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March 18, 2014

  • Nigerian Writer Wins National Book Critics Circle Award

    Nigerian Writer Wins National Book Critics Circle Award by Frederick H. LoweNigerian author Chimamanda Ngoz Adichie won the National Book Critics Circle Award for books published in 2013.

  • Brooklyn Nets Sign Collins for Remainder of the Season

    Brooklyn Nets Sign Collins for Remainder of the Season by Frederick H. LoweThe Brooklyn Nets of the NBA have signed Jason Collins, the league's first openly gay player, to a contract through the end of the season.

  • News Briefs

    News Briefs Oprah to Sell Harpo Studios in ChicagoOprah Winfrey reportedly has signed a deal to sell Harpo Studios on Chicago's West Side for an undisclosed price, but the Sterling Bay Companies, the purchaser, won't discuss the pending sale.Chicago-based Sterling Bay reportedly will lease the property back to Harpo Studios, which produces content for the Oprah Winfrey Network, which is based in Los Angeles.The property is located on 3.5 acres, and is comprised of three buildings.

  • Some Black Men Believe They Are Viewed as "Less Valuable"

    Some Black Men Believe They Are Viewed as by Kelly-Ann Brown, Brelaun Douglas and Jasmine Rennie( –-- As the national focus continues on high-profile shootings of unarmed young-black men, some say the controversies have caused them to fear attack even when they are doing what is right and normal.

  • Letters to the Editor

    Letters to the Editor James MeredithThat was a very good and useful story, especially for the young(er), that you published on James Meredith’s background. Having been born and reared in Chattanooga, Tenn.

  • NorthStar's Days In Black History

    NorthStar's Days In Black History March 181895 ----- Some 200 former slaves left Savannah, Ga., for Africa on this day with the assistance of the American Colonization Society, which was founded in 1816 to satisfy the concerns of two distinct groups --- abolitionists and former-slave owners who feared that free people of color wanted to expel them from America.Rev.

  • Medal of Honor Ceremony Rights a Lot of Wrongs for Men Who Served Our Country in Battle

    Medal of Honor Ceremony Rights a Lot of Wrongs for Men Who Served Our Country in Battle President Barack Obama today awarded the Medal of Honor to 24 U.S.

Edward Horne, retired commercial airline pilot
Edward Horne, retired commercial airline captain

Retired Pilot: Missing Malaysian Plane Did Not Crash

by Frederick H. Lowe
It's pretty clear that Malaysia Airlines Flight 370, which disappeared March 8 while cruising at 35,000 feet from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing, China, did not crash because there isn't any debris and neither the cockpit voice recorder nor the flight data recorder that send pinging signals for 30 days to search and rescue teams, following a plane crash, have been activated, a former commercial airline pilot told The NorthStar News & Analysis.

The flight data recorder is often referred to as the "black box," although it is bright orange in color so it can be found easily at a crash site. The flight data recorder or accident data recorder is an electronic device employed to record any instructions sent to any electronic systems on an aircraft. It is a device used to record specific aircraft-performance parameters.

The cockpit voice recorder records conversations in the cockpit and radio communications between the cockpit crew and others, including air traffic control personnel. It, too, is bright orange in color.

Both the flight data recorder and cockpit voice reporter are located in the rear of the plane, mostly in a plane's tail because that section of the plane is most likely to survive a crash. The flight data recorder and cockpit voice recorder are double wrapped in corrosion-resistant stainless steel or titanium. They are designed to emit an underwater locator beacon for up to 30 days and can operate in a depth of up to 20,000 feet.

The underwater locator beacon assists in helping to find a plane in the event of a crash in water. The device, which is called a "pinger," is activated when the recorder is immersed in water.

Search personnel also have not received a signal from the Emergency Locator Transmitter, which sends out a signal when a plane crashes. The ELT also is located in the tail and the cockpit or another part of the cabin. In the instance of a plane crash, the ELT located in the cockpit is taken by the crew and turned on and the one in the tail is automatically activated.

In 2009 when Air France Flight 447 en route from Rio de Janeiro to Paris crashed into the Atlantic Ocean, search and rescue teams were able to locate the plane because of floating debris although the plane crashed in 15,400 feet of water.

"The flight data recorder and cockpit voice recorder helped pinpoint the crash," Edward Horne, a retired international 747-400 captain told The NorthStar News. "The signal continues for 30 days and so far there are no reports of transmissions from any of the devices."

Flight Data Recorder
Flight Data Recorder. The black box is really orange.
Horne was a pilot for Japan Airlines, TWA, United Parcel Service and a retired search and rescue HC130 pilot for United States Air Force. In the Air Force, Horne's job was to listen for signals from aircraft that crashed into the water.

Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak said during a news conference on Saturday, March 15, that government authorities are investigating what caused Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 to deviate from its original flight path.

Government authorities are searching a northern corridor, stretching approximately from the border of Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan to northern Thailand, or a southern corridor, stretching approximately from Indonesia to the southern Indian Ocean, Razak said. The last confirmed communication between the plane and a satellite was 8:11 a.m. Malaysian time on Saturday, March 8th.

Cockpit Voice Recorder
Cockpit Voice Recorder
As of Saturday, March 15, 14 countries, 43 ships and 58 aircraft have been involved in the search for the phantom Boeing 777.

The investigation is heating up on the ground. Police searched the homes of plane’s pilot, Captain Zaharie Ahmad Shah, 53, and 1st Officer Fariq Ab Hamid,27.

Retired Captain Horne said it is not known what type of cargo other than passengers the plane was carrying.

“Many of these international flights carry valuable cargo such as gold and diamonds in the cargo hole,” he said.
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