LoneStarMike
Topic Author
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AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 6:30 am

Tonight on the Learning Channel:

August 21, 2003
On Air
Aug 21 2003 10:00 PM (ET)
Aug 22 2003 01:00 AM (ET)

Flight 587: Anatomy of a Disaster

For a few nervous hours on November 11, 2001 it looked as if America's enemies were attacking New York again. American Airlines Flight 587 crashed into the residential neighborhood of Belle Harbor. Watch as investigators uncover the mysterious crash.

LoneStarMike

 
Northwesta319
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 7:30 am

Thanks for posting that- I know I will be watching that.
 
Goose
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 7:31 am

Isn't that the aircraft where the tail fell off, due to a structural defect Airbus knew of already?

... I might catch it. Thanks for the heads-up.
"Talk to me, Goose..."
 
redngold
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 7:40 am

Actually, I think it was determined that the tail snapped off due to use of the rudder in mid-flight. This puts extraordinary stress on the tail, beyond normal design limits.

redngold
Up, up and away!
 
Okie
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 7:47 am

I always wondered why with FBW that rudder deflection in flight was not limited to deflections that would not compromise the aircraft.
 
Bobs89irocz
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 7:57 am

I guess im gonna have to leave the motocycle in the garage tonight and watch this show. Thanks for the insite and posting the times.

GOOSE, yes this is the same accident that your thinking of

I herd it was a defect from AIRBUS but when the accident happend and it was time to put blame on someone AIRBUS denied any flaws and said it was the lack of experience from the AA pilots or something? I guess you can tell the press anything and the public will believe it. makes u wonder what the truth really is about everything that is reported???
 
Goose
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 8:05 am

I recall hearing of an incident a few years before Flt 587, where another A300 experienced a downdraft effect, and the flight crew pushed hard on the controls in order to regain control of the aircraft..... eventually they did, but upon landing found that the tail had suffered critical stress fractures and only by luck had it not fallen off in flight.

Airbus failed to report this problem to the authorities, and failed to issue a warning to future pilots or go about constructing a remedy to strengthen the tail structure.

I'll try and find the appropriate link somewhere..... it wasn't too long ago that I read about it.
"Talk to me, Goose..."
 
chicago757
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 8:26 am

thanks! seems like i've got some entertainment for tonight.
Go White Sox!!!!
 
bigphilnyc
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 12:06 pm

That was a pretty cool show.

In the beginning you see kids playing roller rockey at a rink in Rockaway. That is where I used to play a few years ago. I have some good sports memories there.

Some nice footage and an entertaining show.
Phil Derner Jr.
 
FLAIRPORT
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 12:12 pm

I've got to get up at 6:30 ET to do a garage sale! so, is it worth recording, anyone who watched it. I'll either record it or the Wold News Now Polka. tough choice, I record the polka weekly!
NEXT FLIGHT: FLL-ATL-HPN on FL
 
flyingbronco05
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 12:13 pm

I watched it with my dad and he was telling me all this stuff about rudder reversals and stress loads/limits and I was so lost.

But I never really knew what happens in cases like this.

My dad says he is more careful now then he ever was flying through wake turbulence.

FB05

I now believe that Airbus Aircraft: STINK! and are CHEAP!, and are made from FIBERS!.

There's a reason why they are called "scarebus"  Big grin
Never Trust Your Fuel Gauge
 
727LOVER
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 12:25 pm

HHHmmmm....oh I see! And Boeing didn't have rudder problems w/ the 737? The battle between AA and Airbus parallels US and Boeing. You Airbus haters need to STOP HATIN'
Love Trumps Hate
 
tekelberry
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 12:26 pm

Oh cmon people, although I tend to dislike Airbus, you can't say they make cheap planes. Airbus AND Boeing released safety recommendations to not use rudder reversals.

I do agree that Airbus could have done something sooner if they would have actually paid attention to the incident in Moscow. I guess they only like to improve the safety of their aircraft AFTER one crashes instead of BEFORE.
 
artsyman
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 12:29 pm

I do agree that Airbus could have done something sooner if they would have actually paid attention to the incident in Moscow
***************

You have to admit that the pilot who did the recovery in the Moscow incident did well to recover that situation. That looked mental
 
JBirdAV8r
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 12:30 pm

Airbus cheap and attractive aircraft.

Kinda makes you think of hookers, doesn't it?  Big thumbs up
I got my head checked--by a jumbo jet
 
b752fanatic
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 12:30 pm

I dont hate Airbus, I just think Boing is superior.

I have flown most of my entire time in American Airlines A300's, and no problems at all.

Since my family is from Dominican Republic.

But I really think AA should take out of their fleet the A300's.

I just think they have to stop thinking about money, and think about SAFETY!.
"Truth is more of a stranger than fiction." Mark Twain
 
727LOVER
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 12:30 pm

What airline was that Moscow incident again?
Love Trumps Hate
 
NiteRider30
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 12:33 pm

Thanks for posting that, I'll definitely have to watch it. I'm pretty keen on the events that occured, as I was part of a group that did a mock trial over that crash in Aviation Law class.
 
Okie
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 12:34 pm

I watched the program and learned a lot. I had always assumed that the output of the rudder pedals effectiveness was proportional to the speed of the aircraft. In otherwords at 150 kias 7in of rudder pedal might move the rudder say 15 degs maybe at 230 kias 7in of rudder pedal might move the rudder say 7 degs and say 300 kias 7in of rudder pedal might move the rudder 3 degs. Being from and industrial engr enviroment that would be a normal type control program. From the information that I got from the program it suggests that the rudder pedal movement was just limited the stroke of the rudder pedal and they mentioned only 1.250 inches. I would think that during an upset it would be a normal reaction to smash or push the rudder pedal to the full stroke.
It looks like to me that there should have been a little more engineering put into that rudder system.
 
Accidentally
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 12:59 pm

A good friend of mine was a co-worker of Mr. Molin (727), and flew often off the job. He says he was a good pilot.

I'm recording it for him, since his hotel doesnt get TLC for some reason.

I beleive the entire situation was a combination of things. I dont feel Airbus' tail caused it, Sten's technique caused it, or AA's training caused it, but the whole mix.

I'll be seriously upset if one party winds up taking the entire blame.
Indianapolis, IN
 
TLHFLA
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 1:09 pm

I would imagine that due to battle between American and Airbus that American probably will not add any additional Airbus models to their fleet. I wonder if the battle between USAir and Boeing over the Pittsburgh crash was a major factor in USAir's decision to go with Airbus for their fleet modernization.
Bill in ATL
 
b752fanatic
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 1:13 pm

AA will never buy Airbus Aircraft.

Not even if they sell them at half the price.

Since this accident, Airbus and AA have broken friendship and nice relations.
"Truth is more of a stranger than fiction." Mark Twain
 
goboeing
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 1:21 pm

I'm not sure about who's to blame here. But there's one thing this show mentioned that I couldn't agree more with, and that's human factors changing the result of an upset.

In a simulator, you can only feel so much. Even a full motion sim. I haven't been in one, but it certainly doesn't go upside down, or simulate 3Gs pulling out of a dive.

Any pilots, including commercial, would benefit in my opinion from a few hours of "Unusual Attitude Recovery." I have flown aerobatics including that myself with a CFI and not only did I learn a lot, but it's fun! There's nothing like yanking the stick back at 140kts and looking sideways to see the ground perpendicular to the wing and then kick the rudder to the side and reverse sides immediately. The more you practice these "unusual" attitudes, the more routine they become and the less prone to panicking you become as well.

I agree with firsthand experience that you are more likely to over-control the airplane while suddenly under 5Gs and heading for the ground. If you don't react within 2 seconds or so in the Cap-10, you'd be past Vne and you could, well, rip the tail or wings off.

Nick
 
Okie
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 1:28 pm

I have read quite a few of the accident / incident report on the UK's website and I have to say they seem to be a little more down to earth and a little more explanatory than NTSB. I can say this when an Airbus is involved it seems that Airbus's explanation always seems to try to point toward pilot or operator error.
From watching the program it Airbus tries to put the blame elsewhere, most likely this is for legal reasons.
I get the impression that rather than trying to improve the safety of the aircraft and making the plane fit the normal reaction of the pilot, they are trying to imply that the pilot needs to be trained to fit the limitation of the airplane.
 
dc863
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 1:32 pm

The Moscow incident was on an Interflug A310. I know I've seen amateur video footage taken showing the A310 in a near vertical dive before recovering. It was from a three part series on aircraft accidents that was shown on TV several years ago. However, I recall that the commentator stated that the aircraft in the footage was a Romanian A310.
 
flyingbronco05
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 1:48 pm

Airbus AND Boeing released safety recommendations to not use rudder reversals.

Yeah but airbus did it to cover their butt.  Big grin
Never Trust Your Fuel Gauge
 
JBLUA320
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 1:49 pm

Great show..... nice to see both sides of the argument...... tho it was chilling at the same time...

JBLU
 
flyingbronco05
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 1:53 pm

Anybody know why the captain never took over?

The FO said he didn't need help but sometimes you just have to take over.

I wonder if this could have been avoided if the captain was flying, not the FO.

The FO was an excellent pilot according to other AA pilots, but the captain is the captain for a reason.

FB05
Never Trust Your Fuel Gauge
 
AA777MIA
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 1:59 pm

I did not know the Captain, but I had flown with the First Officer weeks prior.. He was a good guy, and a great pilot.. I would fly with him again today if he was still alive...
 
Accidentally
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 2:10 pm

Bronco, I don't think he took over because Molin's actions were not known to be improper at that time.
Indianapolis, IN
 
Red Panda
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 4:56 pm

"...And Boeing didn't have rudder problems w/ the 737? The battle between AA and Airbus parallels US and Boeing."

A very good parellel by 727LOVER

r panda
 
artsyman
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 5:03 pm

The sad part is that the war between AA and Airbus has more to do with avoiding legal liability than finding a solution to the problem. With every crash, air travel gets safer as something is usually learned that helps to stop the same thing, and often spin offs from happening again.
 
Bobs89irocz
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 5:06 pm

FO or Captain, when your in the Airlines and flying a wide body the FO should/could handle the plane on his own.

After watching the show im gonna say, even with with a pilots opinion that has flown with Mr. Molin before i beleive he had alittle bit to do with this accident. MAYBE if he didnt give it any rudder then the plane might have made it through the wake. BUT he did give it rudder and according to SCAREBUS AA trained there pilots wrong...:rolleyes: whatever........in the 7 seconds Mr. Molin was using the rudder i dont see how its his fault it broke. I know he put a lot of stress in it but considering the situation he was in i know i would have done the same thing along with several other great pilots such as himself. I dont think there can be much blame on the pilots but a lot on scarebus. However im a firm believer that things happen for a reason and theres no way out of some situations.....no what/and/ or ifs about it this accident was just that and im sure if it was a 767/757/777 it could handle it but it was an A300 and its gone with 265 other victums.....so lets live and learn.

I learned to never want to fly a scarebus.
 
JMChladek
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 5:29 pm

The Moscow incident as I recall was a pilot vs. flight control computer conflict on an A320 series aircraft. I am trying to recall this from memory of the TLC episode (which I have on tape) so the facts may not be entirely accurate. But the events as I recall were as follows:

A320 was on approach to Moscow International and told to abort the landing. Pilot dials in the right settings for the computer to abort the landing and plane begins climbout. But, the pilot doesn't like how high the nose is pointed and applies a little forward pressure to the sidestick to drop the nose to a more comfortable level. Flight control computer responds to this input by pointing the nose HIGHER to counteract the pilot input. As a result, the plane just about stopped in mid-flight (less then 50knts IAS IIRC), flipped over onto its back, then went into a dive. It came out of the dive, then did a couple of big wing waggles before finally leveling off. Yes, the incident was indeed MENTAL as the flight track from the data recorder was very scarey to watch. It looked almost like the plane was duplicating a Sukoi Flanker vectored thrust airshow loop.

I know it was on my mind when I flew on my first A320 last year, but the flight was without incident (and quite pleasant). As for Airbus as a whole, they make a good product. But to me it seems as though their engineers seem to design planes from a great engineering standpoint while maybe leaving out a few things that might be more beneficial to a pilot (computer in control with inputs from pilot). Boeing tends to keep pilots in the loop more it seems probably because of our tradition (pilot in control dictating instructions to computer). Part of that might have more to do with French and German engineering culture as a whole compared to American engineering culture as opposed to any specific doctrine involving Airbus Industrie itself. And of course this is also pretty much unrelated to the AA A300 crash as that wasn't a fly-by-wire airplane with a flight control computer.
 
CPH-R
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 5:37 pm

Congratulations, B752fanatic.

You post in reply #9 has just warranted my first ever use of the Suggest Deletion for A vs B comments.

I have never seen such ignorant comments before, and I've seen a lot inhere.

I agree with Artsyman that the whole thing with Airbus & AA came down to who was to blame - not what could be done to improve safety.
 
VC-10
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 6:40 pm

I always wondered why with FBW that rudder deflection in flight was not limited to deflections that would not compromise the aircraft.

A300 Rudders are not FBW.

I had always assumed that the output of the rudder pedals effectiveness was proportional to the speed of the aircraft

Rudder deflection is proportional to the speed of the a/c. In the case of the A300, on the ground max rudder deflection is 30 degrees and this remains so until 165 kts. Then as the a/c accelerates the max possible rudder deflection progressively reduces to 5 degrees @ 360 kts.

What the programme failed to point out was that when the rudder pedel deflection reduced from 4" to 1.5" the actual max rudder deflection was also reducing.


From the information that I got from the program it suggests that the rudder pedal movement was just limited the stroke of the rudder pedal and they mentioned only 1.250 inches. I would think that during an upset it would be a normal reaction to smash or push the rudder pedal to the full stroke.
It looks like to me that there should have been a little more engineering put into that rudder system.


There is nothing wrong with design of the rudder system, Rudder deflection is limited at the input mechanaism to the Rudder PCU's

After the program was first aired on the BBC I spoke to several 747 pilots about the AA pilots handling of the incident and all of them said they would NEVER do what he did, the rudder isn't designed for that on a large aircraft.


VC-10
Licensed Aircraft Engineer (Airbus, BAC, Boeing & McDonnell-Douglas)
 
backfire
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 6:51 pm

The Moscow incident was on an Interflug A310. I know I've seen amateur video footage taken showing the A310 in a near vertical dive before recovering...However, I recall that the commentator stated that the aircraft in the footage was a Romanian A310.


I think you'll find that the footage was not the Interflug aircraft. I understand that it was a Tarom jet which was filmed - and that the video footage does not depict the more serious incident which happened to a different aircraft.
 
727LOVER
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 9:05 pm

Actually, I think a lot of blame should go on the JFK tower. Why did they separate the A300 behind a 747-400 by only 2 minutes?
Love Trumps Hate
 
User avatar
United_fan
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 9:18 pm

Wasn't A^A's A300 involved in some sort of a tail srtike during a storm before it was deliverd ?
Champagne For My Real Friends,and Real Pain For My Sham Friends
 
bigphilnyc
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 9:58 pm

They are all like that. That is what the FAA regulates as the waiting time in between departing aircraft. I think.

I've seen ATC at all airports send out planes in closer increments.

-Phil

Phil Derner Jr.
 
contrails
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 10:24 pm

I think they did a good job in explaining what happened. I can only imagine what the crew and passengers went throught prior to impact.

I have a few questions I'd like to see some discussion on:

Why was the rudder reversal issue not raised before the crash? Was it the case, as suggested in the show, that the airlines didn't realize this could cause a disaster?

Also, the show didn't mention the connecting bolts and mounting brackets for the tail assembly. Were they cleared as contributing factors to the crash?
That question was raised immediately after the crash, as I recall.

Finally, and I believe other postings alluded to this, has the FAA changed its procedures relating to planes departing behind "heavy" aircraft?

Flying Colors Forever!
 
Delta777-XXX
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 10:55 pm

I'm not really sure what to think about it all. The program was pretty scary. I would feel confident to fly on the A300... but probably not as much so as on a Boeing or newer Airbus.

At least we learned something from this accident. All of us pilots learned the danger of rudder reversal. I had never been taught that by any of my instructors. It definitely makes sense and will stay in the back of my mind should I ever find myself in a situation.

I didn't realize there was so much tension between Airbus and AA over this. I guess we won't be seeing any Airbus planes in the baremetal AA scheme. I don't think that either company should be at fault, from the little bit I know from watching the program. It was obviously a combintation of wrong doing on both parts.

Does anyone know where I might find a link to that video footage you all were talking about?

Hank
 
Capt.Fantastic
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 11:12 pm

The amateur film footage that some of you are eluding to was a TAROM A310 at Paris Orly - This was not the Moscow incident referred to in the program.

With regard to the co-pilot's actions, hind-site is always 20/20 - You are talking about a 7 second period when his aircraft was pitching and yawing abruptly. He did what he thought he had to - Albeit, it was the wrong thing. Pilots make mistakes too.

I am curious, if the tail were aluminum, would it withstand more load than the composite?

When you think about it, its quite scary - A tail can snap off with a few (inappropriate) inputs within seconds! ... wow

Another question: Has Airbus considered a protection mechanism to prevent rudder reversal at high speeds? I know they have that Alpha Prot for attitude.

 
CcrlR
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 11:21 pm

I saw it too and it was good. Especially when they showed AA and Airbus' demos. I didn't know it was on until beofre I went to sleep but I stayted up and watched it. Also I didn't know there was a lot of debate with who was at fault and with what the pilot knew what to do and what Airbus recomends.  Sleepy  Yawn
"He was right, it is a screaming metal deathtrap!"-Cosmo (from the Fairly Oddparents)
 
VC-10
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 11:29 pm

the show didn't mention the connecting bolts and mounting brackets for the tail assembly. Were they cleared as contributing factors to the crash?

The fin attachments were found intact it was the actual fin that failed at a load in excess of the design load.

I am curious, if the tail were aluminum, would it withstand more load than the composite?

Just look at tub of an F1 Grand Prix car after an accident, vitually undamaged. These days the drivers are getting injuries from the deceleration they are experiencing. When they had aluminium tubs the deceleration forces were less because the car was folding up around them.




 
Okie
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Fri Aug 22, 2003 11:42 pm

Thanks for the info VC-10
I also noticed the AA simulator pilot was making very abrupt movements with the controls be it drama for TV or whatever compared to the Airbus simulator pilot making very small movements.
Unfortunately we did not get to see what the G forces or aircraft attitude did when the Airbus simulation was done.



 
laddb
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Sat Aug 23, 2003 12:16 am

I don't know what the rudder fin was made of, but in my experience, composites have higher stregth than aluminum. However, composites tend to be brittle and the yield and ultimate points are close together so that they fail without warning or without going through a plastic region. Whereas, aluminum tends to yield or bend before rupture. If for example, the rudder or linkage pin was loaded past yield one day but did not reach ultimate, then it would be visually deformed. Composites tend to show stress or fatigue cracks which can be harder to detect. Also with aluminin, bending can reduce the load such that rupture does not occur. When poissible, this is how I design mechanical sysyems using aluminum and other soft metals. Not that this would happen in real life, but imagine a rudder deflected such that it saw too high of an aerodynamic load. A composite one may break in two, whereas an aluminum one might deform or bend, thus reducing the load.
 
Northwesta319
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Sat Aug 23, 2003 12:27 am

Sorry if this is an ovbious question- but I thought A300's were old- is that right or wrong?
 
b752fanatic
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Sat Aug 23, 2003 12:35 am

CPH-R,

No problem with me, if they deleted my message, It was my opinion, I think Airbus does not make the same quality as Boeing.

And if it would had been a Boeing, I dont think it would had happened, for making a cheap tail, more than 250 people lost their lives.

Is not about the Tail, about Airbus, About AA is about all of those who died in the accident, they where going back to their country for vacations and to bring joy to their families down in Dominican Republic.

Not only that, those that died on the ground.

What I think is, that to save money, to save fuel, to add more pax, I prefer safety.
"Truth is more of a stranger than fiction." Mark Twain
 
flyingbronco05
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RE: AA Flight 587 On TLC Tonight (8/21)

Sat Aug 23, 2003 1:56 am

Actually, I think a lot of blame should go on the JFK tower. Why did they separate the A300 behind a 747-400 by only 2 minutes?

The captain or FO could have declined take off clearance but they went.

The blame on the tower is rediculous.

I was cleared to take off only 35 seconds or so behind a departing BAC-111 at UGN a few weeks ago in a Cessna 172.

I declined and waited till a plane landed then took off.
Never Trust Your Fuel Gauge