Nautile & Victor deployed


Jan 29, 2001
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It looks as though IFREMER will deploy their assitance in recovering data and or bodies at the crash site of Air France's, flight 447. The newly developed R.O.V. Victor, and of course, their grand deep-sea submersible NAUTILE will render aid. It should be interesting to follow...

Michael Cundiff
NV, USA
 
Jan 29, 2001
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BTW, in a related article @ Yahoo News..."Retrieving Air France black box will be epic task", a line in part reads "...but merely locating them presents one of the most daunting recovery tasks since the exploration of the Titanic and barring good fortune, could take months", experts said.

Michael Cundiff
NV, USA
 
Dec 2, 2000
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I had a feeling these plucky little craft would be called in. They're two of the very few which can operates at the depths where the remains of this aircraft sank.

The good news is that the "Black Boxes" (They;re actually DayGlo Orange) have a radio beacon that can be homed in on. The bad news is that radio doesn't get very far in water and they'll have to be practically right on top of them to pick up the signal. Worse, they're on a clock which started ticking the moment the plane hit the water. The batteries are only good for thirty days.

Finally, it's entirely possible that they may find them only to realize that they can't recover them. Black Boxes are typically located within the empannage of the airframe because it tends to survive reletively intact even in cases of catastrophic structural failure. Even the ROV may not be able to dig them out.

Any way you look at it, these guys have their work cut out for them.
 
Jan 29, 2001
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Yes, and it was good to see NAUTILE on ABC World News last night, en route to the crash site aboard an IFREMER R.V. As the R.O.V. "caretaker", Yann Houard, stated at an earlier date..."The R.O.V. Robin is getting old", I surmize that the updated R.O.V. Victor will fair well in the depths off Brazil.

Michael Cundiff
NV, USA
 
Dec 2, 2000
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>>I surmize that the updated R.O.V. Victor will fair well in the depths off Brazil.<<

Only as well as the area they search and the equipment they bring to the party. That tail section where the black boxes are located make for a mighty slender needle to find in a monsterously huge haystack.

More to the point, even if they find they thing, do they have what they need to get inside and pry the things out?
 
Nov 26, 2005
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>>More to the point, even if they find they thing, do they have what they need to get inside and pry the things out?<<

If they don't, could we possibly be looking at a recovery operation of the entire section of plane the black boxes are located in?

I'm sure the costs, not to mention the risks, would be astronomical; but the recovery of these black boxes is very important and might tell us something we really need to know.
 
Jan 28, 2003
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Just seen a news flash that the flotsam and oil slick the Brazilian airforce spotted was not from the Air France crash after all. It that's so, then they are no nearer finding out where it went down, or closer to deciding where to dive. Also reports that Air France have 4 minutes of automatic instrument feedback indicating variable air speeds amongst other things, and they've issued a warning to all Airbus operators not to slow down too much when in turbulent storms for fear of stalling. All one can really hope now is that the aircraft broke up catastrophically and suddenly for some reason, that they all lost consciousness instantly, and had no idea what happened to them.

Every time I've crossed the Pond I've gazed out of the window, and fleetingly wondered how long it takes to glide / plunge from 35,000 ft into the Atlantic. And usually asked for another drink immediately. And I'm quite a serene flyer - apart from take-off and landing, of course - which are procedures which render every strapped-in passenger feeling totally at the mercy of people they don't know, and cannot see.
 
Nov 26, 2005
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You're braver than I am, Monica. I don't like flying one little bit. There's something about being trapped in a tube however-many-thousand feet above the ground that just doesn't send me.

And yep, I usually keep the flight attendant pretty busy myself.

With the forces at work when a plane goes through a catastrophic structural failure, I'd bet a lot of the passengers were killed instantly while the rest would have probably been knocked unconscious or just passed out. Either way, I doubt many, if any, were aware of what was going on after the thing broke up.
 
Jan 28, 2003
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It is being trapped in a tube, Matthew - almost packaged for disaster, so to speak. If I were driving the damn thing myself it'd be different, I'm sure. I'd probably be swooping round the skies shouting "Wheeee!" and terrifying everyone else. I'm not a good car passenger for the same reason. I'm God's gift to drinkers. "I'll drive!"
 
Dec 2, 2000
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>>If they don't, could we possibly be looking at a recovery operation of the entire section of plane the black boxes are located in?<<

Beats me. It may be a technological possibility to do something like this but that's one issue. Mustering the finances and resources to make it happen is quite another. My own take is that some sort of attempt will be made to do this if only because it's the best shot at answering some open questions. Considering what's been invested in AirBus, the stakes are pretty high as well. If there's some sort of technical defect, then it needs to be addressed.

By the by, now it's coming out that bodies are now being found near the crash site. The U.S. Navy is also sending in equipment called "Pinger locators" to locate the black boxes...or at least that's what the newsies are claiming. See http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/31137068/

Disclaimer: The above story may or may not have anything to do with reality, so caveat emptor.
 
Jan 29, 2001
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Yes, an expensive recovery effort...it has been estimated the cost will reach $10,000,000 to recover wreckage from the flight. In 1987 a single dive in Nautile to recover Titanic artifacts was $125,000...all resources considered.

Michael Cundiff
NV, USA
 
Dec 2, 2000
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To sweeten the pot, the area they have to search is around 200,000 square kilometers, which to put in perspective is an area about the size of the state of Nebraska!

After finding a lot of trash, they're finding genuine pieces of wreckage adrift on the sea as. That includes what looks like a part of the vertical stabilizer. They've also supposedly recovered around 24 bodies.
 
Dec 2, 2000
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From The Seattle Times:

Segment of jet's tail found; some Air France pilots may refuse to fly
quote:

RECIFE, Brazil – A large tail section of a jetliner bearing Air France's trademark red and blue stripes was recovered from the Atlantic Ocean Monday, helping narrow the hunt for "black boxes" that could explain what brought down Flight 447.

And some high-tech help is on the way – two U.S. Navy devices capable of picking up the flight recorders' emergency beacons far below on the ocean floor.
More at http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/nationworld/2009313855_webplane08.html

Comment: The French have also despatched one of their nuclear submarines, the FNS Emeraude to help out in this.​
 
Dec 2, 2000
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From MSNBC:

Crash autopsies suggest jet broke up in air
quote:

SAO PAULO - Autopsies have revealed fractures in the legs, hips and arms of Air France disaster victims, injuries that – coupled with the large pieces of wreckage pulled from the Atlantic – strongly suggest the plane broke up in the air, experts said Wednesday.
Two page story begins at http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/31410033/ns/world_news-americas/

Comment: This is not going to be good news for Airbus Industrie. Catastrophic structural failure in mid air is not the sort of thing which is looked well upon by prospective buyers. The hell of it that this may not be from any fault of the aircraft. The black boxes would go a long way towards answering some of these questions.

The catch?

The catch is that the subs and ships out on the scene are still looking for them and time is running out. If they don't find them within the next two weeks, the odds are they never will!​
 
Jan 29, 2001
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Thanks for the update Michael. I am anticipating the hour when video is released of NAUTILE being raised from the sea...all the while the submersible's manipulator arm is grasping the black (orange) box.

Michael Cundiff
NV, USA
[email protected]
 
Dec 2, 2000
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>>Thanks for the update Michael.<<

No problem. Trying to keep people informed is what I aim to do. Normally, aviation accidents aren't of a major concern with this forum, but when the people who are picking up the pieces (Literally!) are using one of the submersibles involved with exploring the Titanic, the reasons for the interest are obvious.

I hope they find these things soon. The battaries powering the black boxes won't be in service much longer.
 
Dec 2, 2000
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From MSNBC:

Hope fades for finding Air France recorders
quote:

RIO DE JANEIRO - Signals from the black boxes of Air France Flight 447 are fading, weakening along with hopes of resolving what experts are calling one of history's most challenging plane crash investigations.

Emergency beacons attached to cockpit voice and data recorders are built to emit strong "pings" for 30 days after a crash before fading away, though experts said they could continue for as long as 45 days.
More at http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/31669103/ns/world_news-americas/

Comment: Cross your fingers that the submersibles find something.​
 

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