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Author Topic: Waitt Critique  (Read 23348 times)

Ashley Such

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Re: Waitt Critique
« Reply #15 on: August 02, 2010, 02:06:05 PM »

Something is missing or mis-typed in your question.

She had her own DF.

Unfortunately, she did not know how to use it:


Oh, oops! I meant to type, "Did AE have her radio direction finder on her plane of the morning of July 2nd?" :P I'll take a look at the links. Thanks, Marty!
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Martin X. Moleski, SJ

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Re: Waitt Critique
« Reply #16 on: August 02, 2010, 04:58:52 PM »

AE and FN's refusal to learn Morse code was one of the big links in the accident chain.

But learning Morse Code wouldn't have solved her problem.  It's not practical to fly and send/receive Morse at the same time because Morse requires close, undivided attention, whereas there's never a time when a pilot should stop monitoring heading, altitude, etc. even when using an autopilot.  As for Noonan, I would imagine that his navigation kept him too busy to contemplate keeping up with an hourly radio schedule.  Thus the attractiveness of voice communications, which are much more amenable to multi-tasking.

If she and Fred had known how to interpret Morse code, she could have gotten some information from the Itasca on 7500 kcs.  Instead, they did as she asked and just transmitted the letter A over and over again.  She could have asked questions in voice and gotten replies in code.  Instead, she reported that she heard the A's but could not get a null on them (which was understandable, since her equipment was designed to work on lower frequencies!).  Neither she nor Fred thought to play 20 questions with Itasca.  Of course, what she needed to hear was: "Hold down your transmitter key for two minutes while we get a bearing."  And then she and Fred needed to hear the bearing that had to be flown.  Those two messages probably would have led to a safe arrival.  But they couldn't understand code and didn't try to work out some substitute for it.

The plane had an autopilot.  AE could have done some keying--if she had known how to key and if she had had the key with her.
LTM,

           Marty
           TIGHAR #2359A
 
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Ashley Such

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Re: Waitt Critique
« Reply #17 on: August 04, 2010, 06:05:31 PM »

By the way, within the video Mark gave us, was the weather exactly like that when AE and FN were in search for Howland?
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