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哈德逊河上的奇迹

看到这条新闻后,对人类的力量油然生敬,人类有过很多空难,但这一次,空客上的机组人员成功地在遭遇鸟击、引擎灭火的情况下力挽狂澜,绝处求生,最终150多人全部安然无恙,奇迹!奇迹的背后是高科技、高素质在支撑,和菜头的注解也非常专业地传达出了机组面临危险时的果敢坚毅,还有酷酷的对白:“We’re Gonna End Up in the Hudson”,“my aircraft”。

哈德逊迫降

全美航空公司1549航班在哈德逊河上奇迹般迫降成功,遗憾的是,国内的报道在第一时间居然全部都是用“坠毁”,而且在这个标题下接的是“155人全部生还”。迫降和坠毁的区别还是很大的,迫降失败会造成坠毁,坠毁了也就不用迫降了。这条新闻有两点值得大书特书,一是机组在水面迫降成功,显示了良好的训练素质、高超的驾驶技巧和强悍的心理素质。这样的飞行员,的确可以称之为“飞行员中的飞行员”。二是飞机两台发动机被鸟击,在完全失去动力的情况下飞行员靠飘降成功迫降,一方面证明了机长的驾驶技术,一方面也证明了A320客机设计合理,空气动力学性能优良,因而有足够的滞空能力。无论是飞行员还是飞行器,在这一次可堪载入飞行教材的迫降过程中,都体现了足够的专业水准。

以下,是《纽约时报》的一篇报道,讲述了当时在空中的情形。我以加注的方式,讲解其中的航空部分。

《1549 to Tower: ‘We’re Gonna End Up in the Hudson’ 》
【注】Tower,机场塔台。这个标题是在模仿空地对话,而这句话也的确是录音上记载的机组最后一次空地通话内容。

By MATTHEW L. WALD and AL BAKER
Published: January 17, 2009

Just seconds after the first officer of US Airways Flight 1549, leaving La Guardia Airport and bound for Charlotte, N.C., pointed the nose of his jet into the sky, he noticed that there were birds on the right side — “in a perfect line formation.”
【注】first officer,副驾驶。按照规定,坐在右座,所以他注意到了右侧舷窗外的鸟群。

The plane’s captain, who had been busy watching the cockpit instruments, managing the radios and looking at charts, then looked up.
【注】Captain,机长。刚刚起飞的几分钟他非常忙碌,需要做大量交叉检查和监控工作。

The windscreen, he told investigators, was filled with birds. The plane, at roughly 3,000 feet, was going at least 250 miles an hour. The captain’s first instinct, he said, was to duck.
【注】发生鸟击时,飞机的高度仅仅是3000英尺,航速250英里/小时。在这样的速度和高度下,飞行员对飞行器的异常情况反映时间极短。

Seconds later, flight attendants aboard the plane reported hearing a thud or a thump — a sound they had never heard before. The engines went quiet. And the plane’s captain, Chesley B. Sullenberger III, smelled something.
【注】发生鸟击,往往是乘务员最先发现撞击声,尤其是发生在机翼上的鸟击,乘务长会用舱内送话器向机长报告异常情况。驾驶舱内的空气和客舱内空气采取彼此独立的空气循环系统,以保证驾驶舱内有最新鲜的空气,所以机长最先闻到了肉味。

“Burning birds,” he told investigators.

Since Flight 1549 landed — safely but spectacularly — in the Hudson River on Thursday, no one had heard the accounts of the two pilots who had helped keep 153 other people alive. On Saturday night, Kathryn O. Higgins of the National Transportation Safety Board gave the first version of what the pilots saw, said and did in the course of executing one of the more remarkable safe endings in American aviation history.
【注】NTSB,国家安全运输委员会。有趣的是,这一航班的机长也是委员会成员。

The account offered by the safety agency — based on interviews conducted Saturday with the plane’s crew — had numerous startling elements, not the least of which was the fact that Captain Sullenberger, who has been hailed by the mayor and the president for his skill and bravery, was not at the controls at takeoff. Instead, the plane’s first officer, 49-year-old Jeffrey B. Skiles, was in control; a 23-year veteran of the airline, he had just 35 hours of flying time in this particular kind of craft, the Airbus A320.
【注】鸟击发生时,是副驾驶Skiles控制飞机,在这一型号的A320飞机上,他仅有35小时的飞行经验。

But as soon as the plane encountered the birds and the engines quit nearly simultaneously, Captain Sullenberger, 58, took over.

“My aircraft,” he announced to his first officer, using the standard phrasing and protocol drilled into airline crews.
【注】My aircraft,很酷,不是么?机长用最简短的指令要求飞机置于他的完全控制之下。

“Your aircraft,” Mr. Skiles responded.
【注】副驾驶复颂命令,移交控制权给机长。

With little thrust, and with the plane’s airspeed falling sharply, Captain Sullenberger lowered the nose to keep his plane from falling out of the sky. And he set his co-pilot to work at moving through a three-page checklist of procedures for restarting both the engines.
【注】机长降低机头高度,然后要求副驾驶打开重启发动机标准程序的飞行检查单。在飞行员的飞行资料箱里,有各种各样的飞行程序,上面有各种紧急情况下的操作指示。当发生意外情况时,要求飞行员按照检查单上的内容,一项项操作,以免飞行员因为紧张而疏忽或者忽略了某些重要的操作步骤。机长此时已经完成了对飞机状态的判断:双发停车。因此,要求副驾驶找出重启发动机的飞行检查单,逐项操作。

The checklist, investigators said, is intended for planes that are in distress at much higher altitudes — like 35,000 feet. At such heights, of course, there is more time to restart.
【注】非常不利的情况出现了,重启发动机的程序要求飞机在35000英尺以上的高度。这样驾驶员才有充裕的时间执行标准程序,重启发动机。而1549号航班高度3000英尺,没有时间执行程序。

As the co-pilot worked desperately on the checklist, the crew radioed the air traffic controller, who had just cleared them to climb to 15,000 feet.
【注】地面已经获悉了飞机遭遇鸟击造成发动机停车的现状,塔台要求飞机爬升至15000英尺高度。但是他们并不知道,飞机其实已经失去了动力。

They discussed returning to La Guardia, but the plane was “too low, too slow,” and besides, there were “too many buildings, too populated an area.”

“We’re unable, we may end up in the Hudson,” one of them, probably Mr. Skiles, said to the controller, according to the safety agency.
【注】副驾驶直接告诉塔台,他们不能执行爬升至15000英尺的指令,或许要在哈德逊河上了结了。

The two veteran flight attendants who had heard the thump or thud told investigators that after the engines failed, the cabin was silent.

“It was like being in a library,” Ms. Higgins said.

The pilots saw Teterboro Airport ahead across the Hudson, and they considered going there, but Captain Sullenberger, who is also licensed as a glider pilot, had the same problem: too many miles and not enough power, in the form of altitude or engine thrust.
【注】在空中,飞行员已经目视能见哈德逊河对岸的Teterboro机场,理想状况是把飞机飞到那里去迫降。但是飞机高度太低,速度不够,在没有抵达备降机场前就会坠毁。幸运的是,机长居然也是glider pilot,滑翔机教练。这意味着他熟悉在无动力情况下驾驶飞机飘降的技巧。

The crew worried that in such a populated area, the outcome could be “catastrophic,” the safety agency said.

One of the two pilots, probably the co-pilot, told the controller: “We can’t do it. We’re gonna end up in the Hudson.”
【注】无法飞往备降机场,我们就要在哈德逊河玩完了。文章的标题就是这一句话,上面说过一次,那次说的是“may end up”,这次是“gonna end up”,不再是“或许”,而是“将要”。

“That is the last communiqué of the flight,” Ms. Higgins said.
【注】地面人员最恐怖的一刻到来了,驾驶员进入无线电静默状态,他们已经无暇和地面通话。几分钟后通讯恢复,那么塔台里就是一片狂喜的欢呼。但是,如果一直静默下去,塔台内就会是死一般的寂静,唯有值班管制员孤零零的声音会反复呼叫飞机航班号,要求回话。

But it was not the end of the crew’s task. Captain Sullenberger saw a boat on the river, and remembered from his training that if a plane has to ditch, it should be done near a vessel.
【注】水面紧急迫降要求降落地点附件有船只,因为飞机可能会发生解体,即便安全降落,也会很快沉没。有船只意味着有获救可能。

The crew lowered the flaps, movable devices on the wing that allow the plane to fly more slowly, now essential because the length of their “runway” was not an issue but force at impact certainly would be.
【注】机长放下襟翼,在失去动力的情况下,这是他手头为数不多的几种控制飞机飞行姿态和速度设备。

The flaps run on hydraulic power, and the hydraulics were supposed to run off the now bird-stuffed engines. But the Airbus A320 has a “ram air turbine,” essentially a little propeller that drops down into the wind automatically in certain conditions and produces electricity; it may have provided the energy to allow the crew to lower the flaps.
【注】控制襟翼需要液压系统,但是鸟击引擎,造成泄漏,无法通过液压系统操控襟翼。幸运的是,A320有一个ram air turbine,简单说就是一个很小的风力发电机。在这种时候,它会自动从机腹放出,风吹动叶片带动转子发电,供应驾驶舱必要的最低用电,以电力取代液压系统控制襟翼。

Soon there was a command from the cockpit to the cabin to “brace.” To the two flight attendants in front, it felt like a hard landing; to the flight attendant in the rear, it felt much harder; items in the galley came loose and were thrown around the plane.
【注】迫降接地前,机长从驾驶舱接驳送话器,发布迫降指令“brace”,要求所有客舱成员按照事先交代的姿势双手抱头,双膝分开,伏低,准备迎接撞击。

In the water, the electricity died. One of the pilots opened the cockpit door and ordered, “Evacuate,” but the flight attendants and passengers were already doing so.
【注】Evacuate标准程序,标准紧急撤离程序。乘务员和飞行员都接受过大量类似训练,启动程序之后乘务员会打开紧急出口,释放橡皮艇,要求旅客穿上救生衣快速撤离机舱。

One overeager passenger rushed to the back of the plane and tried to open the rear door, even though it was already at least partly under water. She got it open a crack and water started flowing in, but the flight attendant there got her pointed to the front.

The flight attendant in the rear — not identified on Saturday — was soon in water up to her chest. She grabbed a life preserver and pushed forward, exited the plane and got into a raft, and felt woozy. She had a gash in one leg all the way into the muscle, but the water was so cold she was too numb to feel it.

Early indications, as described by the safety agency, were that the cockpit and cabin crews got through an emergency “by the book,” but it was an event that exists almost entirely in books alone; big planes seldom come down in water in a controlled way.

Just how the plane came down in the Hudson emerged on Saturday in videos kept or obtained by local and federal authorities. They were released, along with recordings of the first 911 calls.

In the briefing on Saturday night, Ms. Higgins said investigators on the Hudson believed they had identified the location of the one engine that had been torn off the plane. They hoped to confirm that in the coming hours and eventually retrieve it.

Late Saturday night, crews at Battery Park City had rigged the plane — weighing an estimated one million pounds — and lifted it out of the Hudson. They planned to load it onto a barge for investigators.

The black boxes, the cockpit voice recorder and flight data recorder that will serve as electronic witnesses to the event, had been removed from the plane by 1 a.m. on Sunday to be taken to Washington, transportation officials said.(来源:和菜头

一些照片:

飞机迫降哈德逊河

飞机迫降哈德逊河

飞机成功迫降哈德逊河

飞机成功迫降哈德逊河

飞机迫降哈德逊河

更多图片报道请移步这里



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