Re: Air France Concorde crashes after departing Paris CDG

Date:         17 Mar 2001 08:33:32 
From:         Matt Weber <mattheww@Qwest.net>
References:   1 2
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At 20:03 15/03/01 +0000, you wrote:
>BTW: Great to see this newsgroup working again.
>
>Congratulations to the moderator. :-)

>On Tue, 25 Jul 2000 21:57:48 +0200, Helen Rose wrote
>(in message <w3em4i6kzn.fsf@kline-station.ckdhr.com>):

> > The usual eyewitness reports have surfaced about the plane being alight
> > before crashing (which appear to be correct, at least from the photos
> > that I have viewed).

>According to some recent eyewhitness reports, the engines were already on
>fire while the aircraft was still on the runway, but it was already beyond
>the 'point of no return'. It seems that in this case, however, the
>'default' option to take off with was the less good choice. But obviously
>the pilot had no chance to know that. :-(

>Question to the more competent people here: How 'flyable' would a Concorde
>with two failed engines (on one side) be. I thought I've read somewhere
>that during the original trials, the manufacturers had to make the
>experience that the loss of one engine already made the aircraft yaw quite
>lot. So with both engines on one side lost, I guess there might have been
>problems with the other two no longer getting enough air in the intakes?

The speed/drag characteristics of Concorde are quite unusual. If you ever
end up below about 275kt on 2 engines, you are in a black hole in the
flight envelope.  Drag exceeds available thrust, so unless you can convert
altitude to airspeed, it is a death trap.  The aircraft slows, forcing more
noise up attitude, which further increases drag....

On most aircraft, minimum drag is usually quite close to V2, on Concorde at
MGTOW it is about 415kt!

The result is a low speed loss of two engines at low altitude is a
guaranteed catastophe...