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American Airlines extends Boeing 737 MAX cancellations through August 19 (reuters.com)
17 points by howard941 3 days ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 4 comments

There's the reassurances about the broken and deadly MCAS system. But what is there to assure us about the engineering team within Boeing that allowed such an egregiously bad system to be put into production and hidden from regulators and pilots? Here is a system that exercises full control authority over the entire extent of the plane's horizontal stabilizer, so much that it cannot be overridden manually, and is controlled by a single sensor that alternates every other flight. Management then hid this system from airlines and the FAA. How can they show that the individuals within Boeing that created such an atrocity have been corrected, and that the same clowns did not engineer any other surprises into the aircraft?

Hopefully this will give regulators time to check every aspect of the plane (not just MCAS) for safety.

Unfortunately 737 Max operators will be stretched thin and this will have ripple effects for everyone. Trip to Miami 30% more expensive? Flight cancelled but no alternatives until tomorrow? At least for American flyers, you can bet it's because there are fewer seats available and less capacity in the network overall.

Will they check the stability of the airframe design? I ask because I read that the software was created to compensate for using dangerous forward weight placement to accommodate oversized engines without undertaking the expense of designing a new airframe. If that were true, it would indicate to me that Boeing knew in advance that they were selling a dangerous aircraft. I can't imagine that software tweaks would suffice to make it fit for human flight in that case.

The airframe according to reports has some stability issues at the edge of its flight envelope. That could have been resolved by requiring additional simulator training for pilots -- but Boeing chose the MCAS system to avoid the cost, and the revenue hit (reportedly $1million / plane by Southwest alone).

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