AF flight from Rio missing [merged]

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Old Jun 1, 09, 7:23 am
  #121  
 
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What exactly happens when lightning strikes a plane?

Many years ago I flew from TYO to SIN on a 747 when we were hit by lightning several times in a row. There was a tremendous bang, all electric function ceased, pitch black cabin, and after a few seconds (2? or 10?) the plane rebooted. This happened three times in short succession, and the IFE never recovered, seemed fried. Glad it was only the IFE!

Is it possible that the reboot/restart malfunctioned?

Any experts?
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Old Jun 1, 09, 7:23 am
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UGGGGGGGGGG, I can only imagine the absolute nightmare that families having to cope with this tragic situation are now having to endure.......

My thoughts and prayers are extended to all those connected with this tragedy and to everyone within the Air France family.

It certainly looks like this is going to be a long, sad, tough and tragic day for all of us.

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Old Jun 1, 09, 7:24 am
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Could someone with in-depth technical knowledge on Airbus aircraft provide some detail on what provisions are designed into the aircraft to handle lightning/surges and the avionics? Also, how do the fly-by-wire systems on these aircraft work? What redundancy is available? What contingencies have they planned for? What do you feel they might have forgotten?

I had the unpleasant experience of being in a car which had brake-by-wire and had the system controller fail. At least on the car, they didn't leave me any additional options. Fortunately it happened on a highway, but the results easily could have been worse.
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Old Jun 1, 09, 7:26 am
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Originally Posted by alanw View Post
Everyone, I have had to edit and delete posts already in this thread. It's reprehensible that (especially at a time like this) people are calling names, attacking the nationality of others, and generally behaving like children. Knock it off.
Thanks alanw. We all need to hope for the best here.
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Old Jun 1, 09, 7:32 am
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Originally Posted by KRSW View Post
Could someone with in-depth technical knowledge on Airbus aircraft provide some detail on what provisions are designed into the aircraft to handle lightning/surges and the avionics? Also, how do the fly-by-wire systems on these aircraft work? What redundancy is available? What contingencies have they planned for? What do you feel they might have forgotten?

I had the unpleasant experience of being in a car which had brake-by-wire and had the system controller fail. At least on the car, they didn't leave me any additional options. Fortunately it happened on a highway, but the results easily could have been worse.
http://www.britflight.com/wingfiles/...ingstrikes.pdf

Some good reading on the systems used to protect the fly by wire

http://www.aviationtoday.com/am/cate...sting_210.html

some background on the actual systems used for FBW

Last edited by vsop; Jun 1, 09 at 7:38 am
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Old Jun 1, 09, 7:33 am
  #126  
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Originally Posted by Zorro View Post
What exactly happens when lightning strikes a plane?
Originally Posted by KRSW View Post
Could someone with in-depth technical knowledge on Airbus aircraft provide some detail on what provisions are designed into the aircraft to handle lightning/surges and the avionics?
I donít know if pilots contribute to AF threads but you can always ask in this thread.

Several UA pilots contribute to the thread including an Airbus pilot.

Just an FYI.

And let me add my sincerest condolences to the friends and families of the passengers and crew.
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Old Jun 1, 09, 7:34 am
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If they lost key systems and/or engines, a small rotor is automatically deployed to give them (limited) manual control isn't there?

Assuming they didn't lose a lot of altitude immediately, they'd still then need to glide to safety somewhere, which isn't what you want to be faced with over the sea I'm sure.
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Old Jun 1, 09, 7:41 am
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Bloody hell this is grim stuff, not helped by some of the insensitive crap on this board by some. Sadly though, it looks more and more like an electrical storm has taken this and the poor souls on it down.

It's not that long since the similarly mysterious Kenya Air crash in Cameroon which IIRC is suspected to be storm related albeit a bit closer to take off than this one. Given the 330's near perfect safety record to now, it is hard to think of an uninduced fault mechanically being responsible for taking it down.

Those equatorial storms are horrible and i hate flying down to JNB with those things around as it gets very bumpy at times - incidents like this just make you wonder if sometimes we just get a bit too close to them. Who knows the truth though. Sympathies to all affected.
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Old Jun 1, 09, 7:46 am
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Our late news bulletin here has just said that an AF spokesperson stated it was a new A330 with very experienced crew on board. I am hoping for a miracle, but it does indeed sound like its too late for that now.

My heart goes out to all those on board and their family and friends . Feeling very sad here for those waiting for news of the plane.
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Old Jun 1, 09, 7:48 am
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latest report here:
http://adjix.com/swww

deeply sorry for passengers and crew members onboard, along with their loving families.
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Old Jun 1, 09, 7:52 am
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Originally Posted by beepyou View Post
latest report here:
http://adjix.com/swww

deeply sorry for passengers and crew members onboard, along with their loving families.
Has it been confirmed "crashed?" If not, it's rather irresponsible of the headline to label it a "crashed airliner."
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Old Jun 1, 09, 7:52 am
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this is tragic for 1 June 2009. my heart goes out to the flyers, crew and their respective families. lets hope for the best.
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Old Jun 1, 09, 7:52 am
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Originally Posted by Cholula View Post
I don’t know if pilots contribute to AF threads but you can always ask in this thread.
I believe panic stations is a pilot although I could be wrong.
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Old Jun 1, 09, 7:59 am
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Originally Posted by blairvanhorn View Post
I'm glad you're OK!
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Old Jun 1, 09, 8:02 am
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Originally Posted by samh004 View Post
If they lost key systems and/or engines, a small rotor is automatically deployed to give them (limited) manual control isn't there?

Assuming they didn't lose a lot of altitude immediately, they'd still then need to glide to safety somewhere, which isn't what you want to be faced with over the sea I'm sure.
My fear is that the computers which control the flaps/control surfaces were affected, thus the plane would be uncontrollable regardless of if the engines were still running or not.

Usually aircraft have redundancy of just about everything. There's usually a chain of mistakes that happen to bring a modern aircraft down. Most failures are little more than a PIlot REPort upon landing.
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