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Thread: MH370 flew as low as 1,500m to avoid detection, says paper

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    Re: MH370 flew as low as 1,500m to avoid detection, says paper

    Quote Originally Posted by WCH View Post
    MH370 flew as low as 1,500m to avoid detection, says paper

    As the search for the missing flight MH370 enters its 10th day with few clues as to its whereabouts, the New Straits Times said today the Boeing 777-200ER dropped 5,000 feet (1,500m) to evade commercial radar detection.

    In an exclusive story, the government-backed paper said investigators analysing MH370’s flight data revealed that the 200-tonne, fully laden twinjet descended 1,500m or even lower to evade commercial (secondary) radar coverage after it turned back from its flight path en route to Beijing.

    The Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777-200ER (9M-MRO) disappeared on March 8 with 239 people on board. Malaysian authorities said on Saturday the plane was deliberately diverted and its on-board transmission devices switched off to avoid detection.

    Its last contact was at 8.11am north of the Strait of Malacca.


    Further indication it was taken.

    Did it descend to 5000ft or did it descend by 5000ft? Those are totally different things.

    Also, saying that it descended "to evade commercial radar" is complete conjecture at this point.

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    Re: MH370 flew as low as 1,500m to avoid detection, says paper

    Quote Originally Posted by Mithros View Post
    Did it descend to 5000ft or did it descend by 5000ft? Those are totally different things.

    Also, saying that it descended "to evade commercial radar" is complete conjecture at this point.
    "Flew as low as" means they were a little less than 5000 ft off the terrain.
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    Re: MH370 flew as low as 1,500m to avoid detection, says paper

    Quote Originally Posted by WCH View Post
    "Flew as low as" means they were a little less than 5000 ft off the terrain.
    That's the headline, but there's nothing in the article to support that. Reporters don't write their own headlines so it's usually a bad idea to stop reading there. But even then, the article is pretty muddy. In this day and age, you should treat every article with more than a few grains of salt.

    just a few points
    1). Accurate reports have been few and far between on this story.
    2). Early reports had the plane flying at 35,000 ft when it lost contact, turning almost 360 and dropping to 29,500. That's a drop of about 5000ft.
    3). It seems strange to claim to have radar tracks of a plane that allegedly avoided radar contact. If you had a track that was good enough to pick up a heavy at 5000ft, then why don't you know where the plane is? Also, how do you know that the plane was attempting to avoid radar contact? And better yet, why didn't you do anything about it?
    4). Contour following doesn't stress an aircraft when it's over water unless it's sucking in salt water.
    5). Someone would have seen or heard a 250 ton aircraft flying over land at 5000ft.

    This story might pan out. But my guess is that it's a mistaken headline.

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    Re: MH370 flew as low as 1,500m to avoid detection, says paper

    Quote Originally Posted by Mithros View Post
    That's the headline, but there's nothing in the article to support that. Reporters don't write their own headlines so it's usually a bad idea to stop reading there. But even then, the article is pretty muddy. In this day and age, you should treat every article with more than a few grains of salt.

    just a few points
    1). Accurate reports have been few and far between on this story.
    2). Early reports had the plane flying at 35,000 ft when it lost contact, turning almost 360 and dropping to 29,500. That's a drop of about 5000ft.
    3). It seems strange to claim to have radar tracks of a plane that allegedly avoided radar contact. If you had a track that was good enough to pick up a heavy at 5000ft, then why don't you know where the plane is? Also, how do you know that the plane was attempting to avoid radar contact? And better yet, why didn't you do anything about it?
    4). Contour following doesn't stress an aircraft when it's over water unless it's sucking in salt water.
    5). Someone would have seen or heard a 250 ton aircraft flying over land at 5000ft.

    This story might pan out. But my guess is that it's a mistaken headline.
    Here a bit more ingredients for the steaming pot.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2014/03/18/wo...=tw-share&_r=0
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    Re: MH370 flew as low as 1,500m to avoid detection, says paper

    Quote Originally Posted by WCH View Post
    Here a bit more ingredients for the steaming pot.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2014/03/18/wo...=tw-share&_r=0
    I think that's a safe fact. Someone who knew what they were doing altered course using the plane's on board systems.

    IMO that means that the most likely scenario is a complex set of cascading failures that the pilots partially responded to before being incapacitated.

    Eg.. crew O2 bottle lets loose, flying into the comms closet and creating a slow depressurization/fire. Pilot/Copilot are already under the effects of the loss of O2 when they notice that there is a problem. This is like trying to respond to an emergency when you are extremely drunk. They try the comms, and find they don’t work. By habit the pilot sets the transponder to standby while dialling an emergency squawk. (Some pilots do this when changing squawks to avoid accidentally cycling through emergency codes) The near incapacitated pilot now realizes what is happening an immediately tries to set a new course back to the nearest airport and breathable air; forgetting to turn the transponder back on in the process. Unfortunately the pilot typed in a course that didn't drop below 10,000 before passing out. The plane flew this mistyped course on autopilot before running out of fuel somewhere in the middle of the Indian Ocean. The plane then nosed over and plunged into the water at high speed, leaving very little debris.

    The plane's flight path may also be explained by an autopilot off, no one at the helm scenario.
    http://www.cnn.com/2014/03/16/opinio...ia-flight-370/
    Last edited by Mithros; 03-18-14 at 10:40 AM.

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    Re: MH370 flew as low as 1,500m to avoid detection, says paper

    Do we have any Pilots here at DP? We should have a few Military Pilots.....Right.

    Has any asked about all the tracking in the area with those who have flown in and around there?

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    Re: MH370 flew as low as 1,500m to avoid detection, says paper

    Quote Originally Posted by MMC View Post
    Do we have any Pilots here at DP? We should have a few Military Pilots.....Right.

    Has any asked about all the tracking in the area with those who have flown in and around there?
    There isn't much in the way of tracking over the ocean in terms of RADAR, turn off the transponder and even less.
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    Re: MH370 flew as low as 1,500m to avoid detection, says paper

    I think people are giving radar too much credit in this situation. Ground based radar would not be tracking a plane over open ocean, and I wouldn't expect Thailand or Malaysia to have a robust enough civil defense radar to catch every plane passing over the country. Satellites aren't capable either of tracking a plane in the way most people think.

    It's funny in a way, because people trust modern technology so completely that CNN host Don Lemon, when confronted with the notion that the plane "disappeared" from surveillance, thought it a good time to broach the idea that maybe something supernatural had taken place.

    No Don, it's just that radar and satellites are not as omniscient as you believe.
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    Re: MH370 flew as low as 1,500m to avoid detection, says paper

    Quote Originally Posted by Quag View Post
    There isn't much in the way of tracking over the ocean in terms of RADAR, turn off the transponder and even less.
    What about Sats.....I keep hearing a lot of military pilots saying there are many tuned into that area.

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    Re: MH370 flew as low as 1,500m to avoid detection, says paper

    Quote Originally Posted by MMC View Post
    What about Sats.....I keep hearing a lot of military pilots saying there are many tuned into that area.
    Sats don't act like RADAR and in general they are no "looking" in the middle of the ocean, unless those in charge have decided there is something there to look at.

    *edit*
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Air_France_Flight_447
    Note it took basically 1 day to find any sign of the crash and 5 days for the first pieces to be recovered and 2 years to find the black boxes and the plane didn't deviate from its flight path so the search area was infinitesimal in comparison to what we are talking about here. The world is a huge place and when you aren't even sure where to begin looking it makes it much harder.
    Last edited by Quag; 03-18-14 at 01:27 PM.
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