.

        • Replies: @Dieter Kief
      83. @Vojkan

        That a problem in hardware design on a commercial passenger aircraft has to be solved with software is simply preposterous. People who have certified the 737 MAX belong in jail.

        Agreed, just look at the F-35, this thing does not fly without software aid. Hey, it looks like an aircraft, looks nice, just the pilots are scared trying to fly it. Consequently, they plan “6th gen” craft, in fact drones and AI, no pilot.

        This is the civilian application of a thought interface, but gives a clue what military have much more sophisticated, and what could be used.

      84. Factorize says:
        @Ilyana_Rozumova

        I have been wondering about this as well. The Jack screw is such an impressively reliable system, why did they not add in another layer of redundancy in order to provide flexibility in difficult control situations? Jack screw system 1 could go up 5 degrees or down 5 degrees from level. This system would be used for nearly all normal flying conditions. In non-normal conditions there would be System 2. System 2 could independently from system 1 move up 7 degrees or down 7 degrees from level. System 2 would not be under the control of MCAS.

        • Replies: @Ilyana_Rozumova
      85. Dan Kurt says:

        re: “Several months ago, I willingly accepted an iPhone operating system upgrade, and lost all the Notes I had stored on my phone…I had stored these notes on my phone rather than the cloud, assuming they were more secure and more private because they were restricted to the hardware in my pocket…”JAMES THOMPSON

        It was your own fault not Apple’s. For heaven’s sake, Apple gives you the choice to save your iPhone software on the Cloud which you rejected and also locally on a computer you own in iTunes. One can use both, the Cloud and iTunes, which is what I and millions do.

        Dan Kurt

        • Replies: @James Thompson
      86. @Achmed E. Newman

        To prove that I am absolute expert in these matters I am give you instant solution.
        What pilot should do in this case is simply turn the plain upside down and flew the plain that way until destination. Landing in this case would encounter certain difficulties, but it would not be so bad.

        • Agree: Achmed E. Newman
      87. CanSpeccy says: • Website

        I do not avoid race differences in intelligence as explanations for human behaviour, but I don’t see that as the most likely explanation in this case.

        But bear it in mind folks. The only planes that crashed were flown by darkies who we all know, don’t we, have low IQs.

        Actually, we don’t have any information about racial variation in the IQ of pilots, which is a very different question to that of racial variation in IQ among nations: different for the obvious reason that pilots in African and some other Third World nations must be vastly better educated relative to the mass of the population than is the case in the First or Second World’s. What that means is that the reported racial differences in IQ are likely much greater that the racial differences, if any, in IQ among pilots.

        But while the challenge of flying an inherently unstable airliner, with a dumb, defective and secret mechanism designed in such a way as to repeatedly drive planes into the ground (did Boeing outsource the software engineering to darkest Africa) no doubt requires skill, knowledge, and quick thinking, we should not be distracted from the basic facts; namely:

        A bum design: giving rise to inherent instability and an ever-present risk of a stall;

        Deceptive marketing: it flies just like the old 737 (except when it doesn’t, but don’t tell anyone that);

        An African-designed, I mean African-quality, um no, I mean a designed-in-Third-Worldized-America auto-anti-stall system (MCAS);

        Failure to ensure all pilots know when MCAS is about to kill them and how to turn the fucking thing off.

      88. @Sbaker

        Safer than a car, by far.

        • Replies: @Sbaker
      89. MEFOBILLS says:

        Back in the “day” when I worked on autopilot and instrumentation systems for aircraft, we used two AoA sensors. And this was a Boeing military jet.

        (For extra money, you can buy a second angle of attack indicator, and apparently these two airlines did not do so. For safety, two should be standard at no extra cost).

        I’m surprised if today’s big jets don’t already have two AoA’s. Would somebody please confirm?

        Both AoA transducer data was fed into Flight Director System, where it would be acted upon by THREE computers operating in parallel.

        These Three Computers were arranged using MAJORITY LOGIC comparators.

        In other words, two of the three computers had to be in high agreement before resultant data was considered valid.

        A robust system would have two AoA and use some other positional information, maybe a ring laser gyro to determine attitude. Three sensors would be higher confidence than two, especially when AoA from one side of the craft may be experiencing slightly different prevailing air.

        Between three sensors and majority logic computing, there would have been high confidence in the systems output data to then control the elevators.

        Is Boeing now using low IQ engineers who have lost their knowledge from the past? The suits in the upper offices need to be opposed when they do wrong, so there may now be a culture of Boeing engineers who are no longer maverick enough to speak out.

        Boeing doesn’t build them better….anymore.

      90. Concerning stalling of the aircraft.
        Stalling of the aircraft is not some kind of monster that can swallow the aircraft in a second.
        Speedometer of the aircraft is one of the sensors that never fails.
        The pilot has it in front of his eyes. and in ascend mode pilot watches only this speedometer.
        The aircraft itself has a huge inertia. so things do not happen suddenly.
        The moment speedometer stops and moves back a little bit the pilot puts the pedal to the metal ad he plays a little bit with flaps and everything is just fine.

      91. bluedog says:
        @onebornfree

        Remove all the government regulations and let the companies and corporation regulate themselves,well you just saw the results of this with Boeing and the FAA being in the same bed,thanks but no thanks only fools think that life goes on with no regulations or limits,and as Joe Kennedy said after cleaning up wall street in 29 “all business men are son-a-bitchs” and that just about sums it up.!!!.!!!

        • Replies: @Sbaker
        , @renfro
      92. MEFOBILLS says:
        @YetAnotherAnon

        You have touched on something important.

        Boeing is outsourcing in order to sell airplanes. The export markets will demand to make large components in order to balance trade and keep their citizens employed.

        China of course, will want to build large subsections in order to acquire technology.

        This distributed business model is also predicated on CAD/CAM where disparate people across distance and time collaborate. I’m also sure that colleges have drunk the cool-aide and wax poetic about distributed manufacturing and collaboration.

        The old “Boeing” model was concentrated in Seattle, where different operations could meet face to face, simply by walking.

        People could also talk in the hallway with chance meetings, and this would avoid problems before they could occur. Hey Joe, Did you hear about that stupid MCAS design that Jim is proposing?

        All systems predicate their output, and Boeing’s system predicated this output. Globalism = Bad IMHO.

      93. Goatweed says:

        Southwest and American fly the Max. Have they had problems?

      94. Factorize says:

        The most chilling aspect of these incidents for me is the engineers who have done the most comprehensive studies on this question concluded that the true risk involved not having a full -5 degree tail plane nose push down. I suppose anti-MCAS protests could start at any time now. However, disabling MCAS would be going against expert opinion and could simply expose the flying public to a greater level of risk. MCAS resulted from years of expert design. What if it is the best design and the problem does relate more to other factors?

      95. CanSpeccy says: • Website
        @MEFOBILLS

        Is Boeing now using low IQ engineers

        With a longstanding open border policy, you can’t expect all of them to be lily white, and you know what that means, though no one’s gonna spell it out in so many words.

      96. Sbaker says:
        @Monotonous Languor

        I hope you are a too pessimistic, but the Muslims and the Chinese are gaining ground. Frankly, I’m astounded at the support that many here have for the Muslims. It seems many here are taken in by the low IQ Somali muslim mostly because some find her oddly cute and others side with her philosophy of hating all non Muslims, aka infidels. If only we knew how many Muslims post to this site?

        • Replies: @bluedog
        , @annamaria
        , @annamaria
      97. res says:
        @MEFOBILLS

        Back in the “day” when I worked on autopilot and instrumentation systems for aircraft, we used two AoA sensors.

        How did you resolve the case when the two sensors differed? You talk about 3 computers using majority logic, but each of those computers only has the two sensors for input and has to resolve that somehow. Why not use three sensors so you can use majority logic there as well?

        P.S. As you are no doubt aware (I think it’s good to clarify though) majority logic also allows detection of a failing component before it causes system failure. But does not guarantee it. If one is foolish enough to operate with a 2-1 vote in play for any length of time eventually the system will break.

        • Replies: @MEFOBILLS
      98. I think its time we look to Africa, Haiti and Liberia’s national aircraft manufacturing industry to start building commercial jets.

      99. Cowboy says:

        How many other near crashes have thier been? Now we know one just a day before Lion air:

        https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2019-03-19/duty-pilot-saved-doomed-lion-air-737-nosedive-day-deadly-crash

        All this war mongering with Russa, North Korea, Syria and Iran is costing the US all remaining credibility. When Trump finally tweets that the 737-max is safe again and going to make america great again, no one will believe him. When Boeing says it, no one will believe them. When the FAA says it, no one will believe them.

        All this war mongering with Russia, North Korea, Syria and Iran is costing the US all remaining credibility. When Trump finally tweets that the 737-max is safe again and going to make america great again, no one will believe him. When Boeing says it, no one will believe them. When the FAA says it, no one will believe them.

        The US has become the high tech and manufacturing laughing stock of the planet. We have examples with the 737-Max, F35, Zumwalt Destroyer, California Hi Speed train, Telsa, Challenger. In Syria it looks like that of 69 cruise missles fired, only a handful met their target. There are also all the collisions of US navy ships in the past few years.

        https://www.moonofalabama.org/2019/03/boeing-the-faa-and-why-two-737-max-planes-crashed.html

      100. Sbaker says:
        @Jim Christian

        Absolutely, and yet these same complainers don’t hesitate to buy any car model on the market, foreign or domestic. It is a defeat for common sense.

      101. @Factorize

        Very good idea but it would add a significant weight to the aircraft.
        I do suspect that adding heavier engines the balance of the aircraft was already shifted due that fact. . Because uplifting force of aircraft is by wings the location of wings decides the ratio how much weight should be before wings and after wings.
        I did not study aeronautic engineering so I do not know this data. But adding heavier engines already did put this number into question.
        Adding second complete system with linkages and shifting weight would certainly influence that number, and I do suspect negatively

        • Replies: @Factorize
      102. Sbaker says:
        @bluedog

        Joe Kennedy was a saint and it appears you are related.

        • LOL: bluedog
      103. @Ilyana_Rozumova

        I cannot stand this pseudo-clever mumbling. I am a total layman in the field but just after reading a few articles my understanding is that the Mcas system wasn’t developed as a fancy addition for the pilots. It had to be developed because the forces on certain AoA exceeded allowed levels. The whole issue can be wrapped up in a simple formula: a new engine equals a completely new plane design equals lots of money spent

        • Replies: @Ilyana_Rozumova
      104. renfro says:
        @bluedog

        You couldn’t be more right. These two crashes come down to greed and politics.

        https://www.barrons.com/articles/capt-sully-sullenberger-where-boeing-and-the-faa-went-wrong-in-this-ugly-saga-51553013295
        ”For too many years, the FAA has not been provided budgets sufficient to ensure appropriate oversight of a rapidly growing global aviation industry. Staffing has not been adequate for FAA employees to oversee much of the critically important work of validating and approving aircraft certification. Instead, much of the work has been outsourced by designating aircraft manufacturer employees to do the work on behalf of the FAA. This, of course, has created inherent conflicts of interest, when employees working for the company whose products must be certified to meet safety standards are the ones doing much of the work of certifying them. There simply are not nearly enough FAA employees to do this important work in-house.”
        He says the FAA lacks sufficient funds to ensure proper oversight of the global aviation industry. On top of funds, the agency is severely understaffed.

        ….Capt. “Sully” Sullenberger is a safety expert, author and speaker on leadership and culture. He is also a retired airline pilot who, on Jan. 15, 2009, safely landed US Airways Flight 1549 on the Hudson River in New York when both engines lost power when they were struck by a flock of birds. All 155 people on board survived.

        • Replies: @renfro
      105. Z-man says:

        Executive hubris for not grounding the plane right after the Ethiopian crash! Boeing not good.

        • Replies: @Anon
      106. renfro says:
        @renfro

        How did the FAA come to be so underfunded and politically pressured it couldn’t do the job?

        First,Bush transferred FAA funds to the airport scanning system for terrorist after 911.
        Then Trump cuts more from FAA in 2017 and 2018 and now is intending to finish it off in 2019.

        The FAA’s fiscal 2019 budget request of $16.1 billion is about 1.9% down from fiscal 2017’s approved level and includes a hefty cut in its research, engineering and development (RE&D) funding. It also calls for slight reductions in operations, and facilities and equipment (F&E), as well as staffing. The proposed budget, released Feb. 12, includes $74.4 million for RE&D, a 58% cut from fiscal 2017—the last budget approved by Congress, and the one the FAA

        Trump has said the FAA can be replace by private industry. In another brain fart he said he wants a ‘non profit organization to take over most of the FAA operations.

        The elite have their own jets, the rest of the public can crash and die…..but its all for the greater good of corporations…..privatize the government.

        • Replies: @CanSpeccy
        , @bluedog
      107. @Raviolli Frivolli

        Your attitude is the fist sound attitude on this site, and I do suspect that you are not even an aeronautical Engineer. Saving money did cost human lives. That requires to take a look at board of directors of Boeing.

      108. @AaronB

        Good summary. I know several pilots that have flown the Max (both with American Airlines and with Southwest) and two have encountered this issue – it wasn’t a big deal. They were mildly irritated at Boeing’s presumption that taking positive action (the MCAS dialing in trim that wasn’t asked for) vs something like a “stick shaker” that is more of a nag was the correct approach, but didn’t view it as a serious safety issue.

        Airlines hiring pilots that don’t really know how to fly is a big issue and its happening every day. There isn’t an easy solution to it. In the US lots of kids grow up hanging around airfields and flying light airplanes that don’t have automation. There are two routes to the airlines in the US generally speaking. 1) join the military and build time that way. In the military you learn how to actually handle an airplane or 2) the civilian route. You get a private license then get to 250 hours then you get a commercial license and you build time as a flight instructor (an awful job) or towing banners (I got over 700 hours in just one summer towing signs) or flying skydivers (I did this too – the skydivers got me a hat that said “Elevator Operator” on it). In the old days flying cancelled checks was another option. Doing it this way you fly lots of airplanes with little to no automation, in and out of short non-towered fields. You learn how to fly.

        Its easy to be the “get off my lawn” guy and bitch that too many pilots don’t know how to fly but its true and there’s not an easy solution. Lots of countries don’t have extensive general aviation like in the US and lots of countries don’t have big militaries churning out pilots. The fact is there is not an sufficient supply of pilots that actually know how to handle airplanes. So the manufacturers have tried to compensate with automation, but there are times when having a pilot that could add some value would be nice.

        Some airlines (Qatar for example) know they don’t have pilots at home so they hire westerners. The Asian carriers prefer their own and it often has disastrous consequences (e.g. the Asiana crew that landed short of the field at SFO).

      109. I am of the opinion that if passengers are to die on a plane they should be victims of an American Naval Vessel, like the Vincennes, and not the victims of some shoddy ‘fix”

      110. @James Thompson

        Maybe this is related to what I read in an article. The article discussed the accident and bit of info said after the first issues, the manufacturer of the plane issued an update (a paid update) to correct the issue or aid in pilot recognition of the issue.

        Not all airlines decided to opt for the upgrade, the African and Asian companies which lost planes were among the group not to purchase the upgrade.

        My thinking was “This shouldn’t be a paid option, this should be mandatory.”, but I’m no capitalist.

      111. Herald says:
        @William Badwhite

        Not too much to argue with there, as we all want pilots who can fly but Boeing remains firmly overstretched and on the hook.

      112. Anon[424] • Disclaimer says:
        @Z-man

        Probably all the globalizacion executives and politicians suffer from a very inflated hubris that prevents then from seeing reality and from respecting people .

      113. Factorize says:
        @Ilyana_Rozumova

        Thank you for your reply. I think the flying public needs to put their foot down on some basic ideas of aircraft for the safety of everyone.

        All of the aircraft needs to be more than 17 inches off the ground! This is a tremendous mystery to me. From what I have read airplanes were designed close to the ground in the 1950s because it helped baggage handlers move baggage by hand onto aircraft. Moving towards a design which is more than a few inches off the ground will help us have safer, more fuel efficient airplanes that do not require complex and sometimes pathological patch systems .

        There needs to be a greater amount of redundancy on key flight systems. The Jack screw is a fundamentally important flight element that has the enormously important task of moving the nose up and down. No one can now getting on a plane with the knowledge that there is only one, non-redundant screw that determines the angle of the plane along it’s major axis. Basically, if that screw fails, you are in trouble. As we have learned from these recent crashes, even if the Jack screw itself doesn’t nominally fail, it is possible that other systems such as MCAS can lead it to an equivalent to fail. Adding in redundant and independent jack screws should be intensively investigated.

        I think that there should also be a gentleman’s agreement that restricts the level of competition that is allowed in airplane manufacturing. Allowing companies to introduce ever more fuel efficiency can and has lead to aircraft that are less safe for everyone

      114. By-tor says:

        The FBI’s field office in Seattle has now joined the criminal probe into the ‘certification’ of the 737-800. Are they as chummy with Boeing’s high rollers as the FAA and Pentagon are so? I would wager that one or two foreign-born engineer unsuspecting sots are going to take the fall for a ‘software’ malfunction and not for design flaws. The well-connected high-ups in Chicago will likely skate. Boeing is one of the US’ most sacred cows, so the feds will keep it on life support no matter the cost.

        https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2019-03-20/boeing-tumbles-after-fbi-joins-criminal-investigation-737-max-approval

      115. Anon[392] • Disclaimer says:
        @Tom Welsh

        You suggest a good practical eugenic measure. Perhaps on this website we can extend the reasoning to wider H-bd considerations.

      116. @Vojkan

        Well, one sees what you are saying but that wouldn’t be reasonable if it related only to any number of non life threatening problems one might imagine.

        • Replies: @Vojkan
      117. @Dan Kurt

        Dear Dan,

        I report my errors, so we are agreed they were my errors.

        By way of explaining my mistake, I assumed the Cloud involved an extra layer of risk over and above just writing to local memory. To compound the problem, upgrades initially had no deleterious effect on my Notes. It was only the last update which did the damage. Previously, no apparent problem.

        • Replies: @Che Guava
      118. @Monotonous Languor

        Your reference to “white Christian males” makes me ask what the important differences and distinctions you have in mind that include Protestants (various), Catholics, Orthodox, Anglio, Scottish, Irish, Polish, German, Scandinavian etc in one superior grouping.

      119. Che Guava says:

        Many interesting comments. Boeing is an ugly state-suckled monster, as is its main imitator.

        Major airports were more interesting when they had aeroplanes from more than two companies.

        The recent deaths, very sad.

        I really wonder about something that may be a little off-topic, but it seems to almost be down the memory hole.

        Whatever happened to MH370? The much that is known (e.g., known flight path, comms) is bizarre. I can’t help but feel that much more is known than was reported when people were still interested, but is suppressed.

      120. Che Guava says:
        @James Thompson

        James,

        It is not your error, but a design error. Of course it is natural to assume that, absent a lightning strike or soaking, the local storage should be safe.

        After reading Dan’s reply to you, it makes me think that Apple intentionally caused the problem, as a step in attempting to *force* people to use ‘cloud’ storage.

        • Agree: Cortes
      121. @Anonymous

        What is the point of MCAS over traditional stall warnings?

        MCAS is not a stall prevention or warning system, despite repeated claims to the contrary in this thread and all over the media. It’s a system to counteract the pitching moment caused by the MAX’s larger, farther forward engines during extreme maneuvers. The stall warning system is the same as it was in older 737 models.

        MCAS is clearly documented in the differences training manual, which evidently many pilots do not read. The jumpseat pilot on the Lion Air plane knew how to shut off the MCAS when it malfunctioned the night before the crash, probably because he’d read the manual while the pilot and copilot had not.

        It defies belief that the crew on the previous flight didn’t notify the airline of what had happened, aside from reporting the bad AOA sensor. And it defies belief that any 737 MAX pilot was still unclear on the MCAS and how to turn it off, after the Lion Air crash and the bulletin Boeing sent out. There must have been more to the Ethiopian crash than the MCAS.

      122. CanSpeccy says: • Website
        @renfro

        The FAA’s fiscal 2019 budget request of $16.1 billion

        This is brilliant. You’ve put your finger on the real problem. Do you realize $16 billion and change is more then the GDP of two-thirds of the world’s countries.

        In such a large organization, the guy assessing the safety of the MCAS kluge would have been eight or ten layers down the bureaucracy. In other words, there was essentially no possibility of his conveying the urgency of any concerns he may have had to the top decision makers. First, because the top guys at the FAA are too important to bother dealing with mere technical details, and second, because they’re probably too busy schmoozing with the airline industry execs.

        No, Trump sure blew it. He should not have cut the budget of the FAA 5%, he should have slashed it by at least 95%, then the agency might have developed some kind of focus on aircraft safety.

        • Replies: @renfro
      123. anon[310] • Disclaimer says:
        @UrbaneFrancoOntarian

        There are all kinds of reasons runaway horizontal stabilizer trim might happen. On this Max 8 jet, the trim ran away because of a malfunctioning MCAS. The trim jackscrew in the Ethiopian accident has already confirmed runaway trim, as stated publicly in the news. The only thing that happened from a pilot perspective is runaway trim. It can happen on many jets for whatever reason, not just a MCAS problem. Many jets without MCAS have checklists for runaway horizontal trim. Any competent pilot can recognize and stop runaway trim. There is no need for the pilot to diagnose or engineer the reason it has run away, just do the items (often memory items) in the emergency checklist.

        737 Emergency Checklist for Runaway Horizontal Stabilizer Trim:

        I. Runaway Stabilizer
        CONTROL COLUMN – HOLD FIRMLY
        AUTOPILOT (if engaged) – DISENGAGE
        Do not re-engage the autopilot. Control airplane pitch attitude manually with control column and main electric trim as needed
        If the Runaway Continues
        STAB TRIM CUTOUT SWITCHES (both) – CUTOUT
        If the Runaway Continues
        STABILIZER TRIM WHEEL – GRASP and HOLD

        • Replies: @AaronB
        , @Ilyana_Rozumova
        , @FB
      124. AaronB says:
        @anon

        Thanks for this. So cutting off switches was #2 on the checklist.

        This is scary, because if, as you say, runaway trim can happen for a number of reasons, then fixing the MCAS issue will still leave us with an apparent situation where many pilots cannot handle runaway trim.

        That is not reassuring. Maybe improving pilot standards – and paying them more to get better people – should be one of the outcomes of this, whatever the final report on MCAS.

      125. stevecel says:

        The proximal problem was low hours and low intelligence on the part of the pilots. Auto-trim error -> disable auto-trim. How any particular pilot is able to come to the correct conclusion is a function of the time limitation given by the altitude at which the issue occurred. If these pilots had more experience or were smarter that time horizon becomes more or less safe. Given infinite time any pilot will probably have come to the correct course of action. Boeing will probably have to add an additional AoA sensor to each plane at their expense and pay out some monies, but the MAX 8 will keep on flying.

      126. @simple_pseudonymic_handle

        Same here in Germany. Very little good reporting/analysis.
        What to do about this situation? Praise this blog? – And Trevor Sumner’s tweets – and? – Maybe Achmed E. Neumann has any suggestions? – – . . – –

      127. Dave Pinsen says: • Website

        The original issue here, judging by the FT’s big read on it over the weekend, is that MCAS was a shortcut in lieu of building a new plane designed with the new, energy efficient engines in mind. That was Boeing’s initial plan, but American Airlines’ announcement 8 years ago that it would switch from 737s to Airbus’s equivalent with more efficient engines prompted to run with the 737 Max instead.

      128. Alfred says:

        It looks like the international mandate of the FAA is over.

        How long will it take before it is the turn of the FDA with vaccines and a host of other things? They got it in the first place by not approving the drug Thalidomide – while almost everyone else did. Now, they seem to approve everything that large pharmaceutical companies put before them.

        Thalidomide: timeline of a scandal

      129. FB says: • Website
        @Been_there_done_that

        Nicely put…I agree that this airplane cannot be fixed with some kind of software patch…but there is a lot at stake her for Boeing, and the US itself, since Boeing is really the flagship company of the country…

        You mentioned the sleazeball media and this is exactly how Boeing is going to play this…I have said this before but this huge company spends hundreds of millions of dollars on shmoozing so called journalists and managing information and even basically controlling the FAA itself…already the media is talking about pilot error in almost all reports, at least in part…no way anyone would ever consider that there was no pilot error and that this Frankenstein airplane just dove itself into the ground shortly after takeoff…a situation where saving a diving plane is for all intents and purposes impossible…

        Unfortunately Boeing can count on useful idiots like this Aaron B who maintain that it’s not so bad…and that the problem can be easily solved simply by flipping a switch like Boeing would have us believe…

        But I think people are smarter than that…I think first of all that a lot of countries are going to demand that this airplane be recertified, before letting it fly in their national airspace…that will basically spell the end for the airplane anyway…since recertification would be a long and fraught process and such a long pause in deliveries will simply force airlines to buy an alternative…

        • Agree: By-tor
      130. @MEFOBILLS

        So MEFOBILIS, is this what you say: The system you describe with two vanes and three computers and “some other positional information” would be reliable and up to the highest safety standards in the industry, whereas the existing MCAS system with two vanes is not up to the highest standards and the one with one vane is so far below the actual standards, that it should never have been applied?

      131. By-tor says:

        Burnsville, Minnesota-based manufacturing company Rosemount Aerospace, Inc. faces questions about its sensors on the crashed Lion Air 737-800. Boeing could stack the deck against Rosemount rather quickly.

        http://www.startribune.com/minnesota-company-made-sensor-for-crashed-plane/507320182/

      132. @William Badwhite

        Don’t worry, Scro, there are lots of ‘tards out there living pretty kick-ass lives*:

        * It’s just in fun, W.B., or should I call you meat-bomber. “Hey, lets extend the jump run this way, little bit of “industrial haze” over the field.”

        • Replies: @William Badwhite
      133. wayfarer says:

        Aeroflexible Aerodynamics

        • Replies: @James Thompson
      134. Erebus says:
        @AaronB

        2) On the doomed Lion Air flight, the flight before the crash had the same problem. It appears the main pilots did not remember their training, but a third passenger pilot did and saved the day with a simple switch. The airline did not fix the problem and the plane crashed on the next flight.

        Did you read the Preliminary Report on this crash? I posted a link to it on the other thread. If you didn’t, I suggest you read it. If you did, read it again, and you won’t keep repeating the same erroneous information.

        Synopsis:
        PREVIOUS FLT:
        – Aircraft had AoA sensor replaced 2 days previous due to AoA DISAGREE warnings (NB: the MCAS uses only 1 of the 2!)
        – Aircraft exhibited crazy behaviour on previous day’s flight early in its approach to Jakarta, including wildly varying altitude and airspeed indicators.
        – No mention of 3rd “dead head” pilot turning off the 2 famous switches. PIC is credited with flipping them after 3 successive Nose Down moves by the MCAS. Of course, he knew nothing about the MCAS, so assumed the standard B737 auto-trim system was malfunctioning due to the discrepancy between the 2 AoA indicators.
        – Flew and landed manually in Jakarta. Reported sensor issues only.
        – All reported sensors were replaced/serviced and tested satisfactory (on the ground) between flights.
        LN1610:
        – Cockpit crew had combined >9,400hrs B737 flt time. The plane was 2 mos old.
        – PIC reviewed Engineer’s service report before the flight.
        – Crew reported flight control problems and wildly varying altimeter and air speed indicators to Jakarta ATC shortly after takeoff.
        – Air crew repeatedly asked ATC for their speed and altitude, as none of their displays agreed, and were giving wild readings.
        – Plane was occasionally diving, but crew was apparently dealing with that “by the seat of their pants” by extending flaps a little.
        – ATC recordings indicate no panic in the crew. Normal, professional communications.
        – Crew requested and received clearance to return to Jakarta and were flying the plane home.
        – Communications switched to ARR ATC Jakarta, crew reported Flt Control Problems, and ATC attached a note to their radar “blip”.
        – Last transmission, crew requested Altitude 5,000′ corridor from Jakarta ARR ATC with all other planes kept at least 3,000′ away. Request granted.
        – 40 sec later, the aircraft was in the ocean.

        No indication whether the 2 famous switches were flipped to CUTOUT.
        The pilots were dealing with the situation, until suddenly they weren’t.
        The wildly varying cockpit indicators before and after sensor repair/replacement suggest that there was more going on than MCAS malfunction. Software/systems collisions comes to mind, but could be almost anything.

        As anon[310] #124 showed, there’s more than throwing switches, but his excerpt isn’t the whole story. The trim wheel instruction did not appear in the Boeing Bulletin TBC-19 that followed the Lion Air crash. Bulletin TBC-19 simply noted that:

        “Manual stabilizer trim can be used before and after the STAB TRIM CUTOUT switches are moved to CUTOUT”

        … repeating what was already in the non-MAX B737 manual. TBC-19 was followed by the FAA’s EMERGENCY AIRWORTHINESS DIRECTIVE #2018-23-51 which explicitly added a further instruction. After flipping the switches…

        “If the runaway continues hold the stabilizer trim wheel against rotation and trim the airplane manually.”

        IOW, Boeing’s passive note regarding trim functionality was changed into an explicitly direct instruction in the FAA’s Directive. I think some disturbing answers lie between those two releases. Namely, Boeing hinted vaguely that there’s more to this than simple trim runaway, and the FAA plainly said there was.

        The Preliminary Report is here: https://reports.aviation-safety.net/2018/20181029-0_B38M_PK-LQP_PRELIMINARY.pdf

        • Replies: @stevecel
        , @FB
        , @AaronB
      135. Factorize says:

        Perhaps the best way to bring this into honest dialogue would be for a high quality 737 MAX flight simulator to be put on the net and people could run the sim on their own computer and decide for themselves. Otherwise all manner of experts with all manner of obscure motivations will manipulate the discussion. Those who have the truth on their side would welcome if not actively enable such an online 737 MAX demo. I am intrigued. How stable is this plane on take-off? What skill level is required to fly without activating MCAS?

      136. Erebus says:
        @FB

        … this airplane cannot be fixed with some kind of software patch…but there is a lot at stake her for Boeing, and the US itself, since Boeing is really the flagship company of the country…

        The MAX’s development is a case of bad engineering, and bad engineering never works. Whether it’s airplanes that nosedive, lawn chairs that collapse, cars that flip over, or smartphones that catch fire, the marginal flaw that’s bred in the bone will always (always!) find a way to come out in the flesh in the real world. Good practice is always and everywhere to design out even marginal flaws from the onset, and then (and only then) implement whatever measures are deemed necessary to inhibit wanton misuse of an inherently stable design. In civilian aircraft, that holds orders of magnitude more emphatically than in lawn chair design.

        However, Boeing went one better here. Not only did they break the first fundamental rule of starting with a sound design, they then papered over the flaws with a patch that was itself marginal and then kept both secret. The compounded instabilities resulted in the two catastrophes, and the secret is now notoriously in the public sphere. Whether or not Boeing’s and the FAA’s actions amounted to criminal behaviour, much of the damage has been done.

        I’m quite sure that every Boeing engineer and designer, and their managers knows the fundamentals of good engineering, and in any case, there are rules that force them to act as if they knew them. Boeing, and especially the FAA have a fiduciary obligation to the public to maximize safety. When the downsides of a marginal flaw’s becoming evident include catastrophic failure of 2x $100M aircraft and the loss of 300+ lives, it isn’t just “understandable” as AaronB would have it. It’s almost certainly criminal, whatever the courts decide, because it means the rules were necessarily subverted or ignored to allow the subjugation of fiduciary duty in favour of commercial interest. Nobody says flight should be 100% safe, but the public has the right to expect that it is as safe as it can be made.

        Every step that the B737MAX design made after the big new engines were proposed was a step away from sound engineering practice. Each step, I’d warrant, was driven by commercial considerations, or personal greed.

        Whatever that all mounts to, both Boeing and the FAA, the process that took their focus away from sound engineering practice and towards financialization, has itself made them marginally stable. The aftermath of these two accidents makes that plain.

        Normally, national aviation agencies defer to the certifying agency in making decisions such as grounding a fleet. The astonishing fact that the entire world ignored the FAA (and Boeing) and quickly grounded the B737MAX, leaving the FAA standing naked indicates that they know that Boeing and the FAA have been compromised and can no longer be trusted. I have to assume that in doing so, national agencies already had some nasty reports on file when they made the decision.

        That Ethiopian Airlines then actively refused to send the “blackboxes” to the NTSB, sending them to France’s BEA instead, says they believe the NTSB to have been similarly compromised. With trust gone, the ability of Boeing and the FAA to carry on as before has nosedived as surely as the planes, and the NTSB is right behind them.

        As bad as all this is, if the video below is to be believed, the B737MAX is the tip of a pretty big iceberg. Boeing’s production & QC engineering management seems to have taken a page from the design engineering manager’s handbook. Have a look at:
        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vWxxtzBTxGU.

        If the above video is even half true, we can expect the B737NG fleet to be retired early, or start falling out of the sky as it ages in the foreseeable future. Either way, Boeing, and by extension America’s civil aviation industry is approaching an existential crisis.

        That’s how the mighty fall.

        • Replies: @joun
        , @FB
      137. We all need to get back to the basics.

        • Replies: @renfro
        , @Jim Christian
      138. Hibernian says:
        @Sbaker

        I heard the “Lazy B Ranch” thing from my sister whose roommate many years ago was a programmer at Boeing. Not all critics of big companies are socialist.

        • Replies: @SBaker
      139. CanSpeccy says: • Website
        @Been_there_done_that

        As a last resort, passengers could refuse to board these jets.

        That’ll be my first resort.

      140. @Wizard of Oz

        The shortest strong hint to a dirty play in this double-crash case may come
        from just two phrases below. First separately, and then together:

        “Two crashes of brand-new Boeing 737 MAX 8 in months”.
        “October 29.2018 Indonesia, and March 10.2019 Ethiopia”.

      141. Mom what does airplane do?
        (This is for little boys and persons that never did fly on airplane including F B who told us that there is a delay in response of jet engine.)
        So you go through that cloth covered tunnel enter the airplane and sit down. Once everybody sit down door is closed airplane start to move. It is the battery power (considerable) that rotate the wheels. When the airplane reaches the end of the runway it stops. Than from to tower pilot receives permission to take off.
        First thing pilot does is to engage breaks on wheels. Second thing pilot does is to pull the control column all the way toward himself. That put the flaps all the way down.
        Flaps are narrow plates alongside the wings that can pivot up or down.
        Similar flaps are on the tail wings. Air forced down will help the plane nose to go up placing plane at the angle. Than the pilot turns on the fans, and also pumps that supply the fuel.
        After that you will hear a little explosion and you will see little smoke from turbine.
        Pilot ignited the turbines, and the turbines start to roar. Roar increases and plane starts to shake. Pilot is pulling back the yoke increasing the thrust of turbines.
        At the right moment pilot releases the brakes and plane jumps forward. Pilot is pulling on yoke increasing the thrust of engines that resulting on increased speed and eventually leaves the ground. Pilots sets the angle of ascent (attack) by control column movement which in turn positions the flaps.

        After reaching the cruising height pilot straighten the plane. (again with the flaps) and engages the automatic cruise control.
        In this case flaps control the height and horizontal stabilizer (with jack screw) keeps the plane straight.

        Than the pilot tells the copilot to wake him up when nearing the airport and he goes to sleep.

        The horizontal stabilizer most important (imperative) function is to keep the plane in precisely horizontal position when wheel (front and back) touch the runway.
        They must touch simultaneously to prevent damage to the aircraft.

        • Replies: @stevecel
        , @FB
        , @Sparkon
      142. Biff says:
        @AaronB

        5) Boeing designed a plane that was less aerodynamically stable under certain extreme conditions unlikely to be encountered, then compensated with software. This is not an extreme deviation from accepted safe practice, as planes are frequently designed this way

        At this very moment you have become the dumbest guy on the entire internet!

        • Agree: FB
      143. renfro says:
        @CanSpeccy

        No, Trump sure blew it. He should not have cut the budget of the FAA 5%, he should have slashed it by at least 95%, then the agency might have developed some kind of focus on aircraft safety.

        Happy flying sucker……in the deregulated, privatized air ways that Trump is proposing.
        You don’t like fat cat elites and yet you advocating for just that eventuality .

        There’s one born every day.

        • Replies: @CanSpeccy
      144. FB says: • Website
        @anon

        Those procedures for runaway trim are correct for previous versions of the 737…but there is a crucial difference with the MAX…notice that the first step is always holding the control column against the trim forces…that is because if you hold control column or apply opposite control column pressure this will trigger the trim cutout switches in the bottom of the control column…

        This means that pulling [or pushing] opposite yoke cuts the runaway trim…Boeing got rid of the aft cutout switch in the control column on the MAX because it would defeat the purpose of MCAS…

        So it’s not correct to say that runaway trim is runaway trim…that cutout switch in the yoke are not there anymore…so the very first item on the checklist DOES NOT WORK ANYMORE…

        ‘The last issue with MCAS is the most significant. The flight condition that MCAS is designed for (accelerated stall) involves the column being pulled back when MCAS needs to trim nose down. This creates a conflict with the aft-column cutout. The aft-column cutout stops a nose-down “mistrim” command.

        The aft-column cutout involves a signal from the column cutout switch to the FCC. The FCC software uses the input to turn off its trim commands.

        The FCC removed the aft column cutout feature from MCAS commands. MCAS can trim nose down in spite of the aft column cutout being asserted. This is a grave error and must be resolved.’

        What have we learned this week?

        –Peter Lemme, former senior Boeing engineer

        There was an airworthiness Directive issued after the Lion Air crash that specifically addressed the fact that runaway trim procedures had changed…so I don’t know why you are saying that runaway trim with MCAs is the same as before …it’s not…

        • Agree: Dieter Kief
        • Replies: @Anonymous
      145. renfro says:
        @Jim Bob Lassiter

        Dont laugh….I had an old J3 tail dragger eons ago . A great fun plane, almost impossible to kill yourself in…lol

      146. joun says:
        @Erebus

        In addition to the MAX, the DoD has stated that they have lost confidence in Boeing’s quality control. NASA is moving away from Boeing’s rocket engines.

      147. stevecel says:
        @Erebus

        I am trying to understand what you are getting at here; the Boeing bulletin indicates a problem with MCAS only as they’ve maintained, the standard checklist includes the instruction to hold the trim wheel by hand, and the FAA directive reiterates what was already state in the second. Besides an analysis of the tenses, what other information is given “between the two releases,” excepting the report given by the Indonesians?

        It is worthwhile to note that MCAS only functions when the flaps are up. Had the flaps been “[extended] a little” the entire time the flight would presumably have continued unabated. Only when the flaps were retracted for the final time did the fatal regime occur. Again this is consistent with a malfunction of MCAS.

        The prior flight landed successfully as we know. What do you suggest then was the difference between the actions of the pilots and the disposition of the aircraft?

        It is also interesting that several American pilots complained to NASA about issues relating to nose down on activating autopilot, which can be seen here: https://assets.documentcloud.org/documents/5766398/ASRS-Reports-for-737-max8.pdf

        The error there however was the diametric opposite being that MCAS does not function in conjunction with autopilot, indeed only during “seat of the pants” maneuvering.

        • Replies: @Erebus
        , @FB
      148. Biff says:
        @William Badwhite

        Airlines hiring pilots that don’t really know how to fly is a big issue

        Ah yea! Tell us, which airlines do you speak of?

        • Replies: @William Badwhite
      149. stevecel says:
        @Ilyana_Rozumova

        This is inaccurate; at least it does not fit the description of the operation of any commercial jet known to exist. Maybe I don’t understand Russian humor, but if this is entirely serious you must inform us of how this came to be. I’ve heard theories of heavier than air flight being not what it is cocked up to be, but pray tell.

        • Replies: @Ilyana_Rozumova
      150. FB says: • Website
        @Erebus

        Good summary, E…

        However it is useless to try to talk sense to ‘renaissance’ rain man…he gleans hard facts not from official documents but from reuters and bloomberg hack pieces quoting anonymous sources…there was a christ-like third pilot who figured out how to simply flip a switch and magically turn a nosediving airliner right side up…and other tales from the MSM crypt…all courtesy of people with no names…

        I’ve never seen such a delusional clown anywhere…he told me earlier that experts ‘agree’ with him…I have a feeling he was a misfit in school and got beaten by the other kids a lot, so now he is taking his revenge by acting out on discussion forums…the consummate loser, crying out for help…

      151. @Ilyana_Rozumova

        And it should be automatic and not left to the pilot.

        See also comment #78 [also by Ilyana Rozumova]:

        http://www.unz.com/jthompson/boeing-737-max-the-upgrade/#comment-3104254

        System itself is an overkill. It should be simple warning to pilot that attack angle is too steep and pilot would only lift up the flaps a little bit. Pilot should have full manual control of the aircraft, until it reaches cruising height. Any other philosophy is nonsensical.

        Well OK then. That should fix it.

        • Replies: @Ilyana_Rozumova
      152. Factorize says:

        How far out our we from a Chinese built 737 “similar”. At this point I would trust them more than I would trust us. If China wants to be taken seriously, then they will need to step up at some point on this project. As a guess, 25 years?

        • Replies: @By-tor
      153. @Been_there_done_that

        Yes the fallout from this is going to go way beyond Boeing. It was a failure of the FAA in the worst possible way.

      154. Akir says:

        This is off-topic so forgive me.
        Pretty much every site I comment on bans me.
        I don’t use dirty words, I’m not a bot, but pretty much every MSM or fake ‘alternative’ site hates me because I encourage free education for everyone to take over the world in more reasonable terms.
        Fat bodied bald headed cunts ban me the world over, so I comment here.
        Sorry to take up your time.

        • Replies: @Akir
      155. Akir says:
        @Akir

        I duno, but I guess actually it is about normal people wanting to have a say in their world.
        According to the government and MSM we are obviously too stupid. To which I would reply, ‘What have you done for us lately?’

      156. Akir says:

        [Cluttering up a discussion with vacuous, totally-off topic comments is bad behavior, and may get all your future comments trashed.]

        We don’t have a democratic government and we don’t have a reply to the ignominy our various governments subject us to, that is the truth of ‘Western Democracy.’
        What do we need starting on the ground floor? We need somebody to create a world wide site called NPP. It stands for Non Partisan Polls. And it means a non government polling system run by non-partisan people who will examine in a completely non-partisan way the opinion of people who are about to be invaded and bombed by any other country or group thereof.
        It’s hard to mount a resistance after you and your people have been bombed out of you socks for doing nothing wrong.

      157. FB says: • Website
        @Erebus

        Wow…so you can build a Boeing 737 with a hammer, hacksaw and magic marker…cool…

        You know none of this surprises me in the least…there is huge corruption in the aviation industry and in fact this is part and parcel of turbo capitalism…I spent most of my career in flight test and so was somewhat insulated from the production goings on…since the flight test aircraft were always hand-built to the highest possible standards…even so, it never ceased to amaze me how they regularly had brutally obvious handling problems that should have been obvious on the drawing board…incidentally, I’ve heard that the flight test team involved with the MAX were the ones that insisted on increasing the system’s authority from a maximum tailplane deflection of 0.6 degrees to 2.5 degrees…ie for what it was supposed to do, it needed four times as much power…of course it wasn’t the test team’s job to rule on how stupid the very idea of MCAS really is…although I am sure that some did just that…I hope they step forward as this unfolds…

        The thing that struck me about those two brave women that blew the whistle is thinking what a bummer it must have been to go to work day in and day out and see these crappy jury-rigged parts coming in from this sub-contractor, and seeing the Boeing employees banging these pieces of shit into shape with hammers and drilling new holes and doing everything they could to make this crap fit…I mean I couldn’t bear to watch that kind of monkey business day in and day out…

        Also interesting was that footage of the remote controlled crash landing of that 707 in the early 1960s…those were the salad days in the aviation industry…you had real engineers and the company management was mostly engineers and they all took the challenge of building and testing these amazing jet powered flying machines with the seriousness that it deserves…

        Of course the later generation came along and saw just how rugged these early airplanes were and they decided that they could cut a lot of corners…it’s actually worked out fairly well for these flim flam artists…oh and btw…I can just imagine the kick backs going back and forth between these subcontractors turning out shit parts and the Boeing brass that was running cover for them…not to mention the FAA bureaucrats overseeing the whole rat’s nest…pretty slimy…

        • Replies: @Ilyana_Rozumova
        , @Erebus
      158. FB says: • Website
        @Ilyana_Rozumova

        ‘In this case flaps control the height and horizontal stabilizer (with jack screw) keeps the plane straight.’

        Obviously you have a jackscrew loose…

      159. By-tor says:
        @Factorize

        The fourth prototype of China’s COMAC C919, with the same LEAP engines as the 737-800, is being built now.

        https://www.ainonline.com/aviation-news/air-transport/2019-02-14/comac-plans-fly-three-more-c919s-year

        http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/a/201902/14/WS5c64a3a9a3106c65c34e9313.html

        The 90-seat capacity regional jet COMAC ARJ21 model has been in service for 5 years.

        http://www.xinhuanet.com/english/2018-05/02/c_137151722.htm

      160. @James Forrestal

        More advanced the automation more complex it becomes and more components are required that increases the possibility of one component dysfunction that breaks down the all system resulting in catastrophe,
        I do understand the automation when there are cost savings on labor, but why here?
        pilots have to sit there anyway.

        • Replies: @James Forrestal
      161. @FB

        He He I have seen a Boeing drawing where was picture of part in full scale no dimensions, (sheet metal). Worker was instructed to cut out the picture put it on sheet metal and cut the sheet metal accordingly.

      162. Erebus says:
        @stevecel

        … the standard checklist includes the instruction to hold the trim wheel by hand…

        Not from what I’ve got.

        I quoted Boeing’s standard instructions for Trim Runaway as per their Bulletin TBC-19 which quoted their manual. It merely notes that trim adjustment remains possible both before and after the switches have been set to CUTOFF.

        The prior flight landed successfully as we know. What do you suggest then was the difference between the actions of the pilots and the disposition of the aircraft?

        As has been noted exhaustively in these threads, the two incidents occurred under radically different circumstances.

        The first occurred early in the descent into Jakarta, the second shortly after lift off. The first pilot had the luxury of time and 10,000s of feet of altitude to play with. The second pilot couldn’t get his plane into the air, and (IIRC) never got above ~2,000′.
        The first handed control to his co-pilot and started studying the situation. He concluded that the auto-trim system had gone whacko, and shut it off. Bingo! He then flew the plane manually to an uneventful landing in Jakarta.
        The second had no such luxury, the plane kept diving back to earth as soon as he got off the ground. Nose down at 900′ gets a lot more exciting than nose down at 19,000′
        Neither pilot had any idea that the MCAS system even existed, much less what it was doing. The first pilot had no idea that he’d shut it off.

        • Replies: @acementhead
      163. Erebus says:
        @FB

        Wow…so you can build a Boeing 737 with a hammer, hacksaw and magic marker…cool…

        Sure. Why not? They ain’t building watches.

        …Boeing employees banging these pieces of shit into shape with hammers and drilling new holes and doing everything they could to make this crap fit…

        The frightening thing is that Boeing had the plane certified as an “end-to-end” CNC precision built to very tight tolerances, which convinced the FAA to certify it to fly higher and faster than ordinary planes. Then they built it by hand to much sloppier “tolerances”, but kept that fact to themselves (ring a bell?).

        …you had real engineers and the company management was mostly engineers and they all took the challenge of building and testing these amazing jet powered flying machines with the seriousness that it deserves…

        Then they bought out M-D and lost the boardroom battles to M-D’s MBA bottom-line driven, “Neutron Jack” Welch style directors. They moved to Chicago so they didn’t have to listen to mere engineers’ complaints, and could flip shares and options in peace.

      164. Vojkan says:
        @Wizard of Oz

        In the case of passenger aircraft, it is definitely life threatening, and on a mass scale.

      165. @FB

        “…this huge company spends hundreds of millions of dollars on shmoozing so called journalists…”

        I can imagine at least a dozen desirable options for tax deductible gratuities to make a key person who could help the company (journalist, FAA bureaucrat, potential customer, supplier) feel special. The choices would vary according to time of the year, location, preferences to take time off, level of cultural sophistication, perceived status, etc. For instance:

        • One liter bottle of rare 30-year old cask strength whiskey inside a wooden box lined with velvet;

        • A case of 12 x 75 cl. bottles of either Moët & Chandon or Veuve Clicquot Champagne;

        • Dinner at local gourmet restaurant, cocktails and subsequent pole dancing performance at strip joint (“Gentleman’s Club”);

        • 3 nights at five star hotel in Manhattan for two with skyline view, dinner at high-end restaurant, and Broadway theater performance tickets, taxi + first class air fare;

        • 3 nights at resort hotel with weekend golf, either in Maui, near Carmel, or in Palm Springs + business class air fare;

        • Super Bowl tickets for two, near 50 yard line in viewing booth with food & beverage, and 2 nights at hotel, limo + first class air fare;

        • 3 nights at French Riviera for two, one day Ferrari auto rental, and Monte Carlo Grand Prix Formula-One race viewing + private executive jet flight;

        • 4 day 1st class summer ocean cruise for two in the Adriatic Sea (including Venice and Dubrovnik) + business class air fare;

        • 3 night stay in standard Munich hotel, with table reservation for six on Opening Day of the annual Oktoberfest at the big HB “tent” + economy class air fare;

        • 4 day stay for four in Copenhagen standard hotel during their summer Jazz Festival and music performance tickets on two nights, also Tivoli amusement park + economy class air fare;

        • 4 day stay for two in Rio de Janeiro during Samba Carnival Dancing performances, with viewing stand tickets + business class air fare;

        • 4 day Alpine skiing for two at high-end Swiss or Austrian resort, including ski lift tickets and equipment rental + business class air fare.

        Which would you prefer, if you were acquiescent and wanted “to play ball”, if only because you fear you might lose your job if you don’t? Journalists could leverage their experience abroad by writing a report in the travel section of the publication they work for – and it doesn’t need to pick up the tab for the expenses.

      166. Additional confirmation that the FAA has lost its reputation: It is now also being challenged with regard to Boeing’s upcoming software enhancement. A short follow-up report from the Seattle Times appeared just a few hours ago:

        European, Canadian regulators to do own review of Boeing jet

        https://www.seattletimes.com/business/european-canadian-regulators-to-do-own-review-of-boeing-jet/

        Boeing’s grounded airliners are likely to be parked longer now that European and Canadian regulators plan to conduct their own reviews of changes the company is making after two of the jets crashed.

        The Europeans and Canadians want to do more than simply take the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration’s word that alterations to a key flight-control system will make the 737 Max safer. Those reviews scramble an ambitious schedule set by Boeing and could undercut the FAA’s reputation around the world.

      167. @Jim Bob Lassiter

        I don’t need some broad flying my airliner. I prefer former military carrier pilots who are White men taking off, landing and saying at the end, on the ground, “Thanks for flying Jet Blue.” Getting back to basics isn’t some broad at the end saying, “That’s so cool!”. If there’s a way out of a bad situation, I know the White male military pilot will save it if it can be saved. I know that makes me bad.

        • Replies: @Jim Bob Lassiter
      168. @wayfarer

        Thank you for this fascinating video. Of course, the real question is what this would look like at 500 mph. Still, worth considering.

        • Replies: @wayfarer
      169. @FB

        Here we go again the brainstorming Wikipedia literate expert.

      170. FB says: • Website
        @stevecel

        It is worthwhile to note that MCAS only functions when the flaps are up. Had the flaps been “[extended] a little” the entire time the flight would presumably have continued unabated.

        How exactly do you feel qualified to make such statements when you obviously have zero experience flying an airplane…?

        The flaps cannot be extended beyond a certain speed…typically about 200 knots for the 737 [and many other passenger jets]…and that’s flaps 1…the first position of flaps [or ‘a little’ as you put it]…

        The airplane is typically going to be climbing at about 250 knots, well above flap retraction speed, not to mention that the after takeoff memory checklist as soon as you get airborne includes ‘positive rate’ [of climb] …followed immediately by ‘gear up’ and ‘flaps up’…

        Please refrain from posting bullshit here…

        • Replies: @stevecel
      171. @stevecel

        I do not know why I am attracting society rejects, first that homeless terrorist, and now this homes-school bushman.

      172. dearieme says:

        I notice few people saying “stop the speculation and wait for the report”. I assume that that means that almost nobody assumes that a report from Boeing or the FAA is likely to be trustworthy. Bit of a problem, that. Who guards the guardians?

      173. FB says: • Website
        @William Badwhite

        Some major problems with what you just wrote…-

        ‘Lots of countries don’t have extensive general aviation like in the US and lots of countries don’t have big militaries churning out pilots.’

        What does general aviation have to do with anything…general aviation is small aircraft like little single engine piston singles like Cessnas…this type of airplane is useful only for ab initio training…all of Europe and Britain now have specific pilot training programs that take a student from zero hours to first officer seat in a regional airliner…this kind of immersive training is not that different from the military, where cadets similarly progress quickly from ab initio to primary and then advanced trainers and end up in their type [including fighter jets] in a similar timetable…those that can’t keep up wash out…a big advantage of this type of sink or swim fast paced system…

        Most countries outside the US train their pilots this way…if you get on a British Airways flight you might have a 200 hour first officer also…

        Also you assume right from the getgo that the cause of the MAX crashes is mostly poor piloting…if you actually knew anything about 737 systems and consider what happens if an airplane noses over right after takeoff you might discover that things are not so simple to say the least…

        As I have pointed out in numerous comments on these two threads, citing specific control system details, it may well have been impossible to save either of these two aircraft, no matter what the pilots did…

        As for airplane manufacturers supposedly using automation to make up for poor pilot skills, that is the most preposterous piece of nonsense I have heard in quite some time…Airbus went to full fly by wire three decades ago in an attempt to make the airplane safer…there certainly some issues with that approach as I have noted elsewhere…

        But the MCAS is simply a bandaid fix for an unstable airplane…unstable airplanes can’t get certified, so this type of fix is actually a new departure…Airbus is not using computers to paper over instability issues…the computers may be more intrusive than needed and this is still an evolving part of the man-machine interface and perhaps they are out ahead of the actual benefit curve…but at least Airbus airplanes have sufficient natural stability that a computer is not needed to actually ‘fix’ bad handling…

      174. Evergreen says:

        Back in 1993, the first time I had antilock breaks kick on, it nearly caused me to lose control of my car. I was approaching the intersection a little too fast and hit a few feet frosty pavement. The ABS took over and didn’t allow me to brake as I would normally brake, and it made such an alarming loud noise, along with pulsation feeding back into my foot and body, that it startled me enough to slow my braking time.

      175. Anonymous[628] • Disclaimer says:

        MCAS (manoeuvering characteristics augmentation system) Sounds like utter bullshit
        Makes a Case for Amerikan Shit

      176. Evergreen says:

        I am not a pilot. And I listened to the criticism about the new engine on an old body design, throwing off the center of gravity. But it still doesn’t add up…

        I was under the impression that pilots are trained professionals and are familiar with how and why planes stall and and how to get out of a stall. So why are they putting in a system that is equivalent to the label on a hot cup of coffee that says contents are hot? Is that plane THAT unstable? That it cannot be safely flown by a human? Surely it is not the first and only plane that was not designed to balanced perfection???

        • Replies: @Ilyana_Rozumova
      177. aspnaz says:

        “Third world pilots” … love the white supremacy.

        So let’s talk about the first world engineers, the guys with all the opportunities and money to do the best possible job, yet let’s face it, they fucked us over, it the engineers’ fault, not the business people. They created a death trap that even a dumb third-worlder couldn’t fly!

        Where were all the whistle blowing engineers when the Max was launched? Ooops, it must have slipped their minds that they just created a death trap. Or, they were happy to slaughter a few innocents to keep their payroll in tact.

        I know, I am a bad person for blaming the engineers – sure, but the business folk are too dumb to understand what is happening. It is not as though Boeing is being run by an entrepreneur, it is run by shitty managers who were promoted because they dependably kiss ass and can’t do anything useful, just like every other publicly owned company.

        We depend on the engineers and they sold us out.

      178. CNN: Boeing just declared that it is updating the software for the plane.
        So people can relax. From now on Boeing will update the software after every crash. And not after two crushes as it happened now.
        (Boeing management is even greater retard like all of you. so you must be proud.)

      179. SBaker says:
        @Hibernian

        True enough, but unions are generally taught to hate the companies that employ them, and unions are a socialist gang–See German Worker’s Socialist Party. I have a few engineers in my family and they are far above union gang members. Note there have been no problems with the 737max when flown by qualified pilots– not those trained with a flight simulator alone. The same goes for combat simulators.

      180. @Biff

        Judging by these accidents, Lion Air and Ethiopian. Judging by Asiana in SFO, Asiana. And judging by Air France off Brazil, Air France.

        • Replies: @Biff
      181. @Achmed E. Newman

        Its great that one of your grandkids taught you know how to link to youtube but your whole “retired guy that feels compelled to respond to every third comment with a link to a music video or movie clip” act is kind of worn out. You should take up golf or fishing or something. Try to restrict your comments to when you have something useful to add.

        • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
      182. stevecel says:
        @FB

        The preliminary report referenced by the poster I quoted and responded to indicates that the pilots were extending and retracting the flaps to get around the auto-trim issue, so how many hours of flying do I need to understand that part exactly?

        @Ilyana_Rozumova

        I was expecting some interesting theory à la Fomenko or Velikovsky, but you disappoint me.

        • Replies: @FB
      183. @FB

        And now I do have to admit that you have ability to learn. (Only one reminder. Flaps do not extend!!!!!!!!!!!!! They only pivot.) (( And most of the time they are in line with wings))

        • Replies: @Anonymous
        , @res
      184. @Ilyana_Rozumova

        Exactly. As I said — if Boeing just follows your suggestion, by making the system entirely automatic and giving the pilot full manual control, that should fix most of the problems that you’re experiencing with your jackscrew threads.

        No question.

        • Replies: @Ilyana_Rozumova
      185. @Evergreen

        Here is one of the factors in play. Most of the airports are in the middle of cities. People are complaining about noisy planes overhead, So airlines are recommending pilots as steep ascent as possible.

      186. Anonymous[420] • Disclaimer says:
        @FB

        > why you are saying that runaway trim with MCAs is the same as before

        Wrong, I’m not saying that.

        I’m saying many jets—including the 737—have had runaway trim checklists for decades before MCAS was ever invented, and that a competent pilot can handle runaway trim. The article you quoted had this little bit you seem to have missed:

        Human factors cannot be denied.

        That’s what I’m saying.

      187. CanSpeccy says: • Website
        @renfro

        Happy flying sucker……in the deregulated, privatized air ways

        You think it takes more than the GDP of Kenya to certify a flakey piece of junk like like the 737MAX? Well I guess you’re right. Only an organization as gargantuan as the FAA could have screwed up in they way they did screw up. So sorry, bud, but if you’re a US taxpayer you’re the sucker.

        • Replies: @renfro
      188. Anonymous[420] • Disclaimer says:
        @Ilyana_Rozumova

        You’re retarded, Ilyana. Everything you say is retarded. Including this idiotic gem: “Flaps do not extend!!!!!!!!!!!!!”

        Welp…

        …you obviously never heard of Fowler flaps. And they’re all Fowler flaps these days.

        Now shut the hell up, you stupid cunt.

      189. @aspnaz

        “Third world pilots” … love the white supremacy.

        So let’s talk about the first world engineers

        Exactly. If only they had flown an Ethiopian-designed and manufactured airliner, those poor people would still be alive today. But due solely to internalized systemic white supreemism, they insisted on buying aircraft designed and built by Evil Whitey, rather than choosing one of the many indigenous African alternatives.

        The problem is obviously — and solely — one of racism and white supreemism. And the answer lies, not in this obsessive, narrow focus on engineering with its presupppositions of ontological certainty, but in emergent interventions to improve African self-esteem and enhance confidence in African ways of knowing, so that autochthonous African airlines will have the confidence to fly truly African aircraft in the future.

        True anti-racist aviation has never been tried.

      190. AaronB says:

        Apparently, on the Lion Air flight that crashed the pilot handed over controls to the co pilot and began leafing through technical manual to find out what was wrong, according to the NYT.

        This is remarkable. It suggests that the pilots did in fact retain presence of mind and were not “frozen” in startle mode – but could not recognize or deal with a basic runaway trim problem that they train for and memorize simple checklists for.

        Not to mention, it disposes of the silly notion that one can’t do anything but pull back on the yoke while battling the plane.

        I think this whole fiasco exposes major deficiencies in the global aviation system that should seriously alarm everyone.

        On the other hand, it suggests that something else was going on – it defies belief that a simple runaway trim problem can completely baffle two trained crews. I was one of the first to suggest Third World incompetence played a role, and it clearly did, but this seems too much.

      191. res says:
        @Ilyana_Rozumova

        Retracting and extending flaps appears to be standard aviation terminology: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flap_(aeronautics)
        Do you have first-hand experience that pilots refer to flaps pivoting rather than extending?

      192. AaronB says:
        @Erebus

        The only thing in this long note that really pertains to the issue at hand is your final few sentences where you say it must be more than just runaway trim.

        I sort of agree. It can’t merely be MCAS-runaway trim problem because that is too easy to fix – the Lion Air pilot actually started leafing through a technical manual!

        Plus, on the previous flight that didn’t crash passengers reported the smell of smoke and strange sounds. And the Ethiopia Air flight supposedly also trailed smoke, although these reports aren’t reliable.

        What is clear is that simplistic reports of a “nefarious Boeing” aren’t credible, however emotionally appealing to some agitated people, and the narrative about deficient Third World pilots is also starting to sound incredible.

        • Replies: @Been_there_done_that
      193. Anonymous[262] • Disclaimer says:
        @aspnaz

        White supremacy in understanding directives regarding flight characteristics during runaway trim is scientific fact.

        Jumping, not so much, because white men can’t. That’s why there’s black supremacy in basketball.

        • Replies: @SBaker
      194. @FB

        Sorry to chime in for you, Captain Badwhite, but I do have the knowledge, and you don’t seem to write that often.

        Mr. FB, an airplane is an airplane, and whether it’s a 2-tandem-seat Piper Champ, a single-engine 105 kt Cessna, 180 kt complex Beech Baron, a Metroliner twin-turboprop, right on up to an Asiana Boeing 777, FLYING IS FLYING. There are basics that apply to all flight that are usually learned on the smallest, cheapest-to-operate, and slowest/most forgiving airplanes.

        The more time one has in these smaller birds, what we call (outside of the training environment) General Aviation, the more different expreience that one has to a) teach one to remain calm and fly the plane (due to getting one’s self out of some precarious situations at times) and b) help one understand the principles of flight that much better. Do you really want a 250 hr. F/O and a 1500 hr. Captain flying that B-737 over two guys whose times add up to 15,000 hours? That’s not saying the 1st 2 will be dangerous, just that more hours experience is a good thing.

        What Mr. Badwhite was trying to relate to you is the America has had a very special general aviation industry not seen in any other country due to a) A big middle-class, b) Cheap gas (always about double car-gas for the Avgas, but WAY cheaper than anywhere else), and c) A huge aviation infrastructure. Most states have at least one public airport per county (and lots more private ones) that anything but a bigger biz-jet or airliner could land in.

        It was a great world, and I say “was”, because it’s gone way down in amount of flying over the last 10-15 years. Like W.B. said, planes would fly checks around in the middle of the night (twin-piston planes, turboprops, and even Lear jets), there is still general fun flying (the $100 hamburger), instruction, skydive flying, banner-towing, (photography is about and the more general corporate flying (could be just one lawyer who has the money to pay a pilot to fly him around in a Mooney, Bonanza, or Cessna 340 – these guys often want to learn to fly, but really don’t have the time, and end up just being a sugar-daddy to some poor low-timer.)

        That’s the world that a lot of non-military American pilots used to, and still do, come from. It’s a world of hard, but hopefully not too-hard, knocks. I would say at least half the flying friends I know have lost the engine and ended up in a bean field, had a bird come through the windshield, or got into the clouds inadvertently and gone down below the tops of antennas, etc. Later on, in the paying general aviation world (say light-twin freight flying) there are thunderstorms not seen on radar, cause you don’t have it, icing all over the plane some nights, and it’s mostly single-pilot. You take care of EVERYTHING, and you can’t just go saying “Oh, not a good night to fly.”

        I hope this helps you, FB, to understand why experience is a good thing, and it’s just not been available to the same extent in other countries.

        • Agree: William Badwhite
        • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
        , @FB
      195. @William Badwhite

        Nah, I learnt it myself, and am not retired. I will say that the kids catch on quicker than me, but it’s not that difficult, man. The video thing is what I do for humor, and I’ll make an effort not to respond to you with any more videos. It is just one of the funniest scenes in any movie I’ve seen in my life.

        I just wrote a long comment to Mr. FB to explain general aviation and what experience means. If you have anything to add, please do. I’ve never had an argument with any of your comments before, except for way back about the changes in the airline pay/qualitiy of life business. It was a misunderstanding anyway. Take it easy.

        • Replies: @William Badwhite
      196. @Achmed E. Newman

        Ooops, wiped out a bit of text in there by accident – I mean something to the effect of your basic photo-flying is becoming passe, what with drones, etc., though there are jobs flying light-twins with big cameras to get all those google-earth pictures. Ah, and I forgot pipline patrol and probably a few more small areas …

      197. @James Forrestal

        Not really that is not my suggestion.
        My suggestion is to install two exclusive servomotor drives with clutches on jacks crew.
        One that will fulfill the stabilizer function, and second that will fulfill the trim function.
        Than upgrade the program
        I do have a serious doubt that the problem can be solved otherwise.

        • Replies: @James Forrestal
      198. @AaronB

        “And the Ethiopia Air flight supposedly also trailed smoke, although these reports aren’t reliable.”

        Definitely not! Those on the ground most likely saw kerosene being ejected (“fuel dumping”) to lighten the aircraft in order not to overshoot the runway during the anticipated emergency landing. Not understanding such issues, they must have simply thought it was trailing smoke, which the jettison procedure does tend to look like. See photo below from Wikipedia.

      199. @Anonymous

        Now please do not show me idiotic pictures. Give me a list of type of planes on which this new flaps are installed.

        • Replies: @James Thompson
      200. @wayfarer

        Thank you. Was thinking about those swimming suits while swimming this morning. A 14% advantage sounds very appealing (though it probably applies at speeds two or three times faster than mine through the water).

      201. @Achmed E. Newman

        Your comments on aviation – in which you clearly know what you’re talking about – are interesting and cogent and appreciated.

        Re the airline pay/quality of life: I left commercial aviation in the early 90’s shortly after being hired by a regional airline (for $15,000/year…even then that was a poverty wage). I decided I’d much rather fly for recreation, turned down the job, and went into finance. My comments on that world are therefore dated – most of my friends/acquaintances that fly for a living have long since been hired by various majors. I still fly regularly though just for my own benefit.

        I’ll check out your comments on FB. I didn’t bother to reply to him because he immediately dismissed GA. Someone that is unable to grasp the benefits that come to a pilot learning to fly in light airplanes where you have to fly by hand, manage power levels, and learn basic stick-and-rudder skills isn’t someone with an opinion I value.

        • Replies: @AaronB
        , @Ilyana_Rozumova
      202. @Anonymous

        If you are so smart go to Boeing apply for the job and tell them you can fix any problem.

      203. bluedog says:
        @Sbaker

        Probably about the same number as the white power that post on here….

        • Replies: @SBaker
      204. @Ilyana_Rozumova

        I watch flaps extend and retract on almost every flight I take, any where I can see the wing anyway. Mostly the airlines I use have either Boeing or Airbus planes.

        • Replies: @Ilyana_Rozumova
      205. bluedog says:
        @renfro

        And this doesn’t come without penality for I just read where China has taken a trillion dollars in Boeing sales off the table,next China will be building airliners with Russia already building some.!!1

      206. While preparing for a minor operation 10 years ago, I asked the doctor how many of these operations he had performed. He smirked, understanding my concern, and said “I’ve done thousands of these. I won’t be doing the operation with the manual in my hand.”, and he jokingly posed as if holding a book.

        I am only one life. I think it criminal that airlines will put hundreds of lives in danger by expecting the pilot to fly the plane by having “the manual in his hands” instead of using his trained skills. Doesn’t he know how to fly the plane he is operating?

      207. @James Thompson

        Come to think about it when I went with A 320 it had this type retractable flaps.
        Everything has advantage end disadvantage. Obviously this type is less prone to vibrations so less noisy. With this type it must take a longer time to achieve the proper angle of ascent.
        Also the runway run will be longer.
        To me it is probably better for lager aircraft 747 or A320.
        Not too important but we are not sure if 737 has this type of flaps.
        Pivoting flaps are definitely more efficient in a service as breaks at landing.
        Even at take up the nose uplift is much faster.

      208. AaronB says:
        @William Badwhite

        FB does not strike one as credible.

        • Replies: @res
      209. Biff says:
        @William Badwhite

        So you(the second dumbest guy on the internet vying for number one) is telling us that Lion Air, Ethiopion, Asiana, Air France etc.. Do not train their pilots to fly airplanes yet they are given the jobs to do exactly that – fly a fucking airplane! This kind of stupidity is special.

        • Agree: FB
        • Replies: @William Badwhite
      210. FB says: • Website
        @stevecel

        ‘The preliminary report referenced by the poster I quoted and responded to indicates that the pilots were extending and retracting the flaps to get around the auto-trim issue…’

        No they weren’t…the preliminary report for LN610 shows they extended flaps ONCE to 5 degrees which was about a minute after takeoff so they still had not built up much speed…they retracted that small amount of flaps after asking the tower to give them their airspeed, which suggests they did not have trustworthy airspeed information from the instruments…when they tower told them their groundspeed was 322 knots they retracted flaps…flap speeds are there for a reason…if you deploy flaps at high speed they could literally rip right off the wing and then you are sunk…

        • Replies: @stevecel
      211. res says:
        @AaronB

        FB does not strike one as credible.

        Perhaps because he disagrees with you? As far as I can tell from your comments here, you seem to think agreeing with you is the same as being credible.

        • Replies: @AaronB
      212. FB says: • Website
        @Achmed E. Newman

        I don’t disagree about experience…that’s why have logbooks…but your experience is not military so you don’t quite have a reference frame to compare to when it comes to an immersive and competitive model for flight training…there’s a lot of people flying small airplanes in GA that should not be commanding any sort of airplane…that is my experience…

        • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
      213. MEFOBILLS says:
        @res

        f one is foolish enough to operate with a 2-1 vote in play for any length of time eventually the system will break.

        Yes of course.

        The Flight Director System also advised autopilot, which used inertial sensors and gyros to plot position in space.

        Also, the flight director system would only compute information for Pilots to operate on.

        The argument can be extended to electric jets, starting with the F-16, where computers control the flight envelope, so it is not a stretch to say that a system can be designed to control the 737 max.

        You need at least three transducers for majority logic to work.

        • Replies: @res
      214. By-tor says:
        @aspnaz

        Yes the USA, the leading nuclear-armed racial diversity pimp of the western industrial world, allowed a segment of the military-armaments aircraft complex to pull a major con. These globalist barons bet one of their nicest Monopoly properties on the 737-800 con and came up short. But, let’s inquire as to why some Afro-designed airliner design from wonderful, vibrant! Africa has yet to be certified.

      215. AaronB says:
        @res

        No, he is extremely agitated and emotional. He shouts at people he disagrees with to not comment. His comments are 50% insults.

        These are not the traits of an unbiased observer.

        His arguments are not real world credible (13 minutes not enough time to throw 2 switches).

        He has an obvious agenda.

        As someone who flys frequently, I am very interested in gaining a realistic understanding of what’s going on here without demonizing anyone. To that end, I welcome all comments – even FBs.

        But he does not pass the smell test.

        • Replies: @res
      216. Sparkon says:
        @Ilyana_Rozumova

        The horizontal stabilizer most important (imperative) function is to keep the plane in precisely horizontal position when wheel (front and back) touch the runway.
        They must touch simultaneously to prevent damage to the aircraft.

        In the context of modern jetliners, this is complete nonsense. 737s and all modern jetliners land in a nose-up or “flair” position so that the main landing gear wheels touch down first on the runway.

        Landing in crosswinds may require uneven or one-wheel touchdown.

        The goal is to land the aircraft on the upwind (lowered) wheel first, then slowly the downwind wheel, and then finally the nose.

        https://www.flyaoamedia.com/aoa/when-landing-on-one-wheel-is-acceptable/

        The video starts slowly but gets going around the 1:11 mark with various landings and go-arounds in 45 kt. wind at Portugal’s Madeira airport on Dec. 26, 2015. Even in rough conditions, the pilots and the airplanes are up to the challenge.

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zkAFUazoFbM&feature=youtu.be

        Samuel Passos video from Interesting Engineering:

        https://interestingengineering.com/video/bumpy-aircraft-landings-every-passengers-nightmare

        Any safe landing is a good landing, where the airplane can fly again, and the passengers go get their luggage.

        • Replies: @Ilyana_Rozumova
      217. @Biff

        So the guy with stupidest name on the internet (and who can’t do basic verb-tense agreement) is having a hard time with reading comprehension. If an airline has to “train their pilots to fly airplanes” they are by definition hiring people that don’t yet know how to fly airplanes.

        Asiana crashed because the captain was unable to land an airplane on a clear day with great weather because the glideslope was inop. BFD, it had been OTS all day and dozens if not hundreds of other airplanes had landed with no problem. If you can’t hand fly and land a fucking airplane without a glideslope telling you where to be at various points on final, you CAN’T FLY. FFS, 28L at SFO had a working PAPI and he STILL couldn’t do it.

        The Air France FO kept the airplane stalled all the way to the ocean. If you do not know how to recognize and recover from a stall, you CAN’T FLY. Landing without vertical guidance from an electronic signal and recognizing and recovering from stalls are very basic things.

        There is a difference between managing the automation in an airplane and actually handling an airplane. The fact you’re too thick to grasp the difference is not my fault. Perhaps you’re the guy who when driving, gets to a stop sign and doesn’t know what to do next because there isn’t a light telling you what to do.

        I’ll assume English is not your first language so give you a pass on the rest.

        • Agree: acementhead
        • Replies: @Biff
      218. res says:
        @MEFOBILLS

        Thanks. Could you talk a bit about how you dealt with deciding what to do when faced with two sensors giving different results?

      219. Anonymous[570] • Disclaimer says:
        @MEFOBILLS

        Boeing’s problem is illustrated by one old white guy who knows aviation for the Boeing STEM Challenge wing test trying to attract engineers from this vibrant canker of mystery meat:

        And the one fellow in the picture who could actually engineer wasn’t “diverse” enough to qualify.

      220. res says:
        @AaronB

        You might consider how well each of those points applies to your comments here. BTW, your shtick of posting inflammatory comments then using the emotion you are getting back in the responses to discredit what people have to say is getting very old.

        His arguments are not real world credible (13 minutes not enough time to throw 2 switches).

        1. Have you ever looked at the controls and sensor readouts in a modern cockpit?
        2. Have you ever been in a position of having to make high stress (in this case literally life or death) decisions under extreme time pressure?

        It is clear you have never flown a plane (nor have I). At minimum you should at least be open to listening to and trying to understand what those who have (especially big planes) have to say on this topic.

        P.S. Here is an extended look at the controls in the cockpit of one model of 737 (I have no idea how similar the 737-600 is to the MAX): https://gizmodo.com/absolutely-everything-you-ever-wanted-to-know-about-air-1677766628

        This part looks particularly relevant (pilots, please check and correct if I am off base):

        Below the flap lever are the stabilizer trim cutout switches. There’s one switch for the autopilot’s automatic control of trim, and another switch for the pilot-controlled electric trim system. If either system were malfunctioning and trimming the aircraft incorrectly, you could disable it and just trim the plane manually using the big trim wheel. Note that these are backup trim cutout switches — the normal trim cutout switch is on the yoke.

        • Replies: @bluedog
        , @Jim Christian
      221. @Ilyana_Rozumova

        Whether the plane is “horizontal” or not is of secondary importance.

        Planes can stall when they are horizontal, too. Stalling isn’t dependent on the attitude of the plane alone, but the attitude (not “position“) and the airspeed combined, plus the configuration of the wing (are the flaps up or down, etc.). A plane can be making a horizontal turn, and have its inside wing stall because the airspeed over that wing is too slow. The result is a spin.

        What the MCAS system does is compare the angle of attack, as measured by the vane in relation to the wing, not the ground, with the airspeed, which is the speed of the airflow over the wing.

        And do I have to point out that the reason the planes crashed in this case seems to be that an automatic system took over from the pilots?

        • Replies: @Ilyana_Rozumova
      222. stevecel says:
        @FB

        I see, so the crew was confused about their perceived airspeed, but it doesn’t explain why all they did was fight the trim until they crashed into the ocean a full six minutes later. Presumably they could have maintained contact with the controller throughout and attained some degree of confidence about the airspeed and altitude at which they were traveling. They must have noticed that during the 30 seconds in which the flaps were deployed, the trim issue went away. What I am wondering is why anything but the failure to identify and deal with the errant MCAS is still the issue here when nothing else suggests otherwise.

        • Replies: @Ilyana_Rozumova
        , @FB
      223. @Sparkon

        Well?
        Even your dog can take a beating occasionally.
        But you have to beat your dog every day?

        • Replies: @Sparkon
      224. @Ilyana_Rozumova

        I do have a serious doubt that the problem can be solved otherwise.

        I concur that the problem with your jackscrew is a very serious one… and one not easily solved by either manual or fully automatic control. Perhaps your threads are not meshing properly?

        • Replies: @Ilyana_Rozumova
      225. @William Badwhite

        Reread FB”s comments He did not even mention flaps until I have introduced them into discussion.
        Flaps are fist and primary control of the aircraft. that is why they are on control column with ruder.
        FB is talking 90 percent nonsense, but he is funny and entertaining and enthusiastic and useful because he brings everything to the comment section that he can find in Wikipedia.

        • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
      226. @stevecel

        Pilot sets the flaps even before he ignites the engines.

        • Replies: @By-tor
      227. bluedog says:
        @res

        Lol read his number of post he’s a shill or a troll and really not even worth reading.!!!

      228. Sparkon says:
        @Ilyana_Rozumova

        Well nothing. You were wrong. It has been demonstrated clearly that you don’t know what you’re talking about, but still you babble on with neither shame nor retraction.

      229. @Ilyana_Rozumova

        Flaps are fist and primary control of the aircraft. that is why they are on control column with ruder.

        I’m afraid we’re gonna need a new tag for this sort of thing, Ron Unz, something like [LOL] but a bit stronger. How about [EM-WTF?!]

      230. @FB

        Even the worst of ’em take flying pretty damn seriously from all that I’ve seen. Give me some examples, why don’t you? Actually they should be examples of private pilots who are more reckless in their flying than lot of drivers are reckless in their driving, as there are a hell of a lot more cars moving around than G/A airplanes, AND, they are much more likely to hurt someone if the operator is reckless.

        • Replies: @FB
      231. “Flaps are fist and primary control of the aircraft. that is why they are on control column with ruder.”

        Flaps are not primary flight controls, of course.

        Ailerons, rudder, and elevators are.

        [MORE]

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flap_(aeronautics)

        “Flaps are a kind of high-lift device used to increase the lift of an aircraft wing at a given airspeed. Flaps are usually mounted on the wing trailing edges of a fixed-wing aircraft. Flaps are used for extra lift on takeoff. Flaps also cause an increase in drag in mid-flight, so they are retracted when not needed.”

        https://www.grc.nasa.gov/WWW/K-12/airplane/flap.html

        Flaps move symmetrically, and are used to change the overall lift/ drag characteristics of the wing. Ailerons are smaller, farther out on the wings, and move in opposite directions on the two wings in order to to control rotation around the longitudinal axis of an airplane (roll).

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aileron

        https://www.grc.nasa.gov/WWW/K-12/airplane/alr.html

      232. @James Forrestal

        Trim or MCAS is and automatic computer ruled system that is preventing the catastrophe of stalling the the aircraft.

        The physical manifestation of it is that aircraft decreases the angle of attack, (that is the angle by which aircraft is going up)

        Physical execution of this computer command can be can be done by 1) flappers or 2)horizontal stabilizer. (Maybe both, but that is not the case.)

        It cannot be done by anything else.
        (Maybe it could be done by compressing all passengers in the tail of aircraft or into cockpit,)

        In Boeing case the execution of computer command was decided to delegate to the horizontal stabilizer. (Which naturally has already another automated function. (to keep the airplane horizontal.)

        And here is the snag, one device ruled by two computer circuits.

        Horizontal stabilizer is a gadget located around center of gravity of aircraft.
        This gadget is moving horizontally and it like a scale. Pushing one side down or the other.
        Pushing nose down or the tail down. (It is pushing actual mass)

        This concoction main part that is driving it is Jack screw which in turn is powered by servomotor
        (here I am guessing it could be driven by hydraulic motor)

        I am now under impression that not many are grasping what is going on.

      233. @Jim Christian

        I flew as a passenger in a Mooney Mark 21 in 1966 one week before the pilot in command and his two high time Air Force flight officer buddies killed themselves in it.

        Something about an ignored no spins allowed placard when operated in Normal Category mode. (i.e. with rear seat passengers in this four seat plane)

      234. By-tor says:
        @Ilyana_Rozumova

        Are you Jen the Ukropian Nazi maggot, the pro-Israel and anti-Russian influencer from the RT English forum? You two have very similar grammatical styles.

      235. James Thompson in the head post said(of the stab trim cutoff switches)

        “Finding them may be a problem (one does not casually switch things off in a cockpit) and for those not warned about the issue, the time taken to find out the required arcane procedure may be insufficient at low altitudes, such as after take-off. Understandably, pilots did not understand the complexity of this system.”

        1)” Finding them may be a problem” Comment: No it most definitely isn’t. They are located, where they always have been on Boeing , on the reaf face of the pedestal and with no other switches nearby.

        2) ” (one does not casually switch things off in a cockpit)” Comment: This is irrelevant. There is nothing “casual” about carrying out required drills, including MEMORY ITEMS which are carried out from memory without reference to a checklist. Runaway stab is a required memory item Any unsired trim movement should be considered “runaway”. Action Stb trim overide switch to cutout. The action is the same regardless of cause.

        3) “… for those not warned about the issue, the time taken to find out the required arcane procedure may be insufficient… ” Comment: This is untrue. The required action is a REQUIRED memory item. All pilots must know it and be able to do it. The action is the same regardless of the cause of the undesired trim movement and takes about half a second.

        4) ” Understandably, pilots did not understand the complexity of this system” Comment: This is irrelevant and actually wrong as well. The system is not comples but NO knowledge of the system is required in order to carry out the correct action FROM MEMORY. it is a drill that pilots must know. It is very simple.

        Piper J3? Pah I’ve done a circuit, just one, in a J2, ZK-AFQ Mangere airfield June 4 1960. Thanks Doug(Freeth). Highest altitude achieved 500′ by end of downwind leg.

      236. @Ilyana_Rozumova

        I think you are not grasping that people are trying very hard to explain things to you, but you seem impervious to any description, diagram, or words of explanation. Could we not simply agree that you are right, about this and about all other things, and just leave it at that?

        • LOL: FB
        • Replies: @Ilyana_Rozumova
      237. @Ilyana_Rozumova

        The physical manifestation of it is that aircraft decreases the angle of attack, (that is the angle by which aircraft is going up)

        Clearly distinguishing between the concepts of “attitude” and “climb rate” might be helpful here.

        Physical execution of this computer command can be can be done by 1) flappers or 2)horizontal stabilizer. (Maybe both, but that is not the case.)

        Any flappers still alive in the current year would be more than 110 years old, and would likely have great difficulty in controlling the pitch of a commercial airliner, either directly or via the use of control surfaces like elevators or horizontal stabilizers.

        Horizontal stabilizer is a gadget located around center of gravity of aircraft.

        No, it’s nowhere near the center of gravity.

        This gadget is moving horizontally…

        No, unlike the flaps, the the tailplane does not move horizontally during normal function — it pivots/ tilts only.

        But perhaps you’re onto something with your latest suggestion that the primary problem lies not with your jackscrew itself, but that the servomotor that drives it is failing. That often causes serious cognitive issues. You should get it checked out.

        • Replies: @James Thompson
      238. FB says: • Website
        @stevecel

        You know what…I’m not going to sit here and go back and forth with a non-pilot who knows nothing about what actually goes on in a jet cockpit…and who has no frame of reference whatsoever yet insists on talking bullshit…

        There is no basis for any discussion here…I have put up quite a lot of information about basics of aerodynamics and specifics about emergency procedures and what it means to recover from a dive in a big airplane and things like that…so you can go and read up about that okay…?

        • Replies: @stevecel
      239. By-tor says:

        NYT claims that the 29-year old Ethiopian Airlines Captain never used the simulator bought by his employer, although the next training session was on March 10th the date of the crash.

        “It is not clear whether the aircraft’s co-pilot had gotten any MAX 8 simulator training either. At the same time, Ethiopian Airlines was one of the few carriers in the world who had MAX 8 simulators installed and was using it to prepare pilots.”

        https://www.rt.com/news/454391-ethiopian-airlines-pilot-training/

        https://www.nytimes.com/2019/03/20/world/africa/ethiopian-airlines-boeing.html

      240. @acementhead

        But if the aircraft’s automated systems really tried to fly it into the ground, it doesn’t really matter if the pilot should have been able to stop them from doing so — no matter how bad the pilot is, he’s still not the primary cause of the accident.

        • Replies: @acementhead
      241. @acementhead

        Thanks for your explanations. You say that the position of the switches was well known, runaway stab is a memory item and can be done in a second, and is simple.
        Therefore, it should be known by pilots, and if they did not know something so obvious, the failure was a pilot error, or in the training given to those pilots.
        Is that right, in the sense of, have I understood you properly?

        Would there be any difference, from a pilots point of view, when the initial problem started, whether they had achieved cruising altitude or had just only taken off? In the latter case, should they still have flicked the switches in a second or two?

        So, against my initial expectation, that the two crashes were in fact due to pilot error?

        • Replies: @acementhead
      242. FB says: • Website
        @Achmed E. Newman

        Look you seem to think I have an axe to grind about private pilots…I don’t…but I don’t appreciate poor airmanship…here’s an example…a lot of people flying small airplanes have very poor visual scanning habits when flying VFR…a lot of folks now have glass panels in these small planes and with the ADS-B these also display traffic…so I see a lot of heads-=down flying…that rally bugs me quite a bit…see and avoid is still in effect no matter what silly gizmos you put in your airplane…

        Another one is the idea that just because you have a full IFR panel and an instrument rating that you can now go in any weather conditions…a small airplane is still a small airplane…even the biggest transport airplane can get seriously beat up in the wrong kind of storm…

        Then there’s decision making…go the AOPA youtube channel and have a look at some of their accident case studies…some of the are bloody heart breaking…one guy put his wife and three kids in a Piper Saratoga if I recall…saw that the weather was bad all along his planned route from northern Cal to Texas but headed out anyway and found himself in the soup…he didn’t even have an instrument rating, but the controller offered him an IFR clearance since he was in clouds already and he accepted…a few minutes later he corkscrewed in…I can just imagine those three young kids screaming in the back seat…

        I think you get the picture…I also know guys who have a lifelong aviation background at the highest levels and also fly their own small plane…these are the guys who will take a look at the weather and say…’you know what, today I’m going to drive’…not enough guys like that, sorry to say…

      243. @James Thompson

        O.K I am puling out my white flag. I do shut the F up.
        But any intelligent discussion in cases like this should have a majority convinced conclusion.
        Can you give it to us. And I do not mean some picture from Wikipedia.
        What was the reason of nosedive and how it can be prevented?
        Where was the point of failure?

        • Replies: @acementhead
      244. @Erebus

        Erebus says:
        March 21, 2019 at 5:02 am GMT

        The second had no such luxury, the plane kept diving back to earth as soon as he got off the ground.

        If this is true, which I very much doubt, then it was due to pilot incompetence as the MCAS does nothing until aircraft is clean(flaps up). Apparently the Etheopia flight claimed erroneous airspeed indications. They have three independent airspeed indicators. It will be found that all were working properly. The airspeed indicators were working at the 80 kt cross check. They didn’t all fail in the next twenty seconds.

        I’m a real pilot, didn’t get beaten-up at school(actually nobody did at my school). Soloed at 16 years 7 months after 3 hrs 35 mins dual instruction(on a tail-drager(PA18a) with world’s best instructor Reg Shand at Mangere airfield in May 1957. Last flight as airline Captain 1990 of B742.

        • Replies: @Erebus
      245. @Ilyana_Rozumova

        Ilyana_Rozumova says:
        March 21, 2019 at 11:19 pm GMT

        Where was the point of failure?

        As has been stated over and over the failure was the incompetent pilots. They had an easily handled problem, one simple MEMORY item,and theydidn’t do it.

        Many people here appear to be enraged because a few of us point out the obvious(that there are incompetent pilots fying) It isn’t only pilots for third world carriers who display incompeten; I once accepted a B742 at Christchurch and the previous captain had flown all the way from Tokyo with the Fuel Condition Actuator Light on. This is an egregious error. FCAL on has one immediate recall item, Start lever to cutoff.

        • Replies: @Sim Jockey
      246. @FB

        Look you seem to think I have an axe to grind about private pilots…

        No, YOU have an “axe to grind” – you’re getting this idiom backwards, FB.

        I see a lot of heads-=down flying…that rally bugs me quite a bit…see and avoid is still in effect no matter what silly gizmos you put in your airplane…

        Agreed, but the small plane version of TCAS is still a Godsend.

        … go the AOPA youtube channel and have a look at some of their accident case studies…some of the are bloody heart breaking

        I, for one, am damn glad AOPA and their members put their money and time into these accident investigations and stories. BTW, I used to keep up with the NTSB reports daily just for learning, back when the site was SIMPLE (aka BETTER), and you could just view each day’s 2 to 8 accidents. More than 90% are non-fatal.

        … a few minutes later he corkscrewed in…I can just imagine those three young kids screaming in the back seat…

        Terrible, but then, I guess you don’t see videos of some of the horrific driving accidents that happen daily. Why? Because they happen daily, and people can’t really gasp and complain about it, and go out the next day and drive 75 mph (in the fast lane, no less, blocking traffic) while surfing the web.

        … these are the guys who will take a look at the weather and say…’you know what, today I’m going to drive’…not enough guys like that, sorry to say…

        Which is very good judgement and highly recommended. Unfortunately, you can’t do that very often in a regular flying job – you’ve got to find a safe solution, and you should have the experience to do it by then.

      247. stevecel says:
        @FB

        I’ve read your comments, but there is nothing definitive aside from your opinion as a self-declared pilot. You can’t and haven’t explained why the pilots in the fatal Lion Air crash did not do anything in the final 6 minutes. I had been trying to ascertain what the other poster had gleaned from the wording of what Boeing and the FAA had to say on the subject. That again turned out to be a bit vague. There is not enough data here to presuppose that anything besides MCAS and the pilots’ failure to perform the procedures already implemented to deal with runaway trim caused the plane to end up going straight into the water 6 minutes later, given that the same issue was rectified successfully in the flight prior. Presumably it did not take 6 minutes to go from 5000 AGL to 0 at speeds exceeding 320 knots, so what happened to cause the final descent there? It was not like the Ethiopian flight where you insist that the plane was not likely recoverable at 1000 AGL, which may well be the case. If you have anything new to add, I would of course appreciate it.

        • Replies: @Erebus
      248. @James Thompson

        James Thompson says:
        March 21, 2019 at 11:10 pm GMT

        @acementhead
        Thanks for your explanations. You say that the position of the switches was well known, runaway stab is a memory item and can be done in a second, and is simple.
        Therefore, it should be known by pilots, and if they did not know something so obvious, the failure was a pilot error, or in the training given to those pilots.
        Is that right, in the sense of, have I understood you properly?

        Thank you for your polite response James.

        Yes you have put it very well indeed.

        Would there be any difference, from a pilots point of view, when the initial problem started, whether they had achieved cruising altitude or had just only taken off? In the latter case, should they still have flicked the switches in a second or two?

        In cruise the autopilot would normally be flying so there would be no MCAS nose-down trim applied due to an incorrect AoA signal. If hand flying at cruise for some reason and the trim started to move uncommanded, ie no pilot input and not accelerating(inwhich case there could be small , automatic “mach trim” then first action would be to electrically trim(with control wheel switches) back to neutral feel. if this did not work, ie trim continued to move the immediately overide to cutoff. This is a “memory” item, ie carried out by recall without reference to a checklist. Others have pointed this out and been subject to abuse.

        So, against my initial expectation, that the two crashes were in fact due to pilot error?

        Yes that is my opinion. Many say “Well it wouldn’t have happened etc etc etc ” but one of the most important jobs of an aircraft captain is when all has gone wrong, for whatever reason, to save the day and get everybody safe on the ground. Often the standard procedures work; well more than often almost always but sometimes uncontemplated things happen and the captain has to try to deal with it in an unprescribed manner.

        Thank you again for your polite interaction.

      249. @acementhead

        Were you flying solo in the J-2? Cause you never see flight photos or videos of E-2s or J-2s with two adults on board.

        • Replies: @acementhead
      250. The strangest thing about this terrible tragedy is the computerization of the cockpit, i.e. auto pilot.

        Why was it not possible for the myriad systems to overid the descent to the ground?

        The plane should have don this on its own.

        What a mess?

        • Replies: @Sim Jockey
      251. @James Forrestal

        But if the aircraft’s automated systems really tried to fly it into the ground, it doesn’t really matter if the pilot should have been able to stop them from doing so — no matter how bad the pilot is, he’s still not the primary cause of the accident.

        Thank-you James for your polite response.

        One of the most important jobs of an aircraft captain is to “save the day” no matter what. There are many things that can go wrong in aviation apart from just systems failure on board. The captains job is to get everybody safe on the ground, preferably on time, in comfort at planned destination. If the two 800MAX crews had done their jobs properly that’s exactlly what would have happened.

        A personal example. I’m not claiming special merit here it is just an example of where blame should lie.

        One night, on descent in to Wellington I had to shut down one engine as oil pressure had dropped to zero due to all that engine’s oil having leaked out(from broken oil pressure sensor tap(how ironic(?)is that?)). Wellington weather was filthy(it often is but this was worse) with more than half approaches being missed. Diverted to Palmerston North and landed uneventfully9about 10 mies final the ATC controller said “Extra fire engines coming out from town , do you want to wait for them to arrive(I hadn’t asked for extra cover and would have been happy to land with NO fire service)” I replied “No thanks , we aren’t going to crash, we’ll just land. ” He said “Cleared to land.” , and we did. Now here comes the point; Palmerston North at the time was a shortish runway. We operated it every day but for a single engine landing in a B737 a longer runway than usual is required(due to Flap 15 landing instead of the normal 30 or 40). During the diversion Wn Operation had called and said Brian Xxxxx says the 100 can’t fit in to Palmerston on one engine. He was wrong and I knew he was wrong but here it is at last. The captains job is to get it right. If I’d messed up and damaged the aircraft I’d have no defence by saying it was due to the inoperative engine. The airplane could fly and I had to get it right. (Landing on 07 turned off at the taxiway; eased off on brakes and reverse halfway through the roll.)

        Phew. And that was the short version.

      252. Wally says:
        @Biff

        Hmm.

        Captain of doomed Ethiopian airliner had ZERO hours of 737 MAX 8 simulator training – report :
        https://www.rt.com/news/454391-ethiopian-airlines-pilot-training/
        ex,:
        ” Ethiopian Airlines was one of the few companies that actually got their hands on the Boeing 737 MAX 8 simulator but the captain flying the crashed plane failed to do any training on it, a recent report suggests.
        The Ethiopian carrier set up a MAX 8 flight simulator in January, two months before the crash, but the captain of the doomed aircraft never used it, the New York Times wrote on Wednesday, citing people close to the airline.”

      253. Factorize says:

        FB, this quote from your previous comment is centrally important to the incidents. I do not fully understand what is meant, perhaps you could explain, SLOWLY.

        The only way to shut off MCAS in an emergency situation is to cut the electrical power to the entire trim system? Hmmmm, I would really have to think about that. Would I really want to cut the electrical power to the entire trim system? I think we are all on-board now that plane nose planting MCAS on= bad, though I am not totally sure whether under those nose planting conditions that I would actually want to cut the power to the entire trim system. I mean if one were to do that, then how might one then trim the plane, given that the electrical power to the entire trim system had been cut and all.

        “The nose down stabilizer trim movement can be stopped and reversed with the use of the electric stabilizer trim switches but may restart 5 seconds after the switches are released. Repetitive cycles of uncommanded nose down stabilizer continue to occur unless the stabilizer trim system is deactivated through use of both STAB TRIM CUTOUT switches…

        Here is where those two switches are located…notice that BOTH have to be turned off, not just one…this cuts the electrical power to the entire trim system and is the only way to shut off MCAS in an emergency situation…”

        • Replies: @James Forrestal
        , @FB
      254. @acementhead

        I’m an ATP (Airline Transport Pilot) with several types in jet aircraft. I was a check airman and simulator instructor. Runaway trim is one of the top “killers” in the sim. I didn’t keep statistics over the years in my logbook or elsewhere, but this is my best guess of how pilots successfully fared, grouped as we sim jockeys grouped them, in recovering from a runaway trim problem the first time they experienced it in initial training, as follows:

        95% – White males (American/European/British Empire)
        60% – Mexico/SA
        50% – White females
        40% – NE Asian
        15% – Muslim
        0% – Black

        Addendum: Not a single sim instructor I knew would ever think of flying with a black or Muslim or Asian airline. Intelligence with the Asian pilots isn’t so much the problem as culture. They had a strict hierarchy and “face saving” cultural hangups that hampered communication, as they flew with Zen precision into the ground without offending anybody. Horrible CRM (Crew Resource Management,) and how do you teach that in Engrish? The Muslims were both arrogant and extremely fatalistic, Allah will intervene if he wills it. The blacks, especially from Africa, were like polite elementary school children trying their hand at calculus, they never really understood it. South American/Mexicans ranked by shade of white, the whiter, the better. Whites were the best, by far, and I’d say German-Swiss-British-Nordic whites generally did a little better than American whites, with eastern European and southern European whites faring less well. Americans who dressed high and comported themselves like gentlemen did best. All but one of the females I trained were mediocre in skill, definitely “diversity hires.” Many white pilots above 55-65 started loosing their sharpness, but mostly with electronics/computer stuff, especially if it was a new FMS to them, a simple problem (simple once a pilot has experienced it and got the memory items pounded into his noggin) like runaway trim never tripped them up.

        • Replies: @Dieter Kief
        , @acementhead
      255. @Jim Bob Lassiter

        Were you flying solo in the J-2? Cause you never see flight photos or videos of E-2s or J-2s with two adults on board.

        Yes sure was solo. Took off on the long grass 20 at Mangere. Applied full power and the tail came up right away. No more than 5- 8 kts direct headwind After a while it started to slowly move forward then after not too much delay climbed rapidly to the top of ground effect, about 5 feet I guess. Eventually got to 200′ and turned crosswind continued clim all to way to end of downwind reached 500′ max. It made the DH82 seem really high performance.

        Simpler times.

      256. Biff says:
        @William Badwhite

        If an airline has to “train their pilots to fly airplanes” they are by definition hiring people that don’t yet know how to fly airplanes.

        Word games with a knuckle head. Just what I need this morning. Hey Einstein “The training never ends!” , and that is one of the original problems that downed two airliners. The first is Boeing produced a fish-out-of-water junker airplane. Second, they came up with some crap software/hardware to try and keep the junker in the air. Third, they got the junker approved by the FAA. Fourth, Boeing never really informed the Airlines that additional training(remember this word it’s fundamental) should be required for all their pilots that are hired to fly their new junker.

        The rest is history.

      257. @Andre Citroen

        : Why was it not possible…

        It was possible. It was only a runaway trim. Every jet in which I am typed has a runaway trim emergency checklist with memory items. The runaway trim did not get addressed properly.

        I do think, from what evidence I’ve read, that Boeing designed an aircraft with too high of a probability for runaway trim, caused by MCAS. But it remains that the problem was just runaway trim. Any properly trained pilot can safely deal with a runaway trim problem.

        • Replies: @Biff
        , @AaronB
      258. Erebus says:
        @acementhead

        If this is true, which I very much doubt…

        Indeed, I shouldn’t have said “as soon as he left the ground”, but “shortly after leaving the ground. It must have been shortly, simply because the plane(s) never achieved significant altitude.

        The airspeed indicators were working at the 80 kt cross check. They didn’t all fail in the next twenty seconds.

        I was speaking about the Lion Air crash, where crew queried ATC several times for their speed and altitude. We know much less about the Ethiopian Airlines crash, and I was avoiding discussing it.

      259. Erebus says:
        @stevecel

        You can’t and haven’t explained why the pilots in the fatal Lion Air crash did not do anything in the final 6 minutes.

        What do you mean they weren’t doing anything? They were flying the plane back to Jakarta. Did you read the ATC recordings? They didn’t know their airspeed or altitude, but they were communicating normally.
        Last transmission PIC requested and was granted 5,000′ corridor by the ARR ATC Jakarta. 40 seconds later he was in the ocean.
        According to the ATC record, the crew was handling the situation. Until they weren’t.

      260. Biff says:
        @Sim Jockey

        “Any properly trained pilot can safely deal with a runaway trim problem.”

        What kind of Moron types this shit?

        • Replies: @acementhead
      261. @Sim Jockey

        Heiner Rindermann in his excellent book about Cognitive Capitalism – Human Capital and the Wellbeing of Nations, Cambridge University Press 2018, has a detailed description about Captain Chesley Sullenberger’s brillant Hudson river landing in it, which goes along quite nicely I’d assume, with your experiences.

        (All in all they are so obvious, so horribly (!?) – no: so incredibly clear, that my heart sinks. Yes, there might be this kind of problems as well – cultural ones, and IQ based ones and/ or ones based on both: culture and IQ) – and age as well (sigh again)).

        ((Thanks – very interesting)).

        • Replies: @acementhead
      262. CNN: Indonesian Airlines just cancelled $5 billion deal with Boeing. They were supposed to buy 50 plains. ( I do not understand morons. Boeing should have grounded the plains after first case of runaway trim. If there is a malfunction it has to be fixed right away, and not leave the pilots to deal with it.

      263. @FB

        I think we’re dealing with a troll here. He or she is enjoying poking us with a stick. No point in taking this any further.

      264. It looks like stock options for Boeing management are now out of windows.

      265. CanSpeccy says: • Website
        @Ilyana_Rozumova

        CNN: Indonesian Airlines just cancelled $5 billion deal with Boeing.

        Silly buggers. All the need have done was fire their Indonesian pilots and hire white men with the combination of IQ and sang froid to safely handle a flying deathtrap.

      266. annamaria says:
        @Been_there_done_that

        A logical way to treat the highly-paid higher-ups: https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2019-03-22/horrifying-blast-china-chemical-plant-kills-47-injures-640

        Executives of a chemical plant in China’s Jiangsu province have been taken into police custody after an explosion on Thursday killed at least 47 people, injured 640 others and polluted areas several kilometers away.

        The US illogical and thoroughly corrupt way to treat the highly-paid higher-ups: https://www.texasmonthly.com/articles/deepwater-horizon-prosecution/
        https://www.ecowatch.com/what-you-need-to-know-six-years-after-bps-gulf-oil-disaster-1891119128.html

        the insulting report by the National Commission on the BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill failed to mention former Vice President Dick Cheney’s role in deregulating offshore drilling activities and the cozy relationship that BP, Transocean and Halliburton that allowed safety measures on the Deepwater Horizon rig to be ignored while safety inspections were virtually nonexistent.

        … BP’s long history of ignoring safety measures and actually creating presentations showing that it was cheaper for the company to pay for disasters instead of keeping their facilities up to date on safety measures, even when those disasters resulted in the loss of human life.

        … the negative health effects of the oil spill. … Corexit itself has been linked to cancers in both humans and marine mammals, which is why the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) initially didn’t want BP to use it in the cleanup. However, after BP refused to comply, the EPA backed off its Corexit ban and allowed BP to pour it by the barrel into the Gulf of Mexico.

        Unbelivable! https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tony_Hayward

        Anthony Bryan Hayward (born 21 May 1957) is a British businessman and former chief executive of oil and energy company BP. His tenure ended on 1 October 2010 following the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. He has been chairman of Glencore Xstrata since May 2014.

        Neither Cheney nor Hayward nor the scoundrels at the National Commission, who wrote the shameful report on the BP disaster, as well as the criminals at the EPA, were imprisoned and made destitute for the deaths of the innocent due to the blatant and calculated negligence of the highly-paid higher-ups.

      267. annamaria says:
        @Sparkon

        And Boeing has been cutting corners to shower money on this? – “Boeing nominates Nikki Haley to join Boeing’s Board of Directors:” http://fortune.com/2019/02/26/nikki-haley-boeing-board-of-directors/

        Ambassador Haley brings to Boeing an outstanding record of achievement in government, industry partnership, and successfully driving economic prosperity for communities in America and around the world,” said Boeing Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer Dennis Muilenburg.

        “Boeing will benefit greatly from her [Nikki Haley] broad perspectives and combined diplomatic, government and business experience to help achieve our aspiration to be the best in aerospace and a global industrial champion,” he added.

        If Boeing Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer Dennis Muilenburg says so…

      268. AaronB says:
        @Sim Jockey

        This is obviously correct.

        But I seem to be the only one realizing that this points to a much larger problem, well beyond these two tragic incidents, and well beyond MCAS.

        Many plots, especially in poorer countries, lack basic aviation skills.

      269. annamaria says:
        @Tom Welsh

        How to say it better… I don’t think that you would approve your child being operated on by a non-certified surgent using some non-certified medical technology. We do need control. The control only works effectively when responsibilities are clear and well enforced. Otherwise, there is the “global liberal order” of ignoramuses and psychopaths.

        The infamous story of the BP spill — when none (NONE) among the executives have been imprisoned and punished with devastating fines for the deaths of workers on the BP oil-rig and for the massive poisoning of the environment with highly toxic pollutants — indicates the rotten head of the US government.

        Until the high-placed deciders learn to be afraid of vox populi, they will continue wrecking the state.

        • Replies: @Dieter Kief
      270. @FB

        FB says:
        March 21, 2019 at 12:41 pm GMT

        Also you assume right from the getgo that the cause of the MAX crashes is mostly poor piloting…if you actually knew anything about 737 systems and consider what happens if an airplane noses over right after takeoff you might discover that things are not so simple to say the least…

        I do know about 737 systems, having been a 737 captain before becoming a B742 captain(which I mention because initial reaction to runaway stab trim is exactlly the same, a single MEMORY item). Yes a runaway stab trim really is that easy to cope with, and a defective MCAS does not cause an airplane to “nose(s) over right after takeoff”. Minimum altitude clean probably at least 1500 feet(depends entirely on how the plane is flown) as minimum flap retraction height for 737 usually 800 feet(varies from runway to runway.

        As I have pointed out in numerous comments on these two threads, citing specific control system details, it may well have been impossible to save either of these two aircraft, no matter what the pilots did…

        I see what you did there. You didn’t “pointed out” (which would mean you pointed out a fact), you made an assertion which was just untrue conjecture(“may well have been impossible to save either of these two aircraft, no matter what the pilots did). The reality is that had the pilots known how to fly then they could have coped with the problem without any of the passengers having been aware that there was any problem at all.

        Read Achmed E. Newman, he knows of what he writes, (and so do I).

        Agree with you on the training.

      271. @FB

        Oops, FB, ignore my first response on “axe to grind” bit. I read you too quickly there. Sorry.

      272. annamaria says:
        @Sbaker

        It seems that you take any critique of the Lobby as a support for the Muslims. And what exactly the brave woman, who happened to be of Somali descent, has to do with the corner-cutting by the US corporations and with pressure from the financial sector?

        The Federal Reserve (which is neither federal nor reserve) was not created by Muslims.
        “The Great Bank Robbery: How the Federal Reserve is destroying America” https://www.rt.com/usa/the-great-bank-robbery-how-the-federal-reserve-is-destroying-america/

        The blueprint for the ongoing wars of aggression the in the Middle East was not created by the Muslims: https://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php/Project_for_the_New_American_Century

        The PNAC was co-founded by William Kristol and Robert Kagan in 1997…

        Several original PNAC members, including Cheney, Khalilzad and the Bush family, have ties to the oil industry. Many other members have been long-time fixtures in the U.S. military establishment or Cold War “strategic studies,” including Elliott Abrams, Dick Cheney, Paula Dobriansky, Aaron Friedberg, Frank Gaffney, Fred C. Ikle, Peter W. Rodman, Stephen P. Rosen, Henry S. Rowen, Donald H. Rumsfeld, John R. Bolton, Vin Weber, and Paul Dundes Wolfowitz.

        The Project for the New American Century seeks to establish what they call ‘Pax Americana’ across the globe. … A report released by PNAC in September of 2000 entitled ‘Rebuilding America’s Defenses’ codifies this plan, which requires a massive increase in defense spending and the fighting of several major theater wars in order to establish American dominance.

        Why does PNAC remind about the composition of the first Bolshevik government?

      273. annamaria says:
        @Sbaker

        Since you are so keen on linking the discussion on 737 MAX crash to Ilhan Omar — a courageous woman of Somali descent in the US Congress, who is a lonely voice against the Lobby’s pernicious influence on the US policies — here is some info on Boeing Board of Directors (to take away your obsessive thoughts about Ilhan): https://www.seattletimes.com/business/boeing-board-of-directors-where-are-you/

        The board is filled with heavy-hitters.

        Among its members: Reagan chief of staff and uber-schmoozer Ken Duberstein; retired Admiral Edmund Giambastiani (a former vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff); and former U.S. Trade Representative Susan Schwab… David Calhoun is chief executive of Nielsen Holdings.

        It has four former CEOs: Lawrence Kellner (Continental Airlines), Arthur Collins (Medtronic), Ron Williams (Aetna) and Mike Zafirovski (Nortel). Linda Cook was a senior executive at Royal Dutch Shell.

        Boeing’s board even has a man experienced in crisis management and its perils: Ed Liddy. He was picked by then-Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson to run AIG as the financial crisis was turning into panic. Although Liddy took a token $1 salary (plus expenses), the insurer was bailed out with $84 billion in taxpayer money. … He presided over $165 million in bonuses handed out to employees at a company that nearly pushed the world economy into a depression.

        McNerney, Calhoun and Zafirovski all come out of high positions at General Electric, where McNerney was the runner-up to succeed Jack Welch as chief executive.

        Taken together, it’s a cozy board largely of elite professional managers and political movers. There’s no shareholder activist. No union member. Not one aircraft engineer.

        Not one aircraft engineer among the “heavy-hitters” of Boeing Board of Directors… Add to this illustrious crowd the newest acquisition — a very illustrious (if phenomenally stupid and sycophantic) Nikki Haley: https://www.washingtonpost.com “Nikki Haley has been nominated to Boeing’s Board of Directors.”

        • LOL: CanSpeccy
        • Replies: @SBaker
        , @Dieter Kief
      274. @Sim Jockey

        Sim Jockey thanks for your response. Very interesting.

        In 1995 I did a short contract job, based in Jakarta, with a “Middle Eastern Airline” to fly RHS into Kai Tak. The Middle Eastern Airline in question had not operated there before and they had their own captains but NONE of their own F/Os. All of us flying RHS had something in common. I had operated B742 for a well known New Zealand airline, including into Kai Tak. The others were all ex-Ansett F/Os(sacked during “the troubles” of Ansett 1991) well experienced in Kai Tak operation. Although never stated it was clear that we were there to nurse them into Kai Tak. They were scared of it with good cause.

        The standard of the ex Anset guys in the SIM was excellent. The standard of the Middle Eastern Airline captains(in the airplane, I didn’t see any in the Sim, but I can imagine) was truly horrendous. I got sacked after about 5 weeks(which suited me fine) due to the “culture” thing that you mention. I had to tell one of the captains, who was on his first famil into Kai Tak, with the cheif pilot in LHS and me in RHS, that he was an idiot. Didn’t go down well. The CP was an OK guy whom I got on well with, (he drank beer by the pool with me and the Aussies(we were living in the Borobudur)) and was OK into KT a couple of days before with me RHS, on his first flight in there. That day he did as I suggested. Two days later with his compatriot watching was a total shambles. Both days IGS but good weather. First day he did as I suggested. Second day, with the compatriot watching, near disaster. The CP was about average compared with a NZ pilot mostly(but on the KT day waaaay worse than I ever saw in 30 years, either seat, in the NZ airline. One other was OKish(had trained in Kuwait air force he said) but the rest were TERRIBLE.

        Regarding Asian pilots I have to agree. I have a friend flying 744 for KAL and from what he says there is clearly a cultural problem.

        I just looked back at your post and have to agree on the arrogance of the arab plots. Terrible pilots but thought they were great. Amazing.

        • Replies: @Factorize
      275. Factorize says:
        @acementhead

        Thank you for posting your informed comments. It is quite possibly true that if the pilot had initially responded differently, then the catastrophic outcome might have been averted. However, what is perhaps of even greater interest is: At what point in time did the airplane move beyond all possibility of the captain regaining control and successfully avoiding a crash? At this exact critical point in the flight what would the pilot have needed to have done to save the aircraft? Assume the pilot had perfect knowledge of all available options.

        • Replies: @acementhead
      276. @acementhead

        I just do not believe this. Every pilot know that flaps are setting the angle of ascent.
        and every pilots know that he has to reset the flaps after dose push down.
        I just do not believe that those pilots were so stupid that they did not do what you just said.
        They did not realize that there was necessity for minimal angle flight or even horizontal flight to perk up the speed and then start ascent again?
        Were both those pilots imbeciles?

      277. This scandal will not be suppressed or diverted. Famous consumer advocate Ralph Nader has come out with criticism today. He makes clear that criminal negligence was involved, which many are still in denial about.

        MARCH 22, 2019

        Greedy Boeing’s Avoidable Design and Software Time Bombs

        by RALPH NADER

        https://www.counterpunch.org/2019/03/22/greedy-boeings-avoidable-design-and-software-time-bombs/

        Boeing is all over Capitol Hill. They have 100 full time lobbyists in Washington, D.C. Over 300 members of Congress regularly take campaign cash from Boeing. The airlines lather the politicians with complimentary ticket upgrades, amenities, waivers of fees for reservation changes, priority boarding, and VIP escorts.

        • Replies: @Anonymous
      278. @Biff

        “Any properly trained pilot can safely deal with a runaway trim problem.”

        What kind of Moron types this shit?

        Biff I’m new here and I see that nobody else has replied, so maybe I should just ignore you too, but what you say is just wrong. It isn’t shit is is absolutely true. I ‘d go even further and say that in one hour briefing and I one hour in Sim I could train a non-pilot, whom I’d selected, to handle runaway stab trim properly. I think I could even teach you and so could Sim Jockey, It really is very simple.

        I’m a very good teacher. I know that because I’ve done what I’ve been told (by an experienced, high IQ, trained teacher(I’ve never had teacher training)) is impossible. I’ve taught a BABY to read. Not just once, but twice. And it was VERY easy. Here’s how. Start at 11 months. Follow Glen Doman method exactly. Baby watches Sesame street each day. By 24 months stop active teaching because at this stage baby teaches self so that by 50 months baby can read better than averge adult.

        • Replies: @res
        , @Biff
      279. More and more I am looking into it more and more I am convinced that it is not a Boeing fault.
        I do not know the data, but I am convinced that at higher speed flaps are easily overpowering the nose push down.
        I am more and more convinced that insufficient understanding of physical forces at flight by certain pilots is the problem here.
        (And I do call aileron spoiler and flaps just flaps because at take up they all work in unison.)

      280. Anonymous[131] • Disclaimer says:
        @Been_there_done_that

        Consumer advocate Ralph Nader has been a long time critic of the F.A.A. but, unfortunately, now it’s personal. Nader’s great niece was killed along with over 300 others in one of the two Boeing 737 Max 8 crashes in the past year. He joins “Squawk Box” by phone to discuss the investigation into the plane’s approval by the F.A.A.

        https://www.cnbc.com/video/2019/03/22/ralph-naders-niece-died-in-one-of-the-boeing-crashes-now-hes-calling-for-the-737-max-8-to-be-grounded.html

      281. @Dieter Kief

        Heiner Rindermann in his excellent book about Cognitive Capitalism – Human Capital and the Wellbeing of Nations, Cambridge University Press 2018, has a detailed description about Captain Chesley Sullenberger’s brillant Hudson river landing in it, which goes along quite nicely I’d assume, with your experiences.

        Dieter you won’t see this anywhere else but I’m a bastard who does my own thinking, I can’t just follow the herd.

        So here goes.

        Captain Sullenberger made some variations from standard operating procedure(SOP). Given the circumxtances that is OK. Some were good and some not so good, or terrible. The first difference was immediately to start the Auxilliary Power Unit(APU). In my opinion this wasn’t just good but very very good. In the event it didn’t matter, as the engines were too badly damaged(so it is said, IDK) to restart, but had they been not so damaged they could have been restarted only with APU running, as Ground Start would have been neccesary because the aircraft speed(at Green Dot) would have been too low for a windmilling start.

        Next variation, not so good, was to not immediately nail the Gren Dot(convert excess speed to height). This is understandable as he would not have known instantly how dire the situation was, however still an undesired variation.

        The last two variations however were very bad. He elccted to use a lower flap setting than manual called for. One position less flap than specified. Flap position 2 instaed of 3, from memory, I think. This gave a higher touchdown speed than designed.

        The last variation was the worst and was no doubt due to the A320 teaching him not to fly for the entire time he’d been on it. He did not “dive and drive’ as one would on a glider or any convntional aircraft where one HAD to “fly the plane”, but held the side stick full aft for something like the last ten secinds, from memory. This meant that he was coming down at “alpha floor” speed. There was no ability to raise the nose to flare as one does on EVERY landing in a real aeroplane. The horizontal speed was at the mimimum that the plane would allow, nothing left for flare. The vertical speed down was way above design(something like 9 metres per second from memory, the figure is in the BEA report. ). This high rate of descent caused the rear bottom of the aircraft to be ruptured and water to pour in. The aircraft is designed to remain intact, without damage sufficient to allow water ingress, provided it is flown in the correct manner(specified flap setting and approach speed of whatever the manual shows for that flap setting and weight. This speed will allow normal flare and thus normal rate od descent at touchdown.

        The purpose of this is not to castigate Captain Sullenberger but to point out that following SOP is the right way to do things. If the Ethiopian and lion Air pilots had followed SOP all would have been well.

        • Replies: @Dieter Kief
      282. @Factorize

        I think we are all on-board now that plane nose planting MCAS on= bad, though I am not totally sure whether under those nose planting conditions that I would actually want to cut the power to the entire trim system. I mean if one were to do that, then how might one then trim the plane, given that the electrical power to the entire trim system had been cut and all.

        From one of FB’s earlier responses — apparently with the power off, trim is adjusted by cranking this wheel:

        https://postimg.cc/HVntq1GG

      283. Factorize says:
        @acementhead

        There is a psychometric interpretation for what you observed. In most developed nations, 120 IQ can be found at any socio-economic position. Due to the highly polygenic nature of human intelligence, this is entirely expected. 120 IQ is 1.3 SD and it occurs with a frequency of 9%. It can hardly be called rare.

        As economic development occurred in developed nations, more and more of this high IQ labor force can be siphoned off to do high IQ activities which results in higher wages. Progress is good! In fact it is even better for those toward the bottom of the SES scale as this is one way that they can realistically move up the social ladder against entrenched elite interests. All the same, there is still likely, an oversupply of high IQ which prevents the emergence of various social pathologies from emerging.

        The same thinking would not apply in many developing nations. In developing nations, 120 IQ would not be found everywhere. 120 IQ with a background average of 80 is 2.7 SD and it occurs with a frequency of .4%. This is rare. If I had been in your stead in the cockpit, I would not have called the pilot an idiot: I would have said instead “Your Majesty”.

        Consider now the consequences for a developing nations of economic development. As more and more of the population acquire a middle class lifestyle, more and more of the very limited pool of high IQ people will be needed to fly people to vacation destinations, teach life long learning courses, provide IT support for web services etc. . It is not difficult to imagine that the needed supply of these high intelligence workers could be completely exhausted. For these nations development could result in extreme levels of psychometric stress.

        These type of considerations need to be kept clearly in mind by those who deny psychometric science. It should not be thought completely unreasonable to expect that such faulty thinking can and has caused entire societies to crash.

        • Agree: res
      284. SBaker says:
        @bluedog

        Where are these mysterious white power people? Can you direct me to one?

      285. SBaker says:
        @Anonymous

        Never ever cite the facts on this site. IQ tests are a conspiracy to downplay the cultures that never discovered the wheel.

      286. SBaker says:
        @annamaria

        You are a muslim though, aren’t you? I know the Quran says it is virtuous of you to lie to infidels, but I’m just asking, are you muslim?

        • Replies: @acementhead
        , @Iris
        , @annamaria
      287. @Factorize

        Factorize sorry I can’t really answer your questions as I don’t have anywhere near enough information. Would need to have trace of the flight path and vertical speed as well as the Indicated Airspeed(IAS). However IF the pilot’s knowledge was good(would not need to be “perfect” regarding the working of the MCAS system AND the only defect was the MCAS nose down trimming due defective AoA sensor(or due to any internal MCAS defect for that matter) THEN the pilot could at all times have use of electrical trim.

        My protocol to use electrical trim in the above circumstances.

        1) The override switches will be in cutoff following runaway stab trim procedure.
        2) If desiring to trim, return override to NORMAL. Operate trim with CW switch(split switch, thumb operated, both halves move). When trim is in desired position release trim switch and retun override switches to CUTOUT.
        3) Once first flap selection made on approach then override switches can be safely left in NORMAL and electrical trim used as normal.

        The whole thing really is a non-event when one knows what one is doing. Not all defects are so benign(hehheh).

        Hope this helps.

        Sim Jockey is very knowledgeable about this stuff too. Also Achmed E. Newman.

        • Replies: @Factorize
      288. res says:
        @acementhead

        I think you forgot step 0. Find a very smart baby.

      289. @acementhead

        a defective MCAS does not cause an airplane to “nose(s) over right after takeoff”. Minimum altitude clean probably at least 1500 feet(depends entirely on how the plane is flown) as minimum flap retraction height for 737 usually 800 feet(varies from runway to runway.

        Huh. That doesn’t seem to fit with the flight data available.

        Altitude, vertical speed, and ground speed of Ethiopian Airlines flight:
        Addis Ababa airport altitude is 7,628 feet (2325 m) AMSL.

        https://addisairport.com/addis-ababa-airport-information/

        Barely made it to 1000 feet AAL, if that.

        https://www.flightradar24.com/blog/flightradar24-data-regarding-the-crash-of-ethiopian-airlines-flight-302/

        But vertical speed of Ethiopian Airlines and Lion Air flights looks like a similar pattern:

        http://tinypic.com/view.php?pic=3148qhc&s=9#.XJU3VIrLdJg

        He didn’t take off with the flaps up, did he?

        That would explain high AoA, high speed, failure to climb, MCAS activation…

        • Replies: @Sparkon
        , @acementhead
      290. @Factorize

        If I had been in your stead in the cockpit, I would not have called the pilot an idiot: I would have said instead “Your Majesty”.

        Thanks for that Factorize I really did get a lol.

        It actually worked out well as I’d already spent enough time in Jakarta, on previous contracts, and between the time I signed the contract for the job and actally leaving Sydney I’d met a new lady friend and REALLY didn’t want to be in Jakarta.

        I agree with the rest of your comment. I’ve had a long interest in psychology and have bought and read The Bell Curve(now lost, and I suppose irreplaceable since it was put on the book burning list) also had B F Skinner BF&D 50 years ago. I know that he was declared out decades ago but his OC still works.

        Getting waaay off topic here but I hope it gets published as I’m very lazy and really dislike wasted effort.

        • Replies: @Factorize
      291. @SBaker

        You are a muslim though, aren’t you? I know the Quran says it is virtuous of you to lie to infidels, but I’m just asking, are you muslim?

        SBaker pardon me sticking my oar in here but although I’m a non-arab atheist I believe, from memory CBA looking it up, that the Quran specifically enjoins against lies to all and especially to people “of the book” which I’m pretty certain includes Christians AND J*ws. Happy to be proved wrong.

        Maybe you are confusing the Quran with some other ME book which DOES SPECIFICALLY approve of lies to ‘the other’.

      292. Sparkon says:
        @James Forrestal

        The Lion Air vertical speed data is noisy, reflecting many small changes while the Ethiopian Air trace is entirely lacking in those very rapid changes, so I can’t agree that the patterns look similar, even at first glance.

        • Replies: @Sparkon
        , @James Forrestal
      293. @James Forrestal

        T/O with flaps up is EXTREMLY improbable. The T/O warning horn is IMPOSSIBLE to ignore.

        It is possible to T/O with an incorrect flap setting in earlier model non-NG 737 but I can’t say for MAX 800 as I haven’t flown it and CBA looking it up. I’m sure you could; everything is OTN. In any event for the aircraft to have been clean 1000′ AGL after T/O at 7000 is most unusual. I don’t have the Ethiopian performance manual but I would be very surprised if flap retraction altitude was below 800′ so to be clean by 1000′ is HORRIBLE flight technique. But it would certainly be possible and anyone so ignorant as to fly in that manner likely is ignorant of lots of things.

        In any event the FDR will have recorded the actual flap setting used and the performance manual will allow calculations of all permitted configurations for that flight.

        Probability of 0 flap T/O, in the words of Dean Wermer, zero point zero.

      294. Sparkon says:
        @Sparkon

        The Lion Air vertical speed data is are noisy…

        I meant to write that; I really did.

      295. renfro says:
        @CanSpeccy

        And you think a privatized corp taking over the role of the FAA wouldn’t !) borrow the money to start it 2) do a IPO to sell stock to investors…….and then have to repay the debt and pay % to its stockholders wouldnt cost even more?

        Don’t bother replying. You obviously don’t have the education or business knowledge to understand this.

        • Disagree: Achmed E. Newman
        • Replies: @CanSpeccy
      296. Factorize says:
        @acementhead

        This is great! Thank you so much for your expert answer! In almost any such instance in my life I would have read through the manuals, carefully worked through the example exercises and probably not have been able to sleep for a week or two as I tried to thoroughly understand everything. However, experts are on board, so to speak, and it is so much easier to just ask them!

        acementhead of Moon of Alabama fame?

        Um, that’s it?
        A 3 step procedure to cut the trim?
        Elsewhere on thread, there has been talk that manual trimming might no longer be effective because the tail plane might then be in a wind shadow. Could this reasonably be true? The tail plane would no longer control flight?

        I have a great number of questions. At the top of the list is my comment #592 on
        http://www.unz.com/jthompson/boeing-737-max-an-artificial-intelligence-event/#respond

        The lead comment on MoA talked about this issue. Was that comment accurate? It is very startling! The flight computers alternate and they only use one input AoA sensor? That would mean after fixing a defective AoA sensor from one flight, the next flight would automatically be assigned to the other AoA sensor– the non-fixed one. Isn’t such behavior extremely pathological and highly counter-intuitive?

        Strangely, many airlines have tried to reassure the flying public that they have went the extra mile and reported that they use two sensors. I am not reassured. In this instance I would guess that one sensor would be safer. It would be like being dealt a winning hand, but refusing it and asking for a re-deal.

        How difficult might it be to reboot the flight computers mid-flight? Switch out the flight computer in use and replace it with the one that is not? If one could easily do so, then it would be like being dealt a losing hand, refusing it and then being re-dealt a new hand. A MCAS problem might then be overrode by merely switching computers.

        • Replies: @acementhead
        , @acementhead
      297. @Sparkon

        The Lion Air vertical speed data is noisy, reflecting many small changes while the Ethiopian Air trace is entirely lacking in those very rapid changes, so I can’t agree that the patterns look similar, even at first glance.

        Probably an artifact of the data source — looks like a different data sampling rate.

      298. @annamaria

        Who is out there to — – o r g a n i z e – – this protest in a ever more atomized society?
        (Does this kind of questions imply that somebody who poses them (dumb me) is necessarily floating in otherworldly realms?)

      299. @annamaria

        Interesting. Even more interesting, that nobody seemed to have cared about such – at least now (sigh) quite obvious corporate malfunctions until – – – – – -now. – The picture you give here of Boing looks extraordinarily grim. But – thanks!

      300. @acementhead

        Puhh – oha! – – – Thanks. Your Sullenberger looks quite a bit less brillant than Rindermanns (and Steve Sailer’s, for that matter).

        I’ll email this to Heiner Rindermann.

        One question, if you please: To follow the SOP procedure would have implied a) to flip these two switches and shut off the MCAS?
        And b) – – what then?
        FB says, in the case of the Ethiopian plane, there was no chance because the situation allowed not at all for any reasonable (and effective) measures – he says there was just no time left for a proper solution.

        If I understand you right, you would doubt that – so: How would everything have worked out fine by following the SOP procedure?
        (I would not mind if you explained this in very few words).

        • Replies: @acementhead
      301. CanSpeccy says: • Website
        @renfro

        Don’t bother replying.

        That shows confidence in your own judgement. LOL.

        I actually said nothing whatever about a private company taking over the role of the FAA. But I suppose to some people the idea of a government agency doing anything at all without a budget in the billions and several dozen layers of bureaucracy is inconceivable.

      302. @Factorize

        Factorize it is a ONE step procedure. The procedure is the same on the B737(all models) as it is on the B742. I no longer have the B737 manuals(they are readilly available online), but I do have the B742 Operations Manual, for a well known South Pacific airline, as of 17 Jul 92.

        Here is the “procedure”.

        Top of page label UNSCHEDULED STABILISER TRIM in box(you know what the box means? all Pilots do.).

        next item on page, in box. Stabiliser Hydraulic Shutoff Switches………………….CUTOUT

        That’s it. On the 742 that cuts off ALL unscheduled trim.

        The 737 procedure is exactly the same. 737 is electric motor unstead of (two) hydraulic in the 742.

        I made a mistake in commenting at MoA. I thought that b might be interested in the truth but I was wrong. The people there were extremely unpleasant and made it clear that they didn’t want any outsiders interupting their echo chamber. Fair enough. It’s not my purpose in life to upset anyone so I shalln’t return. Have fun agreeing with each other on subjects about which you know nothing.

        I didn’t read on after your “acementhead of Moon of Alabama fame?”
        I took in the next two lines, because they were short and I read in blocks, so I corrected your error there.

        I’ve finished with you. Be as vitriolic as you like I won’t see it(Unz has a much better user interface than MoA).

        • Replies: @Factorize
        , @FB
      303. Iris says:
        @SBaker

        No, annamaria is not a Muslim.

        She just can’t stand idiots and Hasbara trolls. Which one are you?

      304. @Dieter Kief

        “Puhh – oha! – – – Thanks. Your Sullenberger looks quite a bit less brillant than Rindermanns (and Steve Sailer’s, for that matter).

        I’ll email this to Heiner Rindermann.”

        Dieter I’d sort of prfer that you didn’t but don’t mind at all if you think it could be beneficial. As I’ve said in a reply to someone else above, I don’t really like to upset people and questioning their religion(unreasoned belief) does upset many.

        “One question, if you please: To follow the SOP procedure would have implied a) to flip these two switches and shut off the MCAS?
        And b) – – what then?”

        Nothing else. That’s it. Electrical trim is now disabled UNLESS there is some other fault, much more major and hardly physically possible.

        FB says, in the case of the Ethiopian plane, there was no chance because the situation allowed not at all for any reasonable (and effective) measures – he says there was just no time left for a proper solution.

        Well my opinion is that he is wrong. It really is simple and easy. Why they got it wrong I can’t say. Zero information.

        If I understand you right, you would doubt that – so: How would everything have worked out fine by following the SOP procedure?
        (I would not mind if you explained this in very few words).

        I believe you do understand my assertions correctly. I’ve explained it, quite simply I think, in previous comments earlier. Sorry I’m too lazy to do it again just now but UNZ has a really good UI and I’m sure that you can easilly find it. If not I’ll hunt it out for you soonish, but not today.

        • Troll: FB
        • Replies: @Dieter Kief
      305. No need to discuss anything anymore. Charts show that it was incompetent pilots that brought the planes down.Period.

        • Replies: @annamaria
      306. Sparkon says:
        @James Forrestal

        Probably an artifact of the data source — looks like a different data sampling rate.

        Those graphs were provided by Flightradar24, which gathers its data from automatic ADS-B broadcasts from aircraft equipped with the transmitter.

        Automatic dependent surveillance—broadcast (ADS–B) is a surveillance technology in which an aircraft determines its position via satellite navigation and periodically broadcasts it, enabling it to be tracked. The information can be received by air traffic control ground stations as a replacement for secondary surveillance radar, as no interrogation signal is needed from the ground. It can also be received by other aircraft to provide situational awareness and allow self-separation.

        ADS–B is “automatic” in that it requires no pilot or external input. It is “dependent” in that it depends on data from the aircraft’s navigation system.

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Automatic_dependent_surveillance_%E2%80%93_broadcast

        I can’t see any reason there would have been a different sampling rate as both of these aircraft were Boeing 737 Max 8s, and they were the data sources.

        • Replies: @James Forrestal
      307. Biff says:
        @acementhead

        The Boeing shills are out in droves. You’re probably getting paid more than 20 year domestic pilots, which probably isn’t much.

        • LOL: FB
        • Replies: @bluedog
      308. Factorize says:
        @acementhead

        I apologize for not understanding your comment. After all of these hundreds and hundreds of posts I was expecting the required procedure to overcome the problem would be complex. The pilots on those 2 crashed flights fought with the plane for many minutes; one pilot applied 100 pounds of pressure to try to regain control; they needed to manually spin the trim wheel dozens of times; the Lion Air flight fought through over twenty cycles of this roller coaster ride. This could largely have been prevented with a 1 step procedure? They didn’t even need to do all that manual spinning either? They could have used the electric trim procedure that you outlined (especially in the step you labelled (2), which I count has 4 mini-steps.). Your comments are in complete agreement with the FAA statement after the first crash.

        https://www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/faa-order-tells-how-737-pilots-should-arrest-runawa-453443/

        Sorry that my misinformed statement upset you; I did not intend that it would. I just had a very murky understanding of what caused these crashes and I was motivated to learn more. If the planes could have been easily brought back into control, then it does not appear that there remains a great deal to discuss. I have no interest in posting obscenities or other ad hominems.

        Best Wishes to Everyone!

        • Replies: @Ilyana_Rozumova
      309. FB says: • Website
        @Factorize

        ‘Hmmmm, I would really have to think about that. Would I really want to cut the electrical power to the entire trim system?’

        That’s a great question…I’m glad to see at least one person here is using their noggin…

        The obvious answer, provided your airplane is in a full blown dive and a few hundred feet above the ground is ABSOLUTELY NOT…because of this simple fact…

        WITH THE STABILIZER TRIMMED FULLY NOSE DOWN, THE ELEVATOR DOES NOT HAVE ENOUGH AUTHORITY TO PULL THE AIRPLANE UP…BOTH OF THE PILOTS PULLING BAKC ON THE YOKE WILL DO NOTHING TO PREVENT THE AIRPLANE FROM GOING IN

        Anybody who is familiar with the 737 design knows this…although it seems that a number of so-called ‘captains’ here have no such knowledge…

        Let me back this up with several top notch airline pilots [most of these guys with military background also]…

        Here is Juan Browne triple seven first officer, former USAF and current national Guard pilot…

        In these two accidents you see the speed increasing, as to which point, full nose-down trim…you are physically unable to overpower the control loading, the aerodynamic loading…TO SAVE THE AIRCRAFT…

        Here is Mentour Pilot a 737 NG captain…

        …if the stabilizer is starting to pitch the nose toward the ground…and you’re struggling to keep the elevator…because the elevator is a much smaller surface than the whole stabilizer is…well then you have to get that stopped…if it moves to full nose down, the elevator on the 737 is just not big enough to counteract that movement…

        And here is Bjorn Fehrm, airline captain and former Swedish fighter pilot…

        This should point to this being another MCAS accident, with the aircraft’s powerful pitch trim going to full nose down position.

        The aircraft can then not be held level with the pilot’s elevator control; he needs to trim against the MCAS trimming to keep pitch authority.

        I have made this point repeatedly in several comments…for example here…

        ‘…once that horizontal stabilizer is in the fully nose down position, the airplane CANNOT BE BROUGHT BACK BY SIMPLY FLIPPING THE SWITCHES AND PULLING BACK ON THE YOKE…

        …there is simply not enough control authority in the elevator to bring the airplane back up…you need to manually wind the trim wheels by a couple of dozen turns in order to bring the tail back into normal position where the elevators will start to have effect…and the pilots pulling on the yoke will be able to pull the plane out…all of that takes time

        And in a comment several days previous here…

        ‘So what happens if that stabilizer is commanded into the fully nose down position…?…in very simple terms it means there may not be any way to pull the aircraft nose back up, by simply pulling on the yoke…

        …remember the yoke only controls the relatively small elevator surface in the back portion of th stabilizer…what needs to happen in order to get the nose back up is that the stabilizer must be trimmed back to the nose down position before the yoke can start to pull the nose up…

        I even included a diagram of the tail to illustrate how small the elevator is in comparison to the entire tailplane [ie stabilizer]…

        So the very clear answer to this question is no, you don’t want to turn off those trim electrical switches if the airplane is already in a dive, because you will not be able to recover it by just pulling on the yoke…

        And let us look again now at the Ethiopian radar data to see what this airplane was doing and what would have happened if that crew had shut down the electrical trim…

        Let’s first look at the altitude chart which also shows the airplane climb or descent with the green line [ie vertical speed]…we see that 30 seconds after the takeoff there is a big downward dip in the green line meaning the airplane has stopped climbing…that’s at 5:38:45

        That green vertical speed line should be more or less flat…the initial climb rate right after rotation will be about 3,000 feet per minute…but the pilot will pitch down a bit to pick up a little speed and then climb at about 2,000 fpm…so that loss in climb rate could be simply the pilot reducing the dck angle a bit to pick up some speed…

        But then the airplane does not get up to a climb rate of even 2,00 fpm for about the next minute…at 5:40:00 the airplane is actually descending at 2,000 fpm…that’s nearly two minutes after takeoff and the airplane at this point should be about 4,000 feet above the airport at least [that would be mean sea level height of about 13,000 ft…

        But we see that the airplane is barely 500 feet above the airport and is actually going down not up…

        And now let’s bring in the speed chart…

        The airplane here is going 300 knots…about 100 knots faster than it should be…[initial climb speed is going to be about 150 to 200 knots]…so clearly those ups and downs that w have seen means the airplane has picked up speed, while failing to gain altitude…we have rising terrain all around…the mountains surrounding the airport are getting higher…

        SO I WANT TO ASK THESE ‘CAPTAINS’ HERE IF THEY WOULD AT THIS POINT CUT THE ELECTRICAL POWER TO THE TRIM SYSTEM…WITH THE AIRPLANE POINTING DOWN AND GOING 300 KNOTS…?

        I’m going to be debunking more of the nonsense that is floating around here from these sim jockeys pretending to be captains…stay tuned…

      310. FB says: • Website
        @acementhead

        ‘Factorize it is a ONE step procedure.

        Thanks for saving me the work of discrediting your supposed ‘captain’ crdentials…

        Here is the actual 737 NG runaway stab checklist…

        Notice there are SEVEN ITEMS…not one…

        Also here’s the thing ‘captain’…the procedure for dealing with MCAS is NOT the runaway trim procedure for previous models…that was covered by the FAA Airworthiness Directive 2018-23-51…and also a Boeing bulletin for an addition to the Flight Crew Operations Manual…

        But let’s cover some basic ground first…what is so different about an MCAS plan and an NG…?

        Let’s refer to the NG runaway stab checklist in the first photo above, found in the QRH [quick reference handbook for the NG, section 9…]

        Notice that the very first item is holding the stick [ie yoke or control column] against the direction fo the trim…that will cut the trim right there, due to the trim cutout switches in the bottom of the control column…only if that does not stop the runaway trim does the checklist continue…

        Here’s Bjorn Fehrm on that…

        ‘[runaway trim is] not stopped by the Pilot pulling the Yoke , which for normal trim from the autopilot or runaway manual trim triggers trim hold sensors. This would negate why MCAS was implemented…

        It’s probably this counterintuitive characteristic, which goes against what has been trained many times in the simulator for unwanted autopilot trim or manual trim runaway, which has confused the pilots of JT610. They learned that holding against the trim stopped the nose down, and then they could take action, like counter-trimming or outright CUTOUT the trim servo.

        That’s right ‘captain’…every 737 pilot is trained to know that the first thing that stops runaway trim is simply holding stick against it…but Boeing changed that on MAX and didn’t bother telling pilots about it…

        And here is Peter Lemme, a former senior Boeing engineer on this very specific detail of leaving out the control column cutout switch that would stop trim just by holding the yoke…

        The last issue with MCAS is the most significant. The flight condition that MCAS is designed for (accelerated stall) involves the column being pulled back when MCAS needs to trim nose down. This creates a conflict with the aft-column cutout. The aft-column cutout stops a nose-down “mistrim” command.

        The aft-column cutout involves a signal from the column cutout switch to the FCC. The FCC software uses the input to turn off its trim commands.

        The FCC removed the aft column cutout feature from MCAS commands. MCAS can trim nose down in spite of the aft column cutout being asserted. This is a grave error and must be resolved.

        The column cutout switches have served aviation well. Boeing NEVER should have removed aft-column cutout for MCAS. Aft-column cutout must be restored. If that means MCAS cannot work as planned, THEN SO BE IT, take MCAS out.’

        The fact of the matter is that we have one crash that happened before Boeing even told pilots that MCAS existed and that the old procedure for stopping trim does not work [at least at first]…then we have a second crash where pilots presumably knew about cutting off electric trim, but what would that do to an airplane 500 feet above terrain and headed down…?

        Not to mention that MCAS kicking in is not like runaway trim in a number of significant ways…for one thing with the flight computer convinced that the airplane is in a stall, you are going to get all kinds of warning annunciations and stick shaker and all kinds of visual and aural warnings going off…

        Here’s Juan Browne again…

        With MCAS upset, it starts out with you fighting the aircraft, and then it becomes an intermittent problem…it may start out as a loss of reliable airspeed inication…it could start of with a whole series of warning lights that are completely confusing and baffling…and lead you down the completely wrong road to recovery…this startle factor is a huge factor in these accidents…

        Here is what one senior captain reported to the NASA ASRS…

        I think it is unconscionable that a manufacturer, the FAA, and the airlines would have pilots flying an airplane without adequately training, or even providing available resources and sufficient documentation to understand the highly complex systems that differentiate this aircraft from prior models.

        The fact that this airplane requires such jury rigging to fly is a red flag. Now we know the systems employed are error prone–even if the pilots aren’t sure what those systems are, what redundancies are in place, and failure modes.

        I am left to wonder: what else don’t I know? The Flight Manual is inadequate and almost criminally insufficient. All airlines that operate the MAX must insist that Boeing incorporate ALL systems in their manuals.

        You know what ‘captain’…why don’t you get the fuck real…?…who do you think you’re fucking kidding with your bullshit act anyway…I’m glad Factorize called you out on your little troll act on moon of alabama…I saw it unfold…you and another pretend pilot were laying it on thick blaming the air crew on these two tragic crashes…something that goes against any kind of basic airmanship and camraderie among the professional pilot community…until several real pilots outed your bullshit and you ran away never to show your ‘captain kangaroo’ ass again…

        now you’ve parachuted in here with zero commenting history…and you don’t feel ashamed pulling the leg of the author of these articles who is actually taking your bullshit seriously…why don’t you just straighten out man…you’re a fucking disgrace…

        What a fucking clown…

      311. @res

        Funny bastard..Reminds me of the center panels of the old A6 Intruder. Everything in the A6’s I used to service was analog and mechanical switches, sensors, controllers, no computers except for navigation and targeting. In airplanes, the late seventies were a very, very different time. They had ridiculous airspeed sensor tubes on the A6, a rugged spike with a hole in it, heated, the thing can burn you if it was inadvertently left on when they put power on the plane. Can’t freeze that puppy up, never heard of one anyway. Up on the tail. They aren’t so prominent on commercial planes as that. But then, the A6 was nothing graceful or efficient.

      312. Erebus says:

        First, I have some questions for the pilots here…
        – Is there any realtime cockpit indicator telling the pilots what the physical stabilizer trim angle actually is? If there is, where is it and how does it display?
        – Are the left and right stabilizers operated/operable independently? That is, can they be set to different angles? Looking at the cockpit controls, it appears that they are independent, but mine are a layman’s eyes when it comes to airplane cockpits.

        I am (obviously) not a pilot, but I have a fair bit of design/engineering experience (including writing manuals) with complex machinery and computer control, including system control involving operations driven by data from all manner of sensors. I’ve seen things go wrong with complex machinery that surprises even those who were intimately involved in its design and construction. These are sometimes due to software/data collisions, and sometimes from unpredicted mechanical behaviour such as underdamped resonances in couplings and/or components building up over time, and sometimes from external influences such as “dirty” power lines.

        I’m also an avid sailor, so have some “feel” for windspeed, apparent & true wind angles, and how to trim sails for maximum performance or comfort. Not an airplane, but the inputs are similar as are responses. Some boats react instantly, some sluggishly, some are very stable and suffer error gladly, while others are fickle and perform badly, even dangerously when out of their sweetspot. When one learns a boat’s character, one sails it accordingly. This becomes important later.

        From what I’ve read of these crashes, I’m reminded of some of the incidents I’ve witnessed with complex machines where the root cause of the trouble lies in places neither the operators nor even the design engineers knew existed.

        The Lion Air crash is the only one we have significant information on cockpit activity during the flight. From the Jakarta ATC recordings, we know that all readouts including angle-of-attack, airspeed and altitude were in disagreement, and there are indications that at least some of those were giving wild readings.
        From the Preliminary Report, we also know that the sensors on this particular aircraft had been misbehaving on previous flights (Oct 26-Oct 28). Its sensors had been serviced/replaced and ground tested after each flight, but continued to misbehave until the aircraft went into the ocean.

        The MCAS system that Boeing overlaid on the standard auto-trim system uses all 3 of the above readings and applies nose-down trim when its algorithms determine that a combination of readings indicates a dangerous stall condition. It activates independently of pilot command, and independently of his knowledge that it is doing so. That is, it’s operation is completely opaque to the pilot, and its very existence was unknown outside of Boeing and FAA.

        That it was so implemented that it could activate in a climbout seems counter-intuitive as the aircraft is normally in a nose up, slow speed situation. From a control engineer’s perspective, that means it’s a “dumb system”, reacting to sensor readings at “face-value” with no integration of past readings (EG sitting on the tarmac). Its 2.5 degrees/10 sec standard move means it had no “look-ahead” functionality either. From what I can gather, it doesn’t even take readings from engine sensors regarding thrust. All bad.

        The MCAS system uses data from but one of the aircraft’s 2 AoA sensors, but it is unclear to me where it gets its airspeed and altitude data. Also from 1 of each? An average of all available?

        Furthermore (and I think this is critical to operator interface design and instruction), the MCAS resets at the end of every correction it makes. That is (from my understanding of “reset”), the MCAS computer treats the new stabilizer setting as “zero” or “home” position and makes its next move from there. In CNC machine terms, it’s running in “Incremental”, instead of “Absolute” mode. In CNC machining, incremental toolpath calculations are typically used on sub-routines such as identical features being machined in different locations on a part. The tool is moved to a new Absolute position and an Incrementally programmed sub-routine machines the feature. The only reason for doing it that way is it’s faster (& cheaper) to program than to create new Absolute positioning for every identical feature. It’s also more code efficient. The critical thing to understand here is that the machine doesn’t “know” its position while running the Incremental sub-routine. Until the sub routine is finished and the machine goes back into Absolute mode, it’s “dumb” as to its position. A good programmer will always bring his machine back into Absolute mode at the end of each Incremental subroutine. Why? Because the danger of running a fully incremental program is that programming errors can run the machine to its endstops and crash the program, or even damage the machine. Modern machines have all kinds of safeguards against that now, but in the old days it was an all too common occurrence. You don’t need to ask me how I know.

        What Boeing seems to have done (and I’m happy to be corrected), is that they put an Incremental subroutine (the MCAS) with override authority of an Absolute routine (the standard auto-trim system) and neglected to put in safeguards against the Incremental subroutine from driving the system to its endstops. If that’s so, it is very, very bad system design.

        From what I’ve read, that causes the auto-trim to behave significantly differently from previous auto-trim schemes. Normally its action can be stopped by pulling on the yoke, or hitting the yoke mounted auto-trim buttons, in the same way as auto-trim systems have been stopped on all other aircraft. Typical auto-trim systems then held in that “Absolute(?)” position and the pilots could adjust from the new Absolute position. Not so with MCAS.

        Like some kind of zombie Incremental sub-routine, 5 sec later the MCAS resurfaces and trims nose down again. Each move being 2.5 degrees means that within 2 or 3 adjustments, the system is at its endstops, and becomes unrecoverable in close situations. If the pilot doesn’t have any idea that Boeing installed an Incremental MCAS at the top of the Absolute auto-trim command hierarchy, he has no idea that the auto-trim system is gonna go to its endstops by design. Instead, he naturally thinks he’s solved the problem in the same way he solved it numerous times over his 5,000 hrs of flying B737s, and can now trim manually. When he can’t, and his sensors are reading all over the scales, flying at 900′ (4-5 secs) above the ocean, the idea that he should “turn it off” when he doesn’t even know it’s “on”, seems to ask more than most pilots can deliver.

        If he’s in LT610 at 900′, with AoA, airspeed and altitude indicators reading wildly so he’s flying by looking out the window, he has his hands full. In those circumstances, even if he has the presence of mind to shut down the system, does he have the time to crank the trim wheels to bring the stabilizers back to a neutral position? Do both wheels have to be cranked simultaneously and brought to similar positions? If he doesn’t, or they do, he’s in the ocean secs later no matter how “professional” he is.

        Yes, after 5,000 hrs of B737 command a pilot can become complacent. He’s seen it all. He and his managers were told that his next 5,000 hrs in the MAX would be just like his last 5,000 in the standard B737. The B737 was a pretty stable aircraft, but the B737MAX is inherently physically unstable. “Stable” and “Unstable” are not the same and Boeing’s new Flight Manuals did not make that point sufficiently clear to raise it above the “same type” sales pitch.

        Putting it in sailboat terms… say I’d had 5,000 hrs in a boat with a motorized lift keel that I knew like the back of my hand, and decided to buy the new & improved model. It too has a motorized keel lifting device with the same familiar controls, but the salesmen/brochures/owner’s manuals now say:
        “You can still lift it manually if the motor fails, and just shut it off if the motor tries to lift the keel inappropriately“. Nowhere do they mention that the motor is attached to a computer that will lift it whenever its algorithms tell it to (presumably downwind, or in shallow water) but if it lifts the keel suddenly while I’m close-hauled into a 40kn breeze in green water, I and the boat are upside down faster than you can say “WTF?”. There would be no time to turn the boat downwind much less lower the keel manually. If I survived long enough, I’d be hair-on-fire pissed at the mfr’s flagrant disregard for my safety. If it happened 2 or 3 times, that mfr would be in a world of hurt legally.

        I’ve read the relevant sections of the Boeing Manual and its Bulletin. As I said, I’m not a pilot, but in technical manual writing, the primary thing one emphasizes if one is writing a manual for a “new & improved” version of an existing model are making explicit the differences between the old and the new. This is especially so if there were operational differences that could lead to catastrophic failure if ignored. In the machine business, if I wrote what Boeing wrote, I’d fire myself. Finally, an FAA Directive spelled it out with a modicum of clarity.

        The information that the system could drive itself into runaway by design could be read between the lines, but if that’s considered inadequate for machinery why would the aviation industry consider it adequate for the life & death situations it places the public? Indeed, some (American) pilots have called it “criminally inadequate” and I agree.

        Then there’s the countless technical questions surrounding how/why this particular Lion Air aircraft exhibited such bizarre sensor behaviour. Sensors were replaced/serviced/tested several times over the aircraft’s last 3 days of life. It’s easy to blame “sloppy ground engineers”, but if they did the prescribed standard tests as their reports stated, then there’s something in that aircraft’s data acquisition and/or processing & display that was seriously out of whack. It’s unclear to what extent the Ethiopian aircraft exhibited similar sensor-reading anomalies, but it wouldn’t surprise me to hear that it did.
        If it did, there would appear to be an inherent, systemic problem in the B737MAX’s flight control system(s) that can lead to catastrophic loss of control. Maybe somebody’s cellphone was still on. [/sarc]

        Given the sloppiness of the aeronautical systems engineering and disingenuity of the sales pitch, I can’t believe people are defending Boeing/FAA using “3rd World Pilots” arguments. The B737MAX has been out for 1.5 yrs. Has anyone heard of a B737MAX with flight sensors all in disagreement, and the MCAS repeatedly driving the nose down on climb out, that the pilots caught and reversed?
        If there was, why was no notice published that the aircraft exhibited such dangerous behaviour as a warning to all operators?

        If Lion Air and Ethiopian Airlines were the 1st & 2nd, I’d say the pilots (and their passengers) were criminally endangered guinea pigs rather than incompetent. I’d be pleased to hear real pilots poke holes in my understanding of the matter.

      313. @Factorize

        I know that you are not addressing to me but maybe I can help.
        They recovered from dive (actually several times.)
        That was done by maximally engaging the flaps.
        What they should have done once the plane had nose up to continually decrease the effect of flaps so the airplane would climb at lesser angle as the steep angle of that did cause the MCAS to engage in the first case. (Actually to considerably lesser angle because what did happen is that they did loose a considerably of airspeed.) The permissible angle of ascent is not constant. It changes relative to speed of the aircraft.
        Read cementhead comment it is all there.

        • Replies: @James Forrestal
      314. Iris says:
        @Erebus

        ” but if that’s considered inadequate for machinery why would the aviation industry consider it adequate for the life & death situations it places the public? Indeed, some (American) pilots have called it “criminally inadequate” and I agree.”

        Thanks for taking the time to put together this very informative comment.

        Engineering within safety-critical industries such as the nuclear, chemical, pharmaceutical and Oil&Gas industries could have never gotten away with such flaws in the design.

        CSV (Computer Software Validation) of critical applications is mandatory. Before putting in function any safety-critical piece of software governing automated functions, in-depth testing must be carried out by simulating all possible failure situation, using methods broadly caused Failure Mode and Effects Analysis (FMEA).

        Furthermore, each critical function should be built using highest quality hardware assembled with redundant back-up, so as the failure of any component does not impact operation of the entire system. These Safety Instrumented Functions (SIF)/Safety Instrumented Levels (SIL) are mandated by ISO Standards. Engineers don’t have the choice but to abide by them and apply them in practice.

        Catastrophic failures such as two planes getting out of control over a short period of time, and only little time after the Boeing 737 Max had been launched are a statistical red flag.
        Failures like that could not easily occur in the adequately regulated and audited engineering areas I listed above. The lack of independent overview over the aviation industry, due to it being mainly polarised between Airbus and Boeing, seems to be a core root cause. Best.

        • Replies: @res
        , @Erebus
      315. res says:
        @Erebus

        If Lion Air and Ethiopian Airlines were the 1st & 2nd, I’d say the pilots (and their passengers) were criminally endangered guinea pigs rather than incompetent.

        Reality probably lies somewhere in the middle. As a technical writer you probably know that sufficiently competent users can deal with difficult (or even incorrect) instructions (have you ever been involved in an alpha or beta program where rough edges are still being smoothed?). But good instructions make technology much more usable for a broad range of people. And help prevent mistakes even by the best. Well designed systems (e.g. fault tolerant) and user interfaces do much the same. The optional nature of some of the MCAS relevant UIs is a very interesting decision. Anyone want to bet whether one outcome of all of this is that those become standard?

        One thing which I think is underrated in system/UI/manual design is providing the user a relatively easy to understand mental model of the system. I think the MCAS debacle has provided a good illustration of that failing.

        Based on the statistical evidence I presented above I think the “third world pilots” explanation has some relevance here. While still remembering that things like pilot skill (or whole population IQs) occur over a range and exceptions exist. And always remembering that airlines should design their products for their entire user base.

        In the Ethiopian Airlines case in particular it sounds like the challenges of the particular airport they were departing also played a significant role.

        But from what I read Boeing created a system that is incredibly fragile, non-intuitive, and prone to failure. Any halfway decent engineer knows that is asking for trouble. What surprises me is that any halfway decent lawyer should also know that. I’d be interested in what kinds of conversations have been happening between Boeing’s management, legal, and engineering teams.

        P.S. Why does everyone (seemingly) insist on framing things as false dichotomies?

        P.P.S. I should emphasize that even though I am only calling out one thing I disagreed with above, I thought your comment contained many excellent points. Thanks.

        • Replies: @Erebus
      316. res says:
        @Iris

        Thanks for calling out those particular points (and for your additions). I did not pay sufficient attention to them in the long original comment.

      317. Erebus says:
        @Iris

        Thanks Iris. You’ve gone one better, and I agree both in whole and in part. Shit happens, but there’s a whole host of standards and protocols that are mandatory whose only purpose is to make sure that we’re as sure as we can be that things won’t go pear-shaped across a wide range of fault conditions.

        “No attempt to make something foolproof can outwit a clever, determined fool”… but there’s protocols in place to outwit all but the most clever & determined, and the protocols are closing in even on them. Alas, in this case it would appear that the fool was inside the gates, and so the spectre of dereliction of fiduciary duty, if not criminality arises.

      318. FB says: • Website
        @Erebus

        Great synopsis E…obviously you’ve done your homework and read the LN610 preliminary report and other relevant documents…there is nothing in what you wrote with which I would disagree…

        ‘Given the sloppiness of the aeronautical systems engineering and disingenuity of the sales pitch, I can’t believe people are defending Boeing/FAA using “3rd World Pilots” arguments.

        The ones saying this here on the UNZ forum aren’t actually professional pilots…I would bet my bottom dollar on that…professional pilots get extremely pissed at the slightest bit of fuckery with regards badly designed airplanes or critical pieces thereof…and they certainly don’t fling shit at fellow airmen…especially those who have gone down…that’s just the kind of bullshit you’re going to find here in this comment section and not in the actual professional pilot community…

        ‘The B737 was a pretty stable aircraft, but the B737MAX is inherently physically unstable.’

        I have spoken at length here about this…I have said that this kind of patch or bandaid, which is what MCAS really is [it is a substitute for a redesigned airplane with its wings mounted higher off the ground]…I’m not the only one…here is one particular MAX captain I quoted, from his anonymous report to the NASA incident reporting system…

        ‘The fact that this airplane requires such jury rigging to fly is a red flag.

        Obviously this captain is calling that MCAS bandaid for a poorly handling airplane an alarming development…and I can tell you he is not the only one…many are both furious and concerned, but they cannot speak publicly for obvious reasons…the unions have been restrained, but critical…but the internal discussion is extremely HOT…

        So we have not only jury-rigging that shouldn’t even be there, but that jury rigging was executed extremely badly…

        ‘Now we know the systems employed are error prone–even if the pilots aren’t sure what those systems are, what redundancies are in place, and failure modes.’

        This from a collection of NASA incident reports published recently in The Atlantic magazine…

        Here’s yet another incident reported to NASA by an American MAX pilot…this BEFORE the Lion Air Crash…

        ‘After 1000 feet I noticed a decrease in aircraft performance. I picked up that the autothrottles were not moving to commanded position even though they were engaged. I’m sure they were set properly for takeoff but not sure when the discrepancy took place. My scan wasn’t as well developed since I’ve only flown the MAX once before. I manually positioned the thrust levers ASAP. This resolved the threat, we were able to increase speed to clean up and continue the climb to 3000 feet.

        So now we have another piece of automation, the autothrottles, acting goofy on an MCAS plane…notably, this happened right after takeoff at 1,000 feet above ground level…one can’t help but thinking back to that flightradar chart showing the Ethiopian flight where it was never able to gain altitude…

        Your analogy with sailing is exactly correct…flying and sailing are actually quite similar…both use aerodynamic forces and balance and stability plays a crucial role…bottom line is I don’t think the MAX is going to survive…if it turns out that the MCAS played a major role in both crashes…as seems likely at this point…

        Already we have airlines canceling their orders…Indonesia Garuda has canceled something like 60 MAXs they have on order…if a few more carrier follow suit…as they well may due to customer refusal to fly on these planes, then the thing is sunk…it never should have been put together like the Frankenstein concoction it is anyway…

        As for your question about a position indicator that shows the actual angle of the stabilizer…it’s shown on a pointer and tape display next to each trim wheel as seen here…

        Here’s how that looks in the 737 manual…

        The green band shows the acceptable range for takeoff…and you can see that the needle moves forward for airplane nose down and aft for airplane nose up…

        Here are the various trim switches…

        At left, #4 are the thumb button switches on the yoke…that moves the trim either nose down or up…if you flip the cutout swi6tches then those no longer work and you can only change the position of the stabilizer by manually cranking the trim wheels…

        Notice at the bottom there is also a warning light that says ‘STAB OUT OF TRIM’…that light is on the center forward panel close to the rudder trim…

        So those are the trim indicators…they do not explicitly indicate the angle of the tailplane…just how they affect the angle of the wing…which is really the bottom line after all…

        And here is the wing angle of attack cockpit display…that little display is an extra-price option…as is the ability for the flight computer to cross check the two AOA vanes to see if they are agreement and light up a warning lamp if they are not…

        Here is what that AOA indicator looks like…

        It’s circled in red here on the primary flight display and is reading 5.2 degrees angle of attack…

        • Replies: @Erebus
      319. @James Forrestal

        So Mr. Forrestal? You’re a man of class and distinction here. Calculating, back of the napkin, looking at the altitude fluctuations and how rapid the transitions, is there any way to tell how many Gs the passengers in the back were subject to? What a ride that must have been..

      320. @Erebus

        Firstly, I was going to respond to FB first, but, if you’re reading this, part can be taken as a response to your 2 recent comments also.

        Erebus: In answer to the two questions at the top:

        1) Yes. They are most likely in different locations and displayed somewhat differently in different type jet and large turboprop aircraft though. However, I would not expect the pilots to be including the current (as opposed to on takeoff) trim setting of the stabilizer as part of their general scan, before this problem, that is.*

        2) No, the stabilizer is one big control surface. You may be thinking of the elevator, which IS made of two independent surfaces that usually work together (via push/pull of the yoke). In a jam (literally, a jam) they can be separated, giving 1/2 of the control effectiveness, which will be controlled via one yoke (on the unjammed side).

        ****************************

        Your part about a motorized lift keel, which I knew nothing about, on a sailboat, is an excellent analogy, BTW, of the lack of transparency that went along with the MCAS system from what I’ve learned. The B-737Max vs. the other Boeings is NOT inherently unstable in general. Like a stick pusher, the MCAS was made to take recover the attitude when things go wrong in an attitude that shouldn’t generally be attained, though, indeed, it’s a software fix for an aero problem.

        Now, more in reply to FB also, I watched that Juan Brown video in its entirety. He’s obviously very experienced and knowledgable. If you listen to him right at the part in which FB linked to, he does mention that the pilots would have a lot of information, not all obviously suggesting the real problem, while in a state of tunnel vision. Hey, that’s the difference between good pilots and ordinary ones, IMO. I have to disagree with him slightly, and let me put it this way:

        Your trim is acting funny, and you’ve got to fight it. No specific message or light tells you that MCAS is in operation (BAD THING). However, it’s not like the trim goes nose down continously as you fight it with elevator. Yes, as FB has stated and all but our Russian contributor should already know, one cannot overcome full down stabilizer with elevator** The MCAS operates continually, but not continuously or, yes, as soon as it operated under erroneous AOA reading, that’d be IT, end of story.

        What do you do? I’d be the last to second-guess a whole lot, as the 1st time you say “oh, I’ll never forget to call the tower and land without a clearance because I have a habit and do this!”, it’ll be NEXT WEEK when it happens! Deciding to actually observe the trim setting moving to ND in spurts might take a while, but, you’ve got to know that “hey, the trim is SCREWING UP!” It’s time to reach for those switches at some point and put an and to that shit. Again, they were near the ground, and things were happening fast, so I cannot say for I would have saved the day. I don’t know this plane either.

        Pilots are told to follow procedures by the book and don’t “be a cowboy” (pisses me off, because I’d have liked to be a cowboy – nothing against cowboys from me). However, when it turns out that there was either no time, or no good procedure, for what’s wrong they will hear “just be a pilot.”, in complete contradiction. This is all lectured to you in hindsight, of course. You can’t often win. When it’s yours and passengers lives on the line, you’re going to go back to “be a pilot”. If the stablizer trim is screwing you over, put the hurt on the stab trim.

        So, without faulting the pilots in these 2 crashes, I’ll still say, experience, coolness and smarts can make the difference betweeen life and death.

        * Let me explain that – most pilots are not test pilots. If everything is working well, the basic flight instruments and route stuff, and fuel level are pretty much what one would look at, unless there is already some problem going on. I really doubt most pilots would catch that the trim is moving faster than normal. A modern test pilot (not the Roscoe Turners and Tex Johnsons), being an engineer and pilot, would be much more attuned to “hey, the stab doesn’t usually move that fast” or “that oil pressure is a tad low for this engine setting”, while regular pilots are told “Green is good, yellow is not so good, and red is bad, mmmkaaay?” ;-} (Humerous, but true!)

        ** It’s a big difference in trim control vs. the trim tabs on smaller aircraft. Trim tabs work by using air flow to force the control (be it elevator, rudder, or aileron) into a zero-force-on-the-pilot-control state. They can be completely overridden as far as the flight control could ALWAYS travel, by, of course, force. They are less efficient though. The entire moving surface trim is the most efficient, and probably has other benefits I don’t know about. (BTW, some single-engine A/C DO have the same set up, but it’s not electrical – on a Mooney the whole tail, including the vertical stabilizer and rudder with it, moves with the trim – I don’t have any idea why!)

        • Replies: @FB
      321. @Factorize

        Consider now the consequences for a developing nations of economic development. As more and more of the population acquire a middle class lifestyle, more and more of the very limited pool of high IQ people will be needed to fly people to vacation destinations, teach life long learning courses, provide IT support for web services etc. . It is not difficult to imagine that the needed supply of these high intelligence workers could be completely exhausted. For these nations development could result in extreme levels of psychometric stress.

        La Griffe du Lion’s “smart fraction” theory.

      322. @Ilyana_Rozumova

        They recovered from dive (actually several times.)
        That was done by maximally engaging the flaps.

        No.

      323. annamaria says:
        @SBaker

        SBaker: Quran says it is virtuous of you to lie to infidels…”

        — Is the following true about the teachings of Talmud?

        Jews may use lies (“subterfuges”) to circumvent a Gentile, Baba Kamma 113a.

        This is what I have found among quotes from Koran:

        Fight for the sake of God those that fight against you, but do not attack them first. God does not love the aggressors.

        Again, this forum is about the tragedy of Boeing 737 MAX, yet all you are interested in is the “bad influence” of Muslims on Americans. You need to peruse the number of articles on this forum, which describe (with the wealth of factual information) the pernicious influence of the Jewish Lobby on the US policies, particularly the foreign policies.

        Your posts emphasize the unredeemable aggressiveness of zionists.

      324. Erebus says:
        @res

        Reality probably lies somewhere in the middle.

        Twas ever thus, of course, but design-engineering of a broadly sold combination of critical systems such as a commercial airliner must take the most conservative route by default. Iris brought up a number of protocols that appear to have been circumvented. One can’t help but wonder whether they were intentionally circumvented.

        Look, a cockpit crew that has a total of >9,400 hrs in type is not “somewhere in the middle” in any book I know of. During that >9,400 hrs they’ve doubtless encountered lots of situations that required cool-headed, professional responses to unusual circumstances. That the B737MAX outwitted them says the machine is at fault for the simple reason that a machine that requires that only the creme de la creme can use it is not a machine that has been adequately design-engineered for its intended purpose. We’re not talking top-gun, carrier aviation here, in the same way that cars designed for F1 or rally racing aren’t sold to the general public. In fact, they’re illegal for good reason.

        I fly 2-3x per month, often longhaul (>10hrs), and I’ve got only an “informed bystander’s” view of what pilots sometimes have to handle, but I’ve been through a few incidents in which I was thankful for the “firm hand on the wheel” that got me where I was going instead of winding up as the contents of a body bag. A pilot who’s flying daily has seen a lot more than I ever will and if he’s still in the air after >5,000 hrs, he knows how to fly a B737. If he couldn’t fly the B737MAX, on a clear day in clear air, it’s a bad design.

        • Agree: FB, Iris
        • Replies: @res
        , @Iris
      325. CanSpeccy says: • Website
        @Factorize

        As more and more of the population acquire a middle class lifestyle, more and more of the very limited pool of high IQ people will be needed to fly people to vacation destinations

        Bollocks.

        As more and more of the population acquire a middle class lifestyle, more and more of the population will be found to have an IQ of 120, just as happened in America over the course of its 20th century development.

        The population mean IQ is largely environmentally, and in particular culturally, determined. This empirically established fact is for some reason beyond assimilation by IQ-ists. But then psychology graduates fall rather low down the IQ range among university graduates classified by faculty.

        • Replies: @res
      326. Erebus says:
        @FB

        Thnx FB.
        So, the wheel is what indicates stabilizer angle. Frankly, just as I thought. I guess it’s a throwback to the cable & pulley days.

        I made a mental note when you last showed that foto that the “APL NOSE DOWN” indication is oddly placed beyond “0 degrees”. Is there any indication anywhere that tells the crew how many degrees of nose down trim is in play? Is “0 degrees” the system’s endstop?

        If it is, at 2.5 degrees per move, 2 or at most 3 “adjustments” by the MCAS drives the trim out of the green take-off zone to its endstops. I am stunned.

        • Replies: @FB
        , @FB
      327. FB says: • Website
        @Achmed E. Newman

        ‘The B-737Max vs. the other Boeings is NOT inherently unstable in general.’

        That’s factually WRONG…

        The MAX is unstable at high alpha [angle of attack] due to the forward engine placement…I have explained that previously…and that is not in dispute in any professional aeronautical circles…

        A lot of people who actually don’t have a professional background in aeronautics will say things like ‘MCAS is like a stick pusher’…

        Without realizing that a stick pusher is in fact found only on aircraft of a certain configuration that can get into an unrecoverable stall…that specific configuration is a T-Tail with aft fuselage-mounted engines…I have already explained this also…the position of the wing and those engine nacelles can blanket the airflow over that T-Tail and render it ineffective…and therefore unable to command nose down authority to get out of the stall…that’s called a DEEP STALL and is a particular concern only on that configuration…

        Also a stick pusher does not use an elaborate computer system with all kinds of goofy ‘control laws’ as to when it will kick in…it is pretty much mechanical on the earlier iterations…using a simple mechanical AOA sensor that then simply triggered the stick forward push…

        Now there is a subtle aeronautical difference between a deep stall and instability at high alpha, which again most laymen are not aware of…this includes pilots at the commercial level, since a degree in aeronautics is required only for test pilots…

        Here is the difference…the stick pusher gets the airplane out of the stall…the MCAS starts working BEFORE the stall because the upward pitching moment at angles of attack of 14 degrees or higher is destabilizing…ie if the nose is pitched to 14 degrees above the airflow the MAX is going to want to point up even more instead of bringing its nose down…

        The stick pusher airplanes HAVE NO SUCH INSTABILITY…they are fully stable right up to the stall…ie if you let go of the stick right at the edge of the stall, the nose will come down…they only become a problem AFTER THE STALL HAS BEEN ENTERED…

        This is another example of people who do not quite have the knowledge required to make these distinctions…yet still feel that they are qualified to hold strong positions on the subject…

        I have mentioned the Boeing propaganda surrounding this whole fiasco, which pisses me off even more than the fact that they built a lousy airplane…they have simply told their huge army of Bernays acolytes to go out and do battle…to cloud and confuse and obfuscate the quite clear cut technical issues and to sow confusion among the public…to use prejudices people may have about other countries and races etc…and to simply fight dirty and do whatever it takes…pull hair, poke eyes…whatever…

        They also count on useful idiots who may know a little about aeronautics, for example by way of private pilot training, to embrace various technical canards like this idea that MCAS is the same as a stick pusher…or that just flipping a couple of switches magically pulls an airplane out of a dive…

        • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
      328. wayfarer says:

        “Runaway Stabilizer. How to stop MCAS.”

      329. @FB

        Both you and CementHead have good input here, though I think your attitude is not a whole lot better than these those 737s had in their last seconds in the air. It reads to me like Captain C.H. has flown older versions of this plane and quite a while ago. His basic points still stand. He says there is only 1 memory item, while you present 2 steps not in memory items but in the reference book for emergency procedures (yes, if the trim DOESNT cut off, it goes to 3 steps, as 3, 6, and 7 are not steps at all, and 5 is pretty damn obvious, like writing “keep the wings level”).

        Next, why don’t you read carefully the “Background Information” under the checklist? If the pilots transitioning to this 737 version had been drilled on this in their differences training, I think there would not have been the 2 accidents. That’s the problem and the part I agree with you completely on. There should have been much more visibility provided by Boeing and the airlines to make sure this information was integral to the training. An additional big piece of visibility would be, as I’ve written before, an RED EICAS message saying specifically “MCAS in operation”. See the MCAS was developed for a reason, not to kill people. Just like with a stick-shaker, it’s up to the pilots to either realize “hey, this is erroneous, and I’ve got to over-ride it” or “damn, we screwed up, thanks, stick-shaker! (or MCAS)”.

        The accident was tragic and Boeing did screw up. Unlike many of the Boeing-haters commenting, I’d rather fly a Boeing than an Airbus for particularly the kind of thing being discussed here. (Nope, I don’t work for them or own stock.) This is EXACTLY the design philosophy by the computer geeks that think the computer knows best, that is associated with Airbus Industries:

        I am the flight control computer. I have many inputs. I know that right now you should not be going around. You are set up for landing, so I will not let you make me go around. I’d rather take you into the fucking woods off of the runway here in Paris.

        Sincerely,

        Flight Computer

        There should always be a way to make the computer shut-up and stay out of the way, so that you can fly. Additionally, as I mentioned way back, because the Airbus joystick input that controls the flight director rather than the controls more directly, makes it not a good, intuitive, hand-flying airplane, that probably keeps people off the controls too much.

        Now, about that FAA. Maybe you’ve never dealt with the Feral Gov’t of the US. The FAA is one of the better groups, with a decent amount of thinking white guys, but still, they have their orders. Their orders, as for any government entity, is that the paperwork rules!. These FSDO guys, along with the Boeing certification guys that work with them, have to knock out all the paperwork. It can be so time-consuming and tedious that the big picture can be forgotten. Is there anyone tasked with simply looking at the overall airplane design changes on the 737-MAX who could have sat back, thought a bit, and had the authority to tell Boeing, “this MCAS system must have an easy way to disable it in case it goes off erroneously, it should have obvious warning to go with it’s activation, and awareness of it must be an important part of the training.”?

      330. @James Forrestal

        I wondered about it being sampling rate as well.

        • Replies: @Erebus
        , @James Forrestal
      331. res says:
        @Erebus

        I think we are pretty much in agreement. Compare my

        And always remembering that airlines should design their products for their entire user base.

        with your

        the machine is at fault for the simple reason that a machine that requires that only the creme de la creme can use it is not a machine that has been adequately design-engineered for its intended purpose.

        Yours is much more elegant, but I think we are saying the same thing. BTW, I should have said “airplane manufacturers” not “airlines” FWIW.

        • Replies: @Erebus
      332. Erebus says:
        @James Thompson

        More likely to have been smoothed by a moving average calculation.

      333. @FB

        That’s factually WRONG…

        Did you note the words “in general”? It’s complete bullshit to state that the plane is aerodynamically unstable. I know that’s not your statement, but I don’t like to see bullshit terms used here. It has a pitch-up tendency as you say, when power is added at certain high angles of attack. I don’t particularly like that, but it isn’t a whole lot different than the fact that some of those old high-powered prop planes would roll left into the grass if you put the power to full before you got enough speed up to have enough rudder authority.

        How old are you if you think the stick pushers on modern airplanes are mechanic? All this stuff is electronic. The Angle of Attack is what relates directly to a stalled wing, and that vane is used for the shaker and pusher. OK, so it’s not a big difference, besides the fact that the though pusher can be overridden when it inadvertantly activates, it is VERY clear when it has activated, while that’s NOT the case with the MCAS. You’re not trying to tell me that all T-tail, aft-engine-mount jets should be grounded, right?

        I have mentioned the Boeing propaganda surrounding this whole fiasco, which pisses me off even more than the fact that they built a lousy airplane…they have simply told their huge army of Bernays acolytes to go out and do battle…

        You come across here as one paranoid Mofo. Listen, it’s the internet. You’ve going to read a lot of garbage from people who care, and know a little, but not enough to reason this thing out themselves. I admit I’ve done the same occasionally on non-technical subjects that I didn’t know as much about as the other writers. It’s not some big conspiracy, man. As far as Boeing goes, of course they’re going to try to spin it toward their views. What would you expect?

        • Replies: @FB
      334. res says:
        @CanSpeccy

        As more and more of the population acquire a middle class lifestyle, more and more of the population will be found to have an IQ of 120, just as happened in America over the course of its 20th century development.

        Whether or not this will happen, and to what degree, is the key question. Hopefully those countries will make it to the point of development where we get to find out.

        FWIW, I think there will be a trend in the direction you indicate. The question is how far will it go. I tend to discuss these things in terms of “genotypic IQ” vs. “phenotypic IQ”, but I suspect you don’t like those terms very much.

        Intelligence GWAS offer an opportunity to quantify the genotypic side of this. The early results are not encouraging for people who believe all groups have the same average IQ potential.

        • Replies: @CanSpeccy
      335. FB says: • Website
        @Erebus

        ‘I made a mental note when you last showed that foto that the “APL NOSE DOWN” indication is oddly placed beyond “0 degrees”. Is there any indication anywhere that tells the crew how many degrees of nose down trim is in play? Is “0 degrees” the system’s endstop?’

        E, that label ‘APL NOSE DOWN’ is beyond the scale itself…so the pointer does not actually go past zero…same goes at the other end for ‘APL NOSE UP’…

        Also looking at my original comment on that it may sound a little confusing…you had asked if the pilots have a display of the actual angle of the tailplane ie horizontal stabilizer…the answer is actually no…because that pointer and tape on the trim wheel is showing the WING angle…I perhaps didn’t make that clear…

        You will notice that the tape goes from zero to about 17 degrees…that is way more than the travel of the tailplane itself…which moves only 5 degrees…but that 5 degrees of tailplane movement WILL turn that wing by as much as 17 degrees…that is because of the moment arm…ie the distance from the tailplane to the aircraft center of gravity, which will be near the wing…

        On this illustration you can see the lift force of the wing and the much smaller lift force from the tail…in actual flight the tail force will be pointing down not up [this is simply a textbook engineering convention the way they draw these pictures]…so it will balance the wing lift…

        What comes into play here in terms of balancing the airplane is the surface area of the tail AND the moment arm distance to the center of gravity, through which all forces on the airplane act [this includes gravity, lift, drag and thrust]…

        So the result of multiplying the tail surface by the moment arm is the TAIL VOLUME…because a surface in square feet or meters or whatever times a distance in feet or meters gives a number that is in length units cubed, hence volume…

        So this is where the tail authority comes from…and so just 5 degrees of movement in that tailplane has enough power to rotate the airplane around its CG by that 17 degrees shown on the Trim indicator tape…

        Like I said, the actual tailplane angle is not displayed…but as far as MCAS goes, it is a fact that it is allowed to move by up to 2.5 degrees at a time…and since it is intermittent and starts from zero as you so nicely explained, then all it takes is two episodes of MCAS commanded trim to put the airplane right to that full nose down stop…which is zero degrees…

        At that point there is NO CHANCE TO PULL THE AIRPLANE UP BY PULLING ON THE YOKE…

        ‘If it is, at 2.5 degrees per move, 2 or at most 3 “adjustments” by the MCAS drives the trim out of the green take-off zone to its endstops. I am stunned.

        So let’s look again at that trim indicator tape…

        So let’s say just for argument’s sake that that little white pointer is starting at full nose up, pinting right at 17 degrees…after just two commands of 2.5 degrees each, that tailplane goes down to full APL NOSE DOWN…

        The tailplane has only moved 5 degrees but the wing has moved 17 degrees…due to the tail volume coefficient…

        And yes, this is stunning…everybody agrees on that…anybody who doesn’t get that or is trying to distract with some other issues is simply detracting from our path to understanding…

      336. annamaria says:
        @Ilyana_Rozumova

        “… it was incompetent pilots that brought the planes down.Period.”

        — This statement by a (highly qualified?) aeronautic engineer (?) should be followed by a standing ovation from the Boeing Board of Directors.

        • LOL: Ilyana_Rozumova
        • Replies: @Ilyana_Rozumova
      337. CanSpeccy says: • Website
        @Achmed E. Newman

        Is there anyone tasked with simply looking at the overall airplane design changes on the 737-MAX who could have sat back, thought a bit, and had the authority to tell Boeing, “this MCAS system must have an easy way to disable it in case it goes off erroneously, it should have obvious warning to go with it’s activation, and awareness of it must be an important part of the training.”?

        No one, that is to say no individual, was “tasked” with looking at the overall airplane design. That’s not how bureaucracies work. At best there would have been a working group directed by a steering committee that reported to an under-secretary who reported to someone five or six layers down the hierarchy.

        Meantime, the guys with the authority to say to the industry do this or do that are absolutely not interested in preventing the industry doing what the industry thinks is best for itself. Instead of regulating the industry, they are schmoozing with industry executives in the hope of landing in a comfy leather arm-chair as a director of this or that corporation being paid many times their government salary.

        You have to realize the degree of giantism in the US government. The FAA is an $18 billion a year boondoggle. That’s Eighteen thousand million dollars a year to supervise an industry that has less than twenty times eighteen billion in gross revenue and less than twice eighteen billion in net profits. With such a monstrous apparatus, you can forget effective supervision of the industry. The thing is so top heavy it doesn’t even have a management board, it has “The Federal Aviation Administration Executive System (FAES)” comprising the top echelon of senior management. LOL.

        If some low level guy who knew what is going on (and many almost certainly did know what was going on with the 737MAX well in advance of the Lion Air crash) were to get really agitated and shove a memorandum directly into the hands of the top guy, his bosses would be truly pissed and he’d be on his way out soon. No, the supervisory function of the FAA is exercised primarily to benefit the bureaucracy itself and the corporate bosses they work with. It’s the same in any regulated industry.

      338. I am a retired airline pilot, with over 30 years and 20,000 hrs in the air, rated on 737,767,757 and DC-10. What you have here is a case of runaway stabilizer trim due to faulty censor inputs. The procedure in ANY airliner is to turn off the stab trim with switches on the center console, and in the case of the 737, trim the stabilizer manually, by using the handles on the two black wheels on either side of the console. Once the system is disabled returning to a departure airport is only slightly problematic. One of the problems that exists is the qualifications of the crew. Most of the third world crews get their jobs thru political influence, not qualifications, and are trained after being hired. Further, in their training they are automation dependent, and can operate the airplane autopilot, without manually flying the aircraft. As long as the automation is working there is no problem. However with malfunctions, the ability to manually fly the airplane, may not be available. This is evident in any number of accidents. In this case the government in order to shift the blame from their crews, and training programs, sent the cockpit voice recorder and flight recorder to France to be analyzed, and edited before publication. There is no problem with the B-737 MAX other than basic airmanship.

        • Agree: acementhead
        • Troll: FB, bluedog, Biff
        • Replies: @CanSpeccy
        , @Avery
        , @Dieter Kief
      339. FB says: • Website
        @Achmed E. Newman

        ‘It’s complete bullshit to state that the plane is aerodynamically unstable.’

        First of all you are not qualified to discuss aeronautical engineering beyond what you learned in private pilot training…so I’m not going to go back and forth with you about the definition of pitch stability…the MAX is UNSTABLE at high alpha…full stop that is a fact…

        As for the issues of stick pusher and deep stall you are making a lot of useless noise that means nothing…I said the early versions of those planes, like the DC9 were mechanical and that is fact…so there is no need to now make a big deal out of the fact that now in the age of fly by wire the stick pusher on T-Tails is no longer mechanical…neither are the ailerons or elevator or anything else…

        That doesn’t mean these fly by wire airplanes are UNSTABLE…

        It also doesn’t mean that T-tails with stick pushers are UNSTABLE…they are not…not being able to get out of a stall is NOT the same as pitch instability…

        There is not one professional aeronautical engineer including at Boeing that will tell you the MAX is pitch stable at 14 degrees alpha…so just cool it with the useless noise…everything I said is factual…

      340. CanSpeccy says: • Website
        @res

        Hopefully those countries will make it to the point of development where we get to find out.

        And if they don’t, they will hardly notice a shortage of high IQ citizens.

        The question is how far will it go. I tend to discuss these things in terms of “genotypic IQ” vs. “phenotypic IQ”, but I suspect you don’t like those terms very much.

        Well, as you know, my objection arises from the conviction that IQ is invalid as a measure of intelligence as that term is generally understood, although it is no doubt a valid measure of the ability to do IQ tests, which in turn, is presumably quite well correlated with the ability to do other things, particularly the sorts of clerical, middle management things that enable many people to earn a reasonable living in an industrial economy.

        However, I would say that IQ testing is profoundly unfair in its assessment of the ability of those with abilities other than the mundane capacities that IQ tests test. Moreover, I would say that IQ tests totally fail to assess the genius of those of exceptional ability even if their ability is in the areas that IQ tests cover. Yes, Richard Feynman would have scored 800 on the sat math, and William Shakespeare would have scored 800 on the SAT language test. But there are thousands and thousand of students every year who make a perfect score on the SAT tests, but few of them I would bet, combine the genius of Richard Feynman and William Shakespeare, neither of whom would have achieved anything like a perfect combined score on the SAT math and SAT language tests. (And many of those who do, tend to have mental health problems).

        In my view, not only is the manifestation of intelligence (phenotypic intelligence as you call it) much more dependent on environmental factors, particularly culture and education than most psychologists seem willing to acknowledge (or investigate), but that intelligence is manifest in numerous ways not measured by IQ tests, and in ways with no close correlation with the verbal and numerical abilities measured by IQ tests.

        I have at times expressed myself on the subject of IQ in a way that must be offensive to specialists in the field, but I feel justified in this, inasmuch as it reflects the view that psychologists need to see the IQ business for what it is, a power trip that promotes a Fascistic hierarchical approach to social organization, which I consider profoundly harmful.

      341. FB says: • Website
        @Achmed E. Newman

        ‘Unlike many of the Boeing-haters commenting, I’d rather fly a Boeing than an Airbus for particularly the kind of thing being discussed here.’

        That’s not what this is about…and it shows a lack of seriousness on your part…

        As for reading Boeing’s bulletin after it was forced by the FAA to tell pilots about the existence of MCAS…maybe you don’t realize that I have been talking about these specifics in detail all along…and am the one that posted copies of these and other official documents…

        Here is one more document for you…which I am posting again for the second time…

        Notice the bullet points at the bottom…

        * Continuous or intermittent stick shaker

        * Minimum speed bar…ie the barber pole on your primary flight display that you are getting close to minimum flying speed

        * Indicated airspeed disagree alert

        * Altimeter disagree alert

        * Angle of attack disagree alert [if the option is installed LOL]

        and a few more…now that is a FUCKING FLIGHT DECK MELTDOWN PAL…

        Also why don’t you and captain kangaroo tell me what any of these fucking things has to do with a runaway trim situation in the previous generation 737…?

        Absolutely fucking nothing…runaway speed trim does not set off any of these things…it’s just the trim wheel spinning…so obviously there is a big human factors issue here…

        I find it absurd that Boeing and their sockpuppet FAA now come out after first saying nothing about MCAS and tell pilots ‘oh and btw’ the whole fucking panel now lights up like a nintendo game when you hit one billion…

        That is fucking ridiculous…

      342. CanSpeccy says: • Website
        @Diamond Dick

        There is no problem with the B-737 MAX other than basic airmanship.

        In other words, the plane was bound to kill a lot of people when placed in the hands of those who would be flying it. But, yeah. No prob.

      343. @annamaria

        Thank you! What is aeronautic?
        I go by statistics That is the safest way.

      344. @wayfarer

        That seems very clear: It is an option at times, to cut the MCAS off.
        After that: if you have enough time to stabilize the plane (that’s FB’s caveat with regard to the Ethiopian crash) – the rest is standard procedure.

        Would you want to be on board with a crew, which doesn’t even know about the MCAS and/ or the switches to cut it off? – I’d definitely prefer rather not to.

        Same is true for any crew which has not been informed and/ or trained to know what to do with a bitchy plane like the 737 MAX in case of stall-emergency (= most likely: MCAS not doing what it was created for: To stabilize the plane and keep it under control).

        • Replies: @wayfarer
      345. Avery says:
        @Diamond Dick

        { There is no problem with the B-737 MAX other than basic airmanship.}

        With respect to your long years of experience on a multitude of equipment, I think you are judging 3rd world crews by your very high, very experienced standards.

        I am no pilot, but have some technical background, and one thing obviously wrong with the MAX is that the standard MCAS (?) package has only one AoA ‘sensor’, a single point of failure: how is that not wrong? Yes, Boeing sells an option package of a 2nd AoA ‘sensor’, but that in itself is really wrong: so Boeing sells a $100 million aircraft, and a 2nd AoA is not standard equipment? If it is not needed, why sell it as an option?

        Yes, you are right: first world pilots as a group have much better airmanship skills. And a highly experienced, cool headed pilot can overcome almost any impossible situation (e.g. Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger).

        But:

        Boeing sells aircraft in every country of the world: 1st, 2rd, 3rd.
        As other posters have said: (#339)
        [the machine is at fault for the simple reason that a machine that requires that only the creme de la creme can use it is not a machine that has been adequately design-engineered for its intended purpose.]

        The 3rd world airmanship skill level is what it is: it is not going to change for a very, very long time. If Boeing is selling to that market, it has to design aircraft for the lowest common denominator.

      346. @Achmed E. Newman

        This is bothering me. What is the sense to disabling it when horizontal stabilizer is pushing plane nose with maximal force down?

        • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
      347. @FB

        Thanks again, FB.
        It is sad.
        Boing sat in a hole and kept digging.

      348. @Diamond Dick

        You comment on a blog, on which quite a few knowledgeable people read and write, Diamond Dick, don’t you underestimate this social fact, if you please. Thanks a lot.

      349. @acementhead

        Sorry I’m too lazy to do it again just now but UNZ has a really good UI and I’m sure that you can easily find it. If not I’ll hunt it out for you soonish, but not today.

        First: Thanks for your answer. Second: No need to, thanks. I rather thought of one or two quite short sentences.

      350. @wayfarer

        Yes, always helpful. Have been looking at his stuff for some time.

      351. @Sparkon

        Just look at the graphs:

        1. The time scale (x-axis) is the same (or very close) in both..

        2. The graphs are clearly plotted from raw data, without any smoothing/ fitting to a curve — note that they consist of lines and “corners.” The “corners” are the individual data points; the lines are added to make the trend clearer. Just visualize the “corners” as individual data points, while ignoring the lines, and you’ll see what I mean.

        3. The “lines” are shorter/ “corners” closer together in the Lion Air graph than in the Ethiopian one. Horizontal distance between corners/ data points is shorter in the Lion Air graph than the other one — clearly reflecting a shorter sampling interval/ faster sampling rate.

        4. So they’re not directly comparable when evaluating for noise or rapid changes in control inputs (2 different things), since the second graph is artificially “smoothed” by the longer sampling interval. The first graph isn’t “noisier” — it just shows more data.

        5. From the Flightradar24 site:
        “Normal ADS-B data is processed at a 5 second interval for display on Flightradar24’s website”

        Just eyeballing it, the sampling interval for the second graph appears pretty close to 5 seconds — i.e “normal” ADS-B data.

        Also from Flightradar24:

        https://www.flightradar24.com/blog/flightradar24-data-regarding-lion-air-flight-jt610/

        “Granular data is stored as received in intervals much smaller than 5 seconds. We have downloaded the granular ADS-B data from receivers in the area and processed it.”

        They clearly state that the Lion Air graph is plotted from granular data. They don’t make this claim for the Ethiopian one. And again — it’s obvious just from looking at the graphs that the sampling interval is different.

        • Replies: @Sparkon
      352. @Erebus

        Thank you for this very detailed and well argued contribution.

        The analogy with sailing is helpful because very similar principles apply. It is still helpful even when considering what differs with flying, because helps build up your argument about the conceptual map that any operator of complex equipment must hold in mind.

        In sailing you are one of the sensing instruments. You can feel the wind intensity and direction, you can see sails filling or flapping, and you can see the waves, and sometimes the currents. This makes it easier to make prompt, intuitive, and probably sensible responses to changing conditions and the performance of the boat.

        No such personal sensing of conditions works in passenger jets, hence the need for systems which are very well designed, reliable, transparent in operation, with well-defined objectives and easily disabled so pilots regain control.

        • Replies: @res
      353. Ron Unz says:

        Well, I’ll admit I haven’t read the 130,000 words of comments on these two Boeing 737-Max threads, but I have somewhat skimmed the discussion, and I’ve also read my morning newspapers.

        If my understanding is correct, the software system Boeing implemented to compensate for their problematical plane design generally worked, but every now and then it would get confused and try to fly the plane into the ground.

        If the pilots were sufficiently knowledgeable, experienced, and level-headed, they would probably be able to react quickly enough to prevent the software from crashing the plane. But it really seems like a rather serious issue for Boeing to have sold planes with that sort of “technical flaw.”

        Is this a fair reading of the situation based on the facts that have now come out?…

      354. @CanSpeccy

        I have at times expressed myself on the subject of IQ in a way that must be offensive to specialists in the field, but I feel justified in this, inasmuch as it reflects the view that psychologists need to see the IQ business for what it is, a power trip that promotes a Fascistic hierarchical approach to social organization, which I consider profoundly harmful.

        Not that long-discredited canard again.

        “IQ is not not only ‘racist’ and generally very bad, but ‘fascist’ and not-see too — so we are ‘morally obligated’ to ignore the overwhelming evidence of its reproducibility, validity, and predictive power, in favor of mindlessly professing our blind faith in The Narrative, and engaging in feeble attempts at (((deconstruction))).”

        lol

        These ignorant, hate-filled IQ denialists never give up, do they?

        • Troll: CanSpeccy
      355. @James Thompson

        Yeah, it doesn’t look smoothed — looks polygonal. Corners and lines — the corners are the data points. And the time scale on the x-axis is pretty close to the same.

        From From the Flightradar24 site:
        “Normal ADS-B data is processed at a 5 second interval for display on Flightradar24’s website”

        Just eyeballing it, the sampling interval for the second graph appears pretty close to 5 seconds — i.e “normal” ADS-B data.

        Also from Flightradar24:

        https://www.flightradar24.com/blog/flightradar24-data-regarding-lion-air-flight-jt610/

        “Granular data is stored as received in intervals much smaller than 5 seconds. We have downloaded the granular ADS-B data from receivers in the area and processed it.”

        They clearly state that the Lion Air graph is plotted from granular data. They don’t make this claim for the Ethiopian one.

      356. @Ron Unz

        Yep. Succinct. Looks that way at the moment.

      357. @Ron Unz

        Sounds like it.

        Looks like we’ve got some emotion on both sides:

        – The pilots should have been able to cope with it/ Boeing is great/ dumb Third World pilots

        vs.

        – Boeing is greedy, careless, and doesn’t care if anyone dies.

        But from a systems analysis standpoint, it doesn’t really matter if the pilot should be able to stop the plane from flying itself into the ground — if the plane’s automated systems cause it to engage in that sort of behavior on any sort of regular basis, the design/ implementation of that system and/ or the underlying stability issue it is designed to compensate for are the root cause.

        And the combination of:
        1. Having a system that has such potentially catastrophic consequences when it fails rely on a single sensor for inputs, plus (possibly) some reliability issues with that sensor.

        2. Increasing the allowable amount of trim induced by MCAS from 0.6 degrees to 2.5 during testing/ development without FAA involvement.

        3. Allowing repeated MCAS trim input to be additive (thus reaching full nose-down trim with repeated activation)

        4. Keeping the whole system largely hidden from the pilots

        Looks pretty bad. There’s also the potential psychological issue that MCAS input is intermittent, in 5 second bursts, so that it may appear to respond to control commands before activating again. That probably introduces some additional confusion in an already-stressful situation.

        One thing that doesn’t quite fit — the MCAS system is supposed to activate only when flaps are fully up. This fits with the Lion Air crash, which showed repeated dives/ climbs after reaching an altitude where the flaps would normally be up.

        But the Ethiopian flight never made it above 1000 feet (above ground level — Addis Ababa airport is 7600 feet above sea level). Flaps should still have been at least partially down.

      358. @Factorize

        Factorize I apologise for my last reply to this post. I hadn’t remembered your name from previous comments and when I saw the MoA bit I wrongly assumed that you were one of the horrid people there.

        Again very sorry for my unpleasantness.

        I’ve spent hardly any time on researching this topic but was shocked when I heard what the “problem” is. I have less knowledge than you of the details of the MCAS system; I laven’t looked it up. When I have time I’ll look at your link. I wasn’t even aware that UNZ would be discussing this when I came here. I think I followed a link from Zero Hedge, to some other topic here, and then saw this one which does interest me and on which I have significant knowedge.

        • Replies: @Factorize
      359. wayfarer says:
        @Dieter Kief

        I called it, “the hand of god,” a night off the coast of Oregon in a violent storm, when the USCGC rolled on its starboard side, sweeping five crewmen into the unforgiving waves of a frigid shark infested Pacific Ocean. We recovered three men, sadly two were never seen again – lost at sea.

        In an ensuing investigation, it was determined that the fuels tanks weren’t properly balanced, and one of the rudders wasn’t responding properly – details that the snipes should’ve been aware of. Also the seaman, not wearing life jackets, didn’t notify the bridge of their plans to secure a freewheeling davit on the weather deck – details the boatswain’s mate should’ve been aware of.

        Shit happens, mistakes are made – we learn from them. At times that’s the best we can do.

        For some, it’s gratifying to remember, “no one gets out of this world alive.”

      360. wayfarer says:
        @wayfarer

        seaman seamen, not wearing life jackets …

      361. Sparkon says:
        @James Forrestal

        Thanks for taking the time to write that. I get your point, but where are the comparable granular data for the Ethiopian Airlines (EA) 737 that crashed?

        Flightradar24 — hereafter FR24 — released the granular data for the 10/29 crash of Lion Air on Nov. 7. EA went down on 3/10, so perhaps in the days ahead FR24 will release granular ADS-B data for EA so we can do an orange-to-orange comparison. I await that development before saying anything else about the two charts.

        • Replies: @James Forrestal
      362. FB says: • Website
        @Ron Unz

        ‘If the pilots were sufficiently knowledgeable, experienced, and level-headed, they would probably be able to react quickly enough to prevent the software from crashing the plane.

        I have a question for you…if the MAX is cleared to resume flying, are you going to board one…?…or are you maybe going to choose another option…?

      363. @Ron Unz

        If the pilots were sufficiently knowledgeable, experienced, and level-headed, they would probably be able to react quickly enough to prevent the software from crashing the plane.

        This might be understood as being not quite right – especially not if one looks at the Ethiopian crash, because the plane was not high enough when the MCAS started to cause trouble to allow the pilots to do anything useful at all, as commenter FB pointed out and explained in great detail (you might want to look into a few of his comments (#347 for a start) and into the wayfarer video (#336).

        So the even more correct version of this sentence of yours might read like this: (…) they would in some cases probably be able to react quickly enough (…).
        The difference is this: The first quote above might be read by someone as saying: If the pilots are good enough, the a) dysfunctional MCAS in the b) bitchy 737 MAX can be dealt with. But this understanding of your sentence would be wrong.

        A second small correction: This part of your sentence If the pilots were sufficiently knowledgeabe – should rather read: If the pilots had been correctly informed and would be sufficiently knowledgeable-, because in this version, it becomes clearer, that just in case that pilots may not have been knowledgeable, this was not necessarily their (or their companies) fault or responsibility.

        Boing kept the crucial information about the MCAS hidden from the companies and from the pilots for quite some time, which then made it impossible for the pilots to become sufficiently knowledgeable.

        • Agree: FB
      364. res says:
        @CanSpeccy

        And if they don’t, they will hardly notice a shortage of high IQ citizens.

        In all sincerity, please don’t underestimate the role of a sufficiency of high IQ citizens towards getting them there. There is a very real chicken and egg problem here. Bootstrapping that process is important IMHO. And again IMHO, pretending everything is okey dokey in Africa (e.g. we just have to wait for the inevitable demographic transition to work its magic) does not help that process.

        In my view, not only is the manifestation of intelligence (phenotypic intelligence as you call it) much more dependent on environmental factors, particularly culture and education than most psychologists seem willing to acknowledge (or investigate),

        Specifics (of the failures you are attributing to psychologists) would be useful here. One issue present is that most psychologists work in and with data from first world societies. I think their acknowledgement of environmental influences (e.g. heritability) is in the ballpark of correct for the range of environmental variation common in those societies. I do think they underestimate the detrimental effect of certain particularly toxic cultures, say in US inner cities (and yes, that is a “racist dog whistle”, one has to admit a problem exists before solving it).

        When it comes to third world countries (especially with groups not studied as much by psychologists) I think the primary problems are:
        – A lack of data and studies of the people involved.
        – A tendency by many non-scientists (and probably too many scientists) to blindly assume conclusions drawn from the first world are valid in the third world.

        I also deplore the lack of willingness to investigate further here. A difference is that I tend to blame SJWs shutting down research into group differences for that. To properly quantify the environmental effects you are concerned about in Africa would also require properly quantifying the genetic group differences IMO. I believe this also applies to attempts to understand and address B/W differences in the US.

        but that intelligence is manifest in numerous ways not measured by IQ tests, and in ways with no close correlation with the verbal and numerical abilities measured by IQ tests.

        Our primary disagreement (that I see) is how strongly to make that statement. Part of our disagreement is of the “is the glass half full or half empty” form, but from the strength of your feelings I have to believe we aren’t even in agreement on where in the range from (say) one quarter full to three quarters full we are.

        I think a big part of our difference is that I tend to think in a broad population, statistical sense, while I think you are thinking on terms of your own life experiences (please correct if you disagree with that assessment). Restriction of range makes a large enough difference (e.g. to correlations of IQ with achievement, but also IMHO to observed correlation of IQ with “intelligence”) to explain why we see things so differently.

        The important takeaway from that observation is to use the right tools for the proper situations. So as an example, for a broad initial screen IQ (and similar) tests have substantial utility. But when looking at a pre-screened population (and the more screened the more important this point is) like grad students the tests will have much less value.

        One corollary is that in an environment with odd screening rules (say one in which the color of one’s skin matters greatly) the tests may retain more predictive power.

        I have at times expressed myself on the subject of IQ in a way that must be offensive to specialists in the field, but I feel justified in this, inasmuch as it reflects the view that psychologists need to see the IQ business for what it is, a power trip that promotes a Fascistic hierarchical approach to social organization, which I consider profoundly harmful.

        I would be interested in a longer form development of this (have you done so on your blog?). In particular comparing with real world environments (past or present) which work better in this regard.

        IQ testing can certainly have negative effects in terms of unjustly labeling people or excluding them from opportunities. The idea of a single test in early childhood determining one’s life course is terrible. I think the modified version of that we have is better, but still imperfect. But I tend to think of it more in terms of providing opportunity to people across the SES spectrum. Low SES may have a negative environmental effect on IQ (and we can argue about exactly how much) but they at least have a chance on the tests compared to a class based system. FWIW at least one of my ancestors came to the US because of a large class based ability/opportunity mismatch in the home country.

        One wrinkle is that IMO much of the current pushback against IQ testing comes from our “elites” which realize they aren’t that elite after all and the tests constitute an obstacle for their progeny.

        • Replies: @CanSpeccy
      365. res says:
        @James Thompson

        The analogy with sailing is helpful because very similar principles apply.

        This made me wonder if experience with sailing (either for individuals or countries) made a difference in early progress in aeronautics.

        Any thoughts?

        P.S. Going rather far afield here, but I do think it is an interesting question.

      366. @FB

        Absolutely agree. Who can remember all that shit if it happens ones in blue moon.
        Why Boeing does not put there interacted computer screen with all those moves on.
        Than the messages disappearing as the actions are executed by pilot.

      367. @CanSpeccy

        You might give this one ten minutes.

        https://quillette.com/2019/03/19/the-mismeasurements-of-stephen-jay-gould/

        If you become curious after having read this article, you might want to look further into James Thompson’s blog – lots of extraordinarily good information about the mismatch of Gould’s critical ideas and the arguments he brings forward against IQ.

        • Replies: @res
        , @CanSpeccy
      368. Iris says:
        @Erebus

        ” If he couldn’t fly the B737MAX, on a clear day in clear air, it’s a bad design.”

        Hello Erebus; Below is some information from a French aviation expert who is very specific about the flaws he highlights in the B737Max. He concurs with the key points you raised in your comments.

        Xavier Tytelman is a former military pilot, an aviation safety specialist and aviation economics consultant. Here is a quick translation of his assessment and the 4 issues he sees as having caused both crashes:

        https://www.huffingtonpost.fr/xavier-tytelman/4-problemes-a-lorigine-des-deux-crashs-du-boeing-737-max_a_23695019/

        1) Airbus and Boeing have diametrically opposed steering philosophies.
        Since the launch of the A320, all Airbus aircrafts have a “protection of their area of ​​flight”, that is to say that the aircraft will refuse some dangerous manoeuvres that the pilot could ask, and control the plane automatically instead. Pilots are aware that the automated system is designed for the plane’s safety, but are also trained to disable this automated process should it fail because a sensor going out of order. Such occurrence happened in 2012 with an Eva Air A330.
        The problem is that, while the pilots were expecting to overriding the controls, as would have been the case on older Boeing models, Boeing added the MACS system without training the pilots on the fact that is activates independently of their action, and without even their knowledge.
        The MACS was installed with a “Engineers-know-better” approach: it was deemed infallible, so no need to highlight his existence to pilots, as they should not have to disable it.

        2- On standard B737Max models, the MACS uses only one AOA vane to perform its critical function, leaving the aircraft completely vulnerable to a failure of this sole sensor failing.

        if an AOA Vane produces an erroneous signal, the MACS will treat the signal as valid” (Screenshot from the “Cockpit Companion” application)

        This issue was picked up by a few aviation companies who, just after the first crash, added a second sensor (angle of attack indicator) to address this critical single point of failure.

        3- The MACS operates much faster than communicated by Boeing in their initial safety documents. Latest revelations show that it directs the plane by an angle of 8 degrees every 10 seconds, instead of the 2 degrees every 10 seconds announced.

        4- Validation requires so much engineering resource that Boeing is virtually in charge with validating its own planes: in the 80’s already , 95% of the validation was done by Boeing, not the FAA.

        The expert summarise his article on a positive/(diplomatic?) note, though. He reckons that the B737MAX was launched too quickly to compete with the A320Neo, but that its issues can be overcome and that it can be upgraded to a more robust aircraft.

        Finally, a short video of the same expert showing, from 01:03, the sole AOA Vane, and from 02:13, from inside a flight simulator, what happened with the trim wheel which would have become uncontrollable as the pilots were not trained to disable the MACS. Best

        https://www.francetvinfo.fr/faits-divers/accident/crash-aerien-en-ethiopie/video-boeing-737-max-ce-qui-pourrait-etre-a-l-origine-des-accidents_3243361.html

        • Replies: @Erebus
      369. AaronB says:
        @Ron Unz

        More or less.

        Except that the fix for a runaway trim problem is so basic and simple, and one of the most essential things any pilot should know, Boeing was being quite reasonable in assuming that every pilot should be able to easily deal with the rare event of a malfunctioning MCAS.

        Of course, hindsight is 20/20, and we have now discovered that many pilots do not possess the most basic, essential skills.

        Which to me is increasingly becoming the most dramatic and significant revelation to emerge from this affair.

        Of course, knowing this now, I absolutely want Boeing to factor this in when designing planes. If we cannot count on pilots to possess essential skills, that is simply a fact we must now deal with. And planes should be designed accordingly.

        • Replies: @FB
      370. @Ron Unz

        …a fair reading of the situation…?

        There is more:

        • Angle of attack sensors with false readings and no calibration prior to take-off
        • Failure to implement standard angle of attack sensor redundancy and warning
        • Boeing did not inform pilots of additional software system prior to first crash
        • Boeing fraudulently misled FAA about stabilizer angle range that was much higher
        • Boeing claimed to airlines that additional training was unnecessary

        The key issue:

        A problematical plane design cannot be allowed to be compensated for.

        • Agree: wayfarer
      371. FB says: • Website
        @AaronB

        ‘Except that the fix for a runaway trim problem is so basic and simple, and one of the most essential things any pilot should know…’

        And you, renaissance rain man are speaking from experience here…?…having ‘fixed’ a runaway trim situation while pilot in command so many times now that it’s just duck soup at this point…?…well done…applause applause…

        And incidentally…MCAS malfunction is actually very different from ‘runaway trim’…

        ‘An MCAS emergency is a much more insidious emergency than a simple runaway trim…

        But what does this triple seven pilot know compared to superdork AaronB…/

        • Replies: @James Forrestal
      372. @Sparkon

        Thanks.

        I get your point, but where are the comparable granular data for the Ethiopian Airlines (EA) 737 that crashed?

        Looks like they posted a link to the raw data in csv form (bottom of the page — “download granular CSV” vs. “download basic CSV”)

        https://www.flightradar24.com/blog/flightradar24-data-regarding-the-crash-of-ethiopian-airlines-flight-302/

        but graphed the basic data for some reason (wasn’t available when they first posted the article?)

        Anyone with some skills in Excel, Python, etc. should be able to generate a graph.

        Huh. I took a quick look at the times on the “granular” data set. The sampling interval looks pretty variable; anywhere from 5x/ second to every 5 seconds, with one gap of 10 seconds. Maybe some kind of technical issue with data transmission/ recording?

      373. wayfarer says:
        @wayfarer

        Won’t be able to sleep tonight, unless this hacked paragraph is reworked.

        “In an ensuing investigation, it was determined the fuel tanks weren’t balanced, and one rudder wasn’t responding – also the seamen, not wearing life jackets, didn’t notify the bridge of their plans to secure a freewheeling davit on the weather deck – critical details, both the snipes and a boatswain’s mate should’ve been aware of.”

      374. bluedog says:
        @Biff

        LMAO they sure are but will have a hard time covering their ass on this one,as the man said if you can’t dazzle them with brilliance then baffle them with bullshit, and they just went into overdrive.!!!.

      375. @FB

        Good job with all the technical stuff.

        One additional question — MCAS should only activate with flaps fully up, right?

        That part doesn’t seem to fit with the low altitude at which the Ethiopian Airlines flight started having problems — he never made it above 1000 ft AGL.

        • Replies: @FB
      376. res says:
        @Dieter Kief

        Thanks for passing that along. Should note that it looks like a popular version of the Russell Warne paper discussed in https://www.unz.com/jthompson/gould-got-it-wrong/
        Might be worth leaving a comment in that thread pointing to the Quillette article.

        P.S. It was interesting to see the Gould apologists in the comment section.

      377. CanSpeccy says: • Website
        @res

        don’t underestimate the role of a sufficiency of high IQ citizens towards getting them (Africans) there (to a first world standard of living).

        My assumption is that Africans are low IQ, on average, because they live differently from First Worlders, and in particular, because they are mostly barely literate (three years average schooling, so I have read, in SubSaharan Africa). However, I suspect they have compensating abilities that no IQ-ist would dream of testing them for.

        Specifics (of the failures you are attributing to psychologists) would be useful here.

        You’re talking of the assumption by IQ-ists that differences in IQ between sub-Ssharan Africans and some other groups are primarily genetic, an assumption that seems to me entirely unwarranted. Phenotype, is the product of genotype and environment. If the environments are sharply different culturally, educationally, in exposure to disease and malnutrition, then the phenotype is sure to be affected.

        When I say:

        intelligence is manifest in numerous ways not measured by IQ tests, and in ways with no close correlation with the verbal and numerical abilities measured by IQ tests

        I am surprised that there is any need to elaborate. Even among the subtests that make up an IQ test, the correlations are low, with an average r-squared value of under 0.1 (here for example). That is what one would expect given the modular structure of the brain and the division of functions among the modules.

        So yes, there may be a g-factor but it doesn’t account for much. The reality is that IQ test focus on what makes for success in high school reading, writing and arithmetic. There’s nothing in it that relates to musical, poetical, artistic, social, kinaesthetic and many other skills. If you expanded the range of skills, then the magnitude of the g-factor would diminish even further.

        Low SES may have a negative environmental effect on IQ (and we can argue about exactly how much) but they at least have a chance on the tests compared to a class based system.

        Without wishing to sound rude, I think that is naive. For example, the late Sir Cyril Burt, once President of the British Psychological Society created the notorious 11-plus test to select entrants to grammar schools. This was generally assumed to be an IQ test, yet Burt acknowledged that it was culturally biased in ways that favored the middle class over the working class.

        One wrinkle is that IMO much of the current pushback against IQ testing comes from our “elites” which realize they aren’t that elite after all and the tests constitute an obstacle for their progeny.

        Dunno about that. Our kid got a perfect score on the SAT tests (although I am certainly not claiming to be a member of any elite).

        • Replies: @res
      378. CanSpeccy says:
        @Ron Unz

        But it really seems like a rather serious issue for Boeing to have sold planes with that sort of “technical flaw.”

        Exactly. That’s where the dumb darkies explanation for two plane crashes is irrelevant even if it were fair, an assumption that remains to be demonstrated. Boeing must be well aware of the competence of the pilots who fly their planes, so selling planes the pilots were too dumb to fly was, as you say, “a rather serious issue” — both for Boeing and the FAA.

        Here’s Ralph Nader’s assessment of that “serious issue:”

        Greedy Boeing’s Avoidable Design and Software Time Bombs

        • Replies: @res
      379. FB says: • Website
        @James Forrestal

        ‘One additional question — MCAS should only activate with flaps fully up, right?

        That part doesn’t seem to fit with the low altitude at which the Ethiopian Airlines flight started having problems — he never made it above 1000 ft AGL.’

        Good question…first of all we don’t know if he retracted flaps or not…or even any other data from the flight data recorder…it might not even be related to MCAS at all…I never stated that it was…since that would be making massive assumptions that are completely unwarranted…

        My main objective here has been to shed some lights about how these airplanes work and how flying them works…

        And also to correct some of the blatant stupidity and non-sequiturs here…such as flipping a couple of switches magically brings back a doomed airliner in a death spiral…those things are just stupid, but they take on quite a life when propagated by people who know absolutely nothing about flying a large jet…and helped on by obvious shills that are on a troll campaign…

        Also the absolutely terrible design of the MAX…the significant departure in basic airplane design of using computer bandaids to solve basic aerodynamic instability issues…the corruption evident in the FAA-Boeing relationship…and the sheer criminality of what has transpired so far…which is why there is an actual criminal case under way…

        So I just want to get these facts straight before we go further…

        Now as for the flaps…here is how that works on takeoff…once the airplane rotates [ie lifts off] the pilot monitoring will watch the vertical speed indicator for a positive rate of climb to establish and he will call out ‘positive rate’ followed by ‘gear up’ and followed right after that with ‘flaps up’…

        This is simply how the procedure goes and it has nothing to do with altitude above the ground…it is simply a fact that by the time you complete those call outs the airplane will be about 1,000 feet off the ground…

        Now…we do see that this airplane had trouble climbing…but that does not mean that the flaps weren’t retracted by the pilot monitoring, whose job is to make those call-outs and clean up the airplane…ie retract gear and flaps…

        So there is absolutely nothing unusual about the possibility that the copilot [pilot monitoring on this departure] would have pulled the flaps within the first 30 seconds as is the usual practice…regardless of the airplane’s height…

        That is one possibility…another thing to consider is the statement that MCAS ‘should’…fill in blank here…yes it should do a lot of things …and those sensors should not be failing that often that there are already so many incident reports and at least one crashed airplane, plus another one that nearly crashed…that’s a lot of ‘shoulds’…

        Right now we have no idea as to the many ways in which this MCAS contraption could misfire…Juan Browne thinks it also pushes authothrottle to full power when it kicks in [not an unreasonable assumption]…then we have that incident report about the autothrottles not going to climb power like they are supposed to…I already mentioned that one…

        After 1000 feet I noticed a decrease in aircraft performance. I picked up that the autothrottles were not moving to commanded position even though they were engaged. I’m sure they were set properly for takeoff but not sure when the discrepancy took place. My scan wasn’t as well developed since I’ve only flown the MAX once before. I manually positioned the thrust levers ASAP. This resolved the threat, we were able to increase speed to clean up and continue the climb to 3000 feet.

        That from a very interesting collection of NASA incident reports in The Atlantic…

        That sounded like just a hiccup compared to the Ethiopian flight…and it happened last October, apparently before that first crash in Indonesia…

        So we do of course have to wait and see what the flight data and cockpit voice recordings tell us…but we do know a lot of bad things about MCAS already…and the way it was handled, from start to finish…the bottom line is that this airplane will almost certainly need to be recrtified, which could very well kill it…

        For me it’s just as well if that happens…Boeing rolled the dice here big time…taking some massive shortcuts and showing massive greed…just on what I know so far I would say they need to pay heavily for the choices they have taken…the fact is that engineers do an incredible job designing these aircraft and pilots do an absolutely great job of flying them [regardless of what some useless trolls here would have you believe]…and the reason air travel is so safe and so great is because of the incredible job that these people do…and people like myself are also very well aware of just how lacking in any moral compass a hugely powerful company can act…that is just a fact that people need to think about…

        • Replies: @Erebus
        , @Biff
      380. @FB

        As a matter of fact, I AM more qualified to write about aircraft stablity than you, FB. Have you taken control theory? No, it’s not from a private pilot background, as I’ll admit you don’t really have to learn much of physics to fly (more on that in another comment). I won’t paste in anything here, just writing the basics: Static stability (as opposed to the dynamic) of the aircraft is basically the ability of the plane to return toward its previous state after being perturbed from an original attitude. We are talking about longitudinal stability here, as in “pitch”. The basic factor that makes an airplane statically stable in pitch is it’s center of lift being aft of its center of mass.

        If the plane pitches up for whatever reason, whether purposefully done or not, it will tend to pitch back down, very simply because the additional lift due to the higher angle-of-attack will produce a pitch-down moment around the center-of-mass. Vice versa for a downward change in pitch. Get it?

        Now, this 737-MAX has its engines more forward. That alone would not do anything for pitch stability unless we are talking about lift from the engine nacelles. If the thrust is along the same line as it was on the other birds., there is no additional pitching moment created due to extra thrust than it would have been with the older, more aft-mounted engines. I have not read enough, I’ll admit, to understand the why on this problem at high angle-of-attack with high thrust. Possibly the thrust line is angled upward slightly more (causing additional pitch-up moment with additional thrust) or it has something with lift from the nacelles (which, being more forward, would indeed increase pitch-up moment).

        … the MAX is UNSTABLE at high alpha…full stop that is a fact…

        Yes, at this very high AoA it may very well be – I never said otherwise – for the 3rd damn time it’s not an unstable airplane in general. That high AoA, though not at stall, is still pretty damn far up there. This brings up your stupidity here:

        That doesn’t mean these fly by wire airplanes are UNSTABLE…

        I know that. I never wrote that.

        It also doesn’t mean that T-tails with stick pushers are UNSTABLE…they are not…not being able to get out of a stall is NOT the same as pitch instability…

        I know that. I never wrote that. My point that you missed is that stalling is going to kill you if you’re low enough (at the altitude, just for example, of where this last plane was) – you’d rather not do that, whether the plane was a stable one before it was a smoking hole in the ground or not! They therefore have safety systems to prevent that which indeed are electronic and may very well use the AoA vane sensor as primary input (I can’t say for sure on that. Anyone?)

        • Replies: @FB
        , @Biff
      381. @FB

        You can have all kind of confusion with the bells and whistles that you (along with Juan Brown in the video) mentioned. I already read this stuff on another comment of yours. The point is, once you realize that the stab trim keeps uncommandedly moving to nose down, STOP IT.

        Yes, there’s lots of confusion, and as I’ve stated before, I don’t like to 2nd-guess the pilots. We’ll, or the investigaors will, find out more on exactly what was being done and in what order things from the CVR.

        That’s not what this is about…and it shows a lack of seriousness on your part…

        Yes, it kind of is. These 2 crashes are tragic, especially the 2nd one, after information was obtained from the 1st. However, the systems being ragged on remind me most of Airbus equipment in which the computer has the last word and the controls don’t mean a whole damn lot (I am referring to things like the joysticks, which, of course, don’t travel together, and are a factor in the Air France crash). The people on here acting like this is the end of the world maybe weren’t around when there were major crashes yearly or semi-yearly. It is a much safer flying world now, though I thought the industry was much better off having a lot of players, like the Lockheeds, Douglases, British Aerospaces, Fokkers, etc.

        Hopefully a lot of human factors stuff will be learned from these 2 crashes, and not all of it related to flying. The technogeeks who think computers are the answer to everything have some answering to do, or whatever managers let this MCAS system be so hidden from the pilots and/or training depts.

        That reminds me. I already read your .gif of part of the aircraft A/D. Why don’t you answer my point about the .gif that you yourself inserted that’s entitled “Background Information” as related to checklists and memory items? You’ve been doing nothing but watching videos and pasting in aircraft diagrams of all sorts (those are informative, no doubt), but you should do some thinking for yourself, too.

      382. @Ilyana_Rozumova

        Because people don’t like to die, I guess…?

        • Replies: @Ilyana_Rozumova
      383. @FB

        Oh, I almost forgot, but I’ll make it quick:

        Yes, one can get through commercial pilot (250 hrs or even less at an approved school) or even ATP (1000 – 1500 hours, depending) without really learning any physics, just enough answers to pass the multiple choice written tests, and still be a very good pilot. However, I’m of the school of thought that the more you know, the better. I don’t maintain that an MIT physics PhD could fly a plane better, or at all, due to his knowledge. It’s just that more knowledge of the aircraft systems could help when things are really going badly.

        That being said, that is absolutely NOT the airlines’ philosophy. You got a degree in physics or engineering, or been a mechanic or aircraft inspector? Sorry, you didn’t wear that red tie and say things to the HR ladies that you were told to say in your interview prep deal 2 months ago. We need you to say what we want to hear, or at least have a friend here from your same unit, if you’re military. Come back another time, don’t call us, baby, we’ll call you….

      384. @CanSpeccy

        You’re preaching to the choir, when it comes to bureaucracy, C.S.

        That was kind of a rhetorical question. See my comment above (with same paragraph twice) on an inspector worried about paperwork for radios installed 15 years ago, and whether he would have noticed a 2-ft long gash in the plane’s belly. (spoiler – NO.)

      385. res says:
        @CanSpeccy

        My assumption is that Africans are low IQ, on average, because they live differently from First Worlders, and in particular, because they are mostly barely literate (three years average schooling, so I have read, in SubSaharan Africa).

        At least you are honest about it being an assumption. No doubt that contributes, but how much is by no means obvious. It is odd that the Afro-optimists don’t come after you for such a harsh assessment of sub-Saharan Africa.

        However, I suspect they have compensating abilities that no IQ-ist would dream of testing them for.

        Nothing is stopping an anti-IQist like you from testing them to find those differences and then publishing that research. I am sure whoever did that would be lauded. Sounds like an opportunity. Why is no one taking advantage of it?

        You’re talking of the assumption by IQ-ists that differences in IQ between sub-Ssharan Africans and some other groups are primarily genetic, an assumption that seems to me entirely unwarranted.

        I don’t know about primarily. Depends on the particular case. IIRC from my discussion of this in Chanda Chisala’s blog I was guesstimating for an average IQ of 70 (some African countries) 10-15 points of that might be environmental.
        How much of the difference do you think is genetic?
        As far as entirely unwarranted, I think the persistence of the B/W gap in the US is fairly suggestive.

        So yes, there may be a g-factor but it doesn’t account for much.

        As demonstrated by one cherry picked table. What is the original source so I can see it in context?

        Without wishing to sound rude, I think that is naive.

        Again, the question is compared to what? What alternative do you recommend for doing talent screening? Compared to the class based system (as I said) I am not being naive–I am being correct.

        Dunno about that. Our kid got a perfect score on the SAT tests (although I am certainly not claiming to be a member of any elite).

        You are not what I mean by “elite.” You possess ability. Referring more to wealth and notoriety created by our media-entertainment complex (see recent Singer college admissions cheating scandal). Along with moderately (or less) competent politicians.

        And to repeat my question: What process do you recommend should replace IQ tests for screening? Do you have any examples of that process actually being used successfully?

        • Replies: @CanSpeccy
      386. res says:
        @CanSpeccy

        even if it were fair, an assumption that remains to be demonstrated

        You must mean better demonstrated than I have already done with accident statistics in the other thread, right?

        • Replies: @CanSpeccy
      387. FB says: • Website

        ‘…or it has something with lift from the nacelles (which, being more forward, would indeed increase pitch-up moment).’

        That’s correct…it has nothing to do with thrust line about which you were prattling on…the nacelles, not being airfoils, do make lift, but only at high alpha…so being that far in front of the wing, they are like two little canards mounted in front of the wing…like I had said much earlier in this discussion there would not be a problem if they were under the wing where they belong…

        As for your little delusion that you actually know something about aircraft stability…please don’t kid yourself…you are only making yourself look silly when you talk like that to a guy with thousands of hours in flight test…OK..?

        As for your second comment, it’s clear you really don’t have anything to contribute and you are basically making useless noises about the Airbus philosophy to automation…a subject whose warts are real and which I have covered already in this discussion…

        • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
      388. CanSpeccy says: • Website
        @Dieter Kief

        You might give this one ten minutes.

        https://quillette.com/2019/03/19/the-mismeasurements-of-stephen-jay-gould/

        Hm. Don’t think I quoted Gould, did I? I have read some of his books including the MM of M, but that was probably the year it was published, or 38 years ago, so my recollection of whatever he said is vague. I recall something about filling skulls with sand and measuring the volume, but the philosophical stuff about reification, etc., was probably rather above my head.

        The problem that IQists wont address is that intelligence is not one thing, but a collection of faculties, or to quote myself:

        I understand the term intelligence more broadly than the IQ-ist, and in a Darwinian sense. Thus … include within the meaning of the term all cognitive activity that promotes the survival and reproductive success of the organism.

        In this respect, the Darwinian view is much closer to the commonsense understanding of intelligence, which the Merriam-Webster dictionary defines as:

        the ability to learn or understand or to deal with new or trying situations … the ability to apply knowledge to manipulate one’s environment or to think abstractly …

        To the Darwinian, the skills required to perform well on an IQ test are extremely limited in range. They demonstrate the capacity to read with comprehension, write with clarity and add up, which are certainly adaptive for those who seek to ensure that there is food in the refrigerator by working at the Post Office or in some other clerical, bureaucratic, or middle-management job.

        In the jungle-dweller or the hunter-gatherer, however, the Darwinist would recognize intelligence in very different skills, including the ability to interpret the sights, and sounds, and smells of both predators and prey; to distinguish the poisonous mushroom among a thousand that are edible; to step from boulder to boulder across a creek in spate when one misstep could mean instant death; to cast a spear or shoot an arrow that saps the strength of an enraged bear, or a charging buffalo.

        In addition, the Darwinist will recognize as manifestations of intelligence a multitude of skills that the IQ-ist ignores but which are essential to the survival of mankind both primitive and modern: the ability to charm a maid or beguile a swain; the power to lead in battle, or sway the election crowd; the Machiavellian gift of manipulation; the ability to entertain; the power of technical innovation.

        6. Defined as the Darwinist sees it, the notion of intelligence as a unitary property of the central nervous system is untenable. The nerd who designs the combat aircraft is unlikely to have the coordination to fly it; the charismatic politician may be devoid of understanding in matters of economics, education, or military strategy; the pop singer who can fill a stadium, may be a political imbecile.

        The neurologist, examining the substrate of the cognitive activity underlying intelligent behavior sees the visual, olfactory, auditory, computational and other aspects of information processing occurring in separate specialized parts of the brain. To the neurologist, therefore, it is evident that aptitudes may vary according to the size, structure, and physiological properties of the various neural components of the brain that are involved. Thus the Australian aboriginal’s path-finding skill appears related to exceptional development of the visual cortex. Carl Gauss’s extraordinary mathematical gifts may have been due to the exceptional convolutions of his cerebral cortex, as observed at autopsy.

        In summary, the IQ-ists view of intelligence is valid only on the IQ-ist’s peculiar and tautological definitions of IQ and intelligence, viz: IQ = intelligence, and intelligence = IQ.

        By the way, Dieter, both you and James Thompson are welcome to visit my blog. You might find good information there.

        • Replies: @Erebus
        , @Dieter Kief
      389. CanSpeccy says: • Website
        @res

        You must mean better demonstrated than I have already done with accident statistics in the other thread, right?

        LOL. I guess I should have said “remains to be demonstrated so far as I am aware.” As for your stats, I would say that they are inconclusive, since there are surely many differences in conditions under which the majority of African pilots fly and those under which pilots with, say, Delta Airlines fly — not that I’m arguing the case for parity. It seems to me the question cannot be definitely resolved and thus is not worth debating. Equally, therefore, I would not base an argument on the outcome to such a debate.

        • Replies: @res
      390. @Achmed E. Newman

        So what is your prognostication? I would like you legally tide down. And than compare it to final action of Boeing. You feel a brave enough for that, or you are a coward.

        • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
      391. FB says: • Website
        @Erebus

        Just one more little loose string here E…

        So in my above explanation of how that little graduated tape beside the trim wheel measures pitch angle…I really should add one more detail that would really only be of interest to a professional pilot or engineer…

        And that is that the tape goes from 0 to 17…as you can plainly see on the illustration from the manual…but technically these are called units, not degrees…although one unit equals one degree…so this is a bit of arcana here that goes back to the fact that the airplane’s pitch angle is defined precisely as the angle between the aircraft’s longitudinal centerline and the horizon…

        Now in practice the wing is usually mounted at an angle of incidence to that centerline which might be say minus 2 degrees…with the wing’s reference line being its chord line…which is a straight line from the center of the leading edge to the trailing edge…

        Now if you were to set full nose down trim which is zero on the indicator…the airplane would actually be at an angle of minus 2 degrees or even more…not actually zero…so that’s why they call them units…because we have changed the meaning of ‘zero’…

        Again…this little bit of arcana is really meaningless to what you wanted to know, but I thought I would throw it in anyway…

        There are also different limits as to how far you can actually move that trim wheel, depending on various things, like whether the flaps are deployed…whether you are moving the trim by hand or by electric switch…and whether the autopilot is moving the trim…if anyone needs this info I can provide it for earlier versions of the 737…but not MAX…it may be of some interest…

        Anyway…it’s just another reason to keep in mind that there is a lot more to this subject than some people here would like to simplify it to…it is important to be precise…

        • Replies: @Erebus
      392. res says:
        @CanSpeccy

        So we go from

        even if it were fair, an assumption that remains to be demonstrated

        to

        the question cannot be definitely resolved and thus is not worth debating.

        Nice.

        In any case,
        evidence presented by res >> evidence presented by CanSpeccy
        Ignore my evidence if you like (and I agree it is not definitive) but don’t pretend what evidence there is does not favor there being a difference. Which you at least acknowledge with “not that I’m arguing the case for parity.”

        To your credit, you are much better at knowing which battles to decline than some here.

        • Replies: @CanSpeccy
      393. FB says: • Website
        @Achmed E. Newman

        ‘As a matter of fact, I AM more qualified to write about aircraft stablity [sic] than you, FB.

        LOL…also here is my brief reply to your silliness which I forgot to address to you specifically…it is brief because you basically have added nothing that is worth discussing…

      394. Erebus says:
        @FB

        ‘One additional question — MCAS should only activate with flaps fully up, right?
        That part doesn’t seem to fit with the low altitude at which the Ethiopian Airlines flight started having problems — he never made it above 1000 ft AGL.’

        Good question…first of all we don’t know if he retracted flaps or not…or even any other data from the flight data recorder…it might not even be related to MCAS at all…

        Exactly. The more I read, the more I suspect that both aircraft exhibited deep(er) systemic flight control systems issues than “simple Stabilizer Runaway”, or even insidious MCAS behaviour.

        The following don’t add up for me…
        – Ethiopian’s and Lion Air’s inability to gain altitude (auto-throttle problems?),
        – Lion Air’s statistically improbable 3-day cluster of “faulty” sensor replacements,
        – the Lion Air flight itself, where the pilots were handling the emergency matter-of-factly until they suddenly plunged into the ocean,

        In combination, they hint strongly that the MCAS is the tip of an underlying iceberg. At least, they so hint to me when I’ve got my troubleshooting hat on.

        Politically/commercially, I expect Boeing to make a big effort to present the MCAS as the “lone gunman” responsible. “Fixing” the MCAS convincingly is Boeing’s only, fading hope of staying in the medium-haul business. They’ll want to fix whatever underlying problems exist both quietly and quickly while making a public show of re-engineering the MCAS.

        PS: Ditto James Forrestal’s previous hat tip for the info.

      395. CanSpeccy says: • Website
        @res

        Nothing is stopping an anti-IQist like you from testing them to find those differences and then publishing that research.

        I can surely have a reasoned opinion without having to devote the rest of my one an only life to proving it! If IQists want to dispose of the idea for evermore, let them do the research to disprove it.

        from my discussion of this in Chanda Chisala’s blog I was guesstimating for an average IQ of 70 (some African countries) 10-15 points of that might be environmental.
        How much of the difference do you think is genetic?

        I have no idea. Moreover, I do not believe it likely that there is just one value. Africans are ahighly diverse group physically and culturally. Some of them could well be better adapted to IQ test type tasks than others.

        As far as entirely unwarranted, I think the persistence of the B/W gap in the US is fairly suggestive.

        Yeah, and what’s merely suggestive needs verification if it is to be considered a fact —African Americans clearly live a very different life to most white Americans, and mostly exist at a great socio-economic disadvantage relative to white Americans, which in part, may well be due to a residue of prejudice and discrimination.

        As demonstrated by one cherry picked table.

        Simply the only one to hand. If you have tables showing quite different numbers I would be interested to see them.

        What alternative do you recommend for doing talent screening?

        That’s easy: exams. You know, ability in some academic discipline. I believe Charles Murray has concluded that actual academic achievement is as good or a better indicator of academic success in university. And of course it has the advantage of indicating whether someone knows something that might be useful, rather than whether they are merely capable of learning something useful if they could be bothered.
        The argument that IQ tests provide a means for those at the bottom of the social heap to demonstrate ability and therefore rise is uncompelling. Schools are available to all. If a kid is bright and demonstrates interest in academics, they will have a fair chance of rising to their level of competence. I have seen this happen. I attended one of only two British universities without a foreign language qualification for entry. As a result, it attracted a lot of bright kids from working class homes who had attended so-called technical schools intended for bright working class kids who would do the basic technical work, while the Eton boys sat on the board of directors.

        Some of those fellows were very bright indeed. One friend, a physicist, got a theoretical 200% in his first year math exams by answering 10 out of 10 questions when it was required that only five be attempted. Another friend, the son of a bricklayer, went on to teach at the LSE, and do many other fairly amazing things, including at one point, brief the Canadian Prime Minister. All was achieved on the basis of hard work at school and examination success. Had those fellows been told they had a high IQ, it might well have dulled their competitive edge.

        • Replies: @res
      396. CanSpeccy says:
        @res

        To your credit, you are much better at knowing which battles to decline than some here.

        To your credit, you state the superior strength of you position with the utmost tact.

        Gotta go now. Cheers.

      397. Erebus says:
        @FB

        the airplane would actually be at an angle of minus 2 degrees or even more…not actually zero…so that’s why they call them units…because we have changed the meaning of ‘zero’…

        Of course. I’m quite familiar with the concept of “zero” having a meaning within a frame of reference.

        Again…this little bit of arcana is really meaningless to what you wanted to know, but I thought I would throw it in anyway…

        Not meaningless at all. It’s another piece in the mental map being drawn in my head of how a cockpit works, so it’s appreciated. Besides, I’m an arcanic sort of guy.

      398. @Erebus

        “Fixing” MCAS is the solution? I thought the MCAS was necessary to begin with only because the oversized engines (for the 737 airframe) caused the change of the profile of the MAX. That made the plane quite unlike the earlier versions of the 737. That way, no re-training necessary?

        Isn’t the real solution to scrap the MAX altogether?

      399. Erebus says:
        @CanSpeccy

        To the neurologist, therefore, it is evident that aptitudes may vary according to the size, structure, and physiological properties of the various neural components of the brain that are involved.

        Surely you meant neuro-scientist.

        • Replies: @CanSpeccy
      400. Biff says:
        @FB

        the bottom line is that this airplane will almost certainly need to be recrtified, which could very well kill it…

        In any sane world this would be the most reasonable outcome. If they do put those junkers back in service, and by happenstance I got booked to fly on one I’d toss the ticket(electronically speaking), and if other flights with a different plane cost a thousand, two thousand, three thousand bucks more I would(sadly) pay it. Never a date with MAX eight.

        Any reasonable business person would see that Boeing is holding a turkey right now, and their stock value reflects that. Nevertheless, in “too big to fail” America I think Boeing will survive – with or without tax payer subsidies. They should just dump that plane and move on.

        • Agree: FB
        • Replies: @Erebus
      401. res says:
        @CanSpeccy

        I can surely have a reasoned opinion without having to devote the rest of my one an only life to proving it! If IQists want to dispose of the idea for evermore, let them do the research to disprove it.

        That’s fine. Just don’t go complaining about what IQ researchers choose to study then. Find someone to study the things you want studied. Seriously, it should be easy. There would be great glory for anyone who found an area of intellect where Africans outperformed. I can just imagine all of the admissions tests being quadruple weighted in that area to close the gap.

        I have no idea. Moreover, I do not believe it likely that there is just one value. Africans are ahighly diverse group physically and culturally. Some of them could well be better adapted to IQ test type tasks than others.

        You have no idea yet you categorically reject the idea it is primarily genetic. You have an interesting definition of “no idea.”

        Agreed there are probably different values for different groups.

        Yeah, and what’s merely suggestive needs verification if it is to be considered a fact

        There we go with the goalposts on wheels again. You originally said unwarranted. Considered a fact is a long way from unwarranted.

        If you have tables showing quite different numbers I would be interested to see them.

        Enough of them have been posted on this blog that that seems like a rather silly request. And what was the original source again? I really would like to see it in context.

        That’s easy: exams. You know, ability in some academic discipline.

        And you think that is more fair than IQ (or similar) tests? I agree it can actually be a better approach given proper education and exams with a reasonable ceiling. But those exams have an even bigger problem with test prep inequalities than IQ style tests.

        The argument that IQ tests provide a means for those at the bottom of the social heap to demonstrate ability and therefore rise is uncompelling.

        So you are saying the SATs (especially pre-recentering) never do this for students who attend unremarkable schools in the hinterlands? Do you really think it is possible to recognize the difference between +2/3/4 SD intellects based on performance in a mediocre high school? Especially when the best intellects often find those schools boring and underperform as a result.

        Any particular reason you find the argument uncompelling, or is that just a way of saying you don’t like it?

        As a result, it attracted a lot of bright kids from working class homes who had attended so-called technical schools intended for bright working class kids who would do the basic technical work

        How exactly did those bright kids find their way to those schools? It did not have anything to do with tests by any chance?

      402. Erebus says:
        @Iris

        The MACS was installed with a “Engineers-know-better” approach: it was deemed infallible, so no need to highlight his existence to pilots, as they should not have to disable it.

        I think that it was installed with a “we gotta be able to sell the MAX as a B737 type” approach, rather than “engineers know best”.

        If they publicized it, the MAX’s greater proclivity to stalling would have raised eyebrows everywhere. That would make it a new type, so it would have to be certified as such and airlines would have to spend millions getting pilots trained and certified for it. That would hamper sales. Anathema to Boeing’s management.

        • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
      403. Biff says:
        @Achmed E. Newman

        As a matter of fact, I AM more qualified to write about – building a dog house.

      404. Erebus says:
        @Biff

        In any sane world this would be the most reasonable outcome.

        Yeah, but after this fiasco, would the world accept the FAA’s judgement? Criminal investigations are already in the air.

        IMO, they should just buy and re-badge the Irkut MC-21 if they want to stay in the medium haul business. It seems to be a great airplane, and pretty much ready for prime time. With the price differential Boeing could still make a buck, and more importantly hold on to a place in the medium haul business.
        As a bonus, I wouldn’t be the only one willing to pay good money to watch Nikki Haley’s face while Boeing’s Board contemplates that option.

      405. Erebus says:
        @Jim Christian

        “Fixing” MCAS is the solution?

        I used quotation marks because I expect Boeing to pitch that as the solution to all the B737MAX’s problems. If more problems surface, that won’t work.

      406. @Erebus

        I’ve just taken a shower and at the same time (water!) spoken to my wife, who knows a bit about sailing, about your automatic keel analogy and the 737MAXs overall behavior and she instantly went: WoW!

        – She grasped your analogy right away, so: This is a very intuitive way to communicate the MAX-flaws to a wider public (maybe even wider than the one which is constituted of sailors, just because in the sailing analogy, the evident power of wind/air power becomes so flabbergastingly obvious – the answer, to conclude with the song-poet, is blowing in the wind (one of the deep layers of Bob Dylan’s famous phrase is, that it says: The answer is invisible – it was a pop-culture protest against the fact that visibility was on its way to dominating the cultural world in a never before encountered way).

        • Replies: @Erebus
      407. FB says: • Website
        @Erebus

        ‘ The more I read, the more I suspect that both aircraft exhibited deep(er) systemic flight control systems issues than “simple Stabilizer Runaway”, or even insidious MCAS behaviour…

        In combination, they hint strongly that the MCAS is the tip of an underlying iceberg.’

        I have that same feeling…there’s more going on here…perhaps a total systems meltdown…

        Here’s something that occurred to me from our discussion about trim range of motion…well I went and just looked up in the 737NG Flight Crew Operations Manual [FCOM] the exact range of motion that can be commanded in various ways…

        Now here is the thing…both the LT610 and ET302 respective jackscrews were found in the full nose down position…but here is the funny part…electric trim which is operated from the thumb button on the yoke handle as shown in a previous diagram, and which the Lion Air crew were using to reverse the MCAS nose down…well guess what…it’s range of operation is from 3.95 units to 14.5 units with the flaps retracted…

        So once that jackscrew is at full nose down, it may be impossible to bring it back with commanding nose up trim, since the starting point is nearly 4 degrees above that…here is that illustration of the graduations again…

        I have marked on there in red where the jackscrew ended up…the yellow arrow is the range at which electric trim starts working with flaps up…and goes to a maximum of 14.5, which is nearly the full nose up…

        Now here is the other interesting part…with flaps deployed, even to the first setting, flaps 1…the 737 FCOM tells us that the electric trim works starting from nearly full nose down, namely 0.05 …and again to a maximum of 14.5 at the nose up end…

        Now I recall from that preliminary report that they had deployed flaps at one point while the airplane was something like 100 knots above flap speed…[they can rip right off at higher speeds because they are designed to be used only in the landing and takeoff phase…

        Now that tells me those pilots in that cockpit had recalled this rather arcane bit of info [these trim ranges aren’t on any emergency checklists]…so these guys were just doing an amazing job to recall this bit of info and turn the flaps on to get that trim to start going nose up…[let’s remember that once the stabilizer is full nose down it is impossible to pull up the 737 with control yoke]…

        Here is that flightradar24 data for JT610…

        And let’s zoom in and look at just the final minute…

        Look at that last big spike in vertical speed…they went from nearly 10,000 feet per minute down…to over 7,000 fpm up…one last huge effort against a Frankenstein monster that was just not going to let go until it put that airplane in the bottom of the sea…a heroic effort that is bloody breathtaking…

        Anyone who comes on here and says those pilots are some kind of morons or incompetent or dumb third worlders just deserves to get his fucking face bashed in…and I would be glad to oblige…fortunately [for both me and them] the UNZ comments section doesn’t make that an option…

        This nonsense also doesn’t do the flying public any good, because unless we find out and accept the truth, then we are just putting our lives and the lives of our loved ones on the line…

        You are absolutely right E…that fucking airplane is a monster of just completely jury rigged bullshit…

        • Replies: @Anon
        , @Jim Christian
        , @Erebus
      408. Erebus says:
        @res

        … I think we are saying the same thing.

        Yes, we are in broad agreement, but I was responding to your statement:

        … I think the “third world pilots” explanation has some relevance here.

        … along with the “IQ” musings that followed. I should have blockquoted it at the time.

        The simple reality is that the “3rd world pilot” in LN610 had proved his competence over the course of his >5,000 hrs in a B737 cockpit, and likewise his co-pilot over his >4,000 hrs in a B737 cockpit.

        In that part of the world, it’s all short haul traffic so that >9,000 hrs probably includes (I’m guessing) ~4,000 individual take-offs and landings (assuming they rarely flew together, obviously). Having survived, they obviously knew their business, and had doubtless tackled tricky situations countless times during the course of surviving.

        All that experience came a cropper that fateful morning when LN610 started throwing them curve balls the likes of which they’d never seen before. Even so, they were communicating professionally with ATC, and limping it home when the final curve ball came and put ’em in the ocean.

        So, I’d submit “3rd world pilots” explanation is at best irrelevant in the LN610 case.

        • Replies: @res
      409. @FB

        That’s one of my two guesses on how a more-forward mounted engine would could cause an increase in pitch-up moment. You’d have to read though, and not reply before reading fully. You are no flight test pilot, because you’d have to be an engineeer first. It is obvious you are not one.

        I am not sure you fly at all, FB, on the airlines, or you’d have already been familiar with this big design philosophy difference (at least HAS BEEN, till now) between Boeing and Airbus.

        Flight test?? Hahaha! You can’t bullshit me, buddy. If you are an engineer, perhaps you are like the software people, using this term for anything – database “engineer”, web “engineer”, and help-desk “engineer”. I guess you could call yourself a blog-comment “engineer”, but it doesn’t make you an expert on airplane flight. Go watch some Martha King videos and get back to me.

        • LOL: FB
        • Replies: @Anon
        , @Jim Christian
        , @FB
      410. @Ilyana_Rozumova

        Against this type of stupidity, I have no prognostication*. I’ll admit it to you only, Miss Rozumova, this stupidity scares me. Are you done writing?

        .

        * You do know that means prediction, right? Did you mean diagnosis, from which you got prognosis, from which you got prognositication. You seem to know English at the same level that some of these commenters here know the principles of flight!

      411. @Erebus

        No, there was no greater proclivity to stalling, Erebus. I don’t doubt Mr. FB’s point that the 737-MAX is statically unstable at that high angle-of-attack. (It’s plenty stable throughout the rest of its flight regimes). What that means is, when hand-flying it, which is what this is about, it will feel as though the plane won’t stay where you leave it (in pitch, that is).

        I have flown a plane loaded way too aft before and experienced this. It’s not like it can’ t be flown, but you’ve got to really watch it, and constantly make corrections.* The difference is obvious, because even in a plane not known to be a real “solid” one, you can still let go of the yoke a few seconds, and it won’t go pitching in a continuous manner in one direction. That is what static stability means. I have no helicopter time, but they say hovering one, an unstable regime, is like standing on basketball. It takes constant attention. In that example, once I got the speed up, it was a lot easier to control.

        This again goes back to the skill of the pilots. Why these 2 crews ended up in this state to begin with is one question, but as to handling it, perhaps they got distracted enough just for a coupla seconds for the airplane to get to the AoA in which the MCAS takes over. I know they had a lot of time in jets though, but had they done much small aircraft flying and experienced some not-so-normal situations?

        .

        * Some even long-time G/A pilots who fly small birds desire autopilots (which they can get, too) because of one thing: They keep a white-knuckled grip on the yoke, rather than relaxing and using trim with one hand and just a little bit of thumb/fore-finger for pitch and roll on the yoke to make slight necessary corrections, while NOT TOUCHING it mosf of the time. It’s a shame, because the latter way to fly is so much more relaxing.

        • Replies: @Erebus
      412. @wayfarer

        This reminds me of a great novel: T. C. Boyle tells the story of a young man swept off of a yacht right into “a shark-infested ocean” – in his wildly entertaining novel “Budding Prospects” about the adventures of three freak-farmers wrestling with Northern California’s quite harsh as it turns out mother nature while trying to work their way through to a glorious weed-harvest. One night at a camp-fire, they begin to tell survival tales – and the one who indeed managed to survive the shark-infested ocean for quite a while had the best of those campfire tales to tell.

        • Replies: @wayfarer
      413. @Jim Christian

        Isn’t the real solution to scrap the MAX altogether?

        EXACTLY

        This is the only correct – and I believe inevitable – solution. I alluded to this in my first post about the 737 MAX issue on March 16, accompanying a side view image of the LEAP engine: “existing models can then be scrapped“. Yet the media are still in denial about such a scenario, so the necessary solution is tacitly treated as a taboo, simply unthinkable and unspoken.

        A possible solution, maybe better for Boeing, in terms of overall costs, than scrapping for spare parts and systems value, might entail figuring out how to enable the mounting of existing smaller diameter engines onto the grounded aircraft all over the world with a new pylon design using similar wing interface points, and reconfiguring the avionics system accordingly.

        This would take time, including the testing and likely certification process. The modified versions would then be sold at a steep discount to low quality airlines and the military, the latter not needing to abide by tight operating margins. Calculating the retrofitting costs would be difficult because the technical issues need to be analyzed and implemented, and it is unclear how long that would take. Also, the future resale value of any modified jets would be subject to the market demand at that time and is therefore subject to gross estimation.

        The best solution could comprise a mix of “scrapping” some jets immediately and retrofitting others later. Determining the projected ratio of scrapped versus modified would be an interesting operations research exercise.

        • Replies: @Jim Christian
      414. @Achmed E. Newman

        Here is my conclusion.
        There is nothing wrong with Boeing design.
        It is simply impossible to design control of the aircraft that so it can be flown by monkeys.
        If some US pilots were complaining about controls they were spoiled babies.
        That’s it!

        • Replies: @Ilyana_Rozumova
      415. @Ilyana_Rozumova

        There is also another thing! There are holes in the air you should know.

        • Replies: @Anon
      416. @Achmed E. Newman

        Just to stop teasing you I was designing for more than four years mechanical parts of simulators for many aircrafts.
        I can tell you that it was a quite complicated mater.
        But I can tell you with absolute certainty if there was error in the system, the engineers that designed the system of the simulator, they would have caught it
        So if simulator was designed for this new aircraft than it is impossible that there is an error in controls.

      417. Anon[164] • Disclaimer says:
        @Achmed E. Newman

        Blog-comment engineer = Third-wave aviation diversity studies.

      418. Anon[164] • Disclaimer says:
        @FB

        Deserves to get his fucking face bashed in? Bash the fash all you want. Or South African scientists. Whatever it takes to vent your Equaloid rage. But still, don’t fly with retards at the flight controls.

        “The mean IQ of sub-Saharan black Africans is about 70 – at the borderline of mental retardation.”

        African IQ and Mental Retardation
        South African Journal of Psychology
        Vol 36, Issue 1, 2006
        http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/008124630603600101

        • Replies: @CanSpeccy
      419. Anon[308] • Disclaimer says:
        @Ilyana_Rozumova

        If the hole in a donut is filled with air, is a hole in the air filled with donut?

      420. Erebus says:
        @Achmed E. Newman

        No, there was no greater proclivity to stalling, Erebus.

        Huh?
        Then why was MCAS implemented? And why in secret?

        Every aviation site I visited said the same thing. The stall characteristics were different because of the up & forward re-location of the larger nacelle engines caused stalling at lower AoA. That makes sense to me. It also makes sense to me that it quite probably flew similarly to an ordinary B737 in level flight and during descent, though your statement that…

        … it will feel as though the plane won’t stay where you leave it

        … seems to contradict my notion.

        My understanding of the issue here is that the MAX got classed as a derivative of the original B737’s type certification. It obtained that despite its different stall characteristics because Boeing persuaded the FAA that the plane was substantially the same, and that pilots won’t notice any difference. In order that pilots not notice any difference, Boeing covertly implemented MCAS to prevent them pushing the MAX to the, well… max – to the point where the difference would be obvious. When it turned out that the difference was much bigger than Boeing’s modelling projected, they simply lied about the amount of correction the MCAS would be applying.

        In summary, we simply wouldn’t be talking about anything B737-ish if what you’re saying was true. Are you arguing that my understanding is false? Or what? If you are, I’m happy to stand corrected.

        • Replies: @FB
        , @Iris
      421. Erebus says:
        @Ilyana_Rozumova

        So if simulator was designed for this new aircraft than it is impossible that there is an error in controls.

        There wasn’t, because Boeing wasn’t making the data available to make them. In fact, according to the NY Times:

        Ethiopian Airlines surpassed many carriers by becoming one of the first to install a simulator… in January, two months before Flight 302 crashed.

      422. @Achmed E. Newman

        OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOH
        And the footnote.
        If you give me your address, I will send you a zerox of my card of membership in the Order of Engineers of …….

      423. Erebus says:
        @Dieter Kief

        Well, the shower details comprised more data than I needed, but I thank your wife for the implied compliment.

        … it was a pop-culture protest against the fact that visibility was on its way to dominating the cultural world in a never before encountered way

        My turn to say wow! I grew up with that song, and I never thought of it that way. Thanks!

        • Replies: @Dieter Kief
      424. wayfarer says:
        @Dieter Kief

        Who knows, you may find Herman Melville, an interesting storyteller.

        source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Herman_Melville

      425. CanSpeccy says: • Website
        @Erebus

        Surely you meant neuro-scientist

        neurologist, n.

        a specialist in the anatomy, functions, and organic disorders of nerves and the nervous system. Sounds like a scientist to me? Or do you think only a non-scientific MD can be a specialist?

      426. res says:
        @Erebus

        The third world pilots explanation (at least in my version) is not that they are all incompetent. It is that their average competence level is lower than that of first world pilots. That matters at the margins of interface usability when trying to hit those curve balls. How big a difference exists would be worth trying to assess if for no other reason than to help define usability criteria for the airplanes. But fat chance of that happening.

        Do you think the average competence level of pilots in the third world differs from that of pilots in the first world? (sample metric, hours flown in both seats) If so, does that make a difference when dealing with difficult situations?

        • Replies: @AaronB
        , @Erebus
      427. CanSpeccy says: • Website
        @Anon

        “The mean IQ of sub-Saharan black Africans is about 70 – at the borderline of mental retardation.”

        So Boeing is selling planes that cannot be flown by morons to airlines that Boeing knows employs morons to fly the planes.

        Boeing should thus be held prominently guilty of misselling, which for morons like Disclaimer, means “selling a product or service unsuitable for the customer’s needs.”

        • Replies: @CanSpeccy
      428. @Anon

        If the hole in a donut is filled with air, is a hole in the air filled with donut?

        From first sight, you never know, especially when it’s dark outside, hallelujah! (Laurie Anderson, Big Science). But that doesn’t matter since you can always taste it.

      429. @FB

        Don’t candy-coat it, FB. Ok! One thing I’ve been curious about, since I used to service the G-Suits and other assorted A-6 flight crew gear. So, given the transition(s) depicted in your graphs, what kind of G’s would you imagine that bird was pulling with all the ups and downs? Any chance a fair number of the passengers were passed out from said Gs by the moment of the crash?

      430. @Anon

        Holes are everywhere. You would be surprised. There are holes in your brain also.

      431. @Ilyana_Rozumova

        Just to stop teasing you I was designing for more than four years mechanical parts of simulators for many aircrafts.
        I can tell you that it was a quite complicated mater.
        But I can tell you with absolute certainty if there was error in the system, the engineers that designed the system of the simulator, they would have caught it
        So if simulator was designed for this new aircraft than it is impossible that there is an error in controls.

        I knew it Rozu! You’re a technical writer! You missed your calling.

      432. CanSpeccy says: • Website
        @CanSpeccy

        Obviously, I meant to refer to the moron Anonymous 164, not “Disclaimer”!

      433. AaronB says:
        @res

        If so, does that make a difference when dealing with difficult situations?

        Even FB is beginning to doubt that the problem was only MCAS – because he knows that despite everything he’s written runaway trim is too easily dealt with. Erebus, despite supporting FBs earlier position, also doubts now.

        The people who spent the past few days arguing strongly that MCAS malfunction is unlike any other runaway trim problem ever seen and it’s impossible to throw two switches over the course of 6 minutes are now quietly admitting that it defies belief a simple MCAS runaway trim problem could have caused these crashes.

        Only two conclusions are possible –

        1) These pilots weren’t just below Western pilots. They lacked the most basic, essential piloting skills that did not involve routine operation in conjunction with autopilot and ground systems.

        In short, they had extremely basic skills.

        2) The problem is more than just MCAS.

        But the idea earlier pushed by FB and others that this runaway trim problem was so different and complicated that flipping two switches was simply not possible is gradually being retired as non-credible.

        We are making intellectual progress here towards a genuine understanding of what happened, and earlier theories are being replaced with more robust ones.

        • Replies: @bluedog
        , @Erebus
      434. Erebus says:
        @FB

        Look at that last big spike in vertical speed…

        Wow.
        That spike is such an outlier that I wonder if it isn’t some anomaly in the radar readings. The only way I see that as real is if they finally got the MCAS, auto-trim, and auto-pilot put to bed, cranked the trim wheels for all they were worth and put the throttles to full power to try to blast their way into some altitude and suddenly lost the engines.

        PS: Send that spittle-flecked, bandy-legged runt aka Anon[164] to hell. He wouldn’t qualify to carry that young captain’s uniform to the dry cleaners.

        • Replies: @Ilyana_Rozumova
        , @FB
        , @Anon
      435. Erebus says:
        @res

        It is that their average competence level is lower …

        That may or may not be, but that has no bearing on these two cases, and the general case is beyond the scope of this thread.

        • Disagree: res
      436. nesnej says:

        Res: I appreciate the intelligence angle. However, the question is not whether more capable pilots might have avoided catastrophic failure. That’s obviously true, in general: Pilots with higher levels of g would, in general, be able to adapt more quickly (to complex, novel situations) and be more likely (again, in general) to avoid catastrophic failure.

        So, what’s the minimum level of g needed to fly a plane and avoid catastrophic failure, in this instance? That’s an interesting question. However, another question, which is also interesting (to me, anyway) and is more legally oriented, is whether Boeing is culpable (in a legal sense).

        Here, we might begin with Ron Unz’s understanding of the situation:

        “If my understanding is correct, the software system Boeing implemented to compensate for their problematical plane design generally worked, but every now and then it would get confused and try to fly the plane into the ground.

        “If the pilots were sufficiently knowledgeable, experienced, and level-headed, they would probably be able to react quickly enough to prevent the software from crashing the plane. But it really seems like a rather serious issue for Boeing to have sold planes with that sort of “technical flaw.”

        “Is this a fair reading of the situation based on the facts that have now come out?…

        We might then consider the following reply to Unz’s comment, ‘But it really seems like a rather serious issue for Boeing to have sold planes with that sort of “technical flaw.’

        “There is more:

        • Angle of attack sensors with false readings and no calibration prior to take-off
        • Failure to implement standard angle of attack sensor redundancy and warning
        • Boeing did not inform pilots of additional software system prior to first crash
        • Boeing fraudulently misled FAA about stabilizer angle range that was much higher
        • Boeing claimed to airlines that additional training was unnecessary

        “The key issue: A problematical plane design cannot be allowed to be compensated for.

        The weight of evidence strongly suggests that Boeing cut corners to get the plane in the air quickly.

        Will Boeing be able to convince a jury that they are not culpable?

      437. FB says: • Website
        @Erebus

        Erebus…

        The MAX was unstable enough that 2.5 degrees of nose-down stabilizer deflection had to be programmed into MCAS after flight test revealed that the original 0.6 degrees of deflection was not enough…

        A ‘small instability’ is not something that you correct with that much tail movement…of course the change from 0.6 to 2.5…an increase by a factor of four in the authority of the MCAS tail movement, was not reported either to the FAA or to airlines…

        • Replies: @Erebus
        , @Dieter Kief
      438. Iris says:
        @Erebus

        “Then why was MCAS implemented?”

        The MACS was indeed implemented to prevent the aircraft from stalling, should the angle-of-attack increase too high.

        https://www.seattletimes.com/business/boeing-aerospace/failed-certification-faa-missed-safety-issues-in-the-737-max-system-implicated-in-the-lion-air-crash/

        • Replies: @Erebus
      439. wayfarer says:

        U.S. Navy aircrews, probably the most skilled aviators in the world.

        One can imagine night operations, foul weather, fog, ice, strong winds, rough seas, rolling pitching, and wide open throttle controlled crashes on a 150-meter flight deck.

        source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_Naval_Aviator

      440. @Erebus

        I grew up with that song, and I never thought of it that way. Thanks!

        This is a secret, which is not shared by too many people yet. – Actually, it dawned on me while I answered Achmed E. Neuman in the gauge-case, two days ago (he knows quite a bit about Rock ‘n’ stuff). But I think about these things a lot because a) I am a photographer and b) am interested not only in psychology but also in aesthetics and hermeneutics. Here I’ve connected some dots, which can be traced back to the mystic Heinrich Seuse, a middle agean genius writer whom I love – and Erich Fromm, actually, who understood right away when it happened, that there was a major pop-culture shift taking place from reading and hearing to seeing (He wrote about this stuff Towards a Sane Society, if memory serves).

        – As you can imagine, it’s great fun to write on a blog, where this kind of thinking is (at times, hehe) welcome. Especially since such discoveries make only sense if they resonate. So – thanks Erebus: I’m especially glad that you noticed this Dylan-thought of mine. My mother once asked, when I was fifteen, who this guy was on this picture (The cover of Blonde on Blonde) – who looks like you – she was not overly amused about the fact that there was another kid looking as underfed and weird as I did, who made it even on the cover of a record album. – A few years later I had a girlfriend who looked pretty much like Suse Rotolo… She left me after a while, to marry an artist and Jazz musician and they have a daughter – – – Maja – – – who just recently became a Zen-nun… – the most beautiful Zen-nun in Frankfurt, I’d say…).

      441. Biff says:

        Head line:

        Fix to 737 MAX anti-stall software is ready: industry sources

        https://news.yahoo.com/fix-737-max-anti-stall-software-ready-industry-203046003.html

        I am guessing this is a ruse to curb the tide of falling stock values, and obvious damage control propaganda.

        From the same article:

        Boeing neither confirmed nor denied the information.

      442. @Been_there_done_that

        Sounds like a wing redesign at a minimum. Replace the wings, mount the old engines, save the tube and seats? Doable? The bean counters must be doing backflips right now. Bet this is the classic case of the tug-of-war of the engineers vs. accountants/shareholders.

        • Replies: @Been_there_done_that
      443. @Achmed E. Newman

        or you’d have already been familiar with this big design philosophy difference (at least HAS BEEN, till now) between Boeing and Airbus.

        Oh great. And I get to fly an A-320 to Tampa Tuesday.

        • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
      444. Erebus says:
        @FB

        Yup, pretty much what I said to Mr. Newman.

      445. @FB

        You detect facts, with which they (should, or: would be supposed to…) sell magazines or TV documentaries or TV news reporting – – even though (or: Just because…?) this is just a blog … – – Thanks again.
        (I think at times, that a good lawyer would just have to check for some of your sources and hire someone to print this stuff out in a useful order… – et voilá, he’s set to go!)
        As I’ve said before: It’s thrilling and – – -enlightening, too, to watch this puzzle of (collective) public efforts happening.

      446. Erebus says:
        @Iris

        Hi Iris,
        That graphic, and much else that’s out there is a bit of simplification of how the MCAS works. I read one site that explained that the MCAS takes data from airspeed, altitude and AoA sensors, and runs it through an algorithm to determine whether the aircraft is in danger of stalling. Obviously, stalling at 40,000′ is much less dangerous than at 400′.

        I haven’t been able to find out whether it takes airspeed and altitude from only 1 sensor (ea), or takes an average >1, or what, but it needs all three to determine the danger level.

        • Replies: @Iris
      447. Iris says:
        @Erebus

        Hi Erebus;

        The MACS is operated by what is called a “closed-loop control system” in Process Controls (a division within electrical engineering).

        Indeed, several parameters would be required to operate and fine-tune the closed-loop controls, for the purpose of smoothly and safely achieving the desired output (a correct angle of attack).
        The drawing is however a very good simplification because it highlights the principal input (swivel angle of the horizontal tail) and principal output (the angle of attack).

        The fact that the MACS takes the angle of attack from a single sensor is utterly wrong and is due to a major flaw in the “Safety System Analysis” carried out on the B737Max.

        This analysis classified a failure of the MACS as a “hazardous failure” only, one level below the “catastrophic failure” that would represent the loss of the entire aircraft. For that (very flawed) reason, the MACS was operated with a single AOA vane instead of at least two. Best.

      448. <