The MH370 Flight Path analysis is dependent on the Inmarsat satellite data. The positive data has been used time and again to “prove” various flight paths, but what about the negative data.
The Inmarsat Satellite System uses 4 satellites covering the globe, Atlantic Ocean Region West and East (AOR-W) and (AOR-E), Indian Ocean Region (IOR) and Pacific Ocean Region (POR). There are areas of over lap, but MH370 was only seen by one satellite. If MH370 was seen by two satellites, then we would know much more precisely where the aircraft is to be found, but Inmarsat confirmed that MH370 only logged into the IOR satellite and no other. Does this imply that MH370 only flew in the dedicated IOR satellite region and not in the overlap region to the POR satellite?
A note describing an approach to constraining the MH370 flight paths can be downloaded here
We don’t have the algorithm code for satellite selection. I suspect that it also involves the ground station to be used. It is difficult to speculate without reviewing the code.
What we have is better than just the algorithm code for satellite selection.
Firstly we have the full Honeywell-Thales system documentation with a full description of the system configuration, operation, firmware, system table, owner requirements table and all algorithms in great detail (534 pages).
Secondly we have the Inmarsat Perth Ground Station Signalling Unit data from the operator SITA for 9M-MRO between 7th March 2014 00:51:09.729 UTC and 8th March 2014 01:16:15.407 UTC with every byte of data sent and received listed with a millisecond timing precision and covering the regular flight of MH371 and the diverted flight of MH370 (7,197 rows).
So we know both how the SDU was intended to function and how the SDU actually functioned and both align.
I just can’t comprehend how we’re guiding tractors and other vehicles, but didn’t track commercial aircraft any better than this in 2014.
well we did, but someone turned it off
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In addition to the transponders being switched off, the ACARS position reporting was also switched off by disabling the connection to the satellite system. There was also radio silence on all 6 communication systems on board MH370.