Boeing software upgrade was still incomplete when grounded. Five pilots reported abnormalities

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 Boeing software upgrade was still incomplete when grounded. Five pilots reported abnormalities


Avalanche grounding, order cancellation, market value evaporation... Boeing is experiencing a major crisis because of two major crashes in five months, which killed 346 people.

Boeing 737 Max8 was still flying over the lonely United States on the morning of the 13th, but shortly afterwards, the United States finally announced a grounding, and Boeings aircraft officially encountered a global grounding.

The late grounding of the United States has recently led the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and Boeing to more and more criticism at the forefront of the storm. Not only that, but also more and more media began to question whether there was any negligence in aviation safety behind the Boeing crisis. As a result, more and more behind-the-scenes information has been exposed, such as the FAA Director, Deputy Director and Chief of Staff three important positions have been vacant for 14 consecutive months, and at least five American pilots in the past few months have reported that the sudden dive of the aircraft has been ignored...

Among them, the news that the U.S. government suspended the upgrade of Boeing 737 Max software delayed attracted attention. After all, the vulnerability of the software is generally believed to be the cause of two similar air crashes, so some media began to link the air crash with the government shutdown, but it is not clear whether there is a causal relationship.

Such speculation stems from a report in the Wall Street Journal on March 12, local time, that Boeing planned to complete the software upgrade in January after the crash of Lion Airlines in Indonesia, but the upgrade was delayed due to its disagreement with FAA. Officials say the longest shutdown in U.S. government history has delayed software upgrades for five weeks.

However, the FAA has responded that the governments suspension has nothing to do with the delay in upgrading.

Boeing Software Upgrade was scheduled to be completed in January

Boeings software upgrade, in fact, began after the crash of Lion Airlines last year, but has not yet been completed.

Later on March 11, Boeing, at the heart of the crash, issued a statement on its website explaining the upgrade of 737 Max software. It is noteworthy that the statement said that the software upgrade was due to the Lion Airlines crash in October last year. It did not mention the Essy Airlines incident to promote the upgrade of the software, but expressed condolences to the victims at the end of the statement.

As for the reasons and details of the software upgrade, Boeing explained this way: In the months following the crash of Lion Airlines JT610, Boeing has been developing enhanced functions of flight control software for 737MAX in order to make the already safe aircraft safer. This includes updates to flight control laws, pilot displays, operating manuals and crew training for the Maneuverability Enhancement System (MCAS). The improved flight control law includes angle of attack (AOA) input, limiting the stabilizer balancing value to deal with wrong AOA data, and limiting the provision of stabilizer commands to retain elevator privileges.

Boeing said in a statement that the upgrade would be completed by April: Boeing has been working closely with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) on improving software development, planning and certification, and will deploy it to the 737 Max fleet in the coming weeks. The update also includes feedback received from customers.

The Federal Aviation Administration said it expects to force the installation of the improved software through the Airworthiness Directive (AD) by the end of April. We developed this improved software in collaboration with the Federal Aviation Administration.

However, the Wall Street Journal disclosed on the 12th that FAA and Boeing had planned to make software repairs to the aircrafts MCAS system in early January, but the plan was delayed. According to people familiar with the situation, this is partly due to differences of opinion between FAA and Boeing on technical and engineering issues, and the two sides have different views on the scope of the restoration.

In addition, officials said the longest suspension in U.S. government history had delayed the work for five weeks. That is the news, and then caused a lot of speculation in the US media: is it the government shutdown that caused Boeing not to repair the software in time, which indirectly led to the tragedy of Aerospace?

However, the Wall Street Journal also reported that the FAA and Boeing experts agreed that there was no immediate security threat to the aircraft and that the delay was acceptable. The FAA also said that after the crash of Lion Airlines, Boeing had informed pilots around the world about the operation of the system, which was enough to mitigate the danger.

Later on the 13th, Daniel Elwell, acting director of the FAA, denied that the closure of the government was the reason for the delayed upgrade, CNN reported. We have just been confirmed that the government shutdown did not cause any delay in software work, he said.

According to the New York Times, Boeing has long been one of the largest defense contractors in the United States, closely related to the Republican government, and its differences with the FAA have existed for a long time.

As for the previous partial suspension of the U.S. government, it lasted 35 days, spanning Christmas and New Years Day, the longest in history. The FAA was indeed one of the affected agencies, when thousands of security inspectors and other staff were recalled to ensure the safety of flights across the country.

However, it is also important to note that the FAA did not completely stop operating during the closure of the government. It is not clear whether the software upgrade between FAA and Boeing was affected.

At least five American pilots have reported Boeing 737MAX dive problems.

Recently, the torture of aviation safety, especially FAA and Boeing, caused by two air crashes has continued.

Senator Richard Blumenthal of the Democratic Party, a member of the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee, said the suspension absolutely increased FAAs failures.

They have new software. They know about sensor problems. Airlines should be responsible for this, but FAA is responsible for taking immediate action.

The New York Times article on the 13th asked, Why does FAA release a system that can easily get out of control on an airplane?

New York Times screenshot

The article mentions the delayed upgrade of the software mentioned above. It also mentions that the FAA management position has been vacant for 14 months. At least five American pilots have reported the problem of the aircraft before, but they have not paid attention to it.

In a previous report submitted by American pilots, an airline captain said that the co-pilot immediately shouted down after putting the aircraft in autopilot condition, and then issued dont sink in the cockpit. A warning. The captain immediately cut off the autopilot system and switched to manual driving to restore the aircraft to a state of climb.

The captain wrote: Based on concerns about the nose downward tilt of the MAX8, we think it should be notified. I analyse that the short-term climate system disrupts the automated flight of aircraft, resulting in fluctuations in flight speed.

In another flight, a co pilot said that after the automatic driving system was activated for a few seconds, the nose fell down immediately, and the aircraft began to fall at a rate of 1200 to 1500 feet per minute (from 365 to 460 meters). Like another flight, the aircrafts low altitude warning system issued a voice warning, and the captain cut off the autopilot system and the aircraft climbed again.

The co-pilot said he later discussed the matter with the pilot, but could not think of any reason why the plane would dive so violently.

In addition, after the tragedy, China took the lead in grounding, followed by dozens of countries have announced grounding. The United States became the last country to announce a grounding. In the face of the delayed decision, the American people also blamed the FAA for their dissatisfaction. They questioned the slow decision-making of the United States, which was irresponsible to the domestic people.

Source: Responsible Editor of Observer Network: Qian Mingxiao_NBJ10675