Indonesian Jet Crashed After a Flight Sensor Was Replaced

08 Novembre, 2018, 15:37 | Auteur: Anatole Charbonneau
  • Parts of an engine of the ill-fated Lion Air flight JT 610 are recovered from the sea during search operations in the Java Sea

This latest incident came just over a week after a Lion Air plane crashed into the Java Sea on October 29, killing everyone on board, prompting the Indonesian Transport Ministry to conduct a special investigation into the airline.

Last night, Boeing issued an "operations-manual bulletin" reminding airlines that their crews should use existing guidelines when dealing with faulty sensor situations such as this one.

Following the fatal crash of a Lion Air jet in Indonesia last week, Boeing has issued a warning to airlines operating its new 737 MAX about what to do in the event of an "angle-of-attack" sensor failure and avoid a unsafe nose-dive.

The 737 Max 8 aircrafts that the company makes could be getting incorrect input from their "angle of attack" sensor, which is the angle of the airplane or its wings compared to wind.

False readings from the sensor can cause the aircraft to pitch downward in an attempt to avoid a stall when the plane is not being flown on autopilot.

This affects almost 250 aircraft flown by USA airlines like Southwest, American and United, the FAA said.

The 787 Max 8 is the second Boeing aircraft to experience serious technical problems soon after its introduction, leading some analysts to question whether Boeing may have overlooked quality concerns as it strives to meet rising global demand.

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Preliminary investigations into the Indonesia Lion Air flight 610 Boeing 737 MAX crash have indicated a problem with a sensor that alerts pilots about the possibility of aircraft stalling, especially when the nose is up post lift-off.

Southwest issued a statement saying it has thoroughly reviewed Boeing's guidance.

Indonesia's National Transportation Safety Committee earlier this week had said the plane that crashed had a malfunctioning airspeed indicator on its last four flights, based on analysis of the flight data recorder.

The plane was said to be leaving the terminal and taxiing around 6.30 pm on Wednesday, November 7, readying for takeoff to Jakarta, when it hit the lamp post, reported the Australian. Chairman Soerjanto Tjahjono said the airspeed indicator and sensor problems are related. Pilots flying with an AOA sensor generating erroneous inputs to the system can experience the inability to engage the aircraft's autopilot system, among other problems.

Boeing has delivered 219 Max planes - the latest and most advanced 737 jets - since the models made their commercial debut past year with a Lion Air subsidiary.

The newspaper said the findings suggest investigators could be looking at a software problem or a mistaken interpretation by flight crew as having played key roles in the Lion Air crash.

Divers have recovered one of the two "black boxes" - the flight data recorder - but are still searching for the cockpit voice recorder, in the hope it will shed more light on the cause of the disaster.

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