Hello, aircraft fans!
In this edition of the Plane Splash (pun intended), we will look at today’s most discussed airliner: The Boeing Model 777 (“triple seven”). I’ll share about some Lockheed P-3 Orions that were launched for a possible resolution. And I’ll even share a pretty lousy theory that the media has NOT tapped into, and probably won’t.
First off, there have been three previous crashes since its first flight in 1994, and this could be the fourth. Of course, it was a night flight, and poor vision, hijacking, terrorism, sabotage, foul play, and mental failure are all possible causes as well.
Here are a few aircraft specs about the 777.
Crew: 2 or 3
Power plant: 2 Pratt & Whitney, General Electric, or Rolls-Royce turbofan engines
Performance: Max speed: 588 mph (946 km/h); range: 4840 miles (7785km) with full cabin; service ceiling 38,697 and 43,100 ft. (11,795 and 13,135m)
Dimensions: Wingspan: 199 ft. 11 inches (60.93m); length: 209 ft. 1 in. (63.73m); height: 60 ft. 9 in (18.51m); weight: 515,000 lb. maximum take-off weight (233,604 kg).
The Boeing 777 entered service with United Airlines on June 7, 1995, and the craft has proved valuable ever since. In fact, some airlines have begun to replace their 747s with 777s. Emirates operates the largest 777 fleet, with 127 passenger and freighter aircraft as of June 2013. The airliner is rated as one of the safest aircraft based on its accident safety record and high number of flight hours. The Asiana Airlines Flight 214 accident in July 2013 was the first fatal crash of the aircraft in 18 years of commercial service.
Here is the latest news on the Orions as of March 20, 2014.
PERTH, Australia (AP) – Search planes scoured a remote patch of the Indian Ocean but came back empty-handed Friday after a 10-hour mission looking for any sign of the missing Malaysia Airlines jet, another disappointing day in one of the world’s biggest aviation mysteries.
Australian officials pledged to continue the search for two large objects spotted by a satellite earlier this week, which had raised hopes that the two-week hunt for the Boeing 777 that disappeared March 8 with 239 people on board was nearing a breakthrough.
But Australia’s acting prime minister, Warren Truss, tamped down expectations.
“Something that was floating on the sea that long ago may no longer be floating – it may have slipped to the bottom,” he said. “It’s also certain that any debris or other material would have moved a significant distance over that time, potentially hundreds of kilometers.”
On Friday, five planes, including three P-3 Orions, made the trip. While search conditions had improved from Thursday, with much better visibility, the Australian Maritime Safety Authority said there were no sightings of plane debris.
On March 19, 2014, a friend of my family was driving his work route, and passed the Madras City/County airport. For those of you who do not live in the Northwest, Madras is a small town in central Oregon. As he passed, he reported seeing three Boeing/McDonnell Douglas MD-80s sitting on the taxiway. 1: Madras Municipal is much too small for these planes, and 2: The airplanes had Spanair markings (meaning they were from Spain). Possibly, they meant to fly to Madrid, and ended up in Madras instead? Perhaps the 777 made the same mistake? Okay, enough of that lousy theory…
Have a great day!