HOME  |  NEWS  |  BLOGS  |  MESSAGES  |  FEATURES  |  VIDEOS  |  WEBINARS  |  INDUSTRIES  |  FOCUS ON FUNDAMENTALS
  |  REGISTER  |  LOGIN  |  HELP
Comments
View Comments: Newest First|Oldest First|Threaded View
<<  <  Page 2/3  >  >>
Charles Murray
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Stupid Questions
Charles Murray   10/4/2012 9:07:54 PM
NO RATINGS
Good point about asking dumb questions, MBlazer. For that to happen, a certain attitude is needed at the top -- one that welcomes all kinds of questions, not just those that sound intelligent but may, in fact, be worthless.

Tim
User Rank
Platinum
Almost right
Tim   10/4/2012 6:56:01 PM
NO RATINGS
This story reminds me of a physics professor that refused to give partial credit on complex problems. His reasoning was that in real life even tiny mistakes like an errant punch slug can have disastrous consequences. We as engineering students had to learn that there is no almost wrong or almost right.

McG
User Rank
Silver
Re: Frightening
McG   10/4/2012 4:33:47 PM
NO RATINGS
The problem described would have been in the autopilot system, not the primary flight controls.  As kenish correctly notes, C-130's have hydraulically-booseted manual controls, not fly-by-wire.  The Functionl Check Flight crew would not have the autopilot engaged during takeoff, but could have had an unexpected surprise when they engaged the autopilot in flight.  However, they could have quickly disengaged the autopilot, and most autopilots have clutches that will allow the crew to overpower the autopilot inputs with the cockpit controls.

TJ,  the metallic sliver was likely introduced by drilling of the structure near the harness, which introduced shavings into the harness that were not properly cleaned up.  Have seen this several times.  You would be shocked at the lack of QA at some of the military overhaul depots.  One major depot that one of my aircraft went through had no independant inspection.  They relied on the technician performing the work to inspect his own work (all in the interest of cost savings). 

SparkyWatt
User Rank
Platinum
Re: Frightening
SparkyWatt   10/4/2012 2:04:44 PM
NO RATINGS
What surprises me is that a critical harness was checked for continuity, but not for isolation!

kenish
User Rank
Platinum
Re: Frightening
kenish   10/4/2012 11:58:14 AM
NO RATINGS
I always preflight my plane, truck and motorcycle.  On the C-130 in the article a preflight probably would not have found the problem.  The elevator isn't visible from the cockpit, so "Flight Controls Free and Correct" would not help.  The first sign of trouble would have been at gear retraction as the author pointed out.

I do wonder a bit on the veracity....the flight controls in a C-130 "Herky Bird" are mechanical...pushrods, bellcranks, cables, and pulleys.  AFAIK even the latest "J" version is not fly-by-wire.

rv8iator
User Rank
Iron
Single point failure
rv8iator   10/4/2012 11:12:12 AM
NO RATINGS
 After reading the story I don't believe that Lockheed designed a single point failure mode of the primary flight control system.   All aircraft are designed with redundancy based on risk.  Flight control failure though low in risk is high in severity and thus qualifies for redundancy.

benmlee2
User Rank
Gold
Re: Stupid Questions
benmlee2   10/4/2012 11:03:35 AM
NO RATINGS
The longer I am in engineering, the longer I realize intuition is as important as math and numbers. Learning to listen to your intuition is as important as learning theories. There are so many interactions in a system, is impossible for anyone to systematically troubleshoot. Sometime when you are faced with a problem, is best to stand back and ask yourself what do you think. What does your little voice tell you.

mblazer
User Rank
Silver
Stupid Questions
mblazer   10/4/2012 10:11:16 AM
NO RATINGS
It is always better to ask stupid questions before the accident than having to testify before the Accident Review Board.

If doesn't look right, investigate until you're certain there is no problem or there is one.  Is someone's word that "it's good enough" equal to an aircrews' life?

Johnathamilton
User Rank
Iron
Frightening - Show versus Tell
Johnathamilton   10/4/2012 9:20:15 AM
NO RATINGS
Good points - I agree it is always more convincing to show than tell. We as engineers are often too busy to spend the time to figure out how to show - it's not always easy. But definitely worth it - especially when it comes to mission critical issues.

Rob Spiegel
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Frightening
Rob Spiegel   10/4/2012 12:25:58 AM
NO RATINGS
Good point about show being better than tell, Dave. The story is also a good arguement for healthy skepticism.

<<  <  Page 2/3  >  >>


Partner Zone
Latest Analysis
Earlier this year paralyzed IndyCar drive Sam Schmidt did the seemingly impossible -- opening the qualifying rounds at Indy by driving a modified Corvette C7 Stingray around the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
As companies rush into IoT connectivity, the choice of doing it yourself or using a platform from a service company becomes a major issue.
Wearables are changing the way we see ourselves. With onboard sensors that have access to our bodies, we are starting to know our physical selves like never before, quantifying our activity, our heart rate, breathing, and even our muscle effort.
Last week, the bill for reforming chemical regulation, the TSCA Modernization Act of 2015, passed the House. If it or a similar bill becomes law, the effects on cost and availability of adhesives and plastics incorporating these substances are not yet clear.
This year, Design News is getting a head start on the Fourth of July celebration. In honor of our country and its legacy of engineering innovation -- in all of its forms -- we are taking you on an alphabetical tour through all 50 states to showcase interesting engineering breakthroughs and historically significant events.
More:Blogs|News
Quick Poll
The Continuing Education Center offers engineers an entirely new way to get the education they need to formulate next-generation solutions.
Jul 6 - 10, Building Raspberry Pi Controllers with Python
SEMESTERS: 1  |  2  |  3  |  4  |  5  |  6 |  7


Focus on Fundamentals consists of 45-minute on-line classes that cover a host of technologies. You learn without leaving the comfort of your desk. All classes are taught by subject-matter experts and all are archived. So if you can't attend live, attend at your convenience.
Learn More   |   Login   |   Archived Classes
Twitter Feed
Design News Twitter Feed
Like Us on Facebook

Sponsored Content

Technology Marketplace

Copyright © 2015 UBM Canon, A UBM company, All rights reserved. Privacy Policy | Terms of Service