Robots find Air France 447 flight recorder

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4/29/2011 3:36 PM

Unfortunately it doesn't seem it will help solve the mystery:

http://www.networkworld.com/community/blog/flight-crash-mystery-robots-find-air-france-f

Flight crash mystery: Robots find Air France flight recorder but key memory part missing
The crash of Air France Flight 447 remains a mystery, but clues are being found
By Layer 8 on Fri, 04/29/11 - 3:08pm.

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Hopes that the ongoing undersea search of the Air France Flight 447 wreckage had yielded one of the key items investigators were looking for - the flight data recorder - were set back this week as the robot subs scouring the ocean floor found the box only to find its memory part missing.

The French investigation unit Bureau d'Enquêtes et d'Analyses (BEA) managing the search said the chassis of the airplane's Flight Data Recorder was found, though without the Crash Survivable Memory Unit that contains the data. It was surrounded by debris from other parts of the airplane. The box that records in-flight pilot conversations has not been found yet.

More: Underwater robots find airline wreckage, bodies

The BEA said it is searching for the memory unit as well as the other black box. It noted that new parts have been identified, such as the Auxiliary Power Unit which is located at the aft of the airplane. The forward and aft parts of the airplane are broken apart and mixed up, which means that a time-consuming systematic search is required, the BEA said.

Crash victim bodies to have been found but recovery operations won't likely take place until the black boxes are located and brought up.

Robotic subs from the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) are at the heart of the search investigators hope will go a long way towards solving the mystery of exactly why the plane crashed. The Air France plane was flying from Rio de Jeneiro to Paris, when it crashed into the on June 1, 2009, taking with it 228 people. Searchers had been unable to locate the aircraft in three attempts since then.

According to WHOI, the three REMUS 6000 autonomous undersea vehicles it is using in the search are designed to operate in depths up to 6,000 meters (19,685 feet or 3.73 miles). As each vehicle covers an area in a "mowing" pattern, it employs side-scan sonar to survey up to 600 meters to its left and right. Capable of staying underwater for up to 20 hours at a time, REMUS then returns to the ship, where scientists download its data. If the data contains evidence of any debris or other items of interest undersea, a REMUS 6000 will be dispatched to gather more detailed, up-close images using high-resolution cameras located on the bottom of the vehicle, the group stated.

BEA continues to update its Website about the progress of the search.

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4/29/2011 3:42 PM

Previous article:

http://www.networkworld.com/community/blog/update-underwater-robots-find-airline-wreckag

UPDATE: Underwater robots find airline wreckage, bodies
Undersea robots from Woods Hole try to address the mystery of what happened to Air France Flight 447
By Layer 8 on Mon, 04/04/11 - 12:57pm.

[LINK TO IMAGE]

The undersea robots scouring a 3,900 square mile search of Atlantic Ocean bottom have found bodies and a large portion of Air France Flight 447 which crashed off the coast of Brazil nearly two years ago.

The French investigation unit Bureau d'Enquêtes et d'Analyses (BEA) today showed undersea pictures of the wreckage including jet engines, the aircraft's wing, landing gear and windows. According to a number of reports including this one from Sky.com: "Officials confirmed identifiable bodies had been found and will be raised to the ocean surface, but would not say how many there were. The recovery operation, which could begin in three weeks to a month, will be funded by the French government."

The original story: Robots dive deep underwater to solve airliner crash mystery

The Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI)-led expedition has not yet found the black boxes from Air France Flight 447 which could go a long way towards solving the mystery of exactly why the plane crashed. In a press conference today investigators said they are "confident that engineers can still read the data and recordings in the black boxes - if they weren't damaged in the crash."

The Air France plane was flying from Rio de Jeneiro to Paris, when it crashed into the on June 1, 2009, taking with it 228 people. Searchers have been unable to locate the aircraft in three attempts since then.

According to WHOI, the three REMUS 6000 autonomous undersea vehicles it is using in the search are designed to operate in depths up to 6,000 meters (19,685 feet or 3.73 miles). As each vehicle covers an area in a "mowing" pattern, it employs side-scan sonar to survey up to 600 meters to its left and right. Capable of staying underwater for up to 20 hours at a time, REMUS then returns to the ship, where scientists download its data. If the data contains evidence of any debris or other items of interest undersea, a REMUS 6000 will be dispatched to gather more detailed, up-close images using high-resolution cameras located on the bottom of the vehicle, the group stated.

BEA is updating its Website about the progress of the search.

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4/29/2011 3:44 PM

Original article:

http://www.networkworld.com/community/blog/robots-dive-deep-underwater-solve-airliner-cr

UPDATE: Robots dive deep underwater to solve airliner crash mystery
Undersea robots from Woods Hole try to address the mystery of what happened to Air France Flight 447
By Layer 8 on Thu, 03/31/11 - 3:31pm.

UPDATE: Underwater robots find airline wreckage, bodies

Photo

A small squadron of undersea robots has begun to conduct a 4 month, 3,900 square mile search of Atlantic Ocean bottom looking for the deep-sea wreck site of and black boxes from Air France Flight 447 which crashed off the coast of Brazil nearly two years ago.

The Air France plane was flying from Rio de Jeneiro to Paris, when for exact reasons that remain a mystery, it crashed into the Atlantic Ocean on June 1, 2009, taking with it 228 souls. Searchers have been unable to locate the aircraft in three attempts since then. The latest $12.5 million search is being paid for by Air France and Airbus, which makes A330 airliner that crashed.

More on aviation: NASA eyes prototype system to control drones in national airspace

The Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) said this week it was sending its ship, Alucia, which includes 34 crew and supports three REMUS 6000 autonomous underwater vehicles which are designed and operated by WHOI.

According to WHOI, the autonomous undersea vehicles are designed to operate in depths up to 6,000 meters (19,685 feet or 3.73 miles). As each vehicle covers an area in a "mowing" pattern, it employs side-scan sonar to survey up to 600 meters to its left and right. Capable of staying underwater for up to 20 hours at a time, REMUS then returns to the ship, where scientists download its data. If the data contains evidence of any debris or other items of interest undersea, a REMUS 6000 will be dispatched to gather more detailed, up-close images using high-resolution cameras located on the bottom of the vehicle, the group stated.

"The plane was lost over the Mid-Ocean Ridge, a feature that we have been exploring for more than 30 years. The terrain will be extremely rugged and the search will be difficult, but this is something that we have been doing as a part of our mission to explore and understand the global oceans," said David Gallo, director of special projects at WHOI in a statement.

WHOI will lead the search cooperation with the Bureau d'Enquêtes et d'Analyses, BEA, the French Bureau of investigation and analysis for civil aviation safety. BEA has already begun to issue updates on its Website about the progress of the search.

According to a USA Today article, find the wreckage and its possible cause is a major issue on a number of levels: "The stakes are enormous: A French magistrate issued manslaughter charges earlier this month against both Airbus and Air France. Accident investigators are trying to determine whether the speed sensors that are used on all passenger jets could have a rare but dangerous susceptibility to icing. And families of the dead are growing impatient with the lack of information."

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4/30/2011 6:28 PM

Those photos give me the chills.

Have you seen the PBS Documentary on this accident? it's pretty well done.

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/space/crash-flight-447.html

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5/1/2011 3:29 PM

Hey, now they've found the flight data recorder. Hopefully they'll find the voice recorder as well:

http://www.bea.aero/fr/enquetes/vol.af.447/info01mai2011.en.php

Flight AF 447 on 1st June 2009
A330-203, registered F-GZCP
1st May 2011 briefing


The investigation team localized and identified the memory unit from the Flight Data Recorder (FDR) at 10 h UTC this morning. It was raised and lifted on board the ship Ile de Sein by the Remora 6000 ROV at 16h40 UTC.

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5/3/2011 4:55 PM

I just heard a TV report that they found the voice recorder today and brought it up but I'm wondering if it's the same recorder that I originally mentioned at the beginning of this thread (minus the memory)? It sounds like a new find to me and would be a very important piece of the puzzle if they get anything off of it.

This is the only mention of it on the web that I can find:

http://www.kirotv.com/news/27765523/detail.html

Air France 447 Voice Recorder Brought To Surface
Seattle-Based Ship Helped In Search Effort

Cockpit voice recorders from Air France Flight 447 were brought to the surface of the Atlantic Ocean on Tuesday. The find was a huge breakthrough and came amid a renewed search, with help from a Seattle-based ship, for the plane, which went down in 2009.

The Airbus jet's flight data recorder was found over the weekend.

Both items will be taken to France to search for data that can hopefully explain what caused the Rio de Janiero-to-Paris flight to crash into the ocean, killing all 228 people on board.

The Seattle ship, the Alucia, set out for the Atlantic in February. In early April, the ship's crew found several bodies of victims of the disaster and in mid-April, robot submarines from the Alucia located the plane's tail section.

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5/4/2011 2:50 AM
Edited Date/Time: 5/4/2011 2:52 AM

I hope they solve the mystery, must be hell for the relatives not knowing what happened - it must also be tough to decide whether to bring the bodies to the surface for a proper funeral or leave them to rest at the bottom of the ocean. I heard they found some passengers still strapped into their seats sad

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Jeff Emigs Keys to the Race:
1. Get a good start
2. Don't crash

5/16/2011 6:08 PM

Sounds like they were able to read the cockpit voice recordings:

http://news.slashdot.org/story/11/05/16/211217/Air-France-447-Black-Boxes-Readable

Air France 447 Black Boxes Readable
Posted by Soulskill on Monday May 16, @05:24PM
from the key-evidence dept.

An anonymous reader writes "It's not a lengthy press release, but it's good news: the memory cards for the flight data and cockpit voice recorders from the Air France 447 crash in 2009, recently recovered from the sea floor almost two years later, are readable. The data was recovered over the weekend and includes the full two hours of cockpit recording. Apparently it will take weeks for analysis of the data, but it looks like the challenging recovery effort is paying off in a big way. Hopefully detailed answers about the cause of the crash will follow."


http://www.bea.aero/fr/enquetes/vol.af.447/info16mai2011.en.php

Flight AF 447 on 1st June 2009
A330-203, registered F-GZCP

16 May 2011 briefing

Following operations to open, extract, clean and dry the memory cards from the flight recorders, BEA Safety Investigators were able to download the data over the weekend.

These operations were filmed and recorded in their entirety. This was done in the presence of two German investigators from BFU, an American investigator from NTSB, two British investigators from AAIB and two Brazilian investigators from CENIPA, as well as an officer from the French judicial police and a court expert.

These downloads gathered all of the data from the Flight Data recorder (FDR), as well as the whole recording of the last two hours of the flight from the Cockpit Voice Recorder (CVR).

In the framework of the safety investigation directed by the BEA, all of this data will now be subjected to detailed in-depth analysis.

This work will take several weeks, after which a further interim report will be written and then published during the summer.

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5/27/2011 12:17 PM

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5/27/2011 12:25 PM

No Mystery...hell...they're already making hardware/software changes to the 330.

There's a reason that we call them "Scare-Bus".

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Nobody ever told me, I found out for myself. You've got to believe in foolish miracles. It's not how you play the game, it's if you win or lose. You can choose. Don't confuse. Win or lose. It's up to you!

5/27/2011 1:22 PM
Edited Date/Time: 5/27/2011 1:24 PM

The co-pilots were getting inconsistent speed readings before the plane crashed.

The recordings showed that the plane, stalled before descending from 38,000 feet into the Atlantic.
The descent lasted 3 minutes and 30 seconds.
The captain can be heard rushing back to the cockpit, shouting instructions at his co-pilots when the plane stalled.
“It seems they did not feel more movements and turbulence that you generally feel in storms," Jean-Baptiste Audousset, president of a victims’ solidarity association, told the AP.
“So, we think that until impact they did not realize the situation, which for the family is what they want to hear

— they did not suffer.”

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in a past life, I was myself

when opportunity knocked, it waited because I was busy

I gave my father a talking to

5/28/2011 5:00 PM

Cool!

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" Some people value their opinions a little too much around here and have a hair less sense of humor than may be required. It's all in fun for me and I can't think of anyone here that I wouldn't buy a beer for including OldFart ." ~Newman~

5/29/2011 2:29 PM
Edited Date/Time: 5/29/2011 2:30 PM

TeamGreen wrote:

No Mystery...hell...they're already making hardware/software changes to the 330.

There's a reason that we call them ...more

lol, we call them? Is this airliners.net?

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5/29/2011 2:56 PM

TeamGreen wrote:

No Mystery...hell...they're already making hardware/software changes to the 330.

There's a reason that we call them ...more

zjbell wrote:

lol, we call them? Is this airliners.net?

It´s Captain Boeing

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