Have speed sensors been replaced on all Airbus planes?

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Spotted in a Bloomberg report after the recent Air France crash:

The plane maker (Airbus) recommended in September 2007 that airlines replace the Thales SA speed sensors, known as Pitot tubes, on single-aisle A320-series planes as well as the A330 and A340. Air France said June 6 it waited until April to begin installing the new sensors because it wasn’t until the beginning of this year that their high-altitude effectiveness for the A330 was demonstrated in lab tests.

I just want to know if the airline companies operating in Malaysia and in the rest of the region have made all the necessary replacements to the speed sensors on their Airbus planes.

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AACD

The speed sensors were categorized as speed accessories and not mandatory safety equipment, so it was not compulsory that all existing speed sensors must be replaced at once. Only when there was confirmed total loss of passengers on the unfortunate Air Franch crash and deep suspicions on the contribution of the old model speed sensors to the crash was the replacement speeded up. How fast the replacement for all affecting planes will depend on airlines and the government priorities.

Richard Loh

Hi Anil, Would appreciate if you can allow me to highlight this important forum. Forum Name: eLawyer – Exabytes Penang Bloggers & Law Forum 2009 Date: 27 June 2009 Time: 9.00am – 12.30pm Fees: F.O.C. Venue: Dewan Kuliah G31, Pusat Pengajian Sains Komputer, Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM), Penang Campus (Landmark Masjid USM). Organiser: http://www.eLawyer.com.my This event is exclusively sponsored by http://www.exabytes.com.my – the No.1 web hosting company in Malaysia Topic 1: Bloggers & Copyrights Laws Topic 2: Bloggers & Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission Act 1998 (MCMC Act) and rules and guidelines of MCMC Topic 3: Bloggers & Defamation Law… Read more »

sunny

right on Julian, the newer ones are supposed to be better and not iced up, causing failure in in the speed info in the former

Julian

pitot tubes are acutually used for speed instruments and for autopilot to control the plane without it, the autopilot will not work.
If I am not mistaken, there are pitot tubes for the pilot’s speed indicatior instrument and the co-pilot’s speed indicator instrument.
If both do not match, the wiould be a warning and alarm to alert the crew of this.
It is not like airbags.

Philips

Yes, all the Airbus planes in Air Asia and MAS had these sensors
replaced. It was clarified and I read this in Malaysiakini too.

MyBlog

Dont know but wont be surprised if they havent!!

anna brella

From some free-time research into the crash of Flight 447, my gratuitius/non-expert view is that the problem is likely to have been with the plane’s ADIRU (Air Data Inertial referencing Unit) and auto-pilot online computer. The auto-pilot probably responded incorrectly by opting to ignore the healthy signals from the non-faulty ADIRUs and acting instead on the faulty data received from one or more of the faulty ADIRUs and then, maybe, like the Quantas flight 72, went into a pitch-down manoeuvre, which because of the notorious heavy downdrafts known in that area that Flight 447 was flying in, caused the plane’s… Read more »

Andrew I

The difference between a bus and an aircraft breaking down is that the bus can stop at the roadside. It’s not funny to hear how short turn around times for aircraft have become. It’s similar to the commission based how many times you can ply the route for minibus drivers. Some of the shortcomings of the airline industry have been shown on Nat Geo’s air crash investigation. One galling story was how one airline stretched its maintenance schedule to the point that you might as well not service your planes at all. It’s been readily admitted that loss of lives… Read more »

buscrashnomore

You are right Ganesh.

I was also just wondering about the proposal of installing a device that will limit the speed of our inter-city express buses. I guess they are just waiting for another major accident to happen before they resume the talks.

Ganesh

I was told this story, don’t know whether its true. Once upon a time there was a plane heading towards Heathrow. As Heathrow was busy, the control tower told the plane to circle until the runaway was clear.

But the Pilot told the control tower, “Alamak, minyak sudah habislah bang,”.

The plane was allowed to land, bypassing the normal queue.

Investigations were carried out as to why the plane was so low in fuel and against aviation regulations.

wong chin kong

The speed sensors were categorized as speed accessories and not mandatory safety equipment, so it was not compulsory that all existing speed sensors must be replaced at once. Only when there was confirmed total loss of passengers on the unfortunate Air Franch crash and deep suspicions on the contribution of the old model speed sensors to the crash was the replacement speeded up. How fast the replacement for all affecting planes will depend on airlines and the government priorities.

Ganesh

Even our cars don’t come with airbags, you want our planes to be with speed sensors?

In the whole world, airbags in cars are compulsory. But in Malaysia, it is not.

And they say the Waja is Malaysia’s answer to BMW.

What a joke.