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Maverick

Another 737 MAX down.

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Just now, rudder said:

Stab trim runs at different speeds depending on whether flaps/slats are extended or up.

Yes, so even without applying trim input is it physically possible to control the pitch to overcome the the change in aerodynamic and thrust influences?

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I can see a software update and a service bulletin to incorporate an AOA indicator on the PFD along with some sort of "MCAS operating" light as well.

With the size of the display I can't see it being a big issue at all.

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The Financial Times has a story I can't access, but the headline says US corporations are pulling business travellers off MAX flights in the US. So even if these planes keep operating, the carriers face operating those flights at a loss (though the money must end up elsewhere in their operations). 

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6 minutes ago, GTFA said:

Yes, so even without applying trim input is it physically possible to control the pitch to overcome the the change in aerodynamic and thrust influences?

The short answer is ‘yes’.

Managing thrust setting will affect pitch moment. And manual stab trim is available on all 737 to lower control forces in manual flight if electric and A/P stab trim switches have been selected off.

Edited by rudder

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7 minutes ago, Maverick said:

I can see a software update and a service bulletin to incorporate an AOA indicator on the PFD along with some sort of "MCAS operating" light as well.

With the size of the display I can't see it being a big issue at all.

The ‘optional’ AOA disagree setup (which was installed by some MAX operators) should become mandatory.

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Here's another thing, longer term, to consider about this whole affair: Who picks up the tab?

Most airlines, I suspect, plan to stick Boeing with the bill. Will Boeing pay in cash, discounts, deferrals or all of those?

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-ethiopia-airplane-norwegian-boeing/norwegian-air-to-seek-compensation-from-boeing-for-max-groundings-idUSKBN1QU0S9

 


Norwegian Air to seek compensation from Boeing for MAX groundings

OSLO (Reuters) - Norwegian Air said on Wednesday it will seek compensation from plane maker Boeing for costs and lost revenue after grounding its fleet of 737 MAX 8 aircraft in the wake of the Ethiopian Airlines crash.
“We expect Boeing to take this bill,” Norwegian said in an emailed statement.The Oslo-based airline has 18 ‘MAX’ passenger jets in its 163-aircraft fleet. European regulators on Tuesday grounded the aircraft following Sunday’s crash of a similar plane in Ethiopia, which killed 157 people and was the second crash involving that type of plane since October.Boeing Chief Executive Dennis Muilenburg said on Monday that he was confident in the safety of the 737 MAX in an email to employees, which was seen by Reuters.Industry sources, however, said the planemaker faces big claims after the crash.Norwegian has bet heavily on the ‘MAX’ to become its aircraft of choice for short- and medium-range flights in coming years as the low-cost carrier seeks to boost its fuel efficiency and cut the cost of flying.
“What happens next is in the hands of European aviation authorities. But we hope and expect that our MAXes will be airborne soon,” Norwegian Air’s founder and Chief Executive Bjoern Kjos said in a video recording released on social media. “Many have asked questions about how this affects our financial situation. It’s quite obvious that we will not take the cost related to the new aircraft that we have to park temporarily. We will send this bill to those who produce this aircraft,” he added.

Idle planes will add to pressures on the airline, which is making losses amid intense competition at a time when several smaller European competitors have gone out of business.

The carrier has raised 3 billion Norwegian crowns ($348 million) from shareholders in recent months and said it would cut costs as it tries to regain profitability this year.

“If this situation gets solved within the next fortnight, this will not be very serious for Norwegian,” said analyst Preben Rasch-Olsen at brokerage Carnegie, adding that seasonally low demand in March likely leaves spare capacity.

“The little extra costs they are incurring, they can probably get that covered by Boeing,” Rasch-Olsen said.

“But if this situation continues into the Easter holidays, or May and June, then it is a problem. They (will) need to get in new planes. And then comes the costs.”

Europeans tend to book their summer holidays in May, so the grounding may not yet affect bookings for the peak season for the airline industry, the analyst said.

Meanwhile, Norwegian was maintaining its order for more aircraft of the same type from Boeing, spokesman Lasse Sandaker-Nielsen said.

Norwegian is expected to take delivery of dozens more of the ‘MAX’ in coming years, raising the overall number to more than 70 by year-end 2021, according to recent company announcements.

Shares in the airline have now dropped 6.8 percent this week as investors worried about the impact of the Ethiopian crash.

They fell by 4.8 percent in early trade on Wednesday but later recovered to trade up 2.7 percent by 1246 GMT.

Norwegian canceled some flights on Tuesday, and on Wednesday it canceled at least three dozen departures, its website showed, most of which were due to fly from airports in Oslo, Stockholm and other Nordic cities.


Boeing to upgrade software after crash
The airline was booking passengers on to other flights and using other types of planes from its fleet to help fill the gaps.

In a separate statement, Norwegian said it would deploy one of its larger Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft to operate its daily route from Dublin to Stewart airport north of New York City, replacing the grounded MAX.

 

Edited by dagger

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Dagger, while Boeing may have played a part by allowing their technical department to run ahead of their marketing and training support, there is are much larger factors at play here.

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The litigation resulting from these 2 MAX hull losses is going to happen in many jurisdictions. The subpoenas for evidence from both Boeing and the FAA are going to be substantial, given that many countries certify commercial aircraft on a piggy-back from the FAA certification.

Boeing will have to prepare itself for a significant legal onslaught, now to include the MAX operators.

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On what grounds exactly are they claiming that Boeing is liable for the cancellation of MAX-flights? On what grounds is the FAA going to be liable? It is being discussed in other forums that in the hands of a proficient crew, the malfunction is in fact manageable.

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Hopefully this will speed up the ET302 FDR/CVR review and implementation of any fix that may be required on the MAX.

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1 minute ago, GTFA said:

On what grounds exactly are they claiming that Boeing is liable for the cancellation of MAX-flights? On what grounds is the FAA going to be liable? It is being discussed in other forums that in the hands of a proficient crew, the malfunction is in fact manageable.

I'm sure litigators will delve into correspondence we have no access to, such as when did Boeing become aware of certain deficiencies, and did it respond adequately in a timely fashion. There is a practical matter for Boeing - if your customers believe they are entitled to compensation, you can fight them, and alienate them in the process, or make arrangements with them to keep them happy, whether that is cash payments, discounts on other aircraft, deferrals of deliveries on planes not yet in production, etc.

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So, if Boeing is correct that the aircraft was properly tested and certified, what if the problem is not with the manufacturer but with the operators and their governing agencies? Front line experience levels and training standards need to be a significant part of this conversation. By front line I mean pilots and maintenance personnel.

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Boeing has struggled for years (decades?) to keep a single type rating in place for the 737-300/400/500/600/700/800/900/MAX8/MAX9/MAX10.

That in part is why the 737 is in some respects outdated in several of its systems and design. The MAX model probably represented the biggest variant change since the inception of the NG line.

The MAX allowed Boeing to bring to market in a very short time frame a fuel efficient NB to compete for sales against the NEO.

Ultimately, the MAX will get the fix required to restore both passenger and customer confidence. It is a shame that it took a hull loss to force action. Perhaps timely incident reports brought to the attention of Boeing for prior MCAS events might have avoided at least one and possibly two tragic events.

Boeing relies on customers from first, second, and third world countries. That fact means that every aircraft, and the associated emergency procedures, must be designed for the lowest common denominator.

Edited by rudder

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1 hour ago, rudder said:

According to news reports, AC has 9000-12000 MAX seats flown per day.

No idea how they will cover this. Not like there are extra crews/aircraft sitting around. May have to cancel North American flights to get ETOPS WB to cover Hawaii. Rouge 767?

Everybody needs to take a deep breath and let things unfold.  Already changes are being implemented for AC. B77P going to OGG this evening to help out. More can be expected.  

Domestically and Transborder, I would expect to see more Airbus flying and consolidation of other flights.

Speculation on the Max, and ramifications does not serve much of a purpose.

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The pilot reports from the NASA safety reporting program is a red herring. What would be significant is a summary of ALL available safety reports related to this system from both maintenance and flight ops. Any major carrier who operate this aircraft has internal reporting programs most of which are widely used and respected.

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1 minute ago, GTFA said:

The pilot reports from the NASA safety reporting program is a red herring. What would be significant is a summary of ALL available safety reports related to this system from both maintenance and flight ops. Any major carrier who operate this aircraft has internal reporting programs most of which are widely used and respected.

To be clear - I am pointing the finger back towards one of the accident operators who had several MCAS related events prior to the accident flight.

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Air Canada Pilots Association Supports the Decision of Minister Garneau

Air Canada Pilots Association Supports the Decision of Minister Garneau

 
The 4,000 pilots of the Air Canada Pilots Association (ACPA) support the decision of Minister Garneau to be proactive and take steps, consistent with other jurisdictions, to help ensure the safety of the Canadian travelling public.

Decisions such as the one taken today are difficult to make, but ultimately important to ensure continued public confidence in aviation. ACPA thanks Minister Garneau for his proactive action on this matter.

ACPA looks forward to the continuation of the science and evidence-based International Civil Aviation Organization process into the Ethiopian Airlines Flight ET302 crash. This investigation is being undertaken by the world’s foremost authorities in aviation safety, and ACPA has every confidence in the outcome of the investigation they are conducting.
 
The Air Canada Pilots Association (ACPA) represents more than 4,000 commercial pilots who fly millions of passengers across Canada and around the world on Air Canada and Air Canada rouge. For more information, visit www.acpa.ca.

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Also to be clear, I am not un-pointing at Boeing. I am pointing ANOTHER finger at other causal factors. I believe we may finally be at a crossroads in aviation where training and standards are being displaced by technology. Instead of raising the lowest denominator we are expecting manufacturers to make ever more complex systems to overcome the shortcomings of industry to provide competent crews.

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Nice of ACPA to take a photo op right now.  I am sure their public support will be helpful when the company tries to invoke the force majeur contract provision and stops paying the affected pilots.

Vs

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Regarding the FAA and Boeing role in this.  I agree with the comment that this all has a tie to the fixation on the common type rating.

Unlike Canada, AFAIK a pilot operating for a US Part 121 carrier can only be qualified on one type at a time.  So this is a big deal for a carrier like Southwest.  The FAA came up with the Flight Standardization Board (FSB) to deal with these variants and the 737 was, if I recall, one of the very first types to go through that process, one that has been revisited many times over its development life.

The FAA process is supposed to identify any differences in systems or procedures that a pilot familiar with one variant might stumble with or misapply when flying another.  Autopilot differences, handling differences, landing perspective, primary flight instrument display, etc.  I have looked but cannot find a mention of MCAS or the different way it affects stab trim runaway procedures anywhere.  I don't fly this type, but I seem to recall that the Lion Air pilots applied a procedure that might have worked on a non-MCAS variant.

If it is true that Boeing did not declare, and the FAA did not reference, MCAS in their differences, then there might be grounds for a discussion of negligence.

All just my opinion

Vs

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1 minute ago, Vsplat said:

Regarding the FAA and Boeing role in this.  I agree with the comment that this all has a tie to the fixation on the common type rating.

Unlike Canada, AFAIK a pilot operating for a US Part 121 carrier can only be qualified on one type at a time.  So this is a big deal for a carrier like Southwest.  The FAA came up with the Flight Standardization Board (FSB) to deal with these variants and the 737 was, if I recall, one of the very first types to go through that process, one that has been revisited many times over its development life.

The FAA process is supposed to identify any differences in systems or procedures that a pilot familiar with one variant might stumble with or misapply when flying another.  Autopilot differences, handling differences, landing perspective, primary flight instrument display, etc.  I have looked but cannot find a mention of MCAS or the different way it affects stab trim runaway procedures anywhere.  I don't fly this type, but I seem to recall that the Lion Air pilots applied a procedure that might have worked on a non-MCAS variant.

If it is true that Boeing did not declare, and the FAA did not reference, MCAS in their differences, then there might be grounds for a discussion of negligence.

All just my opinion

Vs

FAA also treats 757 and 767 as single type rating. Other jurisdictions do not although many use CCQ provisions to enable pilots to operate both equipment types.

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When there are multiple variants of a common type we are still required to be trained on the differences. Boeing is definitely on the hook if they did not properly declare the differences.

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766488824_maxfaa.thumb.jpg.1b69921a69dff41956f207a4463a44c3.jpgIn Consultation with the FAA, NTSB and its Customers, Boeing Supports Action to Temporarily Ground 737 MAX Operations

March 13, 2019 Boeing continues to have full confidence in the safety of the 737 MAX. However, after consultation with the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), the U.S. National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), and aviation authorities and its customers around the world, Boeing has determined -- out of an abundance of caution and in order to reassure the flying public of the aircrafts safety -- to recommend to the FAA the temporary suspension of operations of the entire global fleet of 371 737 MAX aircraft.

On behalf of the entire Boeing team, we extend our deepest sympathies to the families and loved ones of those who have lost their lives in these two tragic accidents, said Dennis Muilenburg, president, CEO, Chairman of The Boeing Company.

We are supporting this proactive step out of an abundance of caution. Safety is a core value at Boeing for as long as we have been building airplanes; and it always will be. There is no greater priority for our company and our industry. We are doing everything we can to understand the cause of the accidents in partnership with the investigators, deploy safety enhancements and help ensure this does not happen again.

Boeing makes this recommendation and supports the decision by the FAA.

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