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Old June 14th, 2009, 07:01 PM   #141
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Air France Flight 447 that never made it to Paris shadows centential Paris Air Show
14 June 2009

LE BOURGET, France (AP) - The Paris Air Show opens Monday under a morose, uneasy cloud.

Already reeling from the global recession, the aviation industry gathering in the city where Air France Flight 447 should have landed only two weeks ago has been shaken by the still unexplained crash.

Pilots of the doomed Airbus A330 en route from Brazil to Paris did not even have time to make a mayday call before their plane plunged into the sea, killing all 228 people aboard.

"The aviation community is still under some shock with the severity of this accident," said Airbus CEO Tom Enders on Saturday.

Investigators have another two weeks to find the flight recorders before signals emitted by small beacons attached to the boxes start to fade. Without them, the cause of the accident may never be fully known.

The crash "has traumatized people," said Gerard Feldzer, a former A330 pilot for Air France who now heads the Air and Space Museum at Le Bourget airport, near Paris, where the air show is held. He said it's hard for air travellers to accept that "zero fault doesn't exist."

The Paris Air Show is marking its 100th anniversary, although because it alternates every other year with the Farnborough International Airshow outside London, it is only on its 48th edition. It opens to industry and the press on Monday, and then to the public June 19-21.

Despite the gloomy economic climate, organizers expect around 300,000 visitors this year, half of them professionals, about the same as the last show in 2007. On diplay will be more than 2,000 exhibitors from 48 countries.

The traditional dogfight over orders between rival planemakers Boeing Co. and Airbus SA has been tempered as the world economic crisis forces airlines to cancel or delay plans to buy planes. Tight credit markets have made it more difficult for potential customers to secure financing.

The International Air Transport Association has warned that the world's airlines will collectively lose $9 billion this year.

"It is a very difficult time today, there's no question about that," Randy Tinseth, head of marketing at Boeing's commercial division, said Friday.

Louis Gallois, head of Airbus' parent company EADS, said there could be worse to come.

"2010 and 11, perhaps 11, will be more critical," he said.

So far this year, Boeing -- which is cutting 10,000 jobs -- has taken orders for 73 planes, but with cancellations of 66, the net order intake is only 7 jets.

Airbus -- which hasn't announced extra job cuts but had already been cutting payroll in a restructuring program launched in 2007 -- has booked fewer orders at 32, but with fewer cancellations has a better net balance of 11 jets.

Still both plane makers are cushioned by order backlogs of around 3,500 planes.

In an ominous sign of how much the business-jet market is hurting, manufacturers Gulfstream and Cessna aren't even showing up.

Embraer, the world's fourth largest plane maker which laid off 20 percent of the company's workforce in late February, will have a "minimal presence" at the show to curb costs, said spokesman Stephane Guilbaud.

Analysts said they expect a trickle of orders, possibly from Persian Gulf airlines financed by deep-pocketed patrons, or bargain seekers such as no-frills airline Ryanair.

Qatar Airways' head, Akbar al-Baker said the company plans to make "further announcements" at the Paris Air Show, suggesting it could add to plans for more than 200 planes worth over $40 billion in the coming years.

"It's the best possible time to negotiate," said Diogenis Papiomytis, an analyst with Frost & Sullivan. "But the air transport industry isn't always the most logical business. It's emotional, and right now it's the worst possible time for the industry."

To mark the centennial show, 30 historic aircraft from various aviation epochs will be on display, including a Bleriot XI, a plane shown at the first Paris Air Show in 1909.

Plane spotters will be entertained with demonstration flights -- including an Airbus show Wednesday to mark the planemaker's 40 years.

But few new aircraft presented -- visitors will have to be content with the first appearance outside Russia of Sukhoi's new Superjet 100.

Airbus and Boeing's newest aircraft, the A400M military transport plane and Boeing's 787 jetliner, won't be making an appearance as both planes are late, having been dogged by a series of problems.

Boeing's Pat Shanahan will give an update on the 787 on Tuesday. The new long-range widebody is going through more tests as it prepares for its first flight by the end of next month.

Airbus parent company EADS has indefinitely postponed the first flight of the A400M transport and is now negotiating new technical requirements and commercial terms with the seven European NATO countries that first ordered the plane.
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Old June 14th, 2009, 07:39 PM   #142
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This incident is such a shame. Seems like the pilots had a very difficult time controlling the plane with malfunctioning pitot tubes.

On another point, how did they spell centennial wrong in the title of the article above?
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Old June 14th, 2009, 08:19 PM   #143
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ramvid01 View Post
This incident is such a shame. Seems like the pilots had a very difficult time controlling the plane with malfunctioning pitot tubes.

On another point, how did they spell centennial wrong in the title of the article above?
Dude, that's French.
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Old June 16th, 2009, 03:45 PM   #144
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Searchers spot more debris from Air France plane
15 June 2009
Agence France Presse

Brazil's military on Monday located more debris from an Air France jet that plunged into the Atlantic on June 1, but found no more remains of the 228 people on board, officials said.

The additional debris was spotted close to the zone where most of the 49 bodies so far recovered have been pulled from the water, air force spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Henry Munhoz told reporters in the northeastern city of Recife.

He added that days of bad weather over the area around 1,000 kilometers (600 miles) off Brazil's coast had passed, allowing military search flights to resume.

A Brazilian frigate was expected to arrive early Tuesday at the Atlantic archipelago of Fernando de Noronha carrying the last six bodies found, hauled up by the crew of a French navy ship assisting a small Brazilian flotilla.

Munhoz said no date had been set for an end to the search operation, but that it would be re-evaluated every two days from June 17.

Currents carrying parts of the plane and the deterioration in the condition of the human remains were making the task increasingly difficult.

A French submarine and tugs towing US underwater listening gear were sweeping the area for signals from the plane's black boxes.
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Old June 18th, 2009, 06:33 PM   #145
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Moro photos released yesterday, of new found debries!







Source: http://g1.globo.com/Noticias/Mundo/0...ECOLHIDOS.html
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Old June 22nd, 2009, 06:42 PM   #146
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Air France to compensate crash victims' families

PARIS, June 19 (Reuters) - Air France will compensate through its insurers the families of the victims of a June 1 crash in which 228 people died, the company's chief executive said on Friday.

Flight AF 447 from Rio de Janeiro to Paris crashed into the Atlantic after flying into stormy weather. The causes of the crash are not known. Brazilian and French ships are still searching the ocean for debris and bodies.

"For now we are going to concentrate on the first advance that will be paid for each victim, approximately 17,500 euros ($24,420)," Air France CEO Pierre-Henri Gourgeon said on RTL radio.

"The lawyers of our insurers in every country are talking to the victims' families to try and organise this advance payment."

Gourgeon presented the payments as a compassionate gesture from the airline, not an admission of liability.

Passengers from 32 nationalities died in the crash of the Airbus 330. Among them were 61 French people and 58 Brazilians.

Pierre-Jean Vandoorne, an ambassador appointed by the French government to liaise with the families of victims of the crash, told reporters the payments were "a first batch of aid".

"If I'm correctly informed, it is the insurance company AXA which is in charge of relations between Air France and the families of the victims on this particular aspect of the consequences of the accident," he told a news conference.

"As far as I am aware this (compensation) will not represent an obstacle to any civil suits," he said in response to a question on whether accepting the money would mean that relatives would forfeit their right to sue Air France later.

INVESTIGATIONS

Responding to a reporter who asked whether the Air France insurance contract meant that families would receive compensation of approximately 100,000 euros per victim, he said: "Yes, it's roughly in that ballpark."

Both officials remained very cautious when asked how the probe into the causes of the disaster was going.

Air France's Gourgeon echoed French investigators who said this week they were getting closer to understanding what happened but had no certainties yet.

They said they did not know yet whether unreliable speed readings from the plane's sensors had contributed to the crash.

Gourgeon said he had not lost hope that the aircraft's flight data recorders or "black boxes" would be found.

Vandoorne, who has just returned from a trip to Brazil to liaise with Brazilian authorities involved in the search operations and the autopsies, said 51 bodies had been recovered to date but none had been conclusively identified.

"We will of course be informed immediately as soon as there are certainties but for now we have received no information concerning the identification of any of the bodies that have undergone autopsies," he said.

Vandoorne said the government was informing the families of every new development via letters, email and telephone.

"The families prefer the telephone. What we are noticing is that these stricken families need to talk. To at least have someone to talk to, and from whom to get information, is an important element which helps start the mourning process."
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Old June 23rd, 2009, 12:10 AM   #147
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There's no way to compensate this families.
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Old June 23rd, 2009, 06:44 AM   #148
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Black boxes design needs to be changed so they can be easily found. This is getting ridiculous.
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Old June 23rd, 2009, 03:21 PM   #149
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Sub follows signal from Air France black boxes

PARIS (AFP) — A French miniature submarine has been launched after a "very weak" signal was detected from the flight recorders of the Air France jetliner that crashed in the Atlantic, Le Monde reported.

But the French bureau investigating the crash said the black boxes of Flight 447 had not been found and that research teams "check out any sound" that might lead to them.

The Nautile submersible set out on Monday after French navy vessels detected a "very weak signal" several hundred kilometres off the coast of Brazil, Le Monde reported on its website.

Owned by Ifremer, the French oceans research institute, the Nautile is capable of operating at a depth of six kilometres (3.7 miles) and was used by teams who located the Titanic.

"No flight recorders have been located to this day," said a spokeswoman for the BEA aviation investigating bureau.

The homing beacons on the devices will only operate for around another week.

"I have no confirmation for the time being" that the flight-data recorders have been found, said Captain Christophe Prazuck, spokesman for the army general staff.

The Air France Airbus A330 carrying 228 people from Rio de Janeiro to Paris came down in the Atlantic on June 1. The cause of the disaster has not been established.

Fifty bodies have been recovered from the crash zone, along with hundreds of pieces of the plane.
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Old June 23rd, 2009, 03:59 PM   #150
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Speed monitors switched on all Air France long-haul jets
US Navy locator begins search

15 June 2009

PARIS (AP) - Air France has finished replacing air speed monitors on all its long-haul Airbus aircraft even though the cause of the Flight 447 disaster remains a mystery, a pilots' union official said Monday.

The search for the A330's black boxes was reinforced Monday with a high-tech U.S. Navy device that began listening for pings in the depths of the Atlantic Ocean.

With the flight recorders still missing, the probe into the disaster that killed 228 people so far has focused on the possibility that external speed monitors iced over and gave false readings to the plane's computers.

Air France had begun replacing the sensors -- Pitot tubes -- on its A330 and A340 jets before the accident, but had not yet changed them on the plane that was lost.

After pilot complaints, the airline pledged to speed up the switch and it has now equipped all planes with the new sensors, said Erick Derivry, a spokesman for the SNPL pilots' union, though he stressed that there is no hard evidence that Pitot problems caused the accident.

The first of two U.S. Navy Towed Pinger Locators was put to work on Monday, pulled slowly in a grid pattern by a Dutch ship contracted by the French government.

The second locator was expected to start operating within hours across the 2,000 square mile (5,180 square kilometer) search area, said U.S. Air Force Col. Willie Berges, commander of the American military forces supporting the search.

A French nuclear submarine is also being used to look for signs of the black boxes.

The pings emitted by the black boxes begin to fade after 30 days. The plane went down on May 31 while flying to Paris from Rio de Janeiro.

"We have a limited amount of time to cover the search area," Berges said, but added that the hunt will go on even if no pings are detected beyond the 30-day timeframe.

Experts say the evidence uncovered so far points to at least a partial midair breakup of the plane, with no signs of an explosion or terrorist act.

At the Paris Air Show, Airbus CEO Tom Enders defended the A330s, saying it has "more than 16 million flight hours, more than 3 million flights, and this is so far one of the safest commercial aircraft built."

In Geneva, Brazil's President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva said French President Nicholas Sarkozy assured him the French government would compensate the families of crash victims. The two leaders were attending the International Labor Conference.

"He (Sarkozy) said that they will take the responsibility to pay the indemnity for all the families that suffered with the crash, the Brazilian and French families and of other countries," Silva told reporters, speaking through a translator.

An Air France spokesman, however, said the airline and its insurance company -- not the government -- are handling compensation. The official, who declined to name the insurance company, spoke on condition of anonymity as he wasn't authorized to discuss the matter.

The French presidential palace in Paris, the French mission in Geneva and a spokesman for Silva in Brasilia declined to comment.

------

Bradley Brooks reported from Rio de Janeiro. Associated Press writers Greg Keller and Emma Vandore in Le Bourget, France, Alan Clendenning in Sao Paulo, and Frank Jordans in Geneva contributed to this report.
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Old June 23rd, 2009, 04:28 PM   #151
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Quote:
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Black boxes design needs to be changed so they can be easily found. This is getting ridiculous.
You are right about having the black boxes be redesigned but I don't think this is ridiculous. I mean, who would find a tiny equipment submerged under a vast body of water that is almost bottomless? This is just one of those deal where any human being is not capable of finding the answer nor have any real means to get an answer until an accident like these happens. In this day in life, there is always something new that always come up, just like diseases, God knows what kind of other diseases would the nature be bringing into our lives and the whole mankind for this matter?
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Old June 23rd, 2009, 04:59 PM   #152
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If the black boxes floats it could have gone away according to the wave. I think both are fine.
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Old June 23rd, 2009, 05:01 PM   #153
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How would you engineer a floating black box with all the components and metal?
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Old June 23rd, 2009, 06:16 PM   #154
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How would you engineer a floating black box with all the components and metal?
in engineering, everything is possible.
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Old June 24th, 2009, 12:07 AM   #155
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Originally Posted by mwg12a View Post
You are right about having the black boxes be redesigned but I don't think this is ridiculous. I mean, who would find a tiny equipment submerged under a vast body of water that is almost bottomless? This is just one of those deal where any human being is not capable of finding the answer nor have any real means to get an answer until an accident like these happens. In this day in life, there is always something new that always come up, just like diseases, God knows what kind of other diseases would the nature be bringing into our lives and the whole mankind for this matter?
It wouldn't cost a fortune to have a GPS device attached to them and be tracked by a software. In that way we will know the exact point of impact of the plane.

Even if its impossible to send GPS signals from the bottom of the ocean, atleast if we know the exact spot of impact, search could be contained to a limited areas. Secondly, the signals emitted by the black boxes could be increased so its easy for ships/subs to detect them.

It is ridiculous because with today's technology, you can know exactly where your friend is if he/she has a GPS but nobody knows where a f*cking modern jet carrying 228 people went.
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Old June 24th, 2009, 10:39 AM   #156
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If that will not a fortune? Why is it not developed yet? All cellphone technologies are always new, why can't a homing device or a gps is? I'm sure the manufacturer of the device knew of the possibility of an aircraft would plunge in an ocean, they knew there is a need for it. This is not the first time an aircraft disappeared in midair. Isn't it the first female pilot named Emelia Earnhart's arircraft disappearance in the middle of nowhere around the bermuda triangle that is one of the reason whye black boxes are developed?
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Old June 24th, 2009, 05:30 PM   #157
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Quote:
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How would you engineer a floating black box with all the components and metal?
Ships are made out of metal too...
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Old June 24th, 2009, 05:56 PM   #158
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Ships are made out of metal too...
But ships don't plunge into the ocean. I don't think a black box is designed like a boat to float.
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Old June 25th, 2009, 07:38 AM   #159
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'Convergence Zone' a Key In Air France Investigation
21 June 2009
The Washington Post

It is an area of extreme turbulence, frequently producing some of the largest and most powerful thunderstorms on Earth. Yet each day, scores of flights forge through it.

This is the Intertropical Convergence Zone, a band of swirling air masses that circles the globe over or near the equator. Roughly 100 miles wide, the zone is suspected of breaking apart Air France Flight 447 while it was over the Atlantic Ocean, killing all 228 on board on May 31.

"It's a jumble of weather, and you really have to pay attention to where you are," said Alan Cohn, of Plantation, Fla., a commercial pilot who often flew cargo jets through the area.

Although the zone has periods of calm, it commonly produces clusters of thunderstorms that tower up to 50,000 feet. That is more than nine miles up and about 15,000 feet higher than most airliners fly.

While the storms aren't as huge and as intense as tropical systems, they still have the ability to produce near hurricane-force winds for short bursts of time.

Why is the zone so turbulent? It is where air currents from the Northern and Southern hemispheres clash. During the summer months, the zone shifts north over the Atlantic and tends to be stormiest.

"When you have air converging at low levels, it has nowhere to go but up. That leads to the formation of clouds, thunderstorms and bad weather," said James Franklin, a veteran forecaster at the National Hurricane Center in Miami-Dade County.

Steamy seas near the equator further energize thunderstorms in the same way warm water nurtures tropical systems, he added.

About 200 airline flights traverse the zone each day. They include flights from South America to Europe, like the Air France jet, and U.S. flights aiming toward southern Africa and some nations in South America.

Aviation experts say the zone requires an extra degree of caution, although the vast majority of crossings are safe and routine.

Today's airliners have sophisticated weather radar, allowing pilots to circumnavigate thunderstorms and turbulence. Satellite imagery also allows pilots to spot and avoid bad weather areas. Pilots say they will fly hundreds of miles out of the way to avoid thunderstorms.

Further, airline flights are in constant contact with air traffic control, said Laura Brown, Federal Aviation Administration spokeswoman.

She said pilots use satellite-link communications while far out over the ocean, and radio when close to land.

"People have this idea that when planes go out over the ocean, we don't know where they are," she said. "They're on an established route, and they're in regular communication with air traffic control."

Even so, the Air France Airbus A330 apparently rammed into severe turbulence. After taking off from Rio de Janeiro bound for Paris, it either broke apart or went out of control, according to the preliminary investigation.

Why the twin-engine jet didn't sidestep the bad weather may never be known unless the cockpit voice and data recorders are recovered from the ocean floor.

"They flew into an area of extreme thunderstorms," said Robert Gandt, a former Delta and Pan Am pilot familiar with the convergence zone. "Why they would have plunged into that is anyone's guess."

One possibility: The plane's weather radar might not have displayed the dangerous thunderstorms ahead. Because of a quirk in such systems, that has happened in the past, pilots said.

Another possibility: The pilots might have thought they could sneak between the most severe weather areas.

Yet another: The pilots might have received erroneous airspeed information if external devices, which measure airflow, froze. In that case, however, the pilots would have seen a warning light.

Gandt, of Daytona Beach, Fla., an aviation author, said in any case, turbulent weather will no doubt be the "overwhelming culprit," giving the pilots no time to react.

"Whatever happened -- happened all of the sudden," he said.
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Old June 25th, 2009, 02:03 PM   #160
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Air France black box signal turns to be false alarm
Posted: 23-06-2009 , 11:19 GMT

Sounds from the Atlantic Ocean thought to be a signal from the black box onboard Air France flight 447 were not. Only pieces of the Airbus 330 that crashed en route from Rio de Janeiro to Paris killing 228 people onboard have been found, as French vessels and U.S. Navy ships continue to search for the data-recording device.

After a crash, the flight recorders send out “pingers” or locator beacons every second for 30 days, audible for up to 2 kilometers away. Time is running out for the search team, as the plane crashed into the Atlantic on May 31.

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