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Anatomy of air crash investigation

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Indonesian soldiers carry a coffin containing a victim of AirAsia Flight QZ8501 upon arrival at an air force base in Surabaya, Indonesia, on Wednesday, December 31. Indonesia's national search and rescue agency confirmed that the debris found is from that flight, the airline said Tuesday.Indonesian infantrymen carry a coffin containing a sufferer of AirAsia Flight QZ8501 upon arrival at an air Pressure base in Surabaya, Indonesia, on Wednesday, December 31. Indonesia’s national search and rescue Agency verified that the Debris found is from that flight, the airline stated Tuesday.
Indonesian soldiers carry coffins of crash victims on December 31.Indonesian squaddies carry coffins of crash victims on December 31.
Relatives of passengers pray together inside a holding room at Juanda International Airport in Surabaya on December 31.Family of passengers pray together inside a holding room at Juanda World Airport in Surabaya on December 31.
Indonesian navy divers inspect their gear in Pangkalan Bun, Indonesia, before a search operation December 31.Indonesian navy divers check up on their equipment in Pangkalan Bun, Indonesia, earlier than a search operation December 31.
Indonesian Air Force personnel on Tuesday, December 30, show debris, including a suitcase, that was found floating near the site where AirAsia Flight QZ8501 disappeared on Sunday.Indonesian Air Drive personnel on Tuesday, December 30, express Particles, including a suitcase, that was once found floating close to the web page where AirAsia Flight QZ8501 disappeared on Sunday.
Debris floats in the Java Sea on December 30. Flight QZ8501 was carrying 155 passengers and seven crew members.Particles floats within the Java Sea on December 30. Flight QZ8501 used to be carrying One Hundred Fifty Five passengers and seven crew Members.
A member of the Indonesian Navy monitors a radar screen during a search operation over the waters near Bangka Island, Indonesia, on December 30.A member of the Indonesian Navy monitors a radar reveal Throughout a search operation over the waters close to Bangka Island, Indonesia, on December 30.
A piece of debris floats in the Java Sea on December 30.A Piece of Debris floats in the Java Sea on December 30.
Family members of missing passengers react at an airport in Surabaya, Indonesia, after watching news reports on December 30.Relations of missing passengers react at an airport in Surabaya, Indonesia, after watching news reviews on December 30.
Debris floats in the Java Sea on December 30.Debris floats within the Java Sea on December 30.
Relatives of the flight's pilot, Captain Iriyanto, gather at his house in Surabaya on December 30. Second from right is his wife, Rr. Widiya Sukati Putri.Spouse And Children of the flight’s pilot, Captain Iriyanto, collect at his house in Surabaya on December 30. Second from right is his spouse, Rr. Widiya Sukati Putri.
Indonesian Air Force personnel scan the sea from plane windows on December 30.Indonesian Air Pressure personnel scan the sea from aircraft home windows on December 30.
A member of an Indonesian search and rescue team gestures as the team is ferried out to a ship to conduct search operations on December 30.A member of an Indonesian search and rescue crew gestures because the crew is ferried out to a ship to behavior search operations on December 30.
Relatives of missing passengers comfort each other December 30 at Juanda International Airport in Surabaya.Loved Ones of lacking passengers remedy every different December 30 at Juanda Global Airport in Surabaya.
Relatives gather at Juanda International Airport as they wait for news on December 30.Relatives gather at Juanda International Airport as they wait for news on December 30.
An Indonesian search and rescue team prepares for a search on December 30.An Indonesian search and rescue crew prepares for a search on December 30.
An Indonesian military airman looks out the window of an airplane during a search over the waters of Karimata Strait on Monday, December 29. An Indonesian Defense Force airman appears out the window of an Airplane During a search over the waters of Karimata Strait on Monday, December 29.
Indonesian Army personnel read a map during a search operation on December 29.Indonesian Army personnel READ a map All Through a search operation on December 29.
Members of Indonesia's Marine Police pray before a search operation on December 29.Participants of Indonesia’s Marine Police pray earlier than a search operation on December 29.
Military personnel perform a search operation on Sunday, December 28.Armed Forces personnel perform a search operation on Sunday, December 28.
Sunu Widyatmoko, CEO of Indonesia AirAsia, announces December 28 that the flight lost contact with air traffic control.Sunu Widyatmoko, CEO of Indonesia AirAsia, broadcasts December 28 that the flight misplaced contact with air visitors keep an eye on.
Members of the Indonesian Regional Disaster Management Agency walk at a beach as they search for the missing plane on December 28.Individuals of the Indonesian Regional Disaster Administration Agency stroll at a beach as they seek for the missing aircraft on December 28.
Jiang Hui, whose relatives were on board Malaysia Airlines Flight 370, watches the news about the missing AirAsia flight at his house in Beijing on December 28. Flight 370 went missing on March 8 and has yet to be found.Jiang Hui, whose Spouse And Children were on board Malaysia Airways Flight 370, watches the information concerning the missing AirAsia flight at his house in Beijing on December 28. Flight 370 went lacking on March 8 and has but to be discovered.
An official from Indonesia's national search and rescue agency points to the position where AirAsia Flight QZ8501 went missing.An reputable from Indonesia’s national search and rescue Agency points to the position the place AirAsia Flight QZ8501 went missing.
The aircraft went missing as it flew over the Java Sea between the islands of Belitung and Borneo, according to Indonesian authorities. It was bound for Singapore.The plane went missing as it flew over the Java Sea between the islands of Belitung and Borneo, consistent with Indonesian authorities. It used to be certain for Singapore.
An official checks a map of Indonesia at Juanda International Airport.An official tests a map of Indonesia at Juanda Global Airport.

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  • Consultants: First precedence is to get well bodies and return them to households
  • Place of Debris and our bodies are sparsely logged and mapped
  • Data recorders are key items of evidence
  • Salvage operations were used for aircraft crashes that have been deeper than Java Sea

(CNN) — The investigation into how AirAsia Flight QZ8501 ended up at the bottom of the Java Sea, involves improving the our bodies, accessing the flight Information recorders, and meticulously mapping the place Debris is discovered to reconstruct its route.

An Indonesian search and rescue official instructed CNN that he thinks subject matter detected by sonar equipment within the water is from AirAsia Flight QZ8501.

So what happens subsequent?

Priorities

The First precedence is to get better the our bodies and return them to their loved ones, Indonesian authorities say. Helicopters are decreasing divers to bring again our bodies and Debris from the skin of the water.

Ocean layers looked for AirAsia Debris

How submersibles can help AirAsia

What might pilots do to keep away from storm?

‘Plane is on the bottom of the Java Sea’

The our bodies provide clues about what happened on the flight, according to where They May Be discovered and their condition. For Instance, sea water in their lungs would counsel that the people on board could have been conscious when the aircraft struck the sea.

There’s explicit attention to the site of the bodies and various Debris.

READ: Who’re passengers?

David Soucie, a former Federal Aviation Administration safety inspector and analyst for CNN, likens it to “peeling an onion apart and then putting that onion back together from the within out.”

Investigators map the Debris discovered on the surface of the water. Then they have got to search for other pieces within the next level of sea for extra clues, he stated.

“So you could go down 50 toes or so, to look if There Is any floating Particles there. And you retain going down and mapping it because it goes. You see how the flow went and how the items of the aircraft moved.”

All Over the investigation of Air France Flight 447, more than A Hundred And Fifty,000 photography of the aircraft’s wreckage site in the Atlantic Ocean had been taken.

It was once necessary to “mosaic them together” to offer investigators a comprehensive view of the wreckage site, said David Gallo, who co-led that search after the French jet crashed in 2009.

LEARN: The 15 who missed Flight QZ8501

Information recorders

The Key to working out what happened is probably going contained in the aircraft’s cockpit voice recorder and flight Knowledge recorder, repeatedly referred to as black boxes.

If they are recovered, Indonesian authorities will designate which Agency should open and download the ideas.

The black bins, which might be if truth be told orange, are situated within the tail for Airbus 320-200s.

The cockpit voice recorder collects audio from the pilots’ microphones and more than a few channels.

“It picks up other feels like clicks, issues going wrong, thuds, hail. You Could hear that on the windshield,” said Mary Schiavo, a lawyer and former inspector normal of the U.S. Department of Transportation.

Acoustic Specialists can comb during the audio to check out to decide the that means of every click on and sound.

The Info recorder holds tons of of pieces of data comparable to airspeed, altitude, whether the aircraft’s nostril used to be up or down and which direction it was once headed. All that Knowledge would print out on lengthy sheets, similar to EKGs, that authorities would use to piece together a timeline of the flight.

Sonar detects QZ8501 wreckage on sea ground

Is air Trip in Asia rising too quickly?

The faces of AirAsia flight 8501

Because The AirAsia aircraft was once handiest six years old, its Information recorder is reasonably brand new and would contain lots of parameters, Schiavo said.

Challenges within the search

Even Though the airplane is in a lot shallower waters than where Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 is believed to have fallen, search crews face challenges. Nature without a doubt is not helping.

“The Problem that the search workforce is now dealing with is the monsoon season,” said Eric van Sebille, oceanographer on the University of new South Wales in Australia.

“This aircraft could not have gone down in a worse time of year. There May Be giant winds, uneven waves. These shallow seas are recognized for complicated waves. It’s really troublesome to work in.”

This Might put search and restoration crews at risk and decrease visibility. They Are also working Under a time limit as the aircraft’s pingers, or underwater locator beacons, simplest closing for roughly 30 days.

Salvage operation

Salvage operations to raise the wreckage are sophisticated, however the process has been accomplished prior to in locations deeper than the underside of the Java Sea, which is ready A Hundred And Forty toes (43 meters) down.

The U.S. Navy salvaged pieces of TWA Flight 800, which crashed off new york in 1996, from depths of One Hundred Fifteen to A Hundred Thirty ft. In 1998, Canadian officials lifted pieces of Swiss Air Flight 111 from the depths of A Hundred And Eighty toes, off the coast of Nova Scotia.

Underwater autos, designed for deep water salvage operations, can descend as deep as 20,000 ft. They Could retrieve smaller objects such as the flight Knowledge recorder.

On Account That they can only carry as much as 4,000 kilos, larger items, such because the fuselage would have to be hooked up to a cable and pulled to the skin by using a crane on a ship. This was carried out for getting better remnants of the fuselage of Air France Flight 447.

CNN’s Laura Smith-Spark, Ashley Fantz and Randi Kaye contributed to this report.


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