Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Where is MH370, or where MH370 is?

Continuing from my previous post A new conspiracy on MH370?, which was based on what Air Force Chief Rodzali Daud said, that: "Based on military radar readings from its station in Butterworth, MH370 may have turned west after Kota Bahru and flew past the east coast and Kedah, and that "The last time the plane was detected was near Pulau Perak, in the Straits of Malacca, at 2.40am", I'm going to ignore his denial today of his alleged statement above.

Even though some of our Malaysian media reporters are renowned (or notorious) for their 'creativity', wakakaka, there are too far too many details in above statement allegedly (though now denied) by Rodzali Daud for it to be just another of their 'creativity'.

Yes, to an extent I believe in the details of that statement though as I had posted earlier, it's qualified by Rodzali's 'MH370 might have ...'.

Also my inclination to believe in Rodzali's statement has been influenced by the circumstances where nothing has so far been found in the South China Sea as well as DCA director-general Azharuddin Abdul Razak's answer to reporters querying about the necessity of a search of the Malacca Straits: "There are some things that I can tell you and some things that I can't."

And I suspect poor Rodzali Daud has being told off by higher ups for upsetting a number of people including the Vietnamese government with his revelation.

The Viet government has now suspended its search because they feel (rightfully so) being 'played out' by the Malaysian authorities for not sharing complete information on MH370. Not good for international/ASEAN relationships lah!

First of all, let me get rid of a few unnecessary interference to what I wish to discuss with you, as follows:

(a) I'm going to ignore that sleazy story coming out from Australian media about two sweeties and the MH370 copilot Fariq in a flight from Phuket to KL. The downside of a free Australian media is that some of the media misuse their freedom during their strive for higher ratings by promoting gossipy scandals.

Recently their vulture-like antics in Bali during the paroling (conditional release) of an imprisoned Aussie woman jailed by the Indons for possession of drugs ten years ago, Schapelle Corby, had nearly caused the paroled woman to be re-imprisoned.

They paid Schapelle's sister, a least admirable character, to comment on/review Schapelle's case, during which the sister offended the Indonesian government by suggesting that Schapelle was framed with the marijuana by someone in Indon, implying Schapelle was wrongly convicted and thus wrongly imprisoned. She subsequently apologized profusely when she realized her big mouth would have re-imprisoned Schapelle.

But hell, Australian media loves such shit, as they did years ago when they bought wholesale the fabricated story of MAS maintenance f**king up the servicing of Qantas aircraft when MAS didn't even have any contract to do so on that particular type of Qantas Boeing. Ignore them and their offering of shameful sleaze about a man who's now missing and grieved over by his family.

(b) I believe Interpol has more or less ascertained that the two blokes with stolen passports were not terrorists but rather Iranian refugees seeking to join their relatives in Europe.

(c) Pilot's suicide. This has become a somewhat popular notion/suspicion with the Western press and authorities since 9/11, but as I commented in my previous post, why would the pilots (or one of them if you like) go to such an extent (turned back etc) if they or he wanted to commit suicide when he could have well done that at any point on the way to Beijing?

Okay, let's get on to my speculation, much as I don't want to speculate, but aiyah, in the absence of any new finding by the Search authorities, will now do so.

Let's recapitulate what we have learned from Rodzali's statement: "Based on military radar readings from its station in Butterworth, MH370 may have turned west after Kota Bahru and flew past the east coast and Kedah, and that "The last time the plane was detected was near Pulau Perak, in the Straits of Malacca, at 2.40am".

  • There was a turn back.
  • not in above statement but in another Rodzali's briefing, that MH370 changed level to a lower one (am not sure by one thousand metres or one thousand feet). Though a report said that Singapore ATC also recorded data from MH370 indicating a change of level, that report suggested the aircraft climbed to a higher one. I'll ignore the report about Singapore ATC (though it won't make any difference to what I want to say) and accept the earlier one by the RMAF that MH370 descended to a lower level - I'll come back to this later.

The above two points are very significant because they denote that MH370 was still being flown by a professional pilot, whether he was in full consciousness or partially physically impaired, more likely the latter.

In order to explain that, we need to learn just a brief understanding of the selection of IFR cruising levels, where IFR stands for Instrument Flight Rules.

I would dare say 99.99% of airline aircraft fly IFR or are REQUIRED to fly IFR because IFR provide better airspace and separation protection for passenger carrying aircraft.

As I would require more than 10 pages wakakaka to explain the superiority in safety and airspace protection of flying in accordance to IFR instead of VFR (Visual Flight Rules), just accept from me that airlines fly such rules - trust me, I'm a Penangite, wakakaka. The rare exceptions would be some smaller airlines operating in, say, Nepal or perhaps Alaska, or even Australia. High grounds like the Himalayas aren't very friendly with low flying aircraft on IFR.

MH370 was heading out to Beijing in a directional sector contained between the magnetic tracks of 000 degrees (North magnetic) to 179 degrees (almost South magnetic) and so in accordance with IFR, would fly at ODD thousands of feet such as, say, 21,000 feet, 29,000 feet or as was its flight level, 35,000 feet. This is known variously as IFR Cruising Level Rules or Hemispherical IFR Rules or in earlier times, Semi-Circular Rules.

Flights on tracks in a directional sector contained between 180 degrees (South magnetic) to 359 degrees (almost North magnetic) would fly at EVEN thousands of feet such as, say, 20,000 feet, 28,000 feet or 34,000 feet.

The IFR imposed vertical separation rules are further divided into RVSM (Reduced Vertical Separation Minima) and non-RVSM rules. Suffice to say, MAS B777 being a modern airline aircraft with modern navigational-electronic equipment would have been flying the RVSM rules, so MH370 was at 35,000 feet on its way to Beijing.

Once above a certain altitude, the altitude of the aircraft are called 'levels' instead of altitude and abbreviated to just 3 digits such as Flight Level 350 or further abbreviated to FL350 (35,000 feet based on standard ICAO-designated pressure setting).

I won't go into technical details about these aviation niceties because apart from a rough understanding they are not all that relevant to our appreciation of my earlier statement that "The above two points are very significant because they denote that MH370 was still being flown by a professional pilot, whether he was in full consciousness or partially physically impaired."

When MH370 made a turn back, supposedly to KL, the aircraft was noted to have descended, meaning a professional pilot was at its controls and obviously one who appreciated the rules requiring him to fly at EVEN Levels. Thus I suspect he wanted to cruise at, say FL340 or even (if the descent was in thousands of metres) FL320.

Hardly the actions of a suicidal pilot to comply with the Hemispherical IFR Rules of Cruising Levels!

What about Rodzali Daud's statement that "MH370 may have turned west after Kota Bahru and flew past the east coast and Kedah, and that "The last time the plane was detected was near Pulau Perak, in the Straits of Malacca, at 2.40am" and why not Kuala Lumpur?

To answer this, I wish to take you all back to my first post about MH370, namely, Mystery of MAS MH370 where I discussed my thoughts about WHAT could have happened. I had then written:

One factor stands out clearly and indisputably: the crew did not make contact with either Malaysian or Vietnamese air traffic control (ATC) to inform them of any flight problem.

That can mean a couple of things: (a) they were prevented from doing so, or (b) they didn't have time to do so.

The former is less likely as there are ways and means for the flight deck crew (pilots, and in some bigger aircraft like B747, flight engineer) to communicate with ATC, even when under duress or threat. I can't go any further than this.

Thus I opine that it would have been the latter, that was the flight deck crew (the 2 pilots) didn't have time to do so, because of a few possibilities, namely:

(a) gradual depressurization where they and the rest on board suffered incremental hypoxia (deprivation of sufficient supply of oxygen) without realizing that was happening and thus went into, worst case scenario, unconsciousness followed by death.

Again this seems unlikely as the aircraft would then have continued flying on autopilot even if both pilots were unconscious, until the fuel ran out and the aircraft crashed. MH370 carried enough fuel to reach Beijing plus an extra hour of reserve.

Such a fate happened to a light turboprop aircraft in Australia (I think it was a Beech King Air) which took off from either Perth or Adelaide and ended its fatal pilot-less flight around the Darwin area, as well as to an executive Lear jet in the USA some years ago, in which professional golfer Payne Stewart plus five other people crashed after drifting across the country for hours with the pilot (and all passengers) probably unconscious from hypoxia.

The remaining possibility would be something happening with such swiftness that both pilot were caught unaware with no time to transmit a distress call.

Let's ignore the last paragraph about 'the reminding possibility' and return to the issue of gradual depressurization coupled with a failure of the warning system on low pressurization.

In my earlier post, apart from providing two examples of fatal accidents resulting from gradual depressurization, I had dismissed such a cause and written:

This seems unlikely as the aircraft would then have continued flying on autopilot even if both pilots were unconscious, until the fuel ran out and the aircraft crashed. MH370 carried enough fuel to reach Beijing plus an extra hour of reserve.

Then I wan't aware of MH370's turn in direction and its alleged progress towards the West. Now that we have new information, we need to revisit the issue of gradual depressurization.

I suspect that could be the reason for MH370 making a turn back when the pilot (or less likely, both) had felt something was wrong but by then far too late as would be for the perilous stealth of gradual depressurization affecting them.

Wikipedia has this to say about Time of Useful Consciousness (TUC): TUC is defined as the amount of time an individual is able to perform flying duties efficiently in an environment of inadequate oxygen supply. It is the period of time from the interruption of the oxygen supply or exposure to an oxygen-poor environment to the time when useful function is lost, and the individual is no longer capable of taking proper corrective and protective action. It is not the time to total unconsciousness.

Again: It is the period of time from the interruption of the oxygen supply or exposure to an oxygen-poor environment to the time when useful function is lost, and the individual is no longer capable of taking proper corrective and protective action.

And TUC at 35,000 feet for a healthy person is 30 to 60 seconds. There would be enough time for a pilot or a passenger to grab hold of a drop-down oxygen mask to breathe UNLESS the depressurization occurred so slowly that a pilot might not be aware of it until hypoxia had already set it.

One of the insidious effects of hypoxia would also be an euphoric feeling, that of excessive well being and false elation which could further impede a pilot’s correct actions.

Or, unless there was rapid decompression or even explosive decompression which would reduce the TUC by 50%, into just 15 to 30 seconds.

But slow depressurization is like a peril creeping up on you, and hitting you before you know it. I suspect that was what happened, assuming that Murphy's Law had struck with the pressurization alarm not functioning.

Nonetheless, the pilot despite his impaired state still had just that wee bit of mental consciousness to react instinctively-professionally and to turn back to KL as well as descend the aircraft to an appropriate IFR level, though it would have been better if he had kept descending to 10,000 feet or so where he and the others would then have been able to recover from the probable hypoxic condition.

But alas, it would be too much to expect a hypoxic-affected pilot to be be fully conscious of what he was doing. I reckon he did his best as could be for a physically-mentally hypoxic-impaired pilot and turn the aircraft around but not fully towards KL.

But what about the SSR (transponder) being turned off? This would be the real puzzle!

I admit I don't know but can only continue my speculation and say that the pilot by professional instinct had wanted to switch the SSR to the emergency code but in that process, switched it off due to his impaired state.

Captain Azaharie Ahmad Shah

From what I have read about the captain, Captain Azaharie Ahmad Shah, he is the ultimate professional pilot. With such a man, I would not be surprised at all that his professional instinct would have been strong even in a state of physical-mental impairment. But alas, given my speculation that he was already seriously affected by hypoxia, there's a limit to what could be achieved by even such strong professional instinct.

So we then had an aircraft load of unconscious crew and passengers flying towards the West, passed the Peninsula west coast out into the Indian Ocean.

Cell phones of passengers kept ringing as claimed by relatives but there were no answer, because according to my speculation, they were all unconsciousness or even ... you say it, I can't because it's only my speculation!

Why did the defence radar stop picking up the blip at 2.40am?

Did it really stop monitoring it? I personally doubt that because if the radar could pick the echo of MH370 off the coast of Kota Bahru and detect its turn back, why would it not be able to pick it up past Pulau Perak?


I hope you know where the Andaman Sea is.

I wonder though I haven't actually worked out how far MH370's remaining fuel on crossing the Peninsula coast would have taken it to?

I rest my case speculations.

those wee yellow dots are the Andaman Islands (India)

Also note, India has now joined the search for MH370


  1. This latest link;

    It also provides the possible cause of the slow decompression & lost of all comm-links.

    The only difference is the heading direction. U r incorporating the ATB scenario towards Andaman sea, while he/she took a straight path onward to Beijing, on auto-pilot until fuel runs out!

    1. Haven't read that one yet - going to nopw, thanks for headsup

    2. I admire his bringing up of the FAA Airworthiness Directive which I wasn't aware of, being not an aircraft enginneer, but that certainly plausibly explains the likely pressurisation leak that I suspected and the loss of SSR (and other radio//datalink equipment) which I had attributed to another cause.

  2. Yep KT..

    1. May be a moot point because the directive doesn't apply to this particular aircraft

      The FAA directive on cracks applies to all Boeing 777-200, -200LR, -300, -300ER, and -777F series airplanes. The missing jet is a 777-2H6/ER. (777-200ER)

      May have to verify though

  3. Complicate speculation full of flaw. Ktemoc speculation didn't say anything about air force/military SOP about civilian airplane that switch off transponder.
    And for failed safe purpose , this technology appear and continue to advanced since 1960, may have more fail-safe feature than a simple "turn off". For an entities that "missing huge engine from the inventory" and get "mystery notification" from media report afterwards, I will keep my finger cross.

    The good old day of Ktemoc uncle uniform body proficiency is long gone.

    1. moot, you haven't explain what have been the 'flaws' in teh posting

      As for your "air force/military SOP about civilian airplane that switch off transponder", apart from it being a separate issue to the topic of my post, we don't know whether the air force defence radar already knew it was MH370!

  4. KT,
    Thinking aloud, it makes better sense now that the plane "was seen" to be flying low.. 10K ft and read somewhere even down to 1K ft. And "corroborated" somehow by the villagers' sightings.. It can be that the pilot is trying his best to "recover" from the effect..

  5. Hopefully unlike AF447, a resolution and the end is in sight. If the truth be told and decompression happened, the pilot is the truth hero together with our fishermen.

    We are even proud of our RMAF guys for bringing out the hypothesis of "turn back" but politics got in-between. Our guy in uniform with informed facts should stick to their guns ("judgment call") in face of public opinion or what the bosses like to hear. At least they could convince the international community and allies with what was plausible once terrorism was ruled out (which should have been done by separate teams on Day #1).

    This is what exactly got in the way of the Sulu incident since politicians thought they were dealing with "friendly" parties. Unfortunately, the police took the largest casualty.

  6. Latest about the ATB of MH370;

    From the chosen words used, it also tells a lot about the air defense surveillance capability!

    Memang we have lousy equipment that costs million plus perhaps incompetent/poorly trained operators.

  7. Kaytee,
    What more I can say man? Where the fuck is Najib? Time to whoop ass. I know it's MAS job,,,,,,but aiyoo.......

  8. This is all Bomoh's fault


    1. Everything else hasn't worked....I suppose no harm in bringing in Bomoh...

  9. Bravo KT......a very good 'educated guess' for lack of a better word ! Really a sensible and reasonable explanation based on whatever limited 'evidence'/infor available....this could be a starting point for further investigation.

  10. These Bomohs wear dark suits and look very "professional" woh...

  11. first u lee tai sor
    now sherlock.
    saiful arse-your enlightenment pls


  13. It is absolutely mind baffling. Let’s take that there was no terrorist, no hijacking, no suicide, and there was a turn back because of a major electrical malfunctioning.

    All radio and navigation instruments were down. It was total darkness. It was pitch dark inside and outside the cockpit. The pilots were flying on manual. For bearing and direction they were looking for and to follow the coastline – the Malaysian coastline.

    They probably saw Penang Island and perhaps to land in Penang. They did not do it. Perhaps, it was too risky as it may cost the lives of others on the ground. They probably hover over the Andaman Sea and perhaps thinking to do a sea landing. Still, there is no wreckage, no debris, and no oil slick. There is still hope.

    Azaharie Ahmad Shah, you’re the Captain of the ship. The day before you fly you spoke to a man by the name of Rahmat. You were cheerful and you told him then you are flying to China. I do not know you but do I know Rahmat since my school days. Rahmat told me you are a good man; an experienced and a very good pilot.

    I know and I can feel you were/are doing and trying your very best to save the lives of so many under your wings and responsibility. Our hopes and prayers and spirits are with you – to bring them all to safety. God bless you.

    - hasan

    1. There is at least 1 case of a Boeing 767 coming in to land with no electrical power, no radio, no transponder (complete electrical system power failure).
      The air traffic controllers, seeing the plane coming in, unable to contact them, took their own initiative to clear the runway for the plane to land.

      That was during day time. You are right, at night it would have been much more dangerous, and Penang airport would have been closed at 1.30 am , all dark.

      Modern airliner pilots are really system managers, not really pilots in the traditional sense.
      Air France AF447 ultimately crashed because the pilots did not know how to fly the plane once the pitot tubes (which measure air speed) iced up , giving conflicting speed inputs to the flight computers.
      The computers basically "gave up", because the plane was in a situation which was beyond the boundaries of the computer software.

      The investigation showed the pilots were so confused and at a loss what to do, when old-fashioned flying skills could have saved the plane.
      I think a lot of airlines will now go back to ensure their pilots remain up to scratch on traditional piloting skills.
      A pilot is really not just a computer jockey, though it seems like that on a normal day when the aircraft behaving according to specifications....

  14. Pressurisation failures leading to disaster very, very rarely occur on large commercial airliners.
    First, the seals and the pressurisation system are checked during scheduled maintenance - which MAS stated had been recently done on MH370.
    If the cabin pressure drops below operating limits, various alarms will sound.
    If the pressure drops to a dangerous level, oxygen masks will automatically deploy.

    In the Helios Airways 522 crash in 2004, multiple problems occurred altogether.
    The technician performing tests on the pressurisation system during maintenance accidentally left the switch on "Manual". One outflow valve had been left Open.

    The crew missed the switch problem at 3 different required check points - Pre-Take off, after engine start, and before climb to cruising height.
    When pressure alams went off, the crew misinterpreted it. When oxygen masks automatically deployed on critically low pressure, the crew still disregarded the warning.
    It was a totally avoidable tragedy, but also proves a point that there are very good and effective safeguards against slow decompression. The crew would have to ignore or misinterpret many alarms for it to lead to a disaster. Ultimately the Helios crash was caused by bad maintenance, coupled with poor aircrew training and poor aircrew discipline.

    I doubt that applies to MAS, but you never know, ya...

  15. My village Bomoh is hard at work at KLIA, helping in the hunt for MH370.
    He's working discreetly, with his assistants behind closed doors. Unlike the "Raja Bomoh" who is a big showman.
    Some people have asked why the have to be at KLIA , can't they do it from somewhere else ? It has to be so - that was the last place the people and aircraft were on solid ground, after that it was in the air.

    The Bomoh is quite sure the plane is to the east side of the Peninsular. The western contact is a false lead. I'm afraid Malaysian military radar is probably not very good, or the people interpreting the data are not.

    I know the Americans, the Chinese, Australians, even Japanese are deploying billion dollar hardware to help in the hunt (satellites, Arleigh-Burke class destroyers, P3-Orion ) but people have to understand that Bomohs and Seers are deeply ingrained in Malaysian culture.

    When the most sophisticated surveillance equipment on the planet still can't find the missing aircraft, people will turn to Faith and the Infinite.

    I was told some very powerful Sifus from China will be arriving at KLIA today - helpful 3rd parties are sponsoring them (their services are normally extremely expensive woh)
    Not sanctioned by China government, of course, but they won't stop them either.

    1. That bomoh kenna tangkap dah


    Gov't warns MH370 rumour-mongers

    Ktemoc is on their radar screen..... be forewarned...

  17. I just want to backtrack to Kajang, which Ktemoc has lost interest since Anwar is not a candidate.

    The other issues , not personally tied to Anwar have not yet disappeared.
    There is a legitimate call for the Chinese community to maintain representation in the Selangor state assembly.
    PKR Lee Chin Chieh's resignation has reduced that, and in any case PKR is a Malay-dominated party with a few Chinese reps, who are beholden to the majority in PKR.
    MCA, for all its faults, is a genuine Chinese community representative. Right now , MCA has absolutely no representatives in Selangor stage.
    I believe a growing number of the Kajang Chinese are accepting that needs to be corrected.

    1. Hello MCA Amoi.....keep to the topic lah....which is the MH370 tragedy. So please do not put your MCA view here. FYI....we Kajangite will spit on MCA which is basically a conglomerate filled with cina apeks looking to fill their own pockets, kowtowing to the Brown Master...yes sir sir three bags full....kalau suruh lompat...lompat lah, how high must MCA jump ? How low as licking the ars*hole of the brown masters leh.

    2. Okay, Ah Moi and you each have a go. No more non-thread comments. Thanks

  18. I know Ktemoc doesn't want race to be introduced into this tragic incident, but I'm going to do this anyway.
    This incident has exposed the weakness of Malaysia's governance system for the whole world to see. The "Melayu-UMNO" system where the entire government leadership apparatus is required to be appointed from 1-ethnic group - Melayu - strictly people who are loyal to UMNO or willing to do their bidding.

    This systems places tremendous limitations on the scope of qualified candidates for such top positions, breeds mediocrity and ball-carrying.
    From day-to-day most government departments can manage to muddle through in mediocrity , without too much damage, but in a crisis like this, the whole matter is getting wall-to-wall World-Wide coverage.

    1. If you don't like it , you are welcome to leave on the next plane.

    2. We are reaping the fruits of 45 years of Ketuanan governance.

    3. Okay, issue closed here. Keep to thread. Thanks

  19. While every instant aviation expert propounds the various scenarios of the fate of MH370, the weaknesses, uncertainties and telling lack of leadership worries me because this land or ours is virtually naked and exposed to any hostile attack. Why, Singapore that little red dot down south could take us out easy!

  20. Malaysia needs some serious help to continue the search for MH370, especially the radar angle. I don't think our military have the skills for this kind of electronic sleuthing.
    The best people would be the radar manufacturer, who know their equipment very well, and most important - the best Radar ELINT analysts from the US Defence Intelligence Agency. They are experts at gleaning the most information from radar plots. They normally work in deep secret, and it may need a high level request from Malaysia to get them to fly out here.

  21. This latest news;

    presumably downloading from the ACARS (aircraft communications addressing and reporting system) of the ill-fated MH370.

    That would mean the plane is either at China Territory or if the ATB is done, somewhere at the Indian Ocean!

    If it's in the China Territory, how come no air-force fighter escorting since it's not responding to call (no squawking due to avionic failure/shutdown)? The Chinese wouldnt be that stupid about their air defense.

    That makes the ATB even more likely, & thus the plane is now somewhere at Indian Ocean.

    India, over to u & godspeed!!!!!

  22. It fits well with the About Turn scenario.
    But decompression is still a question mark. A pilot still in command of his faculties to make an about turn would also have dived as quickly as is safe to put his aircraft down towards 10,000 feet - low enough for normal breathing. It would have taken at most 5 minutes in a steep but controlled dive..and should have enough time to call out a Mayday.
    The transponder was turned Off Before the turn, because Subang didn't pick up the turn, it was military radars which did.

    At this point some sort of foul play, still ending in a crash cannot be ruled out.

    MH 370 , where art thou ? Somewhere in the Indian Ocean ? That's a vast, lonely place. Few airliners even frequent the place because most traffic is north-east towards Middle East, Europe.

    We may NEVER find MH370 again.....

  23. How about this? Various factors they usually do on ill-fated modern flights, and the crew did manage to miss several warnings. What if hypoxia did creep up on them, and one the the pilots 'turned the dial'

    Autopilot controls are usually in front of the pilot, at eye level. To control the altitude, heading and speed, the pilot just has to turn a knob.

    What if one or both of the flight crew realized that something is wrong, and in an attempt to save the flight, turned turned the altitude knob to a lower setting, then twisted the heading knob, causing the jet to turn around, but forgot to set the proper vertical decent rate?

    The hypoxia would have taken over, and the plane kept on flying until it ran out of fuel. An accurate record of the fuel on board at the time of the turn ( that was intended to be 180 but in reality was less) + the prevailing winds at the time and info on the autopilot logic could yield a very close fix on the flights 'last location'

    At this time, the phantom calls have to be assumed to be false, but if the airplane was flying low enough, it is possible that a few cell phones may have had cellular service.

    I assume that the cellular operators would have checked for network sign-ons.

  24. do you people think it's possible the MNLF Sulu terrorist group responsible for MH370?? Maybe they are responsible.. but don't want to admit, maybe it's a failed hijack.. they have a bigger reason to do it..