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Thread: Smolensk 2010 crash - new technical report

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    Default Smolensk 2010 crash - new technical report

    This report was released few days ago - I think it warrants a discussion
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Technical Report Part5.pdf   Technical Report Part4.pdf   Technical Report Part3.pdf   Technical Report Part2.pdf   Technical Report Part1.pdf  


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    Senior Member Gabriel's Avatar
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    I just skimmed through it so I may have gotten things wrong, but these are my initial takeways.

    1- The uncontrollable roll makes no sense. Just 7 degrees of sideslip could have balance the plane, and that even without taking into account any aileron input, even a 707 lost more of the wing and could land safely (together with one engine). Interestingly enough, the report doesn't analyze what would happen if the loss of the wing happens when the pilot are pulling up hard because they are trying to avoid contact with the trees they just saw in front of them.
    2- From the point where the plane supposedly crashed the first tree, which that could never have sliced the wing anyway, the plane climbed and avoided other trees. The required climb exceeds the airplane performance by 4 times. So the plane never touched that tree and hence that tree didn't slice the wing (and even if it had crashed the tree it could have not sliced the wing, rather the other way around). Interestingly, the report doesn't explore the possibility that the plane may have been already climbing BEFORE touching the tree and that it may have been trading speed for altitude in a way that is not sustainable in anything but the short term, and hence is not considered as climb performance. As an example, AA447 climbed at 7000 fpm at 35000 ft. Ok, that's not 4 times the airplane's climb performance at that altitude. It's just 14 times.
    3- But the wing was sliced (a big fragment of the left wing tip was found almost intact way before the main crash site). So how did that happen? Elementary, Watson. Somebody put a linear explosive 1 mm wide and 5mm thick following the airfoil from inside of the wing, more precisely inside the wing tank. And they covered and sealed it so the fuel would not damage the explosive. They don't discuss how was that explosive activated.
    4- The destruction of the central galley and the widespred dispersion of its fragments proves an explosion in the central part of the fuselage. Also, small fragment of bodies and internal organs were found before the main crash site showing that the fuselage was already torn open and the bodies already fragmented before the main crash. Also proof of that is the signs of tree damage ahead of the ain crash site, that show evidence of an active blast wave. THe slicing of the wing tip by a tree, rolling inverted and crashing ahead cannot explain any of that. (the linear explosive placed in the fuel tank near the wing tip cannot do that either, but the report doesn't explain that).

    Conclusions:

    - The pilot attempted a non-precision NDB approach (which by the way is much lower precision than for example a non-precision VOR approach) in conditions that were way below the published minimums for said approach, after the tower advised twice that the conditions were not suitable for landing and suggested to go to an alternate.
    - The pilot violated the published minimum descent altitude for the approach, after the navigator advised three times that they had achieved said MDA.
    - Just about when they were about to crash anyway, somebody activated the linear explosive in the wing and the airplane started to roll inverted, although the roll would have been easily controllable.
    - And just to make sure, a missile was fired at the same time, which impacted in the center of the fuselage dispersing galley and body parts all around.
    - Then the airplane reached the main crash site basically in one piece.

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    Senior Member Evan's Avatar
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    Which brings up the moral conundrum: is it wrong to blow up an airliner that is about to crash anyway?

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    If the investigators had the wreckage of the plane and the original black boxes to examine, I think you could have clear answers to all of your assumed contradictions. There is a reason why the Russians don't want to release the wreckage and the boxes. The facts shown in this report point to several explosions that first crippled, and then destroyed the plane. This by itself should place doubt on any attempts from the Russian side to place blame somewhere else. The ATC provided the pilots with inaccurate information about the position of the plane. The plane did not respond to the automatic go around (as it should have based on experiments with a twin TU-154). This was not an ordinary crash.

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    Senior Member Evan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Northwester View Post
    If the investigators had the wreckage of the plane and the original black boxes to examine, I think you could have clear answers to all of your assumed contradictions. There is a reason why the Russians don't want to release the wreckage and the boxes. The facts shown in this report point to several explosions that first crippled, and then destroyed the plane. This by itself should place doubt on any attempts from the Russian side to place blame somewhere else. The ATC provided the pilots with inaccurate information about the position of the plane. The plane did not respond to the automatic go around (as it should have based on experiments with a twin TU-154). This was not an ordinary crash.
    The go-around (automatic, meaning on autopilot, not automatic meaning without the need for crew action) came too late. This was poor piloting by a poorly chosen and poorly briefed crew operating in a poorly disciplined pilot culture. That's it Northwester. No bomb. No missile. No Sabotage. Just arrogance and stupidity. You can either choose to learn from this lesson or never learn from this lesson. Fortunately, the VIP air wing of the Polish government chose to learn from this lesson. Case closed.

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    The case is far from closed. Explain any of these:
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

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    Senior Member Gabriel's Avatar
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    Why don't YOU explain why the pilot attempted the landing in the first place and violated the minimums (AP or no AP, it took several seconds and calls from the navigator for the captain to even call go around). Or why the Polish decommissioned the previous senior captain for going around against the will of the PM? Or how would have the plot worked if the pilot had made the rational cal to divert, or if the weather had not been so bad by chance? Or the different self-inconsistencies in this report? Starting from the fact that a good part of the information used to prepare the report comes from the same source that they accuse of lying and fabricating? (of course, only the parts that contradict this report were fabrications, the part that favor this report are the basis of it).

    I am sorry. If it walks like a duck, swims like a duck and quacks like a duck, then it is a duck until proven otherwise. And the burden of proof is on your side. And no, saying "you cannot explain this one thing" doesn't imply that you can explain that other thing. In the same way that the fact that I cannot explain what it was or how could it move in such a strange and seemingly impossible way doesn't make that UFO a spaceship controlled by a superior intelligence for another galaxy.

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    I don't know what would have happened if not everything happened the way as it was expected. I can only deal with facts that are known and come from reliable sources. The dispersion of left wing internal parts, fragments of the section of the fuselage, and of body fragments were mapped by Polish archeologists. Hundreds of photographs confirmed some of the information. The material deformation was replicated through experiments. They did wind tunnel testing. The pilot of Yak-40 who landed in Smolensk before TU-154 standing near the runway testified about feeling the shockwave from the explosion. The area around the crash site was secured, hours before the crash, by hundreds of police, military, and special forces. All of this is enough to draw conclusions.
    What happened in the cockpit, why there was a delay in go-around, can be only answered after examining the wreckage, the instruments, and equipment. That will not happen as long as the wreckage is in Russian hands.

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    Senior Member Evan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Northwester View Post
    What happened in the cockpit, why there was a delay in go-around, can be only answered after examining the wreckage, the instruments, and equipment.
    Or the undamaged flight recorders. But, oh, right, those were faked...

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    Polish side has just copies of the recording. 5 different versions of it. Why wouldn't Russians return the original black boxes and the wreckage?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Northwester View Post
    The area around the crash site was secured, hours before the crash, by hundreds of police, military, and special forces...
    Is that not the normal procedure when a Head of State is about to arrive? Or are you suggesting one police car would have been sufficient?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Northwester View Post
    The dispersion of left wing internal parts, fragments of the section of the fuselage, and of body fragments were mapped by Polish archeologists...
    Why? What do they know about accident investigation?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Evan View Post
    Which brings up the moral conundrum: is it wrong to blow up an airliner that is about to crash anyway?
    While I have no credentials to render a legal opinion, I believe it is generally accepted that it is not OK to hasten someone's death.

    The classic example being shooting someone who has already jumped off the roof of a tall building, you could be charged with murder/attempted murder.
    Les règles de l'aviation de base découragent de longues périodes de dur tirer vers le haut.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ATLcrew View Post
    Why? What do they know about accident investigation?
    Nothing. But they know everything about mapping an area, dividing it into sectors, and documenting every fragment of the aircraft or human body found, and handing the results over to crash investigators.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ATLcrew View Post
    Is that not the normal procedure when a Head of State is about to arrive? Or are you suggesting one police car would have been sufficient?
    There wasn't hardly anyone securing the airport. Most of them were securing the approach area. That's not a normal procedure.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Northwester View Post
    There wasn't hardly anyone securing the airport. Most of them were securing the approach area. That's not a normal procedure.
    Went to see Busch II once...I was troubled by the shallow approach of the helicopters over a less protected area...and thinking about a nutjob in their back yard with a slingshot. Once you get to the airport, the security is somewhat better and easier...doesn't seem that far out.
    Les règles de l'aviation de base découragent de longues périodes de dur tirer vers le haut.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 3WE View Post
    The classic example being shooting someone who has already jumped off the roof of a tall building, you could be charged with murder/attempted murder.
    Well, according to Northwester, that's what happened here.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Evan View Post
    Well, according to Northwester, that's what happened here.
    No, it's according to you.

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    Senior Member Gabriel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Northwester View Post
    No, it's according to you.
    Remind me how the plane got that low in the first place?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Northwester View Post
    Nothing. But they know everything about mapping an area, dividing it into sectors, and documenting every fragment of the aircraft or human body found, and handing the results over to crash investigators.
    Really? Archaeologists typically deal with aircraft fragments? Since when?

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