boeing 737 max

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The president has declared planes are ‘too complex’

The president chimes in about a global tragedy.

 

David Covucci

Tech

Published Mar 12, 2019   Updated May 20, 2021, 5:15 pm CDT

In the wake of a crash in Ethiopia, nations around the world have pulled the Boeing 737 Max 8 out of service, pending a result of investigations into the airplane.

Last week’s crash in Ethiopia killed 157 people. It is the second crash involving a Boeing Max plane since October, when a flight in Indonesia went down, killing 189 people.

The president has offered his thoughts on the matter, declaring that planes nowadays are “too complex.”

Trump’s tweets come after several nations banned the Boeing 737 Max 8 from flying, in the wake of the Ethiopia crash. Britain joined China and several other nations in keeping the plane grounded.

The U.S., for now, has decided against grounding the planes. Although no conclusions have been made on the Ethiopia disaster, there are concerns that the planes’ piloting software may play a role in the two crashes. The piloting software came about as the results of design changes to make the Boeing 737’s more fuel efficient. From the Seattle Times:

In order to protect against a possible stall on the MAX, Boeing made a change to a flight-control system so that it automatically pushes the nose of the aircraft down when a bladelike sensor that sticks out of the fuselage indicates that the nose is pitched up and putting the plane in danger of a stall.

In the Lion Air crash that killed 189 people in Indonesia, investigators have determined that this sensor, the Angle of Attack (AOA) sensor, was feeding bad data to the jet’s flight computer, activating the system and repeatedly pushing the nose of the plane down when in fact there was no danger of a stall.

In a statement, the Federal Aviation Authority said that it “has not been provided data to draw any conclusions or take any actions,” with regard to the piloting system and the plane.

Regardless the president has added his thoughts on the matter. Whether this will prompt the FAA to act is unclear.

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*First Published: Mar 12, 2019, 10:20 am CDT