We’re Still Talking about the 737 Max 8
The entire aviation world is focused on the Boeing 737 Max 8, especially as the details from the Lion Air cockpit voice recorder files have been leaked. The truth is, I don’t have a lot to say about it at this stage (unlike me to keep quiet, I know!) and so instead, I’ve put together a collection of some of the clearest and best pieces written about the current situation.
Preliminary Report on Lion Air flight 610 on Fear of Landing
Starting with my own piece but right now the preliminary report released in November is the best official information we have on what happened. This is a summary of the key information and includes a copy of the report.
The cockpit voice recorder tape/transcription has not been released but some details have leaked to the press. Reuters spoke to three people who claimed to have heard the recording. The flight crew spoke of a problem with the airspeed and that the captain’s display showed a problem but not the first officer’s. They focused completely on the airspeed and altitude, said one source, never mentioning the trim.
Doomed Boeing Jets Lacked 2 Safety Features That Company Sold Only as Extras in the New York Times
The angle of attack indicator which would signal an AOA disagree when it received two different values from the two different sensors was an optional upgrade on the Boeing 737 Max. The disagree warning will become standard although the indicator itself will remain an optional upgrade. (Thanks to Kathleen for sending me the link.)
Capt. Sullenberger on the FAA and Boeing: ‘Our credibility as leaders in aviation is being damaged’ in Market Watch
Capt. Sullenberger goes public with his opinion, explaining that the situation between Boeing and the FAA has been building up for quite some time.
FBI joining criminal investigation into certification of Boeing 737 MAX by Steve Miletich for the Seattle Times
Miletich gives the details of the criminal investigation into the certification process
Pontifications: Fluid, dynamic events upend MAX story by Scott Hamilton on Leeham News and Analysis
Hamilton helps us to understand what this means, with a list of the unprecedented actions against the FAA taking place now, putting them into a historical context within the US.
Ethiopian ET302 similarities to Lion Air JT610 on Satcom Guru
This piece gives an in-depth look at the AoA malfunction modes and how it relates to the MCAS logic and what Boeing need to do to prevent the situation from arising again.
Analysis Of What Really Happened To The Boeing 737 Max From A Pilot & Software Engineer by Trevor Sumner and his brother in law
I retweeted this on Twitter because, although there’s a few assumptions buried in there, the explanation does a good job of showing the complexity of the situation. Threadreader has collected the tweets into a single page for easy reading. (Thanks to Mike and hat_eater for the link.)
How the American fervor for deregulation contributed to the 737 Max crashes by Jeff Wise for Slate
Wise looks at the government influence on the airline industry and the issues of short-term profitability when weighed against long-term cost.
The situation remains very fluid and I’d beware of any aviation expert or journalist trying to predict what is going to happen. There is a number of different aspects coming into play, ranging from politics to stature to economics to industrial — focusing on a single slice can be interesting for broadening our knowledge but shouldn’t be considered exclusively. There are no easy answers.
Finally, there’s some great conversation happening on the previous post with people from a good variety of backgrounds shedding light on what they can see in this mess. I hope that it will continue!