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About scott967

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  1. So reality imitates flight sim, now with autoland. I guess FAA gave some sort of type cert for it in the Piper M600/SLS. Found a PR blurb on yt and the video actually looked like it was taken from flight sim. What it's claimed to do: "Autoland, as executed in the Halo system, can be initiated by an occupant of the airplane—typically a passenger—so its interface was designed to be transparent and straightforward to non-pilots. Once the passenger presses the activation button (a guarded installation on the instrument panel), the system calculates through a wide range of performance, operational, and weather data and criteria to conclude the nearest safe airport at which to land the airplane. Autoland communicates with ATC over standard frequencies so that not only are controllers alerted but also other pilots flying in the area. The autothrottle is used to control speed, and manage engine performance and power, allowing the M600 to climb, descend, or stay at a given altitude as appropriate as Autoland guides the airplane to the chosen airport." No problem, I think I'll reach over and pop that switch scott s. .
  2. People trying to land in UK probably hold a record for slow given all the missed approaches and diverts due to the storm. scott s. .
  3. I've PAXed many times OXR-LAX and back on commuter AC and that general route is common coming into OXR (more or less aligned with CMA where the incident AC was headed). At the west end of SF valley the terrain rises and you have two passes heading into Ventura Cty, which the 118 and 101 freeways follow. It looks like the helo was scud running to maintain VFR in the SF valley, but as it followed the 101 route was running out of room due to the terrain rise and attempted to do a 180 to get out of clouds, but was unable to complete the maneuver. NTSB says the AC was intact at impact so unlikely due to structural failure. The possibility exists of engine failure and failure to auto-rotate (I assume this helo has that capability) for some reason, but pilot disorientation or incapacitation leading to improper control inputs and loss of control is also a possibility. At any rate, the decision to continue flying west with rising terrain and low ceiling in VFR can be questioned regardless of actual reason the AC crashed. scott s. .
  4. AFAIK, the special VFR clearance was for the time the AC was transiting the KBUR Class C airspace SFC/48. The flight following would be under VFR after exiting the Class C to the west of KVNY airport. scott s. .
  5. Well, I assume the mission of LAPD and LACSD helos involves a lot of monitoring what is going on on the ground, not transiting from point A to point B, so I don't see this as all that relevant. scott s. .
  6. Infringement is not "theft" nor "piracy", though I get that there are entities which want to promote that idea. In the US copyright law, there is the concept of the "first sale" doctrine which limits the control of rights-holders to the first sale of a work. Software publishers wish to get around the doctrine through license terms and AFAIK have had success in some jurisdictions but not all. I think Vernor v Autodesk in the US Ninth Circuit (dealing with re-sale of autocad software license) was a key decision. scott s. .
  7. In shipbuilding they would layout piping and electrical runs by system on transparent sheets, then put them on a light table to find interferences between the different pipe and cable runs. Piping less than 2" was left to the trades to figure out (field-run pipe). When they first introduced CAD, dimension tolerance was 1/16th inch which was a rude awakening for the trades (tell a welder he has to put a cable standoff on a bulkhead accurate to 1/16th). Of course for aircraft where production runs are much greater having uniformity is more beneficial. CAD was a big deal for plate bending and foundation building as it eliminated the old trial and error method of "lofting" and used automated tooling instead. scott s. .
  8. Alan, thanks for your thoughtful post. A modern problem I see in engineering/program management is when problems are identified late in the program, such as the MAX handling problem, it appears deceptively easy to "tweak" the software. It's a lot different from the days when you would have to rip stuff out and rework it. scott s. .
  9. Having been responsible for safety critical systems (including ones with the ability to launch nuclear weapons) I have professional interest in how other organizations handle the task and also lessons learned (or often, relearned). As it is, it happens that Boeing (McDonnell Douglas at the time) was my system engineer agent. Anyone involved in the software business needs to study and consider what went wrong with the Max. The problem of the "regulator" I think is much deeper than simply "capture". Regulators are by nature conservative (resistant to change) while software development types tend more to be innovators. That creates tension. What I see as fundamental in the Max case is the decision to provide control augmentation in normal, manual flight. While I can see on the surface it seems not that big of a change from prior design of things like "feel" or "speed trim" it's that kind of incremental design change that can come back to bite you in the rear end. I would have expected more "push back" from either the regulator or Boeing internal safety engineering (and in my business safety was a system engineering task, not a software engineering task). But we would need to see the internal meeting notes and design documentation to determine how and why this didn't seem to happen. scott s. .
  10. But at the end of the day, from all I've read it looks more like a requirements/design problem and the code "works as designed". scott s. .
  11. Well, when you make the jump to agile development who needs six sigma? We had "lab rats" who weren't paid that well to run software testing that was scripted. But beyond that I don't think SE has reached the point where you can just push out a spec and expect coders to get it right. scott s. .
  12. From way back in Mosaic days, then Netscape, then Firebird, then Firefox. But got off the upgrade train at Quantum. Now using Waterfox. scott s. .
  13. In my experience, the best place (for the US) to get this type of information is either in an airport master plan or EIS/SEIS that might be required for airport upgrades under NEPA. FAA might have some stuff, but I think it tends to lack sufficient detail. I haven't tried to look though it, but this might help: Houston Intercontinental Master Plan scott s. .
  14. I found this thread found here to be the best in understanding MCAS scott s. .
  15. I have a problem understanding some of the logic in the MCAS design. I get that certification requirements result in the need for augmentation in the pitch axis, and I guess augmentation is allowed. What I don't see is 1. Why the MCAS is inhibited when pilot operates the elec trim switches on the column. I assume the idea was the "pilot knows what he is doing" (but the column cut-out switch does not inhibit MCAS). 2. When the pilot stops operating the elec trim switch, MCAS "waits" for several seconds before starting a new down-trim order. What's the reason for the delay? I can't believe it's to allow sensors to "settle down" after a transient. Both of these design/implementation features seem to me to add cognitive workload to pilot in recognizing trim "runaway" (which isn't really running away). As pilots have pointed out, other systems also operated on trim, such as STS so you have to evaluate unwanted "MCAS" trim in a noisy (as in, aircraft is moving the stab up or down for other reasons) environment. scott s. .
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