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I think terrypinder's synopsis of the news cycle surrounding the mystery of what happened to Malaysian Airlines Flight 370 is basically right, so take this with a grain of salt, but:
Two U.S. officials tell ABC News the U.S. believes that the shutdown of two communication systems happened separately on Malaysia Airlines Flight 370. One source said this indicates the plane did not come out of the sky because of a catastrophic failure.

The data reporting system, they believe, was shut down at 1:07 a.m. The transponder -- which transmits location and altitude -- shut down at 1:21 a.m.

This indicates it may well have been a deliberate act, ABC News aviation consultant John Nance said.

U.S. investigators told ABC News that the two modes of communication were "systematically shut down."

That means the U.S. team "is convinced that there was manual intervention," a source said, which means it was likely not an accident or catastrophic malfunction that took the plane out of the sky.

Earlier today, the Wall Street Journal reported that U.S. officials believed the flight flew four hours after it disappeared from radar, but the Journal's explanation for why officials believed that to be the case was wrong. However, the Journal stuck by the essential story, offering a different explanation for why they believed the plane kept on flying. The plane had enough fuel to travel 2,500 miles. Although the whereabouts of the plane remain completely unknown, the U.S. is redeploying a naval destroyer, the U.S.S. Kidd, to the Andaman Sea as the search for the missing craft looks west.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Ambiguity is Opportunity for anyone with an (9+ / 0-)

    Agenda.   Just a comment.

    ". . .as singularly embarrassing a public address as any allegedly sentient primate ever has delivered." - Charles P. Pierce

    by Rikon Snow on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 04:33:24 PM PDT

  •  In an era where every bit is read by governments (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    catwho, JML9999, MarkW53, Portlaw, greenearth

    and spy satellites can "read documents" from space, it is just astonishing that an airliner can disappear without a trace. Or the traces implicate the mighty, so we are led on red herrings of obfuscation and falsification.

    Shall we go? Yes, let's go.

    by whenwego on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 04:35:48 PM PDT

    •  Those Sats (15+ / 0-)

      Need to be pointed at the location to see it. Contrary to popular thoughts here, the entire globe is not under constant surveillance.

      You best believe it does

      by HangsLeft on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 04:46:03 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Really makes you not want to fly over certain (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      side pocket, whenwego, greenearth

      parts of the planet given  the primitive nature of the Radar grid.

      I want 1 less Tiny Coffin, Why Don't You? Support The President's Gun Violence Plan.

      by JML9999 on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 04:46:31 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Who said it disappeared without a trace? (7+ / 0-)

      That's a very large airliner. Whether it crashed in the ocean or on land, it would certainly leave visible signs. The only instances from history that I can think of where an airliner crashed and the traces were later obscured is in high altitude situations where snowfall later covered he wreckage. This is just a reminder of how large the Earth really is, and if you're not looking in the right place, you're not going to find the wreckage.


      ODS results in Obama's amazing ability to humiliate his biggest critics, on the right and the left.

      by NoFortunateSon on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 04:50:42 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Hard to believe that not a single passenger's (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        akmk, Bulldawg, greenearth

        cell phone, tablet or other device remained on for a while after contact was lost with the plane, that could provide a clue as to where it headed. Don't GPS satellites record device communications?

        "Reagan's dead, and he was a lousy president" -- Keith Olbermann 4/22/09

        by kovie on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 05:01:54 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  GPS satellites send signals out toward earth (12+ / 0-)

          they don't listen to devices on earth .
          A gps satellite over head does not know where my gps device is .
          My GPS device figures out where it is based on the signals it sees coming down from the satellite .

          If a cell phone, tablet or other device remained on for a while after contact was lost with the plane, the cell phone, tablet or other device would have no contact with the outside world . There are no cell phone towers out there , iykwim .

          "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. M. H.

          by indycam on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 05:22:14 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Fun fact.. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Sharon Wraight

            Some cellphones do not turn off the GPS antenna even when the phone is in airplane mode.   Now from within an airplane you get a pretty limited view of the sky so you can't see very many satellites, but by holding the phone up against the window I have sometimes gotten enough that the phone can get a fix.

            What you can't do is download data for maps in airplane mode (unless you want to pay for airline WiFi).  But simple apps that just display lat/long/speed work fine..

            •  That changes nothing in what I said . (5+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              fcvaguy, leevank, Bulldawg, Gurnt, greenearth

              Your phone may see the signal coming to it while you are on a plane , but no signal is going from the phone to the satellite . The satellite has no idea where the cell phone gps device is or if there even is a cell phone gps device .  

              "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. M. H.

              by indycam on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 05:42:55 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  But GPS doesn't work that way.. (0+ / 0-)

                The phone never transmits anything to the satellite.  It gets a fix on a minimum of 4 satellites, and by analyzing the differences in the signal the phone is able to calculate the phone's location.

                •  You are arguing because you don't see (0+ / 0-)

                  what I already said ? Or you don't understand what I already said ?

                  GPS satellites send signals out toward earth
                  they don't listen to devices on earth .
                  but no signal is going from the phone to the satellite

                  But GPS doesn't work that way..
                  The phone never transmits anything to the satellite.
                  That's what I already said .

                  "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. M. H.

                  by indycam on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 07:05:10 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

            •  Limited view of the sky? (0+ / 0-)

              In an airplane, you are in the sky.  You have a better view of the satellites than literally anywhere on land on the entire earth.  There is no place on earth where you can see more satellites from the ground than from the air.

              Also, remember that your phone does not SEND any data to make GPS work.  The satellites send very precise times, and your phone receives the messages, and calculates how long they took to get to you.

          •  It fascinates me how many people (4+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            nchristine, fcvaguy, Bulldawg, Gurnt

            seem to think that there are cell towers everywhere, even over the ocean.

            Even in the US, we don't have 100% coverage over land.

            Fry, don't be a hero! It's not covered by our health plan!

            by elfling on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 06:07:17 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  it surprises me how many people think there is (7+ / 0-)

              100% spy satellite coverage over the entire globe that can read the license plate number on a car in a village in Malaysia.

              There's not.

              Spy satellites are targeted at specific areas of interest.  They are not capable of giving detailed 100% global coverage 24/7. And they can't see any particular thing at all unless they are aimed at it.

              As for radar, they also do not give 100% coverage. Most of the ocean areas are completely totally blind to routine radar coverage. It's simply not needed.

              In the end, reality always wins.

              by Lenny Flank on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 06:14:38 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  They typically can't see in the dark, either (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                nchristine, Bulldawg

                I was surprised to learn in my mapping course how many places there are in the world where people live and have no accurate maps available to them.

                Fry, don't be a hero! It's not covered by our health plan!

                by elfling on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 06:16:12 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Then there's the curvature of the world where (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  elfling

                  it's really difficult to bounce radar off something that's over the horizon without relay towers and where exactly would you put a relay tower in the middle of a sea/ocean?

                •  This is exactly what Miss Teen South Carolina (0+ / 0-)

                  was trying to say!

                  “I personally believe, that U.S. Americans,
                  are unable to do so,
                  because uh,
                  some, people out there, in our nation don’t have maps.
                  and uh…
                  I believe that our education like such as in South Africa,
                  and the Iraq,
                  everywhere like such as…
                  and, I believe they should uh,
                  our education over here,
                  in the U.S. should help the U.S.
                  or should help South Africa,
                  and should help the Iraq and Asian countries so we will be able to build up our future,
                  for us.”
                  •  Heh. (0+ / 0-)

                    One of the particular examples they gave, in all seriousness, was that they had to make maps of Haiti as part of the earthquake relief effort, so that they could deliver help and supplies.

                    Fry, don't be a hero! It's not covered by our health plan!

                    by elfling on Fri Mar 14, 2014 at 08:07:40 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                •  and unles they are geostationary sats (most arent) (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  elfling

                  They can only see any particular area every 90 minutes, as they pass by on their orbit.

                  So if the sat wasn't right over the plane at the right time, it saw nothing--it was on the other side of the world.

                  In the end, reality always wins.

                  by Lenny Flank on Fri Mar 14, 2014 at 06:43:55 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

        •  Yeah, it's a lot harder to silently hijack (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Sharon Wraight, greenearth

          a plane these days, someones going to send a text message or something.

          "Victory means exit strategy, and it's important for the president to explain to us what the exit strategy is." - George W Bush

          by jfern on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 05:26:19 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  This is a very important point. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          greenearth

          Nobody noticed that the plane turned around? Most airlines have live flight tracking. Nobody noticed anything amiss with that? And if the plane traveled off course, and passengers were aware, nobody thought to try and use a cell phone? If this was a deliberate act, then how I did it transpire with no one being able to use a cellphone? Hat to me is the biggest mystery.


          ODS results in Obama's amazing ability to humiliate his biggest critics, on the right and the left.

          by NoFortunateSon on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 06:16:44 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  They're taking the red eye, how many were (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            greenearth

            trying to snooze before getting to Beijing 6 hours later?

          •  One more time... (5+ / 0-)

            When the plane lost contact, and may or may not have altered course, they were over the ocean. A place there are no cell towers.

            For those people who apparently have never known life without one, GSM phones can operate no more than 35 km (22 miles) from a tower in ideal conditions (tall tower, flat terrain). CDMA could theoretically work out to 70 kilometers (45 miles). While the height of the airliner could theoretically add distance, the body of the plane blocking part of the signal would factor in as well to reduce it.

            To put it simply, on an airliner (or a boat for that matter), once you pass over a body of water...any body of water, whether an ocean or a big lake, once you are more than 45 miles from shore your cell phone will not work.

            The plane was more than 45 miles out over the ocean.

            •  That's all good info... (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              greenearth

              But if the flight continued on for perhaps 2500 miles. Is possible to avoid land, but not easy.


              ODS results in Obama's amazing ability to humiliate his biggest critics, on the right and the left.

              by NoFortunateSon on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 08:07:41 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Why is it... (0+ / 0-)

                ...that people assume cell towers have the same density everywhere?

                I'm about to board an aircraft that will spend roughly 3 hours flying over North America. For the second flight segment, of about 90 minutes and 530 miles, my cell phone will work for roughly 5-7 minutes, and that's strictly takeoff and landing.

                One other flight I do regularly, 1400 miles long, again over North America, would have cell service for the same length of time, with maybe a 1 minute segment in the middle of it...maybe, if the flight path takes us close to one community and they've improved their cell tower (yes, tower singular).

        •  No (0+ / 0-)

          No they don't.

          "Socialism never took root in America because the poor see themselves not as an exploited proletariat, but as temporarily embarrassed millionaires." - John Steinbeck

          by Bulldawg on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 06:51:47 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  No one ever found the plane (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Sharon Wraight

        With House Majority Leader Hale Boggs.

        "Victory means exit strategy, and it's important for the president to explain to us what the exit strategy is." - George W Bush

        by jfern on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 05:25:10 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Another possibility (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        burana, leevank, greenearth

        of which there have been many, many examples is an aircraft crashing into jungle or other heavily canopied terrain. There have been aircraft lost forever like that.

        There's plenty of territory like that in the possible radius.

    •  noone cares (0+ / 0-)

      about the south china sea

    •  Missing plane (0+ / 0-)

      No one was looking and that part of the world is remote. They may have been on Mars but we would have spotted them there if they had. Worst part is some one turned off all the communications equipment. Which is very telling. Last day or two I am beginning to believe the Airline isn't being totally truthful and maybe covering up shoddy maintenance or missing the black box and other beacons weren't even on the plane or, working at all.

    •  well (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      whenwego
      In an era where every bit is read by governments and spy satellites can "read documents" from space
      part of the problem is that people actually believe that those things are possible when they aren't.

      people tend to believe the impossible when it comes to governments which makes them assume the implausible when it comes to events.

      anyone born after the McDLT has no business stomping around acting punk rock

      by chopper on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 07:41:19 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I look forward to all the rampant speculation (5+ / 0-)

    Should be good fun.

    Imagine the most profound idea ever conceptualized occupying this space. Now expect exactly the opposite. You'll never be disappointed.

    by Gurnt on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 04:35:51 PM PDT

  •  you only live twice (6+ / 0-)

    and moonraker.

    either that or the star trek episode tomorrow is yesterday.

    The cold passion for truth hunts in no pack. -Robinson Jeffers

    by Laurence Lewis on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 04:37:29 PM PDT

  •  turn (0+ / 0-)

    Yes, the westerly turn that keeps being reported had made me think it was a deliberate move, and not a mid air explosion or crash.

    •  long range radar is inaccurate. (0+ / 0-)

      at long range, ducting throws it off.

      unless this was acars or DS-B,
      it may be nothing

      •  searchers (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        fcvaguy, greenearth

        must think it was reliable enough to have them looking west.

        ABC

        U.S. officials said earlier that they have an "indication" the missing Malaysia Airlines jetliner may have crashed in the Indian Ocean and is moving the USS Kidd to the area to begin searching.

        It's not clear what the indication was, but senior administration officials told ABC News the missing Malaysian flight continued to "ping" a satellite on an hourly basis after it lost contact with radar. The Boeing 777 jetliners are equipped with what is called the Airplane Health Management system in which they ping a satellite every hour. The number of pings would indicate how long the plane stayed aloft.

        It's not clear, however, whether the satellite pings also indicate the plane's location. [I see this. Don't know the answer.]
        ...

        But the search was extended earlier this week to include water far to the west on the other side of Malaysia.

        “We are working very closely with the FAA and the NTSB on the issue of a possible air turn back,” Hishammuddin said, referring to the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration and National Transportation Safety Board.

  •  Okay, so now we've established... (6+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    catwho, whenwego, Gurnt, ChemBob, Hastur, greenearth

    1.)  The aircraft has either traveled through an inter-dimensional loop of some sort and/or other paranormal activity.

    2.)  It's landed in some friggin' country somewhere within the projected time/fuel radius, and no one knows where it is....

    3.)  It's STILL in the ocean somewhere....

    Please, FIND THIS DAMN PLANE.... :\

  •  The tone has changed (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JML9999, skybluewater, greenearth

    The Malaysian Officials have been botching this embarrassingly. Looks like we might finally be starting to get info? I'll take a wait and see approach.

    A true craftsman will meticulously construct the apparatus of his own demise.

    by onionjim on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 04:39:59 PM PDT

    •  It doesn't appear that they've (6+ / 0-)

      been botching things at all, except in terms of communication.  And even that's been shoddy reporting as often as not.

      •  The media have reported every rumor (0+ / 0-)

        None of this information about pings has come from anybody official, and people leaking things like that may or may not know what they're talking about, and may or may not be telling the truth, even if they are in a position to know. It still wouldn't shock me if they eventually found wreckage somewhere within a couple of hundred miles of the last known location, and that they've just missed it (although the shallow depth of water in that area would seem to make that less likely than if it was over open ocean).

        Even in relatively defined areas such as the Gulf of Thailand, there is a LOT of water. I've been shocked on a couple of cruises in areas of heavy maritime traffic, such as from Boston up into the St. Lawrence, and in the Caribbean, how rare it is to see a ship or any other evidence of humans other than in the immediate vicinity of land.

        Bin Laden is dead. GM and Chrysler are alive.

        by leevank on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 07:07:16 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  The US w/ the GOP plan for the NTSB = Malaysia (6+ / 0-)

      You really don't realize what good government is until you see bad government in action.


      ODS results in Obama's amazing ability to humiliate his biggest critics, on the right and the left.

      by NoFortunateSon on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 04:54:05 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  landings or crash landings. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    dougymi, greenearth

    The Andaman and Icobar Islands, and various Pulau islands are between the Andaman Sea and Indian Ocean. Also the Maldives are within 2000 miles.

    The plane had enough fuel to travel 2,500 miles. Although the whereabouts of the plane remain completely unknown, the U.S. is redeploying a naval destroyer, the U.S.S. Kidd, to the Andaman Sea as the search for the missing craft looks west.

  •  i just read a USA today story (5+ / 0-)

    that basically said that they have moved off of the original search area because they found no debris and the plane had fuel to fly for more hrs.

    the diednt move the search because they had new info.
    they moved because they had no info

    big problem w/that IMHO. just because you found no initial debris doesnt mean the plane didnt crash there. the parts of a plane are not meant to float and those that do are small and maybe trapped and unable to create a debis site. then you have a huge ocean. we arent talking lake tahoe here.  small debris can easily get lost. the air france took its time turning up

    and just because you have fuel doesnt mean a plane used it.

    and if the transponder was shut down at a different time from the reporting system why? if i am going to cut off all data relaying systems i am going to do so at the same time. why would i wait 14 mins and do another part later.

    all this ping and data retrieval are red herrings
    that plane went down close to where it last was identified.

  •  calling Major Kong (4+ / 0-)

    Our resident big-bird pilot will tell us how these planes typically fly, including normal business and routine practices.  Until then, all else is CT to me.

    We haven't met but you're a great fan of mine

    by Great Cthulhu on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 04:44:51 PM PDT

    •  I'm stumped (4+ / 0-)

      If this report is accurate it then the hijacking theory has some merit.

      That still begs the questions "Where did it go?" and "Why hasn't anyone taken credit?"

      If the pilot's good, see, I mean if he's reeeally sharp, he can barrel that baby in so low... oh you oughta see it sometime. It's a sight. A big plane like a '52... varrrooom! Its jet exhaust... frying chickens in the barnyard!

      by Major Kong on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 06:22:44 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Hi Major! (0+ / 0-)

        Does a 777 or any other modern meat-bus just fly itself sideways for several hours?

        I'm thinking that once the transponder went offline, either the plane kept going under whatever circumstances it was under when the transponder went off, or the plane was manually redirected

        If it did in fact move left across the Malaysian peninsula, wouldn't there be some other telemetry aside from scanty reports from MYA military?  Would that "just happen" without significant human intervention?

        You're our resident specialist WRT commercial meat-mover jets, so maybe you could at least eliminate the usual suspects for us and get rid of the CT flying around here (crap, pun not intended).

        We haven't met but you're a great fan of mine

        by Great Cthulhu on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 07:05:01 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Yes and no (0+ / 0-)

          Any loss of electrics sufficient to knock out communications would also take out the autopilots.

          Otherwise I guess it could happen.

          If something happened to the crew and the plane was at cruising altitude with the autopilots engaged it would continue on its flight-planned route.

          It's wouldn't make a course change on its own, however.

          If the pilot's good, see, I mean if he's reeeally sharp, he can barrel that baby in so low... oh you oughta see it sometime. It's a sight. A big plane like a '52... varrrooom! Its jet exhaust... frying chickens in the barnyard!

          by Major Kong on Fri Mar 14, 2014 at 06:37:36 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  Major, how many EPIRB/ELT's does a 777 have? (0+ / 0-)

        That's my big unanswered question: no on has mentioned (to my knowledge) the lack of an EPIRB signal at all.

        Surely the COSPAS/SARSat system would have picked it up had it crashed, and the lack of this particular information has me vexed.

        And yeah, I know tarantulas don't really act like that at all, so no snarking, this is the internet damnit!

        by itzadryheat on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 07:09:58 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I don't know (0+ / 0-)

          I have a 777 systems manual but it doesn't say anything about the ELTs. I would guess it has at least one but it could vary by airline or by country.

          If the pilot's good, see, I mean if he's reeeally sharp, he can barrel that baby in so low... oh you oughta see it sometime. It's a sight. A big plane like a '52... varrrooom! Its jet exhaust... frying chickens in the barnyard!

          by Major Kong on Fri Mar 14, 2014 at 06:39:09 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  can a plane's transponder be turned off (0+ / 0-)

    remotely?

  •  This wasn't a small plane. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    rbird, ericy, greenearth

    The number and locations of airstrips that it could land safely on has to be limited AND known.

    While you dream of Utopia, we're here on Earth, getting things done.

    by GoGoGoEverton on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 04:45:53 PM PDT

    •  True that.. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      GoGoGoEverton, greenearth

      And the number of airstrips that are large enough to land the plane of that size, but where one could land without anyone noticing and reporting it would be??  

      You would almost need an abandoned military base in a country with a weak and/or dysfunctional government, and I am not sure how many of these exist in the region of the world that the plane could have reached without running out of fuel.

      Perhaps 0?

    •  If not safely (0+ / 0-)

      Safely is the key word there.  If a reasonably skilled pilot were not overly concerned about safety or moderate levels of damage to the airplane it could be landed on a much smaller/rougher strip.  Takeoff would depend on whether or not cargo and passengers were aboard; empty and again pushing the specs beyond the safety limit it could take off from a relatively short strip as well.  The Soviets had several airliners that were used on short and rough airfields in Siberia and both the Boeing 727 and 737 had models certified for gravel strips (Alaska service and similar).

      sPh

    •  Lots of unofficial landing strips in SE Asia (0+ / 0-)

      Government can take years to inspect and certify landing strips in that area, local pilots use US maps from the 60s and add runways to the maps as they find them. The NATO bombing campaign of Serbia missed most tanks and artillery because of camouflage.

      If the plane really flew for 4 hours than the objective wasn't to crash it into the sea.

  •  Pass the popcorn, please (7+ / 0-)

    This story seems likely to end up right up there with D.B. Cooper in the annals of modern aviation history.

    Outside of a dog, a book is a man's best friend. Inside of a dog, it's too dark to read. - Groucho

    by DocDawg on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 04:47:24 PM PDT

  •  the german aviation head rejected US NAVCOMs (0+ / 0-)

    for their commercial airlines because they could be used to remotely control an aircraft, some years ago.

    i was researching samantha smith's crash and saw that somewhere - it probably happened in late 80's or 90's.

    i forgot who made those NAVCOMS.

    just wanted to add that to all the mystery!

    This is a list of 76 universities for Rush Limbaugh that endorse global warming denial, racism, sexism, and GOP lies by broadcasting sports on over 170 Limbaugh radio stations.

    by certainot on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 04:48:52 PM PDT

  •  Let's keep (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    therehastobeaway, akmk, greenearth

    The rumor mill fed so the MSM has plenty of unsubstantiated crap to report and pull back. Lots of time to fill on MSNBC, you know.

    You best believe it does

    by HangsLeft on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 04:51:15 PM PDT

  •  alas, the problem with ALL events like this, (11+ / 0-)

    whether it's 9-11 or the Boston bombings or the Kennedy assassination, is that virtually all of the initial information and news reports are later found to be completely utterly totally wrong. What we're getting now is speculation, interpretation and supposition, mostly second-hand. Some of it may be correct, much of it will be mistaken, and lots of it will be complete baloney--and we have no way of knowing yet which is which.

    In the end, reality always wins.

    by Lenny Flank on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 04:54:04 PM PDT

  •  Amazing (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Rikon Snow

    The most important question that is not being asked or answered is: How is it possible for a plane to disappear from Rader - Which has absolutely nothing to do with the transponder. One second the plane was there, the very next second, the plane is gone from radar. It can't drop from 35k feet to below radar detection in an hour.

    Also Radar clearly shows "UFO" activity, however, the media aren't covering it. I can understand why.

    The plane, in my opinion, has been abducted by aliens. And the U.S. is in Hurry up cover-up mode.

    What happened to that 70ft by 70ft junk in the middle of the ocean? UFO crash?? No one is talking about that anymore. Jus saying.

  •  Do these planes have silent alarms like banks? (0+ / 0-)

    You know how banks have silent alarms that can be triggered unknowingly to authorities? At work, a debate ensued whether commercial airlines had these or not. Let's say the cockpit is breached or a pilot/pilots who go rogue. Would there be a way for a flight attendant or a pilot to send a distress signal without the perpetrators' knowledge?

    "Patriotism is the virtue of the vicious." - Oscar Wilde

    by macleme on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 04:58:22 PM PDT

    •  silent alarm (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      GoGoGoEverton, Gary in NY

      Short answer, yes.
      However the pilot has to be able to do it and if the other pilot was part of the problem, he could prevent it.
      If one of the pilots has his headset on, all he has to do is press a button and he is talking to ATC. But the other pilot of a hijacker could prevent that.

      I suspect there is a system for the flight attendant also to  contact the ground to coordinate special meals, wheel chairs meeting the plane, get gate info ect. But I don't have real knowledge about that.

      A different question is some long haul flights have a 2nd crew on board. Does the crew rest area have communication ability.

  •  Any chance that it was landed somewhere (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    OLinda, greenearth

    and is intact but hidden, conditions of passengers unknown, to be used for whatever reasons? Would that even be possible, say at night?

    "Reagan's dead, and he was a lousy president" -- Keith Olbermann 4/22/09

    by kovie on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 04:59:34 PM PDT

    •  I think so, (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      PatriciaVa, greenearth

      maybe it is wishful thinking, but that is why I keep mentioning the various islands in the area.

    •  additionally, (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      greenearth

      perhaps it crashed on land. The search appears to be only in water. They would assume, I assume :) , that if it landed or crashed on land, someone would have seen it, so they aren't looking. But, there must be remote areas, and some of the islands are uninhabited.

    •  It needs a 3500 ft. reinforced concrete runway (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      EJP in Maine

      To land on, and there aren't a whole lot of those around that owned and operated with heavy traffic on them - and they're inside countries with radar systems that would see an unknown, unresponsive heavy jetliner flying into their airspace. AND the plane would be flying over populated areas - and not one of the 230 people on board made phone calls, sent texts, emailed etc.

      The no communications from passengers makes me really doubtful of the 'flying for hours after disappearing' theory, or hijacking to another country. Remember even way back in 2001, the passengers on the 9/11 jets were talking to people on their cell phones right up till the end.

      "When does the greed stop, we ask the other side? That's the question and that's the issue." - Senator Ted Kennedy

      by Fordmandalay on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 05:25:30 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  However Flight 93 wasn't at 35000 feet. It was (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        leevank, greenearth

        closer to the ground and in range of ground based cell towers.

        •  35 000 feet doesn't matter that much (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          sphealey

          It was how close they were to cell towers. The height would have actually helped a bit because they would have "seen" more towers, but only if towers were within 40 miles or so, which in the Northeastern US is a safe bet.

      •  Safety factor (0+ / 0-)

        The Boeing "sticker price" technical documents show a minimum runway length of ~5000 ft for both landing and takeoff for a lightly-loaded 777 at sea level.  And those specs are no doubt for a concrete runway meeting 1st-category specs

        However - those are the requirements assuming the operator and pilot are following all applicable regulations, factoring in all safety criteria, and operating the unit with a view to a long operational lifespan.  As demonstrated by three incidents within the last year [1] these aircraft have large design margins, and when operated with variances from safety requirements in legitimate operations or with outright disregard for safety in the case of criminal operations they are capable of doing a lot more.

        So I wouldn't restrict the search to 5000' hard surface runways.

        sPh

        [1] Boeing 747LCF Dreamlifter landing at incorrect small airport in Kansas, Ethiopian 767 landing at incorrect small airport in Tanzania, and C-17 landing at small general aviation airport in Florida [which was actually in-spec for the C-17 by 100 ft, but not a takeoff they like to make if they don't have to]

      •  Oh, for %&% sake... (0+ / 0-)

        Flight 93 was flying over one of the most heavily populated areas of North America with lots of communications infrastructure (ie, cell towers). If the plane had been approaching over the ocean more than 30 miles or so from shore, they wouldn't have been talking to anyone.

        I really with people would learn how the magic box they carry in their pocket actually worked before proposing how it fits in to incidents.

      •  Presumably, if it was hijacked (0+ / 0-)

        the hijackers would have confiscated and turned off all devices.

        "Reagan's dead, and he was a lousy president" -- Keith Olbermann 4/22/09

        by kovie on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 07:17:24 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  I propose no more Flight 370 stories because (6+ / 0-)

    the DKos crowd is simply not mature enough to handle it.

    Half the posters are posting snark or half-TIC alien claims in response to an already (no matter the final outcome) tragic event.

    The other half are running around screaming "CT! CT! Banhammer! Sooooooooo embarrassing! For shame! For shame!"

    It's pitiful, and it's pathetic.

    Talk like adults, people. Reason and be sensitive, responsible, and discursive in your speculation. And those of you screaming about CT and how this is embarrassing—just shut up. TPTB will handle anything inappropriate without you having to play the role of playground tattletale.

    -9.63, 0.00
    "Liberty" is deaf, dumb, and useless without life itself.

    by nobody at all on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 04:59:35 PM PDT

  •  pretty obvious at this point (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    bcba2013

    something unusual happened to that plane, and that local authorities are covering it up

    free the information

    by freelixir on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 05:00:51 PM PDT

  •  The discussions about satellites makes me want (0+ / 0-)

    to canvas the neighborhood.  Rockwell Collins, located here in town, and up the street from me, which means a big chunk of the neighborhood works for them, does shitloads of communications design, programming, and construction.  Rockwell Collins is one of the biggest, if not biggest, player in aviation communications equipment and satellite communications in the world.  I'm sure they're having a cow over there.

  •  Stealth? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    lotlizard, greenearth

    It's weird that the US spent zillions of dollars on stealth bombers and fighters. The idea was that the $ was worth spending because otherwise radar and other systems could track airplanes (and shoot them down?) Anyway, here there is a huge ass airplane and to hear it told, when it turned off its transponder and some other system (engine data reporting?) it essentially disappeared.  That does not compute.

    The other thing that does not compute is why you would make a transponder or engine data system that could be turned off from inside the plane. It's like making a car on which you can turn off the brakes. It's like having one of those iPhone apps that helps you find your lost phone, installing it and then turning it off. It's only good when it works.

    I do hope they find this airplane quickly. Although at this point "quickly" seems to have come and gone. Maybe it's just me. I fly weekly. I'd like to know what in the world happened here.

    •  There's no active air traffic radar that far out (0+ / 0-)

      in the ocean, that's why the transponders are there to register the plane's location and info to the controllers. I do agree that the idea of being able to shut off the transponders is pretty loony though! I'm sure there's a 'reason' for it, but whatever it is, doesn't seem good enough.

      "When does the greed stop, we ask the other side? That's the question and that's the issue." - Senator Ted Kennedy

      by Fordmandalay on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 05:29:18 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  WEll (0+ / 0-)

        If it would have hit the water it would have sent automatic signals to land. It never hit water. If it were to keep flying, it would have come into contact with land radar. That never happened. It's gone and the aliens took it.

      •  The reasons... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        sphealey, greenearth

        ...are generally related to giving the flight crew the ability to  isolate electronic systems that may have malfunctioned either to eliminate their interference with other systems or eliminate a potential hazard to the aircraft due to fire, etc.

         

      •  Why the shutoff (0+ / 0-)

        Transponders, as do all electronic equipment, fail from time to time.  A failed transponder that is transmitting an incorrect signal can require shutdown of hundreds of miles of airspace (really bad if that includes LGA or Heathrow); a failed transmitter that is on fire can have an undesirable affect on the airplane.

        Basically everything on the airframe has to be under the control of the pilots because it is assumed that everything can and will fail; there are procedures for handling all those failures but most start with "isolate and remove power from the failed equipment".

        sPh

    •  For one.. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      sphealey

      You don't want the thing on when the plane is parked at the gate.  It just clutters up the radar and makes it harder to keep track of the flights in the air..

      •  Limited codes (0+ / 0-)

        Standard transponders are also limited to 4096 codes (12-bit signal), less some that are predefined (1200 for aircraft flying under VFR for example).  A busy airspace can use up all the available codes so you don't want transceivers left on.

        sPh

    •  There's a difference (4+ / 0-)

      between air traffic control radar and air defense radars.

      ATC radar has a fairly weak signal and is fairly dependent on the aircraft having a working transponder.

      If the pilot's good, see, I mean if he's reeeally sharp, he can barrel that baby in so low... oh you oughta see it sometime. It's a sight. A big plane like a '52... varrrooom! Its jet exhaust... frying chickens in the barnyard!

      by Major Kong on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 06:15:10 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  something most ppl dont realize (0+ / 0-)

        and thank you for pointing this out (Damn, Major, you do a lot of that!)

        Civilian Air Traffic Control radar is like standing on a pedestal and waving a flashlight around -- you see all the reflections, but you're only really looking for the guys wearing mirrors (that be the transponders that are designed to send the same noise you're sending out).

        Once a transponder goes offline, the plane is suddenly dark WRT the frequencies that the civilian flashlight-waver is looking for.  He might see you, but if he does, he won't immediately or necessarily know who you are, what altitude you're flying at, what your speed might happen to be, what direction you're going -- you're just a blip with information that comes in only over time and concentration.

        To put this in modern terms: LOA is good because in order to track it you have to amp your Doppler gain such that you're tracking every bird and bat in the sky every 1/100th of a second, and then comparing that to every other bird and bat in the sky the very next 1/100th of a second, and then connecting dots over a few 1/100th's of a second and hoping that you connect all the dots before a Mach 3 HARM gives you a kiss. If this were "easy" then F117's would be falling like flies.

        Civilian air controllers work on much larger time and space scales.  A meat bus moving away from them and into an expected and accepted air corridor would not trigger any alarm bars, either personally or electronically.

        We haven't met but you're a great fan of mine

        by Great Cthulhu on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 07:26:26 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  I'm thinking that the pilot (0+ / 0-)

    and co-pilot were sleeper cells and that they had cohorts help/muscle/cell members on the plane with them. They plan these things for years. They could then have hostages now and a plane that would later become one of the scariest weapons in the world. They could also have over 200 hostages. America is now involved in this so I'm wondering if they may be thinking the same thing as I am?

    DONATE MONEY OR TIME TO WENDY DAVIS

    by Chamonix on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 05:34:36 PM PDT

  •  Once a plane is offshore a bit it's out of range. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    nchristine

    100 miles or so and there is no radar that far out at sea. Planes report their positions to air traffic control when possible but even then there is no guarantee of radio reception in the middle of the ocean.

    If the plane crashed into the sea there would be debris. This area of the ocean is not that desolate. There is plenty of air and sea traffic there. If the plane exploded midair it would almost certainly be seen by someone on it's intended flight path and the surface fire would have burned for a while.

    Cell phones would not work offshore either. They need land based towers.

    There are water activated emergency transmitters on planes. Perhaps it's too deep for the signal to be picked up.

  •  Link to Journal requires log-in. Hate that n/t (0+ / 0-)
  •  Press is focused on word "catastrophic." (0+ / 0-)

    If something terrible happened, say a piece of fuselage blew off but the plane kept flying, it could have had a failure that was not catastrophic in the sense of one instantaneous event that blew it out of the sky, but a failure that developed over the course of some period of time into a catastrophe.

    If it was something that can't be gamed in a flight simulator, as such as an airframe failure, with or without the involvement of weather, sabotage, whatever, the pilots might have been shutting stuff down over a period of time. They might have been desperately trying anything to stanch whatever they had going on - smoke, damaged O2, things falling off.

    And, in aviation accidents, what is termed pilot error comes in many shades of grey. There could be out-and-out pilot error - doing something they shouldn't have or not doing something they should have - or error determined in retrospect when more is known. Something towards the latter end of the scale is more likely.

    Or the failure might have taken things like transponders off line or given the pilots reason to believe they had to turn them off. Fire in the cockpit, for example, where the heads of the units are located (or at least those parts of the transponder system).

  •  More speculation, waiting for WSJ to blame Russia (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    burana

    Human beings are not good at dealing with uncertainty and the unknown.

    Strange days indeed. ~John Lennon

    by joanil on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 06:18:06 PM PDT

  •  reading the comments here, I can only say . . . . (4+ / 0-)

    "So much for that whole 'reality-based community' thingie . . ."

    (sigh)

    In the end, reality always wins.

    by Lenny Flank on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 06:22:50 PM PDT

  •  Wouldn't it make sense that, if this were (0+ / 0-)

    terrorism, someone would have taken credit/blame for it? There are usually demands. And threats.

    "Life and death, dispensed on a dollar basis. How ridiculous and fatally stupid, in what is still the richest country on earth?" Exmearden

    by burana on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 06:25:37 PM PDT

  •  Latest info from WSJ (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    PatriciaVa

    Looks like WSJ has an inside source, but still take this with a grain of salt.  

    Their latest report is that the Aircraft Communications Addressing and Reporting System, or ACARS, continued to ping satellites for five fucking hours before the pings ended.  These "pings" were not simple "Here I am" querys, they included altitude, bearing, and location.  The last ping occured at cruising altitude, suggesting that someone in the plane finally disabled the ACARS system.  The WSJ article mentioned that the data was being analysed to determine if the plane had landed at any point.

    If true, this suggests that the US authorities know much more than they have divulged, including the last location of the plane.  The only explanation can be foul play, and there is a tiny chance that the passengers are still alive.  Since no ransom demands have been made, my own hunch is that the hijackers slaughtered the passengers so they wouldn't have to deal with food and security for over 200 pissed off mofos.  But then I'm a glass is half empty guy so hopefully I'm fucking wrong.

    "When I was an alien, cultures weren't opinions" ~ Kurt Cobain, Territorial Pissings

    by Subterranean on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 06:26:09 PM PDT

    •  big grain of salt w/that. (0+ / 0-)

      the malaysians are the ones who found the pings and they arent sure if they even came form the lost plane or another plane.

      •  Nope, Malaysians are adament that (0+ / 0-)

        there were no signals after the first 27 minutes of flight.  The ping info is from American investigators, probably with the help of Boeing or RR.  

        Given the threat posed by this plane having been hijacked (remote, but still existent), I suspect the Pentagon is now involved.

        "When I was an alien, cultures weren't opinions" ~ Kurt Cobain, Territorial Pissings

        by Subterranean on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 07:35:05 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Forgot the link: (0+ / 0-)

          "When I was an alien, cultures weren't opinions" ~ Kurt Cobain, Territorial Pissings

          by Subterranean on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 07:35:51 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  well i have a link too! (0+ / 0-)

          this really has become a rabbit hole...

          cnn claims that the malaysians came up with the pings today.
          right now i think everyone is grasping at straws
          even the "new ' cnn report has changed since i read it initially-2 hrs ago
          http://www.cnn.com/...

          •  Strange article, (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            greenearth

            It seems internally inconsistent:

            Malaysian authorities believe they have several "pings" from the airliner's service data system, known as ACARS, transmitted to satellites in the four to five hours after the last transponder signal, suggesting the plane flew to the Indian Ocean, a senior U.S. official told CNN.
            Earlier Thursday the Malaysian government denied a Wall Street Journal report that the plane was transmitting data after the last transponder signal.
            But U.S. officials maintained Thursday afternoon that the information from the airplane's data system was being actively pursued in the plane investigation.
            Analysts from U.S. intelligence, the Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board have concluded that the pings likely came from the missing aircraft, the senior U.S. official said.
            I still suspect we're seeing US intelligence being laundered through the media.  The next update will probably prove me wrong.

            "When I was an alien, cultures weren't opinions" ~ Kurt Cobain, Territorial Pissings

            by Subterranean on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 08:26:15 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  Other linkage: (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          greenearth

          From the avherald:

          On Mar 13th 2014 afternoon Malaysia's Transport Minister said in a televised press conference, that the last ACARS transmission was received from the aircraft at 01:07L (17:07Z), there were no later transmissions via ACARS

          "When I was an alien, cultures weren't opinions" ~ Kurt Cobain, Territorial Pissings

          by Subterranean on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 07:48:35 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  AVHerald (0+ / 0-)

            AVHerald has pretty much gone to 2/day updates on this incident.  Reasonable since the site operator prefers to be a factual record rather than a newscycle discussion board, but it does mean AVH is behind on actual changes in the situation as well as behind on false rumors.

            sPh

            •  The point is that (0+ / 0-)

              the source of the info on satellite pings is not Malaysia.  

              "When I was an alien, cultures weren't opinions" ~ Kurt Cobain, Territorial Pissings

              by Subterranean on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 08:20:02 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Reasonable guesses (0+ / 0-)

                Two reasonable guesses for the discrepancies:

                1 - the people who know aren't in the habit of giving out detailed information to outsiders (lot of closely held information in the aviation and satcom worlds)

                2 - Inmarsat actually didn't have the data - since it wasn't a communication and wasn't needed for billing they might have discarded it - but some other entity did:  NSA or Australian signals intelligence.  Those entities needed to find the information and then figure out how to launder it back through Inmarsat to avoid revealing their capabilities.

                sPh

    •  That WSJ article isn't even internally consistent (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      greenearth

      First it says the pings gave:

      the plane's location, speed and altitude for at least five hours after it disappeared from civilian radar screens ....
      Then, only a few paragraphs later, it says:
      U.S. aviation investigators said they were analyzing the satellite transmissions to determine whether they can glean information about the plane's location or status.
      Which is it, WSJ? Did the transmissions indicate the plane's location, speed and altitude, or didn't they?

      Bin Laden is dead. GM and Chrysler are alive.

      by leevank on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 07:25:23 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Latest info (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        greenearth

        Latest info is that the subject aircraft had maintenance ACARS installed but no subscription for the satellite service (outside of radio range).  The engines did have a full ACARS subscription but were configured only to report key events.  The last key event the engines reported was going from climb power to cruise power.  After that there were up to 8 more keepalive messages to the satellite network at 30 minute intervals, but no data was transmitted.

        IF VERIFIED, that would imply the aircraft was in cruise for 4 hours after the last known position fix.

        However, assuming the aircraft was in cruise with the pilots incapacitated (Helios 522 situation) that still leaves the question of why when the plane ran out of fuel the engine system did not report an event.  

        And again, assuming this news is verified.  Which nothing so far has been.

        sPh

      •  My guess? (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        greenearth

        A.  The article is bullshit.

        B.  The information was obtained by the Pentagon using classified means, and so they are trying to launder it for the public.

        Also, noted by the Maddow show, the WSJ article was changed during the day.  Initially it reported that the pings originated from the ACARS system.  The article now makes no mention of ACARS, instead referring to "satellite transmissions" and "data 'pings'".  This suggests the B explanation of info laundering.  

        If I were feeling lucky, I'd bet that the Pentagon knows precisely where the plane is at this very moment, but we will only find out about it after the Kidd or some other US ship "finds" the missing plane.

        "When I was an alien, cultures weren't opinions" ~ Kurt Cobain, Territorial Pissings

        by Subterranean on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 07:41:47 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Actually, ACARS does not use satellites. (0+ / 0-)

      ACARS works with VHF radios (above the FM band) and on shortwave when out of range of the VHF stations.

      The data could have been delivered two ways: 1) the data would have been automatically sent via shortwave to a ground station at Hat Yai, Thailand, only a few hundred miles from Malaysia, or 2), to ground stations within the area. Aeronautical Radio Inc. (ARINC) runs the system on behalf of the airlines and air traffic controllers everywhere (for a fee, of course).

      ARINC would be able to easily tell from the recorded data where it was received and on what frequency.

      It does make it harder: shortwave can carry for thousands of miles, meaning that in those five hours it could have been far from the search area. VHF radios are much shorter range, generally only about 100 miles or so (to the visible horizon), and if the data was received on VHF only, that would mean it didn't go far in those five hours.

      ACARS does report flight data such as altitude, position, and speed, so if that data is available it should give an idea of the direction of travel of the aircraft. Generally ACARS transmits every 30 minutes IIRC, so you would have ten locations to give the search parties a better idea of where it went.

      And yeah, I know tarantulas don't really act like that at all, so no snarking, this is the internet damnit!

      by itzadryheat on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 07:32:45 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  AIRINC (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Subterranean

        From AIRINC's ACARS web site:

        = = =   ARINC is the world leader in air-to-ground communications
            Automatic and manual data link messaging
            Very high frequency (VHF), Inmarsat satellite, and high frequency (HF) provide seamless coverage around the world = = =
        •  I stand corrected. (0+ / 0-)

          The INMARSAT connection is newer than my recollection. A caveat with such a connection is that it only works where the INMARSATs have coverage: they are fixed systems, and if you fly out of their coverage, there is no coverage using satellites. Hence the backups. I see ARINC is also selling coverage over the Iridium satellite system, so they are covering many bases on their end.

          The costs associated with satellite usage are also higher, and some airlines may not use that version. The shortwave and VHF ACARS systems use already installed and required equipment, so the cost to the airlines is much lower to implement.

          Reading between the lines on ARINC's website page that covers ACARS, it sounds like they are not emphasizing satellite usage. Oddly enough, they highlight information about the shortwave version (their term: High Frequency Data Link) and how "it has grown 20% a year for the last 10 years." That is not how you sell satellite time... They may be de-emphasizing satellite because ARINC has to buy satellite time from INMARSAT, while shortwave is much cheaper and very reliable, and ARINC does not have to pay anyone else for airtime.

          And yeah, I know tarantulas don't really act like that at all, so no snarking, this is the internet damnit!

          by itzadryheat on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 09:23:30 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  Why do you suppose (0+ / 0-)

        the WSJ is now reporting only "satellite transmissions" rather than ACARS data?

        My guess is that we are seeing Pentagon info laundering.

        "When I was an alien, cultures weren't opinions" ~ Kurt Cobain, Territorial Pissings

        by Subterranean on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 08:18:19 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Good question. (0+ / 0-)

          Could be simple technical illiteracy, I suppose. There's a bit of an epidemic of that going on right now when it comes to this missing plane.

          I personally don't trust the WSJ on straight news, much less anything with a technical bent. They typically don't win awards for their science and technology reportage.

          What I have heard was sent was that data messages containing information about the performance of the engines was sent at least twice, maybe more. This is a feature of Rolls Royce, the engine manufacturer, as the data goes to them as part of the engine care package. Boeing apparently offers a similar system (for $$ of course) that would make similar reports on the entire aircraft, but Malaysia Air had declined it. This type of data would be sent out on the ACARS system very easily, as that is what it was designed to do. It is also designed to do it automatically, invisibly even, so the air crew doesn't have to worry about it.

          The engines are the most expensive parts of any aircraft, and while I couldn't find a price for a Trent 800 on the internet, I'd hazard a guess they cost somewhere near $15 million each. Hence the care package...

          And yeah, I know tarantulas don't really act like that at all, so no snarking, this is the internet damnit!

          by itzadryheat on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 09:41:31 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  Here's a graphic of how far the plane could go (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Subterranean, PatriciaVa, greenearth

    Just to help everyone visualize of where and how far it may have gone, and theories of it possibly beinh hijacked and ending up in everywhere from Somalia to Iran.

    The black circle is an approximation of the 2500 mile flight distance it had fuel to fly, with the center of the circle it's takeoff point of Kuala Lumpur. Note that it's the maximum straight line distance the plane could go, with no manuevers - just Point A to Point B. The only 'unfriendly' country it could get to would be Pakistan - every other country in the circle is either under the control of, or friendly to China (the majority of the passengers were Chinese). There are no 'rogue states' in the circle.

    asiaradius

    "When does the greed stop, we ask the other side? That's the question and that's the issue." - Senator Ted Kennedy

    by Fordmandalay on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 06:47:33 PM PDT

    •  Nice graphic, (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      PatriciaVa, greenearth

      Even to get to Pakistan, the plane would have to fly through controlled Indian airspace, where it would show up on radar and be challenged militarily.

      South of India, the plane would run near Diego Garcia.  I don't know the exact range of the base's radar, but most likely the region is also under satellite surveillance by the US, and there would be many US assets in the waters with radar capability.

      I do wonder about Sri Lanka, but IIRC the Tamil Tigers were defeated a few years ago.  

      "When I was an alien, cultures weren't opinions" ~ Kurt Cobain, Territorial Pissings

      by Subterranean on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 07:03:30 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Yeah, I forgot about those guys (0+ / 0-)

        But they weren't big international players - what would be their reason? And the plane would still have to be landed, and that means the Sri Lankan gov. would have to be involved.

        "When does the greed stop, we ask the other side? That's the question and that's the issue." - Senator Ted Kennedy

        by Fordmandalay on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 08:53:00 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  maybe (0+ / 0-)

      if you include a bit of gliding into that range it could go a little farther, as far away as NORTH KOREA! dun dun duuuuuuun

      anyone born after the McDLT has no business stomping around acting punk rock

      by chopper on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 08:36:39 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Missing plane (0+ / 0-)

    I find it hard to believe no one on that plane had a cell phone! No Tweeter, no nothing! Looks like they, the crew and passengers may have gone the same way Amelia Earhart did. Fortunately people have survived worse ordeals and we should give up hope until we find the plane.

  •  like EgyptAir 990 perhaps..../nt (0+ / 0-)

    Warning - some snark may be above‽ (-9.50; -7.03)‽ eState4Column5©2013 "I’m not the strapping young Muslim socialist that I used to be" - Barack Obama 04/27/2013 (@eState4Column5).

    by annieli on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 08:13:40 PM PDT

    •  From TV Machine (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      greenearth

      sorry, I have no link, and I forget if it's MSNBC or Al Jazeera, but the report was basically that two automatic comm systems were disabled at different times.  That rules out catastrophic failure and suggests somebody separately shut down both systems.  

      The ACARS/satellite comm also is suspected of being disabled after about 5 hours, but I can't find anything reporting that explains why "intelligence analysts" believe it was manually disabled rather than due to a crash.  Maybe info laundering?  

      "When I was an alien, cultures weren't opinions" ~ Kurt Cobain, Territorial Pissings

      by Subterranean on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 08:36:50 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Found a link: (0+ / 0-)

        ABC News:

        Two U.S. officials tell ABC News the U.S. believes that the shutdown of two communication systems happened separately on Malaysia Airlines Flight 370. One source said this indicates the plane did not come out of the sky because of a catastrophic failure.

        The data reporting system, they believe, was shut down at 1:07 a.m. The transponder -- which transmits location and altitude -- shut down at 1:21 a.m.

        "When I was an alien, cultures weren't opinions" ~ Kurt Cobain, Territorial Pissings

        by Subterranean on Thu Mar 13, 2014 at 08:55:32 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Wonder If N. Korea Is Involved? (0+ / 0-)

    Maybe fearless leader of N. Korea has seen movie and been inspired.

  •  on another board someone talked of switching off (0+ / 0-)

    the two systems and didnt think it would be easy to do and doubted this theory of intentionally turning off both.
    anyone know how or where they both are?

  •  War Games in China Sea (0+ / 0-)

    China and US are engaged in high stakes military maneuvers in China Sea.
    Both China and US have massive intelligence gathering capabilities.

    New weapons are being deployed by both nations.

    See China Times and see for yourself.

    http://www.wantchinatimes.com/...

    "AMERICA DID NOT INVENT HUMAN RIGHTS, HUMAN RIGHTS INVENTED AMERICA"

    by michealallison on Fri Mar 14, 2014 at 06:28:02 AM PDT

  •  This is entirely possible (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Subterranean

    My husband works for a major US airline and he was discussing the possible scenarios with aircraft mechanics.  If the pilot lowered the pressure in the cabin, used his own oxygen mask, killed or disabled the co-pilot (or vice versa), the indicators could be disconnected and the plane flown just about anywhere without detection.

    Another possibility is that the plane was flown very close to the water, landed, a la the USAir landing on the Hudson, nosed into the water, and it would sink without being destroyed.

    Which leads to questions of why and where are those passengers and crew?  

    What a tragic situation for loved ones. I hope it's resolved soon for their sakes.

  •  Latest flight path info (0+ / 0-)

    We now have a flight path through the Andaman Sea.

    Flight was navigating using established waypoints, or flight paths.

    No question it was 'jacked.  The lack of ransom demands is troubling, since it suggests that the 'jackers didn't want to bother with security for over 200 angery passengers.

    "When I was an alien, cultures weren't opinions" ~ Kurt Cobain, Territorial Pissings

    by Subterranean on Fri Mar 14, 2014 at 09:54:21 AM PDT

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