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The $100,000 Device That Could Have Solved Missing Plane Mystery 461

First time accepted submitter evidencebase writes "How can an airliner simply disappear, leaving no clues? And why do we have to wait until the black boxes are found to learn what happened to Flight MH370? As this article explains, there's no good reason that flight data needs to go down with the plane, because the technology to stream it to ground, from the moment things start to go wrong, is already on the market. It can be fitted to a commercial airliner for less than $100,000. But the industry has decided that it's not worth the expense. Tell that the the families of passengers on Flight MH370."
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The $100,000 Device That Could Have Solved Missing Plane Mystery

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  • by tipo159 ( 1151047 ) on Tuesday March 11, 2014 @07:44PM (#46459343)

    "Of course, that wouldn’t yield much information if a plane is blown out of the sky by a bomb, or suffers a sudden catastrophic structural failure at cruising altitude. But in those rare cases, conventional black boxes are really the only viable technology."

    MH370 was sending data when it disappeared. The ADS-B data can be found on FlightRadar 24. Rolls Royce indicated that it was receiving ACARS data from the engines.

    All of this stuff was either switched off or stopped working because of a sudden catastrophic failure.

  • by LeeRyman ( 1942792 ) on Tuesday March 11, 2014 @08:19PM (#46459625)

    I disagree,

    Maintenance schedules are already extremely tight, and there is a great deal of engineering change procedures that would need to go into fitting something like this to ensure it actually works without making the aircraft fall out of the sky (would kind of make the device redundant). Mods are made, but not without extensive rigour and testing.

    (And yes, I have worked in an aircraft through-life support industry)

  • Re:snark (Score:5, Informative)

    by mjwx ( 966435 ) on Tuesday March 11, 2014 @10:52PM (#46460591)

    You obviously don't know about the concept of closure, or care enough about someone else to care about it.

    Because some company using a tragedy to peddle their wares that have dubious value and are not even remotely guaranteed to work is closer.

    Pot, meed kettle.

    FLYHT are scum. Their products have been rejected by the aviation industry because they don't add value but add additional cost (satellite data connections aren't cheap), are just as prone to failure as current methods (relies on instrumentation or manual activation) and have additional points of failure (a dial on demand satellite connection, when a flight disappears from radar and the pilots cannot be raised on the radio and the transponder is gone... WTF makes me think a dial on demand satellite connection will work). And now they're using a tragedy to try to peddle their crud.

    I read the article, it's nothing but attacks on the aviation industry and badly used thought terminating cliche's like "tell that to the families". Its the kind of thing an angry pre-pubescent child would write when their parents ground them.

  • by reub2000 ( 705806 ) on Wednesday March 12, 2014 @01:19AM (#46461169)

    why would you think that most people in an airplane crash survive the accident? []

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