shakesphere
Posts: 9
Joined: Wed Nov 14, 2001 12:54 am

AA Flt 587 Could Weight/balance Be A Factor?

Thu Nov 15, 2001 12:24 pm

I could imagine those flights from New York to the Dominan Republic having alot of natives onboard, thus having more baggage then just ordinary tourists. I was wondering if maybe a mis-calculation on the weight and balance could of had a factor in the crash of this ill fated flight. If there are any pilots or operation agents that could answer my question I would appreciate it.

Many thanks from Manchester U.K

Sir William McKenzie
 
PanAm747
Posts: 4713
Joined: Mon Mar 01, 2004 4:46 am

RE: AA Flt 587 Could Weight/balance Be A Factor?

Thu Nov 15, 2001 12:28 pm

I'm not an expert, but I don't believe weight would have caused the engine to fall off, or the tail to come off.

The most it would've done would make the plane behave "sluggish" or make it more prone to stalls. Which would've been bad, except by all accounts it looks like it didn't happen.

I think the cause of this crash is a direct result of either the engine or the tail. They are looking into wake turbulence now.
Pan Am:The World's Most Experienced Airline - P(oor) S(ailor's) A(irline): San Diego's Hometown Airline-Catch Our Smile!
 
tygue
Posts: 220
Joined: Sun Jul 18, 1999 4:42 pm

RE: AA Flt 587 Could Weight/balance Be A Factor?

Thu Nov 15, 2001 1:14 pm

Merr..... not necissarily true. Eyewitnesses report seeing the airplane wobble,then nose dive. Sounds like a stall to me. Also, a pilot on the CVR shouted for full power, also possibly pointing towards a buffet.

 
PanAm747
Posts: 4713
Joined: Mon Mar 01, 2004 4:46 am

RE: AA Flt 587 Could Weight/balance Be A Factor?

Thu Nov 15, 2001 1:40 pm

>>a pilot on the CVR shouted for full power<<

But if they were taking off, they would have already been at full power.

But about the other stuff, I really don't know. A stall could have happened but if I was the NTSB, I would first focus on the engine, then on the wake turbulence.
Pan Am:The World's Most Experienced Airline - P(oor) S(ailor's) A(irline): San Diego's Hometown Airline-Catch Our Smile!
 
lymanm
Posts: 1100
Joined: Tue Jan 23, 2001 2:30 pm

RE: AA Flt 587 Could Weight/balance Be A Factor?

Thu Nov 15, 2001 4:41 pm

Airlines very rarely use full power on take off. To conserve engine life, they use a power setting that will enable a safe take off, but not full power.
buhh bye
 
spacecadet
Posts: 2790
Joined: Thu Sep 20, 2001 3:36 am

RE: AA Flt 587 Could Weight/balance Be A Factor?

Thu Nov 15, 2001 4:55 pm

And they usually cut the power further after takeoff due to noise abatement. Depends on the noise charactertistics and power of the engines on a particular aircraft type, though; I don't know the typical settings on an A300 on that takeoff pattern.

I thought the last transponder return showed this plane at 280 knots. Unless there was some sort of ridiculous angle of attack, I have a hard time believing the plane would have stalled at that speed; and it was obviously accelerating after takeoff. There's video of the plane taking off that the NTSB has, and they've said it's unremarkable. Usually when there's a really bad weight distribution problem it's obvious right from takeoff due to an unusual attitude.

The call for max power's another piece of the puzzle, though. We'll have to wait and see what that's about.
I'm tired of being a wanna-be league bowler. I wanna be a league bowler!
 
lymanm
Posts: 1100
Joined: Tue Jan 23, 2001 2:30 pm

RE: AA Flt 587 Could Weight/balance Be A Factor?

Thu Nov 15, 2001 5:24 pm

An aircraft can stall at any airspeed Spacecadet... called an accelerated stall.

These are caused by abrupt or excessive control movement. They commonly occur during maneuvers such as steep turns or rapid dive recoveries involving a high load factor or a sudden change in flight path. Accelerated stalls are usually more violent than unaccelerated stalls, and they are often unexpected because of the relatively high airspeed. Any time you are experiencing an increased flight load factor, that acceleration indicates that you have increased the angle of attack, and even though you may be well above the usual stall speed, you will be closer to the stalling angle of attack.
buhh bye
 
shakesphere
Posts: 9
Joined: Wed Nov 14, 2001 12:54 am

RE: AA Flt 587 Could Weight/balance Be A Factor?

Thu Nov 15, 2001 9:27 pm

Thankyou to all of you who have shared your thoughts and insight with me. I just wanted to make sure that my theory could be ruled out. Since the aircraft was full to capacity and the baggage load being typically full on these flights to the Dominican Republic.

This is such a horrible accident and I hope that we will get the answers soon. My condolencences to the families and friends of the victims and to the city of Queens New York which has suffered many loss's already.

 
Guest

RE: AA Flt 587 Could Weight/balance Be A Factor?

Thu Nov 15, 2001 9:38 pm

Shakesphere - The fact that the aircraft broke up in mid-air really rules out your posssibility. If the aircraft is unbalanced it would be very difficult to control, but I do not think it would cause enough stress for the airframe to fail.
Iain
 
Stretch 8
Posts: 2468
Joined: Fri May 28, 1999 4:00 am

RE: AA Flt 587 Could Weight/balance Be A Factor?

Thu Nov 15, 2001 11:25 pm

I also wonder about the First Officer's call for "max power." I understand 587 heavy took off from 22R, and was in the process of banking left. Did they cut back on full throttle due to noise abatement rules over Jamaica Bay?
Maggs swings, it's a drive deep to left! The Tigers are going to the World Series!!!
 
Guest

RE: AA Flt 587 Could Weight/balance Be A Factor?

Fri Nov 16, 2001 12:05 am

Stretch 8, a couple things come to mind, when taking off in a large airliner they do not go full power, but they use a calculated percent which will give them plenty of power to get airborne.

I am not sure if it is the same on an airliner, but in the cessna 421 I flew you reduce the power on climb out otherwise you would burn too much fuel.
Iain