Re: FLY-BY-WIRE (AIRBUS vs. BOEING)

From:         kls@ohare.Chicago.COM (Karl Swartz)
Organization: Chicago Software Works, Menlo Park, California
Date:         17 May 95 17:25:52 
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Jean-Francois Bosc writes:
>> The result: an awfully high number of Airbus crashes, due to
>> pilots that are either unsure of the autopilot's reaction, or
>> the pilots "fighting" the inputs of the autopilot.

>Always the same kind of assertion. Some STATISTICS, please !

AW&ST had a number of articles spread over two issues several months
ago detailing various concerns about complex, new flight deck designs
and problems with the pilot-aircraft interface in these systems.  A
rather memorable observation was the remarkable number of crashes or
serious incidents of late in which comments such as "what is this
thing doing?!" are heard from the pilots.  One article lists many of
the accidents/incidents involving this sort of problem.  I'm afraid
I don't have it handy, but I'll try to dig it out if nobody else beats
me to it.

>From memory, accidents in which pilot confusion over what the aircraft
controls were doing played a significant part include:

    Indian Airlines	A320-231	(VT-EPN, Bangalore, 900214)
    Air Inter		A320-111	(F-GGED, Strasbourg, 920120)
    China Air		A300B4-622R	(B-1816, Nagoya, 940426)
    Airbus		A330-321	(F-WWKH, Toulouse, 940630)

Pilot confusion may also have contributed to:

    Lufthansa		A320-211	(D-AIPN, Warsaw, 930914)
    Aeroflot		A310-308	(F-OGQS, Novokusnetzk, 940323)

Noteworthy incidents in which pilot confusion over what the controls
were doing include:

    Interflug		A310-304	(reg unk, Moscow, 910211)
    British Airways	A320-200	(reg unk, Luxembourg, 940124)
    British Airways	A320		(reg unk, Luxembourg, 940203)
    Dragonair		A320		(reg unk, Hong Kong, 940606)
    Brittania Airways	757		(reg unk, Manchester, 940621)
    TAROM		A310-325(ET)	(YR-LCA, Paris, 940924)
    TAROM		A310-325(ET)	(YR-LCA, Riviere-du-Loup, QE, 950301)

There have been a few MD-11 incidents which might also be appropriate
to include in this group, but I'm not certain.  Apparently there have
also been two incidents with the 777 in which PIOs (pilot-induced
oscillations) have occurred due to some peculiar interactions between
pilot and aircraft controls.

>Since this post will probably be censored like the previous ones

That's a pretty serious accusation.  Since you're asking others to
provide statistics, might I ask you to do the same to substantiate
your claim?

>Any honesty around there ?

I think there's plenty of it.  How 'bout in France?

--
Karl Swartz	|INet	kls@ohare.chicago.com
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