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Final report of Air Force Global Express one year ago

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  • Final report of Air Force Global Express one year ago

    Special-mission Global Express in Afghanistan in cruise flight lost a fan blade on the left engine. They shut down the wrong engine and ended up making a forced landing into a field and neither pilot survived.

    Think about it. Sever vibration, instrument panel shaking, unable to read instruments and while the engine auto shutdown, they where so quick in 24 seconds they shutdown the good engine. Now they couldn't tell which engine was the problem and they also couldn't see they had shutdown the good engine and didn't attempt a re-light on either one. Their idea was to try to glide 230 miles to Kandahar. When they decided they couldn't do that they finally tried another airport and couldn't make that one and crashed in a field.

    Now go back to any of your training and see if there was anything you could relate to this kind of situation? How about both throttles to idle, now set up a glide, one pilot flying and one into the checklist. Maybe get the good engine back and maybe the bad one would idle, hydraulics and electrics. Looks like they had some altitude/time to work out their problem, maybe we'll never know.

    Another old story from my past. In the simulator, 4 engine aircraft we train for a two engine failure, usually on the same side, emergency return, obviously. A friend told me about his experience where the instructor accidently shut down 3 engines.

    My next sim session I asked my instructor to give that to me. After that time I asked for it every time I was in the sim, DC-8, 747, Hawker 1000 and the Citation X. Well one day I was doing a test flight in the Hawker 1000 and at about 12,000 ft I had a dual flameout (turned out to be fuel contamination). We were able to turn around and glide back to the airport, as I had done before in the sim. Training, Training.

  • #2
    Oh yeah, AIN alerts, Jan 22, 2021

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    • #3
      CRM is everything. Why do so many crews fail at this?

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      • #4
        maybe because the sim is really bullshit. you know you are going to live. your reaction is not hampered by "holy F#$%^ i may die if i screw this up!"

        and because the sim is the best we have, there will always be the sorry-ass human factor to deal with. that is, of course, until HAL is "perfected."

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        • #5
          ...24 seconds...glide 230 miles...
          That’s a glaring contrast- 24 seconds to screw up versus 24 (36?) minutes to troubleshoot.

          But, how much sim time is focused on instant recall and prompt engine management during engine failures?

          At V-1 it’s really critical...In this scenario it seems to call for the old rule to not touch anything and light a cigarette and analyze the situation...

          Then again, if the vibration is that bad, maybe you better fix it before it tears the plane apart.

          I guess Kent asks the right questions: Why not totally power back and then investigate (Maybe because the vibration is still horrible? Maybe an underlying desire to save the million dollar engine from more damage?)

          Why not try a restart? (Was the vibration THAT bad? Was there some reason they were convinced that both engines were worthless?)

          No answers other than sim sessions always seem to include a V-1 engine cut where the pilots are expected to promptly analyze and secure things...so done in 24 seconds.

          I see the comment that they could not read the instruments- that says the vibration was bad.

          Maybe a big computer-controlled light next to each power lever that is green or red? /mild sarcasm.
          Les règles de l'aviation de base découragent de longues périodes de dur tirer vers le haut.

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          • #6
            Kent didn't mention the type but modern jets will record engine data on their DFDR, QAR as well as ACARS. With laptops on board in addition to the aircraft's data interface, it seems like there should be a way to access that data in flight. With that access, they could have simply gone back to the engine vibration parameters and determined which engine had failed.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Evan View Post
              they could have simply.
              I’d be very careful with that statement.

              Have you simply taken that bicycle ride yet?
              Les règles de l'aviation de base découragent de longues périodes de dur tirer vers le haut.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by TeeVee View Post
                maybe because the sim is really bullshit.
                A little harsh, BUT indeed, I don’t think there’s a “vibrate so hard you can’t read the instruments and who knows if this whole MF is coming apart” mode on simulators (see footnote)

                Footnote: Except in California during really big earthquakes.

                Les règles de l'aviation de base découragent de longues périodes de dur tirer vers le haut.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by 3WE View Post

                  I’d be very careful with that statement.
                  Ok. Carefully now... One pilot flying, the other bringing up the 'historical' engine data and checking the vibration levels. Or bringing up the ACARS data where high engine vibration would certainly trigger a maintenance message. Oh, there it is, affecting the #2 engine. So let's relight #1 and not end this mortal play in a Afghan field.

                  How much simpler does it get? But I suppose there is currently no simply way to do this. That wouldn't surprise me.


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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Evan View Post

                    Ok. Carefully now... One pilot flying, the other bringing up the 'historical' engine data and checking the vibration levels. Or bringing up the ACARS data where high engine vibration would certainly trigger a maintenance message. Oh, there it is, affecting the #2 engine. So let's relight #1 and not end this mortal play in a Afghan field.

                    How much simpler does it get? But I suppose there is currently no simply way to do this. That wouldn't surprise me.

                    This information is not readily available to the pilots. It is a maintenance function, and often not even available unless the aircraft is on the ground and shut down. So now what oh Sage of the aviation safety world?

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Evan View Post
                      Kent didn't mention the type
                      Bombardier Global Express E-11A. This is the "non-coverage" by AvHerald:
                      http://avherald.com/h?article=4d282570&opt=0
                      The E-11A is the military designation of the Bombardier Global 6000.

                      --- Judge what is said by the merits of what is said, not by the credentials of who said it. ---
                      --- Defend what you say with arguments, not by imposing your credentials ---

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by BoeingBobby View Post

                        This information is not readily available to the pilots. It is a maintenance function, and often not even available unless the aircraft is on the ground and shut down. So now what oh Sage of the aviation safety world?
                        Yeah, as I suspected. That was more of a 'wish list' thing. So, why not? Why in 2021 can't pilots, who are there to troubleshoot and deal with system anomalies, access this info in flight?
                        You can see current engine data on the ECAM/EICAS but not historical data, which is being stored by the system. Seems like it wouldn't be so difficult to add this somewhere.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Evan View Post

                          Yeah, as I suspected. That was more of a 'wish list' thing. So, why not? Why in 2021 can't pilots, who are there to troubleshoot and deal with system anomalies, access this info in flight?
                          You can see current engine data on the ECAM/EICAS but not historical data, which is being stored by the system. Seems like it wouldn't be so difficult to add this somewhere.
                          Because you are supposed to be flying the aircraft, not performing in flight maintenance.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by BoeingBobby View Post

                            Because you are supposed to be flying the aircraft, not performing in flight maintenance.
                            Um... CRM... is trying to get one engine back after shutting both down on a twin considered flight maintenance or is it considered flying the aircraft?

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Evan View Post

                              Yeah, as I suspected. That was more of a 'wish list' thing. So, why not? Why in 2021 can't pilots, who are there to troubleshoot and deal with system anomalies, access this info in flight?
                              You can see current engine data on the ECAM/EICAS but not historical data, which is being stored by the system. Seems like it wouldn't be so difficult to add this somewhere.
                              I believe you would open a can of worms. There is a lot of data in those QAR and interpreting maintenance data is not something at which the pilots necessarily are (or should be) experts.
                              You open the door for wrong interpretation, wrong conclusions, and wrong decision making, not to mention diverting the attention from flying the plane, monitoring, running checklists, navigating, communicating, etc.

                              If you want something specific available to the pilot, then make that somethings specific available to the pilot in an easy and friendly way that doesn't involve getting a laptop, getting some cables, connecting here and there, booting Windows, opening the corresponding application, login-in with the plane, etc.

                              That said, what's wrong with "idle both engines and then cautiously advance the thrust lever one at a time"?

                              --- Judge what is said by the merits of what is said, not by the credentials of who said it. ---
                              --- Defend what you say with arguments, not by imposing your credentials ---

                              Comment

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