|Quoting dtw2hyd (Reply 43):|
Predicting/forecasting/interpreting weather is not black and white even for world renowned meteorologists.
This is, why I posted this link:
|Quoting cat3appr50 (Reply 53):|
IMO the exclusion of weather as a contributing root cause (major or minor) at this point by some posting here is unusual.
It is not excluded. But it is considered as unlikely. Except they might have been icing. But strong updrafts are basically excluded. There is a difference.
|Quoting cat3appr50 (Reply 53):|
The major question lingers, why did the flight crew request a climb to FL380, and then without ATC’s approval to do so initiated that climb (which is legal to do as a pilot in emergency conditions), and according to some preliminary data that climb rate was 2-3 times beyond the capability of the A320 at the flight level they were cruising at. IMO two situations come to mind….TCAS warning for conflict or severe turbulence, etc. due to possible t’storm encounter, the latter being absolutely weather related.
Therefore those who assert at this point that weather wasn’t or likely wasn’t a factor should explain why AirAsia 8501 climbed without ATC approval unless it was a sudden emergency to do so, and what other inflight emergency besides TCAS conflict or severe weather effects would precipitate that emergency decision.
If they needed to do an emergency climb due to severe turbulence (or avoidance of storm conditions), it is not out of the question that they may have encountered a very high updraft velocity that was superimposed on their emergency climb rate ending with an actual climb of 2-3 times the actual, maximum aircraft climb capability.
All of your observations are kind of correct, if consider each of your points by itself. But if you consider the whole picture, you probably will get different results.
1. The crew requested a heading change. This is a strong indicator, that they where aware about the weather ahead. Changing course/heading laterally is normally done to circumnavigate CBs.
2. They requested an altitude change. The reason for that is still unclear. I doubt they did that to climb overhead a developing CB
. Because they knew (very likely; see above; they fly in this area a lot) the wx conditions.There are several reason to request a climb. Performance, turbulence, …
3. CBs producing very strong updrafts should be visible on the on board weather radar screen (navigation display). They must have turned in on. Otherwise they would not have asked for a heading change.
4. All the so called ATC radar display screenshots are highly doubtful in my opinion. I do not (yet) consider them reliable. If they have been reliable, they would have known where to look for the aircraft pretty soon. Almost no forward speed with a huge descent rate should give the SAR team a relatively small search area.
But they established a large search are right from the beginning. They might not have known those "ATC radar screenshots" initially, but it took them quite long getting them. And see here: http://www.avherald.com/h?article=47f6abc7&opt=0
Scroll down to the comments section. Simon did some explanations as well, why to consider the screenshot unreliable.
5. Therefore all those steep climb and descent scenarios are kind of lame. As others have pointed out, the data transmitted by the aircraft may have been corrupt (for whatever reason).
In the end we don't know very much at all. The airplane crashed. That's about it.
Edit: Explanation added
[Edited 2015-01-03 01:10:31]