Sign in to follow this  
Maverick

Another 737 MAX down.

Recommended Posts

https://aviationweek.com/commercial-aviation/update-boeing-did-not-fix-max-aoa-warning-issue-found-2017

UPDATE: Boeing Did Not Fix MAX AOA Warning Issue Found in 2017

May 6, 2019 Sean Broderick | Aviation Daily
 

WASHINGTON—New questions are being raised over the development and oversight of the Boeing 737 MAX after revelations the manufacturer knew about a mis-configured angle of attack disagree annunciator alert message on the aircraft in 2017 but did not fix it or tell operators about the problem until after last October’s crash of a 737 MAX 8—the first of two to strike the model in five months.

Boeing on May 5 clarified that within “several months” after MAX deliveries began in May 2017, it discovered that most of its 737 MAXs were being delivered without angle-of-attack (AOA) disagree alert message being activated as intended. It determined the issue was not a safety risk, however, and planned to address it as part of routine flight control software updates. The revelation adds more context to why the amber AOA Disagree alert messages, meant to tell pilots of a discrepancy between the aircraft’s two AOA sensors, have only been active on MAX aircraft equipped with a package of options.

“The Boeing design requirements for the 737 MAX included the AOA disagree alert as a standard, standalone feature, in keeping with Boeing’s fundamental design philosophy of retaining commonality with the 737NG,” Boeing said. “In 2017, within several months after beginning 737 MAX deliveries, engineers at Boeing identified that the 737 MAX display system software did not correctly meet the AOA disagree alert requirements. The software delivered to Boeing linked the AOA disagree alert to the AOA indicator, which is an optional feature on the MAX and the NG. Accordingly, the software activated the AOA disagree alert only if an airline opted for the AOA indicator.”

Boeing’s statement does not discuss whether the software was developed to its specifications, or whether the vendor introduced the error. Boeing’s statement does not name the vendor, but it is Collins Aerospace. Collins referred all questions to Boeing.

After it discovered the issue, Boeing said it followed its “standard process for determining the appropriate resolution of such issues,” including a review with “multiple company subject-matter experts.” The review “determined that the absence of the AOA disagree alert did not adversely impact airplane safety or operation,” Boeing said. “Accordingly, the review concluded, the existing functionality was acceptable until the alert and the indicator could be delinked in the next planned display system software update.”

Boeing’s senior management was not involved in the review, and neither Boeing’s senior leadership nor FAA were made aware of the issue until after the Oct. 29, 2018, crash of Lion Air Flight 610.

The AOA sensors provide key data to the MAX’s maneuvering characteristics augmentation system (MCAS) flight control law that is the focus of two fatal 737-8 accidents—Lion Air flight 610 and the Mar 10 crash of Ethiopian Airlines flight 302—in which all 346 people were killed and that have left the MAX fleet grounded.

In each accident, faulty data sent by one AOA sensor told the aircraft’s flight control computer that its nose was too high, causing MCAS to command horizontal stabilizer nose down trim. Preliminary reports on each accident suggest the pilots were not able to diagnose the failure quickly enough.

The original MCAS is programmed to command nose down trim if the AOA data shows the angle of attack is too high. Pilots can counter it in two ways: with electric trim input or via the manual trim wheel. Electric trim input resets MCAS, meaning faulty AOA data would trigger it again after a 5 sec. delay. In both accident sequences, the pilots countered with electric trim, setting up the MCAS’s cyclical activation.

Boeing’s safety analysis determined that crews would diagnose an unwanted MCAS activation as stabilizer runaway, and would follow the appropriate checklist, which includes de-powering the stabilizer trim motors by turning off the trim cutout switches, leaving the manual trim wheels as the only elevator trim inputs. The Ethiopian crew toggled off the cutout switches, but could not manually trim the aircraft at the relatively high indicated airspeed, so they turned on the trim cutout switches, which set the stage for MCAS to re-engage.

Neither Lion Air nor Ethiopian Airlines had the optional AOA disagree indicator package. The accident sequences would have triggered AOA disagree alerts, adding it to several that activated, including a stick-shaker stall warning.

Following the Lion Air accident, Boeing convened a “safety review board” (SRB) to revisit whether the AOA Disagree issue was a safety risk. “That SRB confirmed Boeing’s prior conclusion that it did not,” Boeing said. “Boeing shared this conclusion and the supporting SRB analysis with the FAA.”

Addressing reporters following a Boeing shareholder meeting Apr. 29, Boeing CEO Dennis Muilenburg downplayed the significance of the AOA Disagree alert’s role in delivering key information to pilots. “It’s not something that drives pilot action,” he said. “It’s not something that we designed in as a primary flight display in the flight deck of a commercial airplane. What pilots care about are things like altitude, airspeed, heading, pitch and roll. That’s what they fly. Those indicators are in the flight deck today. Airspeed and altitude in particular are the relevant items around these two [accidents].”

Even if the absence of the AOA Disagree lights is not linked to either accident, the issue adds more questions to the MAX’s development, and how much airlines knew about changes from the 737NG. MCAS was not on the NG, and most pilots didn’t know it existed until after the Lion Air accident.

Since just after the Lion Air accident, Boeing has described the AOA Disagree as an available option on the MAX, which was accurate. It was not until Apr. 29 that it explained the AOA Disagree’s status as an option was a mistake—it was supposed to be standard, as it is on the NG. Six days later, it acknowledged that it has known about this problem since mid-2017.

Boeing is updating MCAS, using both AOA sensors to prevent the system from acting on a single faulty sensor. The changes also will limit MCAS’s authority, in part by removing its ability to reset itself and potentially fire again based on faulty AOA data when the crew provides electric stabilizer trim input to counter it. 

In addition, Boeing will make both the AOA disagree alerts and AOA indicator standard on all MAXs, including offering free modifications for aircraft already delivered.

Note: This story has been updated from the original version published May 5. It includes additional details and clarifications on MCAS's operation and the AOA Disagree alert's intended function.

Edited by moeman

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

AC is re-deploying some 737 MAX pilots, while putting them all through sim training of the particular conditions suspected in the two fatal crashes. I knew AC had a sim, but didn't realize it had the only two of any North American airline.

Air Canada says it will reassign Max pilots as grounding of Boeing plane drags on

 
Globe and Mail
ERIC ATKINSTRANSPORTATION REPORTER
 
 

Air Canada says it will redeploy some of its idled 420-odd 737 Max pilots to fly other planes as the grounding of the Boeing plane drags on.

The global fleet of the 737 Max narrow-body planes remains parked as Boeing and aviation authorities work on a software fix and pilot training procedures after two fatal crashes of the aircraft since October. Boeing has halted deliveries of the planes and slowed production as it makes changes to the automated controls allegedly linked to the crashes in Ethiopia and Indonesia that killed a total of 346 people.

Air Canada owns 24 of the 737 Max planes and was due to take delivery of another 12 by June.

Transport Canada grounded the model domestically on March 13, forcing Air Canada and WestJet Airlines Ltd. to scramble to replace much of the lost capacity. Air Canada said on Monday the loss of 20 per cent of its narrow-body fleet that flew as many as 12,000 customers a day meant it had to cancel 1,600 mainline flights, but was able to retain 98-per-cent of its schedule.

Calin Rovinescu, Air Canada’s chief executive officer, said the company has about 425 Max pilots who are spending their days training on a 737 Max simulator, but not flying customers. Some pilots who flew other planes in the past year – narrow-body Airbus or the Embraer 190 – will return to flying those models, Mr. Rovinescu said.

Boeing has said the global groundings cost it US$1-billion so far but has not provided any timeline on when regulators will approve the 737 Max’s return. Air Canada and WestJet have retooled their schedules without the planes well into the busy summer travel season.

Mr. Rovinescu said it could take several weeks to fully deploy the 737 Max once it is cleared by regulators. But because Air Canada is the only airline in Canada or the United States with a 737 Max simulator (it has two in Toronto), its pilots are “modelling some of the scenarios that occurred in the two accidents. So that has given us a leg up in terms of the readiness for the pilots to go back into flying these aircraft.”

In the first quarter, Air Canada said it paid $920-million for six Boeing 737 Max 8 planes and one 787-9.

“Our final decision on returning the Max to service will be based on our own safety assessment following the lifting of government safety notices and the approval of the software modification and training protocol,” Mr. Rovinescu said on a first-quarter earnings conference call with analysts on Monday.

For the three months ending March 31, Air Canada beat market expectations and posted a profit of $345-million, or $1.26 a diluted share, compared with a loss of $203-million (74 cents) in the same period a year earlier.

Profit on an adjusted basis was $17-million (6 cents), up from a loss of $26-million (10 cents) in the first quarter of 2018. Analysts expected an adjusted loss of 17 cents a share.

The results were lifted by the recent purchase of the Aeroplan loyalty card company and a new agreement with Chorus Aviation for additional flight capacity. Air Canada’s cash liquidity hit a record of $6.9-billion at the quarter’s end.

Passenger revenues rose by 9.4 per cent to $3.8-billion.

“We achieved these results in a quarter where we faced extremely severe weather events early in the quarter, literally from coast to coast, and the first 18 days of the Max grounding at the end of the quarter,” Mr. Rovinescu said.

Walter Spracklin, a stock analyst with Royal Bank of Canada, noted Air Canada provided no update to its 2019 guidance, which it suspended in March due to the 737 Max groundings. For his outlook purposes, he is assuming the planes will not return in 2019.

But he said the good financial results despite the first quarter’s bad weather and 737 Max loss highlighted Air Canada’s operational and financial resiliency. The stock is rising as markets express relief the 737 Max problems are not “overly severe” and measures to mitigate the challenges are in place, he said in a note to clients.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, dagger said:

I knew AC had a sim, but didn't realize it had the only two of any North American airline.

AC was the only one who's purchase of the MAX meant addition of a new fleet type. All of the other North American purchasers were current operators of 737NG's - some with their own simulators, and some using third party machines. As the MAX was identified as a common type, there wasn't a perceived need for a tailored simulator for those current operators.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I sure hope CAE or whoever the Sim provider is knew about MCAS.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The Chorus fleet is getting rid of the Dash8-100s in favour of larger airframes.  Fewer planes but more available seats.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I just don’t know why Boeing didn’t update the 757 if the MAX 10 was going to have about the same #of seats. Then I’m not a Boeing engineer.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, boestar said:

I sure hope CAE or whoever the Sim provider is knew about MCAS.

 

The provider is CAE and their 737 MAX simulator would include all known systems and functions as per any regulator approved aircraft. AC initially ordered their aircraft and simulators without HUDs but reversed that decision awhile ago. 

A friend of mine repeated the ET event in the AC 737 simulator recently. He said they managed to get through it but he also said it took all of his arm strength which were shaking the whole time. Their solution was to unload the stab through Boeing’s porpoise maneuver. 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, thor said:

I just don’t know why Boeing didn’t update the 757 if the MAX 10 was going to have about the same #of seats. Then I’m not a Boeing engineer.

I’ve asked the same question and it appears at the time aircraft sales of the 757 had all but stopped and the 737 was emerging as a popular model with the low cost/leisure carriers. I’ve read somewhere that Boeing even destroyed all jigs associated with the 757 production. Someone must have taken a page out of the Avro Arrow playbook. 

The basic 757 airframe had plenty of room to add a larger more fuel efficient engine with a complete review of lighter weight parts from stem to stern.  

The original 757 aircraft was the least expensive model to produce by Boeing because so many parts were used from other aircraft including the 707/727/737 airframe and 767 systems. The reason you stepped ‘down’ into the 757 flight deck was due to Boeing squeezing a 767 flight deck into the nose. 

 

Edited by blues deville

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

ALPA: Simulator Time Not Needed To Un-Ground 737 MAX

May 8, 2019 Sean Broderick | Aviation Daily
 

WASHINGTON—The world’s largest pilots’ union will not ask FAA to require additional mandatory simulator training on maneuvering characteristics augmentation system (MCAS) scenarios for 737 MAX pilots before they can fly, but will recommend it as part of routine recurrent training, Aviation Week has learned.

The Air Line Pilots Association (ALPA) will make its views known in comments on a draft of proposed minimum 737 training standards out for public comment. The Flight Standardization Board (FSB) draft report does not recommend simulator sessions as part of transition training for 737 Next Generation pilots upgrading to the MAX, opting for less costly computer-based training instead.

A person with knowledge of ALPA’s comments tells Aviation Week that the pilots’ union will go a step further, calling for hands-on simulator training at the earliest scheduled opportunity. Under this scenario, MAX pilots would fly simulated MCAS-related scenarios within a year or so as MAX simulators become available, but not before they return to line operations once flight restrictions on the model are lifted. Some regulators are expected to require simulator training as conditions for removing their operations bans, and Air Canada has said it is already using its MAX simulator—the only one in airline hands in North America—to run its 420 MAX pilots through MCAS-related scenarios.

ALPA’s training recommendations will include other additions to the draft document as well—most of them emphasizing MCAS-related differences between the NG and the MAX. The MCAS was needed for certification purposes to enhance pitch stability with slats and flaps retracted at very light weights and full aft center-of gravity (CG), ensuring the MAX handled like the NG. The system activates when the aircraft’s speed approaches threshold AOA, or stick-shaker stall-warning activation, for the aircraft’s configuration and flight profile. 

The union wants the AOA Disagree alert message and its relation to MCAS added to items given “special emphasis” in MAX training. The MCAS is fed by angle of attack (AOA) data, and activates when the data shows the aircraft’s nose as being too high for the current flight profile. ALPA wants pilots to understand the link between AOA Disagree alerts, which will now be standard on primary flight displays for all MAXs, and the MCAS’s role of automatically moving the horizontal stabilizer to compensate for an AOA approaching aerodynamic stall.

The union also wants MAX pilots to understand that nose-down stabilizer trim applied by MCAS cannot be countered by pulling back on the yokes. The MCAS is an extension of the 737 speed trim system (STS), which automatically moves the stabilizer to ensure pitch is maintained as speed increases. On the NG, stick force inputs override runaway trim, including the STS runaways. On the MAX, stick force overrides all runaway trim conditions, but not MCAS.

Boeing determined that allowing the MCAS to be countered by pulling back on the yoke could negate its purpose, so the column brake is bypassed when the MCAS is activated. Instead, the MCAS can be countered using yoke-mounted electric trim switches or, in extreme conditions, by toggling cutout switches that de-power the trim motors and using hand-cranked trim wheels.

The public has until May 15 to comment on the draft FSB report. Approving it will be a key step in getting the MAX fleet back in the air, along with having regulators sign off on changes to the MCAS software that Boeing is finalizing. 

FAA said it will consider the public’s input before making a final decision on the FSB’s contents. “We are looking forward to reviewing all of the comments,” the agency said.

The Air Line Pilots Association did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Regulators grounded the 370-aircraft operational fleet in mid-March following the second of two fatal MAX 8 accidents. The MCAS’s erroneous activation played a role in each accident. Boeing is modifying the system’s logic by adding triple redundant angle of attack validity checks to add data redundancy and reduce its authority to activate multiple times in certain scenarios and by limiting its stabilizer command authority to a single, proportionate nose down trim input. 

Boeing designed the MCAS to operate in the background and only if the aircraft were being operating in a small corner of the flight envelope. Both the company and the original FSB that worked on the model’s 2017 certification determined that special training on the system’s operation was not necessary. As a result, the system was not covered in flight manuals. The updates will add information on the system’s operation.

Boeing and the 2017 FSB team also determined that pilots would recognize an MCAS-related failure as stabilizer runaway—a common air transport issue that pilots are trained to manage with a memorized checklist. 

But in both MAX 8 accident sequences, the crew did not immediately diagnose the MCAS inputs, trigged by erroneous AOA data, as stabilizer runaway. They countered the MCAS with manual electric trim inputs, which re-set the MCAS and caused it to activate again based on the continued stream of faulty AOA data. Had the crews not used the electric trim, the MCAS system would not have activated repeatedly, eventually leading to uncontrollable dives. Boeing’s software update removes this function so that electric trim does not re-set MCAS so that it cannot operate again based on faulty data. 

ALPA, which represents pilots at MAX operators United Airlines and WestJet, also will advise that pilots practice as many MCAS-failure-related emergency scenarios as necessary to demonstrate competency. Boeing’s explanation of MCAS following the first accident, Lion Air Flight 610 in October 2018, listed nine related “indications and effects” that could result from an AOA Disagree alert and possible MCAS activation.

While the FSB still must be finalized, mandatory simulator training before qualified 737NG pilots fly the MAX is not expected to be part of the package.

“At this point, we’re not hearing that [simulator training] will be a requirement,” Southwest Airlines CEO Gary Kelly said recently. “Just getting pilots back into the simulator for an event would be a challenge, and that would take time. But my own interpretation is that we already do the kind of training that one would be contemplating to put the MAX back into service. Managing the aircraft in a runaway stabilizer scenario is something that we already trained on and…has already been covered.”

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2019-05-10/boeing-fights-to-bring-737-max-back-from-ford-pinto-like-taint

 

Boeing Sends 737 Max to Brand Rehab to Avoid Fate of Ford Pinto

By
May 10, 2019, 2:00 a.m. PDTUpdated on May 10, 2019, 6:42 a.m. PDT
 

Boeing Co.’s 737 Max is about to join the list of brands trying to come back from ignominy.

Analysts are digging into decades-old safety scares for clues to the future of the jetliner -- and Boeing’s finances. There’s the Chevrolet Corvair rollovers that launched Ralph Nader as a consumer advocate in the 1960s, gas-tank explosions that sank Ford Motor Co.’s Pinto in the 1970s, and the Tylenol poisonings of 1982 that spurred tamper-proof packaging.

But there’s little precedent for the tangle of safety, regulatory and financial issues buffeting a workhorse jet that’s vital to sustaining the surge in global air travel. After two crashes of the aircraft model in five months and a grounding that’s nearing the two-month mark, some nervous passengers are vowing to avoid the Max. Boeing has added to the mess by not fully explaining the apparent flaws in the best-selling jet in company history.

Longtime Boeing watcher Nick Cunningham said he’s starting to wonder if “this has become too serious and too protracted for the Max to escape unscathed.” The accidents in Indonesia and Ethiopia killed 346 people. Nader’s own grand niece was among the victims.

The longer the crisis drags on, the greater the risk that the cumulative effect “will have acted to permanently lock it into people’s memories,” said Cunningham, founding partner at Agency Partners.

Confidence Shaken

Boeing is finalizing an update to software linked to both crashes, which it will submit to the Federal Aviation Administration in a crucial step toward getting the plane back in the air. A May 23 summit of global regulators “may lay out a path towards certifying fixes and removing the grounding,” Morgan Stanley analyst Rajeev Lalwani said in a note Thursday.

Rebuilding consumer confidence is an urgent priority, as the Chicago-based company works with airlines to prepare resuming flights of the 737 model over the next few months. Boeing must also win over pilots, flight attendants and fractious regulators.

Chief Executive Officer Dennis Muilenburg and commercial-airplane chief Kevin McAllister have been hosting regular conference calls with airline executives. And the company has invited Max operators and lessors to a half-dozen sessions around the world to discuss the specifics of the software changes, along with the logistics of taking planes out of storage.

“It’s a multifaceted approach to taking the steps necessary to preserve the fleet, return it to service safely and restore any lost confidence that pilots, regulators and the traveling public have had in the Max,” Boeing spokesman Gordon Johndroe said.

U.S. President Donald Trump has even weighed in with advice on how to rehabilitate the largest U.S. export, suggesting that Boeing re-brand its marquee single-aisle jet. “No product has suffered like this one,” he said in an April 15 tweet.

There’s been “no discussion” of a name change, Johndroe said, including dropping “Max” and referring to the jet family by product numbers such as 737-8.

Jetliner Recovery

Commercial jetliner programs have recovered time and again from horrific accidents. The trend started at the dawn of the jet age with de Havilland Comets that blew apart due to a window-design flaw. A redesigned version was never a hot seller, but flew for the U.K. military until 2011. Bargain-hunting consumers in the Internet age quickly forgot their aversion to Boeing’s 787 Dreamliner after battery fires grounded it in 2013.

Back-to-Back 737 Crashes Have Few Parallels in Aviation History

Brazil’s Gol Linhas Aereas Inteligentes SA is assuming the crisis will have faded by December. The company is already touting new, nonstop service from Sao Paulo to Lima starting Dec. 12 on a “modern Boeing 737 Max 8,” although an older model can be substituted if necessary.

“The consumer has a very short attention span,” said George Ferguson, an analyst at Bloomberg Intelligence. He pointed to United Continental Holdings Inc.’s rebound from social-media furor after one of its passengers was dragged off a plane.

But Boeing is struggling against deep damage to its reputation as a safety-conscious designer of aircraft. Cunningham pointed to General Motors Co.’s Chevy Corvair and the Ford Pinto as cautionary tales.

“Obviously GM and Ford survived the issues, but the Corvair and Pinto brands didn’t,” he said. “The cases are still remembered 40 or 50 years later.”

Those scandals helped spawn safety regulations that transformed the auto industry. Boeing’s travails could spur a similar review of airplane certification and oversight amid criminal and Congressional investigations.

The Tylenol poisonings are remembered today in part because Johnson & Johnson’s reaction became a case study in effective crisis management -- a feat that has so far eluded Boeing.

‘Wrong Calculation’

The planemaker worsened its own plight by waiting months to explain publicly how a software subsystem known as MCAS repeatedly shoved the nose of the doomed jets down, eventually overwhelming pilots. With the company facing $1 billion or more in potential liability from lawsuits, executives have been careful not to admit their approach was flawed.

“They made the wrong calculation,” said Richard Aboulafia, an aerospace analyst with Teal Group, in weighing short-term liability costs versus the risk of long-term brand damage. “Just explain what went wrong with the subsystem, and explain everything about it. Make this as transparent as possible.”

Compounding its dilemma, Boeing revealed a separate problem with a cockpit warning light in late April. The company followed that up this week with an admission that it had known about the problem but waited about a year to tell airlines or the Federal Aviation Administration.

“We have a number of areas where we know we need to improve, and transparency is one of them,” said Johndroe, the Boeing spokesman.

Passenger Fears

The lack of full disclosure has fanned a narrative that the Max itself is badly flawed because of its larger engines. Aboulafia, who forecasts aircraft markets, says his estimate of Max sales “is predicated on this getting better in the long run. If they make this worse by making it a publicly reviled product, all bets are off.”

At stake is not just the manufacturer’s image, but the vitality of the jet that accounts for about one-third of Boeing’s profit and has added 4,625 unfilled orders to the company’s backlog. If demand fades because of jittery consumers, airlines could postpone deliveries or force Boeing into a pattern of deeper discounts that erode its profit and cash, Aboulafia said.

Investors are counting on the furor dying down as global regulators sign off on the new software Boeing is finalizing. But 44% of travelers in North America and Europe say they would wait a year or more to fly the Max, according to a survey of 1,756 fliers by Barclays Plc.

“I don’t know,” said David Strauss, a Barclays analyst, who downgraded Boeing after the study. “It feels different to me this time.”

— With assistance by Fabiola Moura, and Rick Clough

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Another take on it. It looks like the functionality of the stab switches was altered with the Max.

https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2019-05-11/boeing-dangerously-altered-mcas-toggle-switches-737-max-deadly-crashes

 

Boeing Altered Critical MCAS Toggle Switches On 737 MAX Before Deadly Crashes

When Boeing transitioned from the 737 NG model to the 737 MAX, designers altered a toggle switch panel that could have prevented both of the deadly crashes over the last year in Ethiopia and Indonesia, killing a combined 346 people, according to an investigation by the Seattle Times

lion%20737_1.jpg

On the 737 NG, the right switch was labeled "AUTO PILOT" - and allowed pilots to deactivate the plane's automated stabilizer controls, such as the Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System (MCAS), suspected to be the culprit in both crashes. The left toggle switch on the NG would deactivate the buttons on the yoke which pilots regularly use to control the horizontal stabilizer. 

On the 737 MAX, however, the two switches were altered to perform the same function, according to internal documents reviewed by the Times, so that they would disable all electronic stabilizer controls - including the MCAS and the thumb buttons on the yoke used to control the stabilizer. 

toggle%20737.jpg(Dimas Ardian / Bloomberg)

Former Boeing flight-controls engineer Peter Lemme, a harsh critic of the MAX design, first raised questions over the switch alteration on his blog, and says he doesn't understand why Boeing made the change. 

He said if the company had maintained the switch design from the 737 NG, Boeing could have instructed pilots after the Lion Air crash last year to simply flip the “AUTO PILOT” switch to deactivate MCAS and continue flying with the normal trim buttons on the control wheel. He said that would have saved the Ethiopian Airlines plane and the 157 people on board.

“There’s no doubt in my mind that they would have been fine,” Lemme said. -Seattle Times

Boeing told the Times that they had historically called for pilots to flip both switches to disable a problematic or "runaway" stabilizer, so the button change matched that procedure, adding that the two switches "were retained for commonality of the crew interface." 

"Boeing strongly disagrees with any speculation or suggestion that pilots should deviate from these long-established and trained safety procedures," the company added. 

 

During the October Lion Air flight, pilots were reportedly unaware of the MCAS system - while the day beforean off-duty pilot with knowledge of the stabilizer controls helped pilots disable the system on the same plane. Data from the flight revealed that the repeated commands from the MCAS system sent the flight from Bali to Jakarta plummeting into the sea.

 

After that crash, Boeing issued a directive calling for pilots to use the typical runaway stabilizer procedure to deal with MCAS in the event of a problem. Then pilots would be able to swivel the tail down manually by physically turning a control wheel that connects to the tail via cables.

But on the Ethiopian Airlines flight, the pilots appear to have recognized the errant MCAS problem and flipped the cutoff switches as described in the checklist. But then it appears that the pilots were unable to move the manual wheellikely because the forces on the tail made it physically challenging to turn. -Seattle Times

After they were able to manually control the stabilizer, the Ethiopian Airlines pilots appear to have flipped the cutoff switches back on, reactivating the MCAS system. Shortly after, it entered a fatal nosedive which killed all 157 people aboard. 

"When you’re pulling on the column with 80-100 pounds of force trying to save your life, your troubleshooting techniques are very weak," said aviation consultant Doug Moss. "You need some gut-level instinctive things to do to solve the problem." 

A veteran Boeing 737 test pilot said that all Boeing planes have two such cutoff switches, not just the 737. And both he and American Airlines Captain Dennis Tajer, a spokesman for the Allied Pilots Association who flies 737s, said they could think of no existing procedure that called for flipping only one of the switches.

The procedure appears to be designed to prepare for a situation in which the plane’s stabilizer motor is for some reason jammed and moving uncommanded in one direction – a classic “runaway stabilizer” situation. That would require shutting off all power to the motor. -Seattle Times

Notably, the FAA did not notify pilots that the functionality of the switches had been altered, simply noting in its documentation the labeling change "Stab Trim cutout switches panel nomenclature." 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ethiopian MAX Crash Simulator Scenario Stuns Pilots

May 10, 2019 Sean Broderick | AW&ST Aviation Daily
avdet302wreckage2019-03-11jemalcountess-

Wreckage from Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302. 

Jemal Countess/Getty Images

WASHINGTON—A simulator session flown by a U.S.-based Boeing 737 MAX crew that mimicked a key portion of the Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 (ET302) accident sequence suggests that the Ethiopian crew faced a near-impossible task of getting their 737 MAX 8 back under control, and underscores the importance of pilots understanding severe runaway trim recovery procedures.

Details of the session, shared with Aviation Week, were flown voluntarily as part of routine, recurrent training. Its purpose: practice recovering from a scenario in which the aircraft was out of trim and wanting to descend while flying at a high rate of speed. This is what the ET302 crew faced when it toggled cutout switches to de-power the MAX’s automatic stabilizer trim motor, disabling the maneuvering characteristics augmentation system (MCAS) that was erroneously trimming the horizontal stabilizer nose-down.

In such a scenario, once the trim motor is de-powered, the pilots must use the hand-operated manual trim wheels to adjust the stabilizers. But they also must to keep the aircraft from descending by pulling back on the control columns to deflect the elevator portions of the stabilizer upward. Aerodynamic forces from the nose-up elevator deflection make the entire stabilizer more difficult to move, and higher airspeed exacerbates the issue.

The U.S. crew tested this by setting up a 737-Next Generation simulator at 10,000 ft., 250 kt. and 2 deg. nose up stabilizer trim. This is slightly higher altitude but otherwise similar to what the ET302 crew faced as it de-powered the trim motors 3 min. into the 6 min. flight, and about 1 min. after the first uncommanded MCAS input. Leading up to the scenario, the Ethiopian crew used column-mounted manual electric trim to counter some of the MCAS inputs, but did not get the aircraft back to level trim, as the 737 manual instructs before de-powering the stabilizer trim motor. The crew also did not reduce their unusually high speed.

What the U.S. crew found was eye-opening. Keeping the aircraft level required significant aft-column pressure by the captain, and aerodynamic forces prevented the first officer from moving the trim wheel a full turn. They resorted to a little-known procedure to regain control.

The crew repeatedly executed a three-step process known as the roller coaster. First, let the aircraft’s nose drop, removing elevator nose-down force.  Second, crank the trim wheel, inputting nose-up stabilizer, as the aircraft descends. Third, pull back on the yokes to raise the nose and slow the descent. The excessive descent rates during the first two steps meant the crew got as low as 2,000 ft. during the recovery.

The Ethiopian Ministry of Transport preliminary report on the Mar. 10 ET302 accident suggests the crew attempted to use manual trim after de-powering the stabilizer motors, but determined it “was not working,” the report said. A constant trust setting at 94% N1 meant ET302’s airspeed increased to the 737 MAX’s maximum (Vmo), 340 kt., soon after the stabilizer trim motors were cut off, and did not drop below that level for the remainder of the flight. The pilots, struggling to keep the aircraft from descending, also maintained steady to strong aft control-column inputs from the time MCAS first fired through the end of the flight.

The U.S. crew’s session and a video posted recently by YouTube’s Mentour Pilot that shows a similar scenario inside a simulator suggest that the resulting forces on ET302’s stabilizer would have made it nearly impossible to move by hand.

Neither the current 737 flight manual nor any MCAS-related guidance issued by Boeing in the wake of the October 2018 crash of Lion Air Flight 610 (JT610), when MCAS first came to light for most pilots, discuss the roller-coaster procedure for recovering from severe out-of-trim conditions. The 737 manual explains that “effort required to manually rotate the stabilizer trim wheels may be higher under certain flight conditions,” but does not provide details.

The pilot who shared the scenario said he learned the roller coaster procedure from excerpts of a 737-200 manual posted in an online pilot forum in the wake of the MAX accidents. It is not taught at his airline.

Boeing’s assumption was that erroneous stabilizer nose-down inputs by MCAS, such as those experienced by both the JT610 and ET302 crews, would be diagnosed as runaway stabilizer. The checklist to counter runaway stabilizer includes using the cutout switches to de-power the stabilizer trim motor. The ET302 crew followed this, but not until the aircraft was severely out of trim following the MCAS inputs triggered by faulty angle-of-attack (AOA) data that told the system the aircraft’s nose was too high.

Unable to move the stabilizer manually, the ET302 crew moved the cutout switches to power the stabilizer trim motors—something the runaway stabilizer checklist states should not be done. While this enabled their column-mounted electric trim input switches, it also re-activated MCAS, which again received the faulty AOA data and trimmed the stabilizer nose down, leading to a fatal dive.

The simulator session underscored the importance of reacting quickly to uncommanded stabilizer movements and avoiding a severe out-of-trim condition, one of the pilots involved said. “I don’t think the situation would be survivable at 350 kt. and below 5,000 ft,” this pilot noted.

The ET302 crew climbed through 5,000 ft. shortly after de-powering the trim motors, and got to about 8,000 ft.—the same amount of altitude the U.S. crew used up during the roller-coaster maneuvers—before the final dive. A second pilot not involved in the session but who reviewed the scenario’s details said it highlighted several training opportunities.

“This is the sort of simulator experience airline crews need to gain an understanding of how runaway trim can make the aircraft very difficult to control, and how important it is to rehearse use of manual trim inputs,” this pilot said.

While Boeing’s runaway stabilizer checklist does not specify it, the second pilot recommended a maximum thrust of 75% N1 and a 4 deg. nose-up pitch to keep airspeed under control.

Boeing is developing modifications to MCAS, as well as additional training. Simulator sessions are expected to be integrated into recurrent training, and may be required by some regulators, and opted for by some airlines, before pilots are cleared to fly MAXs again. The MAX fleet has been grounded since mid-March, a direct result of the two accidents.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Boeing 737 MAX Training Changes Eyed And Simulator Time Considered

May 14, 2019 Sean Broderick | Aviation Week & Space Technology

As Boeing moves closer to wrapping up changes to the 737 MAX aimed at getting the grounded fleet back into service, training has become the focal point. One key consideration is whether simulator sessions should be added to the existing MAX pilot-training package based on lessons learned from the two fatal 737-8 accidents. 

A third round of public input on FAA-led Flight Standardization Board (FSB) draft recommendations closes May 15, and the comments are expected to help shape a final set of minimum training protocols for all operators to build upon. The Air Line Pilots Association (ALPA) weighed in during the initial public-input window. While the pilots’ group may amend its recommendations, its original comments do not call for mandatory simulator training on the Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System (MCAS) scenarios for 737 MAX pilots before they can fly. But ALPA told the FAA that simulator sessions may be a prudent step to cover emergency procedures linked to MCAS failure scenarios, and should, at a minimum, be included in recurrent training.

“ALPA believes that operators must ensure that this system is trained in some method, and this case should be examined by the FSB,” the association’s comments say. “ALPA recognizes the current differences [between the 737 Next Generation and the MAX] are limited to Level B, however, it should be examined that another level of training may be appropriate to adequately [instruct pilots on] this system.”

 

If computer-based Level B training is deemed sufficient, ALPA insists it should be “robust” and include not only system details and failure scenarios but also “visual and audio descriptions” and reenactments of recent similar occurrences.

The union further says that “pilots should receive hands-on flight training on the MCAS during their next recurrent training opportunity or qualification course” as simulators become available.

ALPA’s initial training recommendations include other additions to the draft document as well—most of which emphasize MCAS-related differences between the NG and the MAX. The MCAS was needed for certification purposes to enhance MAX pitch stability with slats and flaps retracted at very light weights and full aft center-of gravity (CG), ensuring the MAX handled like the NG. The system activates when the aircraft’s speed approaches threshold angle of attack (AOA), or stickshaker stall-warning activation, for the aircraft’s configuration and flight profile.

The union wants the AOA Disagree alert message and its relation to the MCAS added to items given “special emphasis” in MAX training. The MCAS is fed by AOA data and activates when the data show the aircraft’s nose as being too high for the current flight profile. ALPA wants pilots to understand the link between AOA Disagree alerts, which will now be standard on primary flight displays for all MAXs, and the MCAS’ role of automatically moving the horizontal stabilizer to compensate for an AOA approaching aerodynamic stall.

The union also wants MAX pilots to understand that nose-down stabilizer trim applied by the MCAS cannot be countered by pulling back on the yoke. The MCAS is an extension of the 737 speed trim system (STS), which automatically moves the stabilizer to ensure pitch is maintained as speed increases. On the NG, stick-force inputs override runaway trim, including the STS runaways. On the MAX, stick force overrides all runaway trim conditions; the MCAS does not.

Boeing designed the MCAS to operate in the background, and both the company and the original FSB that worked on the model’s 2017 certification determined that special training on the system’s operation was not necessary. The system was not covered in flight manuals and was largely unknown to pilots outside of Boeing until the October 2018 crash of Lion Air Flight 610 (JT610). 

Boeing and the 2017 FSB team also determined that pilots would recognize an MCAS-related failure as a stabilizer runaway—a common air transport issue that pilots are trained to handle with a memorized checklist. But in each 737-8 accident sequence, the crew did not immediately diagnose the MCAS inputs—trigged by erroneous AOA data—as stabilizer runaway. The pilots countered the MCAS with manual electric trim inputs, which reset the MCAS and caused it to activate again based on the continued stream of faulty AOA data. Had the crews not used the electric trim, the MCAS system would not have activated repeatedly and so would not have led to uncontrollable dives. Boeing’s software update removes this function so that electric trim does not reset the MCAS, removing the possibility of it firing again based on faulty data. It also will update manuals to include details on the MCAS.

ALPA, which represents pilots at U.S. MAX operator United Airlines and Canada’s WestJet, also advises that pilots practice as many MCAS-failure-related emergency scenarios as necessary to demonstrate competency, its initial comments reveal. Boeing’s first detailed explanation of the MCAS followed the JT610 accident aftermath and listed nine related “indications and effects” that could result from an AOA Disagree alert and possible MCAS activation.

In a statement to Aviation Week, ALPA emphasizes that its recommendations could change, depending in part on what Boeing’s final package of MCAS updates and training modules includes.

“ALPA has not yet determined whether or not simulator training will be necessary to return the 737 MAX to service and will continue to review any and all additional information as it becomes available,” the association says. “Until Boeing formally submits its plan to the FAA for consideration and approval, it is impossible to fully evaluate what actions will need to be taken to ensure the aircraft’s airworthiness.”

Regardless of what the final FSB standards say, some regulators and individual operators are expected to incorporate MCAS-related simulator sessions into their training. Air Canada has said it is already using its MAX simulator—the only one in airline hands in North America—to run its 420 MAX pilots through MCAS-related scenarios. Regulators in Europe and China are among those that are expected to conduct independent reviews of the MCAS upgrades and related training—evaluations that could see their banning of MAX operations extend well into late this year and the return-to-service requirements go beyond what the FAA approves.

Boeing is close to finalizing the MAX changes and presenting its conclusive package to the FAA. The last major step is certification flight tests of the MCAS 12.1.1 software. Boeing and the agency are working to complete the tests before a May 23 regulators-only meeting during which the FAA will present its work on evaluating the MCAS updates and respond to inquiries.

The 370-aircraft operational MAX fleet has been grounded since mid-March, a direct result of the Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 crash on March 10. Boeing began working on the MCAS changes after the Lion Air accident. 

 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Boeing desperately needs to get the 737 Max back in the air. Getting it approved will be hard

New York (CNN Business)Boeing's future rides on the success of the 737 Max. But all of those planes remain grounded, waiting for the world's aviation regulators to approve a software fix that will make them safer to fly.

The 737 Max does not appear close to flying again. Aviation experts doubt global regulators will act in concert to approve the 737 Max for flight, because serious questions remain about how and why the FAA approved the 737 Max for flight and whether it rushed the certification process.
The world's aviation authorities have lost confidence in the US Federal Aviation Administration. In the past when planes were grounded, other regulators followed the FAA's lead. When the FAA approved grounded planes to fly again, regulators around the world similarly let them fly too. That's what happened when the Boeing 787 Dreamliner was grounded because of battery problems in 2013.
But this time, getting the FAA to sign off on the fix won't by itself solve Boeing's problems. That could be troubling news for Boeing (BA) as it tries to return the planes to service as soon as possible.
The 737 Max is by far Boeing's bestselling plane, with orders for 5,000 of the workhorse single aisle jet on its books. Boeing's profit fell 21% last quarter because it halted 737 Max orders during grounding, and it has to reimburse airlines that have to use alternate planes. Boeing has already spent at least $1 billion on a software fix it hopes can get the planes back in the air.
 
The stakes could not be higher for the company, America's largest exporter.

Damaged credibility

Boeing is seeking regulatory approval for its software fix a 737 Max automatic safety feature, which is the focus of the investigations into two recent fatal crashes. Questions about how the plane was certified in the first place means lifting the grounding won't be easy.
 
The FAA's certification process is under investigation by Congress and the Department of Transportation.
"Clearly confidence in the FAA as the gold standard in aviation safety has been shaken," DOT Inspector General Calvin Scovel testified at a Senate hearing last month.
If global aviation regulators don't agree to end the 737 Max's grounding, that could create costly delays for Boeing. More than 80% of the 737 Max planes that are grounded are flown by airlines outside the United States. Boeing will need those aviation authorities around the globe to lift their orders grounding the jets for their customers to begin flying the planes once again.
"It will be jarring if other countries don't immediately follow. I'll be disappointed. But I guess I won't be too surprised if other countries thumb their nose at us and don't follow immediately," said Jeffrey Guzzetti, a former director of the FAA's accident investigation division.
Shanghai Airlines' Boeing 737 MAX 8 planes grounded at the airport in Shanghai, China.
 
Shanghai Airlines' Boeing 737 MAX 8 planes grounded at the airport in Shanghai, China.
Authorities from nine different countries met for a week's worth of meetings in Seattle recently to discuss problems with the 737 Max. The group, dubbed the Joint Authorities Technical Review, was headed by Chris Hart, the immediate past chairman of National Transportation Safety Board, which is independent from the FAA.
Hart told CNN Business he is "not confident at all" that countries will unanimously and simultaneously approve the 737 Max's return to service. Instead, each country may approve the plane on its own schedule.
Aviation regulators have good reason to be skeptical about following the FAA's lead when lifting the grounding.
Reports about the plane's certification have revealed a process in which Boeing, not the regulator, was calling many of the shots, and self-certifying the safety of many features.
The FAA followed the company's desire to allow pilots of the original version of the 737 to fly the Max with only a brief online instruction rather requiring full simulator training. The ability to move pilots from one plane to the other was a selling point for Boeing as it took orders for the planes. Boeing CEO Dennis Muilenburg said last month that the company still believes that online training is all that will be needed when the plane starts flying again, but that it will follow whatever regulators require.
Hart said he believes the FAA is "still recognized as the gold standard" for aircraft certification. But questions about its certification process for the Max were at the core of the meeting in Seattle.
"We are not here to determine when to un-ground the plane," he said. "We are here to determine if the certification was robust and if it wasn't robust, what needs to be done to make it robust in the future."
Boeing and the FAA both issued statements saying they were pleased to participate in the meeting. The FAA said the joint authorities will take a comprehensive look at its certification process. Boeing said it's confident the regulatory review will ensure the solution will "get it right."
But the process to get the planes back in the air around the globe will be an uphill battle for Boeing.
"It's hard to tell what is based upon genuine disagreement about safety, what is based upon lack of trust, and what is based upon not wanting to be seen as rubber stamping the FAA approval," said Richard Aboulafia, aerospace analyst for the Teal Group. "But that's three reasons why it's going to be different this time."
Edited by moeman

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, moeman said:

Boeing desperately needs to get the 737 Max back in the air. Getting it approved will be hard

New York (CNN Business)Boeing's future rides on the success of the 737 Max. But all of those planes remain grounded, waiting for the world's aviation regulators to approve a software fix that will make them safer to fly.

The 737 Max does not appear close to flying again. Aviation experts doubt global regulators will act in concert to approve the 737 Max for flight, because serious questions remain about how and why the FAA approved the 737 Max for flight and whether it rushed the certification process.
The world's aviation authorities have lost confidence in the US Federal Aviation Administration. In the past when planes were grounded, other regulators followed the FAA's lead. When the FAA approved grounded planes to fly again, regulators around the world similarly let them fly too. That's what happened when the Boeing 787 Dreamliner was grounded because of battery problems in 2013.
But this time, getting the FAA to sign off on the fix won't by itself solve Boeing's problems. That could be troubling news for Boeing (BA) as it tries to return the planes to service as soon as possible.
The 737 Max is by far Boeing's bestselling plane, with orders for 5,000 of the workhorse single aisle jet on its books. Boeing's profit fell 21% last quarter because it halted 737 Max orders during grounding, and it has to reimburse airlines that have to use alternate planes. Boeing has already spent at least $1 billion on a software fix it hopes can get the planes back in the air.
 
The stakes could not be higher for the company, America's largest exporter.

Damaged credibility

Boeing is seeking regulatory approval for its software fix a 737 Max automatic safety feature, which is the focus of the investigations into two recent fatal crashes. Questions about how the plane was certified in the first place means lifting the grounding won't be easy.
 
The FAA's certification process is under investigation by Congress and the Department of Transportation.
"Clearly confidence in the FAA as the gold standard in aviation safety has been shaken," DOT Inspector General Calvin Scovel testified at a Senate hearing last month.
If global aviation regulators don't agree to end the 737 Max's grounding, that could create costly delays for Boeing. More than 80% of the 737 Max planes that are grounded are flown by airlines outside the United States. Boeing will need those aviation authorities around the globe to lift their orders grounding the jets for their customers to begin flying the planes once again.
"It will be jarring if other countries don't immediately follow. I'll be disappointed. But I guess I won't be too surprised if other countries thumb their nose at us and don't follow immediately," said Jeffrey Guzzetti, a former director of the FAA's accident investigation division.
Shanghai Airlines' Boeing 737 MAX 8 planes grounded at the airport in Shanghai, China.
 
Shanghai Airlines' Boeing 737 MAX 8 planes grounded at the airport in Shanghai, China.
Authorities from nine different countries met for a week's worth of meetings in Seattle recently to discuss problems with the 737 Max. The group, dubbed the Joint Authorities Technical Review, was headed by Chris Hart, the immediate past chairman of National Transportation Safety Board, which is independent from the FAA.
Hart told CNN Business he is "not confident at all" that countries will unanimously and simultaneously approve the 737 Max's return to service. Instead, each country may approve the plane on its own schedule.
Aviation regulators have good reason to be skeptical about following the FAA's lead when lifting the grounding.
Reports about the plane's certification have revealed a process in which Boeing, not the regulator, was calling many of the shots, and self-certifying the safety of many features.
The FAA followed the company's desire to allow pilots of the original version of the 737 to fly the Max with only a brief online instruction rather requiring full simulator training. The ability to move pilots from one plane to the other was a selling point for Boeing as it took orders for the planes. Boeing CEO Dennis Muilenburg said last month that the company still believes that online training is all that will be needed when the plane starts flying again, but that it will follow whatever regulators require.
Hart said he believes the FAA is "still recognized as the gold standard" for aircraft certification. But questions about its certification process for the Max were at the core of the meeting in Seattle.
"We are not here to determine when to un-ground the plane," he said. "We are here to determine if the certification was robust and if it wasn't robust, what needs to be done to make it robust in the future."
Boeing and the FAA both issued statements saying they were pleased to participate in the meeting. The FAA said the joint authorities will take a comprehensive look at its certification process. Boeing said it's confident the regulatory review will ensure the solution will "get it right."
But the process to get the planes back in the air around the globe will be an uphill battle for Boeing.
"It's hard to tell what is based upon genuine disagreement about safety, what is based upon lack of trust, and what is based upon not wanting to be seen as rubber stamping the FAA approval," said Richard Aboulafia, aerospace analyst for the Teal Group. "But that's three reasons why it's going to be different this time."

"Desperate" is a bit of a stretch. There a backlog of 5,000 orders and Airbus is booked solid for the A320NEO family for a very long time. Not really many options for the carriers to do but wait it out. Everything else Boeing makes is late so they are used to shuffling the cash around to pay bills and stall creditors. The MAX was the first Boeing delivered nearly on-time in a very long time and it was just a face lift.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I disagree with the word "Faulty" .  The system worked just as designed.  the problem is that it was poorly designed.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The headline reads “After two faulty Boeing jets crash, the Trump administration blames foreign pilots”. Is this part of Boeing’s PR recovery plan?

I guess all other than US operated 737Max air carriers may have to consider parking, returning or cancelling all future orders. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

https://edition.cnn.com/2019/05/16/politics/737-max-boeing-software-fix/index.html

 

Quote

Boeing says it has completed 737 Max software fix

 

Boeing said Thursday it has finished the development of a software fix to its troubled 737 Max.

The plane maker said in a statement it has flown the aircraft with the updated software on 207 flights for more than 360 hours.
The software heads next to the US Federal Aviation Administration and its counterparts in other countries that want to review it. An FAA spokesman said Thursday afternoon the Boeing materials, including the software, have not yet been submitted.
"We're committed to providing the FAA and global regulators all the information they need, and to getting it right. We're making clear and steady progress and are confident that the 737 Max with updated MCAS software will be one of the safest airplanes ever to fly," Boeing CEO Dennis Muilenburg said in the statement.
The submission comes ahead of an international gathering of aviation regulators in Dallas next week to discuss the reviews of the Max.
The 737 Max 8 and 9 were grounded worldwide after an Ethiopian Airlines crash two months ago that investigators have described as appearing similar to a Lion Air crash last year. Between the two crashes, 346 people died.
In both accidents, the automated Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System, or MCAS, pushed the planes' noses down while the pilots struggled to regain control.
The company has said its fix will feed MCAS with data from two, rather than just one, sensor, making the plane less susceptible to a crash because of bad data. It will also make the system less potent, which is expected to prevent the steep dives seen in the two crashes, and provide additional training materials.
"Boeing has developed enhanced training and education materials that are now being reviewed with the FAA, global regulators, and airline customers to support return-to-service and longer-term operations," the company statement said. "This includes a series of regional customer conferences being conducted around the world."
Multiple investigations, including the initial crash investigation, are ongoing. Criminal prosecutors, congressional staffers, and the Transportation Department inspector general are reviewing the initial certification of the 737 and the FAA's processes.
The FAA's aircraft certification chief, Earl Lawrence, told Congress on Wednesday the agency has been reviewing a preliminary version of the software provided by Boeing.
"I would call it the beta version," Lawrence said. "The reason why they submitted it to us is so we can stick it in the simulator so we could test it, so we can also look at their system safety analysis and see whether it will appropriately address it."
A Technical Advisory Board organized by the FAA will participate in the review. That panel includes experts from the Air Force, NASA, Transportation Department and FAA.
Aviation regulators in other countries will complete their own reviews of the software separate from the international Joint Authorities Technical Review, or JATR, the FAA has organized.
That raises the possibility some countries' regulators could approve the software while others do not deem it safe to fly -- and complicate Boeing's goal of safely returning the plane to the skies.

CNN's Drew Griffin and Curt Devine contributed to this report.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Podcast: When Will the Boeing 737 MAX Fly Again?

May 16, 2019 Joe Anselmo, Sean Broderick and Guy Norris  | Aviation Week & Space Technology

https://aviationweek.com/commercial-aviation/podcast-when-will-boeing-737-max-fly-again?utm_rid=CPEN1000001138147&utm_campaign=19738&utm_medium=email&elq2=7c605d60570f4bfb9c9d6949cd64d44c

 

Comments:

Some key observations..., MAX will be ungrounded next month by the FAA, other regulators will definitely not follow, (understandably skirted the obvious question, "Why?"), Boeing parking lots getting full even in the paint lot & Texas, lots of resources dedicated to MAX so reduced resources for the new B777X, "MMA" (is that "mid-term model adjustment? - something like that?), subject broached, and a turn from MMA to the possibiliity of a B737 replacement is broached.

Discussion about design philosophy, reasons for "simplicity" of MCAS is Boeing expected pilots would use "runaway" drill if MCAS broke, (even though Boeing never told pilots or anyone else about the system and how it worked), AW&ST's Sean Broderick is asked by the moderator, "With the benefit of hindsight...What did Boeing do wrong?"; some good & fair observations from Sean, very few weasel words. Guy Norris was asked same; some weasel phrases, a lot of softening words, like the phrase, "sort of", rather than just coming out and stating something, lots of hesitation, equivocations & use of "words not wanting to offend" stuff). It's a good listen if one is into the informality of podcasts.

Edited by Don Hudson

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this