Boeing admits faulty system part of 'chain of events' in 737 MAX crashes

_A Monitor Report16 Apr, 2019 | 194 Views|-+
Chicago : Boeing CEO Dennis Muilenburg has said "it's apparent" that the 737 MAX 8's MCAS maneuvering system contributed to two fatal air accidents.

Investigators had long suspected the system's role in the disasters.

Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 plunged into a field shortly after takeoff in March, killing all 157 people on board. Indonesian Lion Air Flight 610 nosedived into the sea last October, killing all 189 passengers and crew. Investigators noted "clear similarities" between both accidents.

"The full details of what happened in the two accidents will be issued by the government authorities in the final reports," Muilenburg said in a video posted Thursday. "It's apparent that in both flights the Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System, known as MCAS, activated in response to [the] erroneous angle of attack information," he continued.

The MCAS system reads the 737 MAX's angle of attack (the angle of the plane's nose) through a nose-mounted sensor. If the nose drifts too far upward, it manipulates the tail to keep the plane level and avoid a stall. However, investigators and Boeing whistleblowers claim that the sensors can deliver false readings, and the system can overcompensate, throwing the aircraft into a dive.

Muilenberg's statement comes on the same day Ethiopian investigators determined that Flight 302's crew "had performed all the procedures, repeatedly, provided by [Boeing], but was not able to control the aircraft." CNN, claiming to have seen the full report, described how the pilots fought the plane's MCAS system for the entirety of the six-minute flight, but were unable to pull the plane's nose up and regain control.

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