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GHarrall

BA Boeing 777 Crash Lands at LHR

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It will be interesting to see what caused this accident, a modern airliner with all that redundancy built into to every system could end up like that.A passanger spoke on a news channel - he must have not been by a window. He told of thinking it was a rough landing but only realiased a problem had happened when they were led out of the plane via CHUTES!! Amazing. 136 very lucky passangers. 2 amazing pilots and the professional cabin crew.

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Pilot is reported to have said that they had lost all power and had to glide to the runway.Seems odd.......Glenn

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I'm not familiar with 777 systems, but that sounds like fuel starvation to me. Could have inadvertently switched to an empty fuel tank, or just plain ran out of fuel..............it happens, even to the best of them.I do know that a "dirty" 777 glides about as well as a wet crowbar...........crew should be commended for getting her down as safe as possible.

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That would be odd indeed. A qantus 747 had a power outage recently on descent into BKK but even then, they had battery power to get by on (albiet for just 1 hour) to lose all redundant electric power is something that isn't allowed to happen.But this incident is strange in that to lose BOTH engines power on approach. Losing all electrical power (including battery) is something we won't know until much later.Fuel starvation? The pilot would have declared this to ATC at some point surley.

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> Could have inadvertently switched to an empty fuel tank, or just plain ran out of fuel..............it happens, even to the best of them.Needless to say, if was one of the best of them, they would surely lose that title just as soon as the {BONG} of the engine-out alarm was heard in the cockpit... (Presuming non-malfunction related fuel starvation was the cause, of course)

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The article on the BBC website now claims that the captain lost all power with no advance warning. All electronics were also lost. This is based on a discussion with ground crew and is not an official statement however.This all seems VERY strange.............EDIT - New article appeared on BBC: "What Went Wrong"http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/7194569.stmGlenn

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Indeed!Let's wait for some official statements and not speculate based on what an airport worker says the captain said to him.

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Well,...probably they had an AP and FMC from Wilco or Captain Sim installed. :-lol :-lol

Staffan[/font size]

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What would the 777 recommended fuel reserve be, on theChina to GB leg, with winter weather variables?Peter Sydney Australia

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I think there's a bit of assuming going on with the speculation, in that people are assuming complete loss of power = engines off.Statements made by passengers and eyewitnesses on the TV have included statements along the lines of the "engines roaring before touchdown", "banking sharply" and "high angle of attack".So far, not one person has said it glided quietly overhead and a number of passengers were interviewed and stated they just thought it was a bumping landing. One would have thought if there was no engine sound, this would have been mentioned?Paul

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I have a good question.Does the 777 have sensors in the fuel tank like a car that tells the pilots how much fuel is left? If so, then we can rule out the fuel scenario.The only other time this was an event was in the 767 Canada-US flight where a 767 was loaded with 'pounds' of fuel instead of kilograms, because the Canadians use metric and the Americans Imperial.The Chinese, I am quite sure, use metric (they train here in AUstralia, I know the China Southern boys and Cathay Pacific guys). But I would assume the fuel is not measured in kilograms, but pounds, although I could be wrong. In Perth I have always seen Celcius been used for Dewpoint temperature broadcast.If I knew the following data, I would be able to give everyone at avsim a reasonable assessment of what actually happened.1. Beijing Who loads the fuel for BA in Beijing, and do they use the Metric system, including kilograms?2. Does the 777 have a in built backup system which will alert pilots to low fuel?3. With 180 PAX on board (about half the full load) and (if it is correct-which i didn't assume at first) if there is no fuel on board, this would explain for the miraculous glide in landing which could not have occurred (I believe) if the fuel tanks had fuel in them. Also, another good reason to suspect fuel loss is the pilot didn't restart the engines???? No fuel, so why bother?I also suspect no fuel leaks upon evacuation of the aircraft.What needs to happen is I need evidence to support the fact the 777 has a fuel tank guage or it is traditionally based on the similar 767 which experienced the power loss incident at full altitude and glided in to an unused runway. Has anything changed? I do like the 777 very much. I do hope the system didn't fail, but it is a human designed system, and the same airline that brought us an emergency landing in Scotland due to its lack of foresight in a LA to London flight 747 where it lost one engine. Should have landed in Chicago. The passengers get the night free. and BA get to pay for it, not happy eh, better keep the aircraft going I would say from company execs....BA may have excellent pilots, but their economic and logistical thus safety capabilities are really lacking.http://f111raaf.blogspot.comSave the RAAF F111s, keep Australia's Strategic capability.

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Let's put an end to these statements about fuel.. it's NOT low fuel that caused this.. even without any fuel instruments.. fuel at landing could be worked out to the nearest 2 or 3 tonnes.. regardless.. It's all carefully worked out and loaded.. They don't simply rock up to the ramp and say "fill her up".. They know what they want and request that amount..As for fuel warning.. of course there are warning systems.. for a start.. the FMC will flag.. INSUFFICIENT FUEL.. if you drop below your set RESERVE.. let alone if you drop below 0.. and you'll have FUEL LOW warnings on the upper EICAS.. Not to mention.. if a fuel pump goes low pressure the EICAS also warns.. and the overhead should show this too.. I can't see.. any way.. in which an aircraft as advanced as the 777 could possibly run out of gas.. on an approach.. There are way too many ways to tell fuel is low and far too many warnings.. It would take someone sitting in the cockpit putting their fingers in their ears closing their eyes and going "la la la la la la la la" for a low fuel prompt to go unnoticed VERY early..I don't know what the cause was.. but speculation will do no good.. Total power failure.. not sure exactly what that means.. What I find hard to believe is.. passengers would have noticed a "total power failure" and at first most thought it was simply a rough landing.. sounds like lighting etc was working ok to me! So "total power failure" needs to be defined I think..Not going to speculate anymore I don't think.. but dying to know more..CheersCraig

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>I have a good question.>>Does the 777 have sensors in the fuel tank like a car that>tells the pilots how much fuel is left? If so, then we can>rule out the fuel scenario.>The only other time this was an event was in the 767 Canada-US>flight where a 767 was loaded with 'pounds' of fuel instead of>kilograms, because the Canadians use metric and the Americans>Imperial.>>The Chinese, I am quite sure, use metric (they train here in>AUstralia, I know the China Southern boys and Cathay Pacific>guys). But I would assume the fuel is not measured in>kilograms, but pounds, although I could be wrong. In Perth I>have always seen Celcius been used for Dewpoint temperature>broadcast.>>If I knew the following data, I would be able to give everyone>at avsim a reasonable assessment of what actually happened.>>1. Beijing Who loads the fuel for BA in Beijing, and do they>use the Metric system, including kilograms?>>2. Does the 777 have a in built backup system which will alert>pilots to low fuel?>>3. >>With 180 PAX on board (about half the full load) and (if it is>correct-which i didn't assume at first) if there is no fuel on>board, this would explain for the miraculous glide in landing>which could not have occurred (I believe) if the fuel tanks>had fuel in them. Also, another good reason to suspect fuel>loss is the pilot didn't restart the engines???? No fuel, so>why bother?>>I also suspect no fuel leaks upon evacuation of the aircraft.>>What needs to happen is I need evidence to support the fact>the 777 has a fuel tank guage or it is traditionally based on>the similar 767 which experienced the power loss incident at>full altitude and glided in to an unused runway. Has anything>changed? I do like the 777 very much. I do hope the system>didn't fail, but it is a human designed system, and the same>airline that brought us an emergency landing in Scotland due>to its lack of foresight in a LA to London flight 747 where it>lost one engine. Should have landed in Chicago. The passengers>get the night free. and BA get to pay for it, not happy eh,>better keep the aircraft going I would say from company>execs....>>BA may have excellent pilots, but their economic and>logistical thus safety capabilities are really lacking.>>http://f111raaf.blogspot.com>>Save the RAAF F111s, keep Australia's Strategic capability.You're still upset about the rugby world cup, aren't you? ;-)

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>It would take someone sitting in the cockpit putting their>fingers in their ears closing their eyes and going "la la la>la la la la la" for a low fuel prompt to go unnoticed VERY>early..Surprisingly enough as it may seem for some, the history of aviation safety reveals a lot of aviation accidents happened with pilots having clear and ample warnings beforehand.Marco

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Initial findings of the AAIB are that both engines failed to respond to either auto-throttle or manual throttle commands.The AAIB has not yet determined why this happened.

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How much fuel DO planes carry? Say, to get from Beijing to London, it took 500 gallons (using small numbers here). Do aircraft carry somewhere around 510 gallons or 550 gallons for safety?

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It depends on the run they are doing.. but typically they have a minimum amount of fuel for landing.. not counting any holding fuel or taxi fuel.. I imagine it's in the order of 10,000Kg for your minimum landing fuel.. then on top you have contingency.. taxi.. and anything else.. so if an aircraft is landing and hasn't had to hold.. and it's been clear all the way.. and it's on it's first approach.. you can bet it's got enough fuel for another hour or so flying around.. at least.. before it runs out..So .. Taxi + Contingency (45 min hold or so) + min landing fuel + flight plan fuel + initial taxi fuel... etc...So.. saying it might have ran out of fuel is just not realistic.CheersCraig

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Craig,"It would take someone sitting in the cockpit putting their fingers in their ears closing their eyes and going "la la la la la la la la" for a low fuel prompt to go unnoticed"I kid you not when I say that I practically wet myself when I read that, I thought it was just so blinking hilarious.I even started to build up a mental picture of two pilots doing just that, kind of like the scenario with the bored pilots racing,what a great comedy sketch that would make, "what do you mean we don't have enough fuel" yes but I only had

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>would take someone sitting in the cockpit putting their>fingers in their ears closing their eyes and going "la la la>la la la la la" for a low fuel prompt to go unnoticed VERY>early..Well, history of air crashes is full of accidents caused by pilots who almost did that - for one or other reson they did not pay much attention to warnings. Fuel exhaustion happened already 3-4 times in big commercial jet aircraft and hundreds of times in GA flying, so lets remember that humans are capable of of all kind of mischief. So no, fuel exhaustion can't be discounted, not yet.Michael J.http://img142.imageshack.us/img142/9320/apollo17vf7.jpg

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Per the British Authorities, it doesn't sound like any lack of fuel. They state the autothrottles were calling for an increase of power @ 600 ft, but the engines did not respond. Since this occurred on both engines, it implies a problem that would be common to both engines. I assume the engine to tank configuration is such that both engines probably weren't feeding from the same tank. Fuel quality could be an issue, though it isn't clear why it would be evidenced at this point in the flight. dual engine problem implies it isn't something like an hp fuel pump drive shaft failure, or main fuel control problem which it is hard to see would occur simultaneously on two engines. So we may be forced to look "upstream" at the control logic from the autothrottle (and the Authorities report pilots moving throttle levers, so also the engine control logic) to see where common-mode failures could occur. Once the FDR is decoded that should provide most of the data needed. Since the aircraft is intact, any suspect areas should be able to be tested, though that wouldn't rule out an intermittent error, or one based on a set of inputs that are difficult to test (and possibly aren't captured by the FDR, such as internal logic states of the various controls).scott s..

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>>Well, history of air crashes is full of accidents caused by>pilots who almost did that - for one or other reson they did>not pay much attention to warnings. Fuel exhaustion happened>already 3-4 times in big commercial jet aircraft and hundreds>of times in GA flying, so lets remember that humans are>capable of of all kind of mischief. So no, fuel exhaustion>can't be discounted, not yet.>>Michael J.Sure, nothing should be discounted, but to say that both engines flamed out from fuel starvation on short final would be akin to saying alien spacecraft shot them down. The images and outcome from the incident does not add up to such a supposition. Like the alien scenario, possible, but very remote.If they did lose both engines at that low of an altitude, those people would all be dead. In the normal landing configuration and at the normal landing speed, if the engines both quit all of a sudden at that point, the plane would fall out of the sky. It would have been a very hard hit, most likely nose down. The plane would be smashed even if they hit main wheels first. We would not be here with a dozen or two cases of whiplash among the passengers.This looks more like the crash of the C-5 at Dover not too long ago, where the aircraft mushed into the ground with insufficient power to stay aloft. The more likely possibilities would be pilot error in failing to manage speed and power, an unrecognized loss of power in one of the engines, or most likely failure in the FADECs or the thrust levers. Since most modern aircraft with computer controlled engines do not actually have thrust levers that mechanically link to engines, a common failure scenario is loss of TL signal to the FADECs or EECs. If their TLs failed at a moment where they were throttled backed, the engines would have been stuck at that low power setting and there would be nothing they could do to adjust the power.

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Steve.Whehe.. I'm glad you appreciated my humour there.. Ryan, and All (I've been quiet on your forum lately lol)Yeah exactly.. that's what.. 6,000Kg.. slightly over.. That's got to be at or below min landing fuel and due to go arounds.. I think you could make an educated guess.. 8,000Kg - 10,000Kg min landing fuel.. maybe that again for your contingency.. so.. 16,000Kg to 20,000Kg.. and perhaps a couple more for good measure.. 18,000Kg to 22,000Kg.. something like that.. and if you expect a long taxi maybe even a bit more still.. I would be amazed if that aircraft had much less than 20,000Kg on board upon landing.. and you'd set the reserve to landing + maybe... 60% contingency, so that's about 12,800Kg to 16,000Kg.. 24,000lbs to 32,000lbs... That's probably a lot actually the later.. I am not entirely sure what the 777 uses.. But you can see what I mean.. I won't be a million miles away.. give or take a couple of 1,000lbs.. So it would chime INSUFFICENT FUEL (747 there.. but 777 won't be massively different in that respect) then.. and you know when you're getting close to burning half your real reserve up..NO WAY.. was that lack of fuel.. As for autothrottle.. I am not convinced of that either.. simple press on the yoke button.. and it's off.. and push forward on the throttles.. I'd probably expect him to have his hands there anyway ready to take over on the last couple of hundred.. and besides.. the pilot not flying would have seen the warning and sorted it in seconds.. you might lose a second or three.. and perhaps.. 4 or 5 knots.. easily recoverable.. and plenty of time to do a go around if you're not happy.. Maybe some electrical fault effecting the engine control units?I dunno.. but.. at this point in time I really would not like to speculate.. but.. at this time.. without more information..CheersCraig

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There is nothing in the AAIB report that indicates or hints that the engines did not continue to provide power until impact. The report does not talk about the engines failing.Just that the Autothrottle and the pilots could not increase power.I'm just guessing here - but it appears common to me for the engines to add a bit of power as the last notch of flaps is dropped.I'm sure the control systems, software and such are going to get a real serious look.

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