• MH370 speculation has become excessive recently. Metabunk is not a forum for creating theories by speculation. It's a forum for examining claims, and seeing if they hold up. Please respect this and keep threads on-topic. There are many other forums where speculation is welcome.

Flight MH370 Speculation

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TWCobra

Senior Member.
I flew past the last point of contact with this aircraft last night coming down from Bangkok. We mentioned the passports to some Australian consular officials who routinely inspect passports of people getting on to our particular flight.

Neither was surprised that some passengers were travelling on fake passports. It is quite common in that part of the world, particularly with mainland Chinese passengers. This confirms my own view. I doubt it will be a factor in the ultimate cause when it is determined.

The intriguing part of this is the lack of reports from marine traffic regarding an explosion or sightings of a crash.

The Gulf of Siam is the busiest stretch of water I have ever seen in my travels. The number of fishing boats with lights that can be seen on a clear night is mind boggling... How any fish survive to be caught is the first thing that springs to mind. How none of these boats seemed to witness anything is very strange.

image.jpg

Waypoint IGARI to the left of track here, is the Flight information Region (FIR) boundary between Kuala Lumpur and Ho Chi Minh FIRs. That was the last point of contact or thereabouts. WMKK is Kuala Lumpur airport where the aircraft departed.
 

Mark Barrington

Active Member
Here is an interesting addition from FlightAware:

http://www.ibtimes.co.uk/missing-ma...showing-wreckage-plane-posted-chinese-1439484

Headline: "Missing Malaysia Airlines Jet: Images Claim to Show Wreckage of MH370 Surface in Chinese Social Media"
That photo does not look like airliner debris to me, but it's such poor quality it could be anything. In any case, if the authorities have the metadata from the original image and it was taken from a cell phone, they should be able to geolocate it pretty precisely. I suppose they're already checking it out.
 

WeedWhacker

Senior Member
That photo does not look like airliner debris to me, but it's such poor quality it could be anything. In any case, if the authorities have the metadata from the original image and it was taken from a cell phone, they should be able to geolocate it pretty precisely. I suppose they're already checking it out.

I agree as to the quality and veracity of the photo. I only offered it as part of the discussion, in order to confirm, or "debunk" its veracity.
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
http://www.themalaysianinsider.com/...irms-signal-of-mh370-turning-back-on-saturday

This, if correct, changes the whole scenario. This means the aircraft was tracked, an hour after the supposed last contact, heading in completely the wrong direction.

The Malaysians would have known this days ago, as questions were being asked about why there was a serious search effort being mounted yesterday in the Malacca Straits.

Given that the plane had enough fuel to get to Beijing, if it were some kind of hijacking or pilot takeover, then that gives a very large potential search area:
 

WeedWhacker

Senior Member
Unconfirmed reports have been made that the airliner turned West, and descended to approximately 1,000 meters (or 3,000 feet).

But, conflicting info at this point in time.

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-26527439

(11 March 2014, 1329 EDT)

Military radar suggests the missing Malaysia Airlines plane turned west, away from its planned route, before vanishing, Malaysia's air force says.
Content from External Source
(Noting that this BBC article does not mention the altitude change, this I heard from another source).

Another EDIT: Just came across this Reuters article:

http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/03/11/us-malaysiaairlines-flight-idUSBREA2701720140311

(Reuters) - Malaysia's military believes a jetliner missing for almost four days turned and flew hundreds of kilometers to the west after it last made contact with civilian air traffic control off the country's east coast, a senior officer told Reuters on Tuesday.
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......
"It changed course after Kota Bharu and took a lower altitude. It made it into the Malacca Strait," the senior military officer, who has been briefed on investigations, told Reuters.
Content from External Source
Speculation, or fact? Hard to say.
 
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MikeC

Closed Account
They are quoting military radar plots.

so, a scenario - total and pretty much instant electrical failure, followed by deployment of the RAT supplying emergency hydraulic power for flight control. they lose all communications, and turn back looking for somewhere to land, but "lose it" or hit a hill......

Hard to imagine such total failure, and I don't have my 777 systems DVD handy to check what the RAT powers...and it's for -300's anyway not -200's.....
 

WeedWhacker

Senior Member
I fear that my earlier post (#31) may have steered this particular thread in a wrong direction...there is cross-interest in MH370, but this thread is specific to the question of the "fake passports".

On that topic: Regardless of the "reason" for the apparent disappearance of MH370, it seems that the fact of these two falsified passports may be irrelevant. Still, it is a mystery.
 

Mark Barrington

Active Member
Since we're in chitchat, I'll just go ahead and post this meander. Digital Globe is hosting a crowd sourced search for the missing plane on their TomNod site. You can register as a user and tag anything you find in recent satellite images in their defined search area. If enough users tag something as interesting, then it's investigated by experts. It's a great idea, but the site seems to be bogged down by the traffic right now.

http://www.tomnod.com/nod/challenge/malaysiaairsar2014?source=malaysia
 

TWCobra

Senior Member.
IMHO opinion there are only a few valid scenarios.

The transponder went off not long after the aircraft reached top of climb. There was no further communication from that point. There are two possibilities there:

1. Massive electrical failure, or

2. It was turned off

Massive electrical failure, in an aircraft like the 777 is hard to envisage although it has happened on similar aircraft. The redundancy on these systems is impressive as you may imagine. A total electrics failure on a dark night (there was no moon) is a nightmare scenario for most pilots but even then there are standby instruments to fly off as you try to get the power back on to the aircraft. It may explain why the aircraft turned around and flew in the manner it did.

If the transponder was turned off, it was either one of the pilots or a hijacker with some basic systems knowledge. Either scenario is a nightmare for the airline involved for obvious reasons.

Thats all I can come up with that fits the facts as they are known. Maybe the other pilots here can think of something else.

It is worth noting that just because the aircraft was tracked over the Malacca Strait doesn't mean it crashed there. There are some reports from the area of a low flying aircraft being heard, which implies the the engines were still working. I have no idea however, save for a disoriented crew, why it would be heading that way.
 

AluminumTheory

Senior Member.
It seems likely that this event will spawn a whole wave of conspiracy theories. I'm reluctant to get into it though, in the almost total absence of any real facts. But it might eventually warrant a new sub-forum.
Ignorance will always fill the void of knowledge; thus the longer this jet goes undiscovered, the more conspiracy theories that will spawn from this. And of course, people will cling to those theories long after they have been disproved.
It seems the authorities have investigated the Iranians with stolen passports and have deemed them to be unlikely terror suspects with no known connections to terrorist groups. Between this and the 20 Freescale semi conductor employees, it would make for alot of interesting theories. Although it is hard to not speculate or wonder what might have happened with virtually nothing to go on after several days since it's disappearance.
The Malaysians would have known this days ago, as questions were being asked about why there was a serious search effort being mounted yesterday in the Malacca Straits.
That's a good question. And if the plane really did alter course, you would potentially have a very large search area as Mick pointed out earlier. And it could be years or even decades before the fate of this jet is discovered.


From a statistical point of view, the most likely scenario would be some combination of systems failure and pilot error. In which case I suppose the plane could have either stalled or maybe a water landing was attempted (which most likely would have failed) resulting in fewer larger pieces of debris that would sink after a short period of time.

If there was an explosion, I'm pretty sure that would have left a large debris footprint that most likley would have been found by now.

Another scenario would be a hijacking in which case deepens the mystery.

Wasn't there a plane that nose dived into the ocean at near mach speed? How much debris did that crash leave?
 
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Mark Barrington

Active Member
Ok, I've thought this over, and this is the conspiracy theory I'm going with. The jetliner collided with an alien spacecraft and was instantly destroyed. The collision caused minor damage to the alien spacecraft, which made it visible to radar for a brief time, while it continued on its westward path. After about an hour or so, the aliens repaired their radar cloak and went back to stealing whales or whatever they do.

Ok, this is disrespectful to all of the people who have lost their lives, but I expect this theory or something similar to be on a conspiracy site somewhere within the next couple of days if the wreckage of the plane isn't found. I'm glad this thread is in chitchat.
 

WeedWhacker

Senior Member

That document does not address control 'takeovers".

In any case, there seems to be a layperson's misconception, fueled (unfortunately) by too many hack Hollywood screenwriters of late.

There is, quite simply, no way that an experienced pilot could NOT easily disable any attempted ground-based "takeover", even on our modern computerized airplanes. Even if it "were" to seem "feasible".

(HINT: Electrical power...and, we know how to find Circuit Breakers).
 

WeedWhacker

Senior Member
It has come up on some sites... along with being struck by a meteor.

I think there will continue to be a rash of unfounded, and really "out-there" types of speculation.

A meteor sufficiently large to cause this would (A) Have likely already been tracked by NASA, or ESA as a NEO and, (B) Would have been quite visible, given that it was night-side at the time of the flight of MH370.
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
I think there will continue to be a rash of unfounded, and really "out-there" types of speculation.

A meteor sufficiently large to cause this would (A) Have likely already been tracked by NASA, or ESA as a NEO and, (B) Would have been quite visible, given that it was night-side at the time of the flight of MH370.

I don't think A is true, as all it would need (in theory) is a baseball sized rock in the right place.

But if it were hit by a meteorite, there would be debris everywhere.
 

JRBids

Senior Member.
"OMG... if this is not terrorism and impossible to crash from 35000 without debris, the only other explanation can only be ALIEN ABDUCTION or NEW BERMUDA TRIANGLE."

"It's obvious the airplane got hijacked by Muslims and got rerouted to an unused airport in Southeast Asia or India or the middle east, and then the hijackers are blackmailing Malaysia airlines to keep their mouth shut or they will kill the passengers on that plane."

"I think it's time for Malaysia Airlines to engage the services of Military trained Remote Viewers to help resolve this mystery...if not for themselves, then for the families. They should look into farsight.org or learnrv.com and contact the principles."

https://www.facebook.com/malaysiaairlines
 

JRBids

Senior Member.
Maybe I missed where this is discussed, but wouldn't the black box be sending out a signal?
 
J

Joe

Guest
That document does not address control 'takeovers".

In any case, there seems to be a layperson's misconception, fueled (unfortunately) by too many hack Hollywood screenwriters of late.

There is, quite simply, no way that an experienced pilot could NOT easily disable any attempted ground-based "takeover", even on our modern computerized airplanes. Even if it "were" to seem "feasible".

(HINT: Electrical power...and, we know how to find Circuit Breakers).
What about from inside the aircraft ? Or maybe a couple of blondes hijacked the plane ? I think it stupid you can shut off a transponder didnt we learn anything from 9/11 ?

Two South African tourists say they were entertained by Fariq Abdul Hamid, the co-pilot of the missing Malaysia Airlines plane, and a colleague on a flight in December 2011


Content from External Source
 

TWCobra

Senior Member.
Maybe I missed where this is discussed, but wouldn't the black box be sending out a signal?


If it crashed..yes. The caveat to that is that if it is underwater you need to be close to the wreckage to find it. There is an ELT (Emergency Locator transmitter) fitted to most airliners these days which begins to transmit after a crash. It carries the same caveat however. There are also ELT's on some of the life rafts in the case of a ditching.

That none have been heard means the aircraft either crashed into the water or is at some mysterious location and intact. (Unlikely)
 
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WeedWhacker

Senior Member
I don't think A is true, as all it would need (in theory) is a baseball sized rock in the right place.

LOL...yeah, I thought of that. Too small for the NEO network to track. Still, even that size meteor would be extremely bright, on entry through the atmosphere.

And, ditto on the debris, from the one-in-a-million shot of a "meteor hit"!
 

WeedWhacker

Senior Member
What about from inside the aircraft ? Or maybe a couple of blondes hijacked the plane ? I think it stupid you can shut off a transponder didnt we learn anything from 9/11 ?

Sorry, "Joe", I didn't quite understand the point of your question. Could you please clarify, because I don't want to presume your intent.
 

WeedWhacker

Senior Member
There is an ELT (Emergency Locator transmitter) fitted to most airliners these days which begins to transmit after a crash. It carries the same caveat however. There are also ELT's on some of the life rafts in the case of a ditching.

The absence of any ELT occurred to me...you personally transited the region recently. Heard nothing on 121.5, I presume?

Also, IIRC, some modern ELTs have satellite location capabilities...although, I will need to check this. In any case, since the S&R has been ongoing, seems that ruling out any life rafts, and their associated ELTs is fairly certain, at this point.
 

TWCobra

Senior Member.
you personally transited the region recently. Heard nothing on 121.5, I presume

We flew over Ho Chi Minh on the day it happened but were unaware of the accident at that stage. The following night we basically flew down the east coast of Malaysia so within 80NM of waypoint IGARI, the reported last point of contact. There were notams issued by KL to report any ground fires spotted on the peninsula. We heard nothing on 121.5 mhz however.
 

WeedWhacker

Senior Member
The transponder needs to be shut off on the ground otherwise it clutters both ground and airborne radar displays.

Not to cloud the topic but...in some instances there are reasons for the transponder to be used, while taxiing...this occurred after I retired, but I try to "keep up" nevertheless! HOWEVER, none of these procedures were in effect, nor commonplace, on 11 September 2001.

http://www.lvnl-ohd.nl/ATC Fact sheets/AFS 07 Transponder ground operations.pdf

http://www.flyingmag.com/technique/tip-week/use-correct-transponder-mode

You may have been trained to put the transponder in STBY mode while taxiing. But this practice no longer satisfies the recommendations of the AIM (Aeronautical Information Manual).

The wording in the AIM regarding the use of transponders was modified last year. Regarding ground operations the AIM states: “Civil and military transponders should be turned to the “on” or normal altitude reporting position prior to moving on the airport surface to ensure the aircraft is visible to ATC surveillance systems.”
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Yeah, I know....this goes against ALL of my previous training and experience. But, seems to be starting to become more commonplace, depending on jurisdiction.
 

TWCobra

Senior Member.
Not to cloud the topic but...in some instances there are reasons for the transponder to be used, while taxiing...this occurred after I retired, but I try to "keep up" nevertheless! HOWEVER, none of these procedures were in effect, nor commonplace, on 11 September 2001.

http://www.lvnl-ohd.nl/ATC Fact sheets/AFS 07 Transponder ground operations.pdf

http://www.flyingmag.com/technique/tip-week/use-correct-transponder-mode

You may have been trained to put the transponder in STBY mode while taxiing. But this practice no longer satisfies the recommendations of the AIM (Aeronautical Information Manual).

The wording in the AIM regarding the use of transponders was modified last year. Regarding ground operations the AIM states: “Civil and military transponders should be turned to the “on” or normal altitude reporting position prior to moving on the airport surface to ensure the aircraft is visible to ATC surveillance systems.”
Content from External Source
Yeah, I know....this goes against ALL of my previous training and experience. But, seems to be starting to become more commonplace, depending on jurisdiction.


Correct, some require you to use it, some don't. The ones that don't tell you to turn it off if you have it on.
 

WeedWhacker

Senior Member
Correct, some require you to use it, some don't. The ones that don't tell you to turn it off if you have it on.


I agree with you....but, in a response to (what I now realize seemed a slightly off-topic diversion) by another member about Transponder usage protocols...perhaps there is a relevance to MH370 that could be made, in this thread?
 

TWCobra

Senior Member.
Well, in the absence of wreckage, someone turned it off and appears to have turned the ADSB off as well. To know how to do both requires some systems knowledge.

You only do that if you don't want to be tracked.

(info-ADSB is a new development (the basis for FR24, planefinder etc etc) and was not in use on 9/11)
 

TWCobra

Senior Member.
The only other thing I would add is that if the reports of a low level aircraft flying towards the Malacca Straits is true, then that also requires some skills and systems knowledge of the terrain displays now available as an overlay on the navigation display. There was no moon on the night although the weather was clear.

Whether or not that report is true has not been confirmed however.
 

Pete Tar

Senior Member.
Some rather more grounded speculation...


http://mh370lost.tumblr.com/?og=1
Summary
: It’s plausible that a fuselage section near the SATCOM antenna adapter failed, disabling satellite based - GPS, ACARS, and ADS-B/C - communications, and leading to a slow decompression that left all occupants unconscious. If such decompression left the aircraft intact, then the autopilot would have flown the planned route or otherwise maintained its heading/altitude until fuel exhaustion.
A slow decompression (e.g. from a golfball-sized hole) would have gradually impaired and confused the pilots before cabin altitude (pressure) warnings sounded.
Chain of events:
  • Likely fuselage failure near SATCOM antenna adapter, disabling some or all of GPS, ACARS, ADS-B, and ADS-C antennas and systems.
  • Thus, only primary radars would detect the plane. Primary radar range is usually less than 100nm, and is generally ineffective at high altitudes.
If the decompression was slow enough, it’s possible the pilots did not realize to put on oxygen masks until it was too late. (See Helios 522)
With incapacitated pilots, the 777 could continue to fly on Autopilot - programmed to maintain cruise altitude and follow the programmed route. Using the Inertial Reference System (gyroscope based), the plane could navigate without needing GPS.
Other thoughts:
  • The plane was equipped with cellular communication hardware, supplied by AeroMobile, to provide GSM services via satellite. However this is an aftermarket product; it’s not connected through SATCOM (as far as I know).
  • This explains why 19 families signed a statement alleging they were able to call the MH370 passengers and get their phones to ring, but with no response.
  • When Malaysian Airlines tried to call the phone numbers a day later, the phones did not ring. By this time, fuel would have been exhausted.
Note: 777 Passenger Oxygen masks do not deploy until cabin altitude reaches 13,500. Passengers were likely already unconscious by then, if it was a slow decompression. Also remember that this flight was a red-eye, most passengers would be trying to sleep, masking alarming effects of oxygen deprivation. No confirmed debris has been found anywhere near the search area, consistent with the plane having flown for hours after it lost radar contact.
Conclusion:
This was likely not an “explosive decompression” or “inflight disintegration.” This was likely a slow decompression that gradually deprived all crew/passengers of oxygen, leaving the autopilot to continue along the route autonomously.
The aircraft may be at the floor of the East China Sea, Sea of Japan, or the Pacific Ocean thousands of miles northeast from the current search zone. [UPDATE: Basically, it could be “anywhere”, and we need to use any available radar records to help figure it out. This is where the Vietnamese/Malaysia civilian and military radars will help.]
Content from External Source
 

WeedWhacker

Senior Member
and appears to have turned the ADSB off as well.

Presuming it was ADS-B equipped. But, is one function of the Mode-S feature of the Transponder...so, two birds, one stone (to simplify).

And of course, ADS-B did not exist on 9/11, again total agreement. (This is for the benefit of some in the audience, who may not realize the progress of technological developments, since 11 September 2001). And, these "developments" are by no means complete, nor are they thoroughly implemented.
 

WeedWhacker

Senior Member
then that also requires some skills and systems knowledge of the terrain displays now available as an overlay on the navigation display.


Enhanced, or 'E-GPWS'. I would presume it might have been installed on that airplane, but of course further investigation as to this fact will be needed.
 

WeedWhacker

Senior Member
...leading to a slow decompression that left all occupants unconscious.
Content from External Source

I am having some difficulty with that link, Pete...especially the bit I just excerpted.

Doesn't work that way, on a modern airliner. Once the Cabin Altitude exceeds 10,000 feet (+/- a few hundred) a whole bunch of alarms go off.

EDIT...on the Flight Deck, I should have added. Masks in the Cabin usually won't "drop" automatically until about 14,000 feet, +/- the usual margin for error. (on Boeings).
 

TWCobra

Senior Member.
Pete, that scenario requires too many coincidental factors. An alarm goes off in the cockpit once the cabin pressure goes above 10,000 feet. A fuselage failure that size at 35,000' would have ruptured the fuselage. I have seen that one on PPRUNE and most people don't give it credence.

The route it was flying on is littered with Primary Air Defense radars. ACARS also works on VHF and the route has transmitters everywhere.
It would have been on it planned NAV track and would have flown overhead Beijing airport, entered a holding pattern there until it ran out of fuel.
 

WeedWhacker

Senior Member
That's not unexpected it doesn't stand up to more knowledgeable analysis...

Hence an earlier point I made about Hollywood screenwriters, and their ability to sow very bad and incorrect memes into peoples' psyches.

I am reminded, suddenly, of a very egregious example...from one of the 'Die Hard' sequels. AND, I cannot recall which one, but in the climax, our "hero" (Bruce Willis) destroys the "bad guys" in their departing airplane by lighting the leaking jet fuel, as if it were a "fuse"....this is what I mean when I say that Hollywood destroys science, and adds to memes that perpetuate BAD and incorrect "beliefs".

EDIT....perhaps it was from the "sequel", 'Die Hard 2'. There is THIS utterly ridiculous sequence:


Again....I apologize if this is veering off-topic, but since the idea of these "false" passports being part of the mystery of MH370 is less and less likely....perhaps I will be "split off" at this point?

Could be a category of "Debunked Conspiracy Theories Surrounding Malaysian 370"
 
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