reply to post by glitchinthematrix
Interesting link to the timeline by Paul Thompson. As usual, eyewitness accounts conflict, and should be taken with a grain of salt....
However, I can clear this part up rather easily:
The 911 Timeline meticulously put together by Paul Thompson states that the official NORAD time of the Flight 93 crash in Shanksville, PA was at
There IS a three-minute discrepancy, and here is why.
From the seismic records, and also the FAA ATC radar, the actual time when radar contact was lost was ~1006 EDT.
The Recorders (both CVR
- Cockpit Voice Recorder - and FDR
- Flight Data Recorder) stopped at time index 1003 EDT (or,
more correctly, 1403 UTC).
Absent the equipment for GPS updating, which was not installed on UAL 93, the Recorders both get their time reference fromt he ADC (Air Data Computer)
which, in turn, receives its time from the Captain's clock. The clock is set manually, by the crew. It can be somewhat laborious, at times (and
frustrating, much like setting a VCR clock can be). Also, it may have been set by the maintenance personnel (mechanics) when they first prepped the
airplane that morning. Either way, it was a few minutes off. Sometimes, that happens.
If we're going to fly an extended over-water route, then accurate times are more important (and just about all have GPS nowadays, anyway, so it is
accurate automatically). The Captain's clock does not report outside the airplane; for that there is what's called the ACARS. It automatically
reports the Out, Off, On and In times (among other things) for Flight Following requirements, per FAA regulations.
The BIG question still hangs us up, as it sits out there --- Was There a Shoot-Down, contrary to reports.
I don't know, since I wasn't there to witness, obviously. However
, based solely on the CVR and FDR data there is no indication.
There ARE signs of erratic control movements, possibly to disorient the passengers who were attempting to break into the cockpit. But, interestingly,
the FDR shows no disruptions in the electrical, hydraulic, fuel or pressurization systems that would be indicative of either F-16 wing cannon fire
(20mm rounds) or a missile.
It has been my understanding that any F-16s scrambled that day would NOT have been loaded with missiles, but would have had at least "training
rounds" in their Vulcan cannon.
Would like some verification on that.
In any event, there are comments by the hijackers, in Arabic, about putting it down, or "finishing it". This seems to show their intent to not
allow a passenger take-over.
A shoot-down, if it occured, seems would have been perfectly accepted by the public, since it is known that authorization was given.
Either way, the airplane was never going to make its intended target.....
That's how I'm still viewing this thing.