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Air France Jet Carrying 228 Missing Over Atlantic

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Black Flash    36

They're saying they might have been struck by lightening from a storm they flew through so I'm guessing even if they did land chances are the waters pretty rough right now.

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SuperJediMedia    48

The news development of this is definitely really slow. It's it almost Nighttime there?

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starburst1980    0
The news development of this is definitely really slow. It's it almost Nighttime there?

No. It is 7PM.

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Panacik    27
May Allah Almighty help them!

Yep, and god almighty too! :)

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brentaal    404
Yep, and god almighty too! :)

Unfortunately, Thor wasn't on their side.

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adsadsads    0

The chances of the plane still being in the air are pretty much nil. According to representatives from Air France the plane should have run out of fuel by now and there are apparently no places to land (ala no islands/etc) so the plane probably has crashed by now and its passengers are all dead most likely.

Very sad :(

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Panacik    27
Unfortunately, Thor wasn't on their side.

Hopefully Zuse(sp?) will help :)

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starburst1980    0

Arnt there distress beacons on these planes? Before the plane went down, I imagine the pilot activating it.

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perochan    151

UFO adapted?

hope they are ok.

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hdood    145
Not true. It was done in NYC only a few months back i believe and a few times before that in various other places.

Yes, on a calm river with nothing wrong with the plane other than a loss of engine power. Quite a different scenario from what I described. I believe you can count the number of successful landings by oceanic flights on zero fingers.

If it had happened, lifeboat beacons would have been picked up by now. The reality is that they're all dead and will probably not be recovered because of the depth.

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hdood    145
Arnt there distress beacons on these planes? Before the plane went down, I imagine the pilot activating it.

They probably aren't much use if the plane is sitting at the bottom of the ocean, two miles or more down.

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Subject Delta    108
The oceanic controls there are shortwave (HF), not VHF (which is line of sight and only possible over land), but the plane is also in direct contact with the airline separately from air traffic control and in fact sent an automated diagnostic message to the airline about an electrical failure after passing through a thunderstorm. In other words, the airline has constant access to large amounts of data that air traffic controllers don't (and normally don't need), and which they pass on to the authorities that are doing the search. If they crashed at sea and sunk though, I doubt it will be easy to find even if they have an idea of the location.

You'd be amazed how large the line of sight would be at 35,000 feet (the level the plane was at when it vanished).

Trust me, aviation is not like Formula 1, there is no telemetry stream, the plane only radios in when there is a problem detected by the flight software, but that can only identify systems glitches, which wouldn't always give the reason for a crash.

I hope the passenger and crew are ok, but somehow I knew it would be an Airbus.

What the hell difference does that make? Airbus aircraft pretty much across the board have an absolutely fantastic safety record

Arnt there distress beacons on these planes? Before the plane went down, I imagine the pilot activating it.

There are locator beacons on the FDR and CVR but they run out after 30 days. The fact that there was no distress call indicates to me that whatever happened to the plane happened very quickly, meaning it would be unlikely the pilots had time to do anything

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hdood    145
You'd be amazed how large the line of sight would be at 35,000 feet (the level the plane was at when it vanished).

No, I wouldn't. The range is very limited. That is the whole reason for using shortwave and satellite on transatlantic flights. It isn't done just because someone thought it would be fun with some variation, is it. It's done because the VHF transmissions simply can't make it that far.

The same is an issue with any VHF/UHF beacons on the plane. If they've sunk, they can't be tracked by satellite and you'll have a really hard time picking them up manually as well unless you're right on top of them.

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vincent    155
May Allah Almighty help them!

Plane's missing, along with passengers, looks like Allah has failed.

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Eric    1,605
What the hell difference does that make? Airbus aircraft pretty much across the board have an absolutely fantastic safety record

Have you tried searching for airbus safety? They have many issues.

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Garry    136

What about Airbus numbers of accidents compared to planes in service? I'd bet you they and Boeing are almost equal safest...

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Black Flash    36

Is this Airbus vs Boeing arguement some kind of U.S.A vs Europe thing?

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Subject Delta    108
Have you tried searching for airbus safety? They have many issues.

No, they don't. You clearly lack the facts on this issue, so let me clear them up for you

Airbus A300: No fatal crashes ever caused by poor design or mechanical failure

Airbus A310: 1 Fatal crash caused by mechanical failure

Airbus A320: No fatal crashes caused by mechanical failure, 2 possibly caused by flight crew not understanding the plane's automation

Airbus A330: This is the first A330 to have a fatal crash outside of the one fatal incident in certification

Airbus A340: No fatal crashes

Airbus A380: No fatal crashes

You need to stop drinking the Boeing kool-aid and get the facts about commercial aviation companies.

Is this Airbus vs Boeing arguement some kind of U.S.A vs Europe thing?

It's an American thing. They like to assume they are the best at everything, and quiet a lot of yanks groundlessly slag Airbus off without getting the facts. Personally I don't care what plane I fly on as long as it has a good safety reputation.

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vincent    155
No, they don't. You clearly lack the facts on this issue, so let me clear them up for you

Airbus A300: No fatal crashes ever caused by poor design or mechanical failure

Airbus A310: 1 Fatal crash caused by mechanical failure

Airbus A320: No fatal crashes caused by mechanical failure, 2 possibly caused by flight crew not understanding the plane's automation

Airbus A330: This is the first A330 to have a fatal crash outside of the one fatal incident in certification

Airbus A340: No fatal crashes

Airbus A380: No fatal crashes

You need to stop drinking the Boeing kool-aid and get the facts about commercial aviation companies.

It's an American thing. They like to assume they are the best at everything, and quiet a lot of yanks groundlessly slag Airbus off without getting the facts. Personally I don't care what plane I fly on as long as it has a good safety reputation.

And stiff drinks for you :p

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Subject Delta    108

I don't drink actually :p

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vincent    155
I don't drink actually :p

Liar

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starburst1980    0

It is true that a plane is one of the safest ways to travel.

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+Mirumir    5,857
BTW OT, I think the pilot could have driven it into the water and since these aircrafts are designed to float, everyone will be OK :)

This is the Atlantic Ocean, not still waters of the Hudson River...

The cold water would kill the passengers anyways even if the pilot managed not to crash.

Tragic news...

Edited by zhiVago

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+Mirumir    5,857
Several factors likely caused air crash: analysts

By SLOBODAN LEKIC – 44 minutes ago

BRUSSELS (AP) — The lightning and turbulence that may have hit an Air France jet flying from Rio de Janeiro to Paris are rarely the cause of plane crashes, analysts say. But they note that rough weather may have triggered a series of malfunctions that led to the disappearance of the jetliner.

Chief Air France spokesman Francois Brousse suggested the plane could have been struck by lightning.

But most experts say lightning doesn't usually bring down a modern airliner, unless it coincides with other factors that contribute to the accident.

"Planes are built with lightning strikes in mind and are struck reasonably frequently," said Patrick Smith, a U.S. commercial pilot and aviation writer.

"I've been hit by lighting in my career a number of times, which at worst resulted in a superficial mark on the outside of the plane," Smith said in a telephone interview from Sao Paolo, Brazil.

Aviation safety statistics indicate that each large passenger jet — such as the Airbus A330 — is struck by lightning about once every three years on average. Regional aircraft however, which fly at lower altitudes, are hit more frequently — about once a year.

Although lightning may have been a contributing factor in a handful of accidents since World War II, only one major crash was attributed directly to a strike. In 1963, a Pan American World Airways Boeing 707 exploded in midair when its fuel tank fumes were ignited by lightning.

Since then, aircraft electronic components have been hardened to withstand electric pulses of that magnitude, and new systems have been designed to prevent sparking in fuel tanks.

About seven hours after taking off and flying through the night over the mid-Atlantic, the pilots of the Air France Airbus reported that they had encountered an area of intense cumulonimbus activity, part of the massive thunderstorms that regularly batter the world's equatorial belt.

To avoid structural damage, both military and civilian pilots use standard onboard radar to maneuver around the thunderheads, which are characterized by electrical discharges, hail and high winds.

The mid-Atlantic region is where most hurricanes that hit the Western Hemisphere originate, and this is the beginning of the storm season. Thunderheads in the area can tower up to 60,000 feet, making it impossible for airliners to fly over them and forcing them to make long diversions.

It remains unclear whether Flight 447 took evasive action to avoid the area of heavy turbulence.

Air France reported that the aircraft's ACARS (Aircraft Communications and Addressing System) — a digital datalink that automatically transmits service messages from the aircraft to ground stations — messaged the company's headquarters regarding a problem with the aircraft's electrical and pressurization systems.

Former NTSB chairman Jim Hall said that, since the A330 is widely used in international travel, it was vitally important to locate the black boxes as quickly as possible and analyze what happened to Flight 447.

"At this point accident investigators can't rule out anything," he said. "But these aircraft are designed to withstand almost any lightning strikes or any level of turbulence."

Although aviation experts stressed it was much too early to speculate about the causes of the crash, they noted that the accident was most likely caused by various factors that combined to cause a catastrophic chain of events.

"It sounds like something that evolved into a problem, not something that happened instantly," said Bill Voss, president and CEO of Flight Safety Foundation, in Alexandria, Virginia.

"It would appear that their systems were degrading but we don't know why they were degrading."

Smith said that that if the crew was forced to ditch the A330 in the ocean at night in stormy weather, "the outcome would not likely have been a good one."

"It would be nothing like landing that Airbus at midday in the Hudson river, a completely different scenario," Smith said, referring to the successful Jan. 15 water landing of a US Airways Airbus A320 in New York.

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code.kliu.org    0
The cold water would kill the passengers anyways even if the pilot managed not to crash.

Uh, this happened near the equator... during WWII, sailors of sunken ships survived for a couple of days floating in equatorial Pacific waters with only life jackets.

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