Title: Disastrous air crash and two investigations with different results

Authors: Andrzej Ziółkowski

Addresses: Department of Intelligent Technologies, Division of Safety Engineering, Institute of Fundamental Technological Research, Polish Academy of Sciences, ul. Pawinskiego 5B, Warsaw 02-106, Poland

Abstract: This case study is to analyse the catastrophe of Polish Air Force One, TU-154M aircraft on 10th of April 2010, near Smolensk North airfield, Russia. The catastrophe ended up in total destruction of the aircraft and death of all the passengers and crew on board. The results of the official investigations of the Russian Federation executed by the Interstate Aviation Committee and Poland executed by the Committee for Investigation of State Aviation Accidents are recalled, which found that the crash resulted due to pilot's errors. The evidence is presented showing faults in official examination proceedings and thus existence of grounds for possibility of drawing false conclusions. An academic investigation effort is undertaken to reconstruct the course of events during the last few seconds of flight of the TU-154M aircraft. The publicly available data, photographic evidence and circumstantial information have been analysed, which allowed pointing out a number of observations, which were not reliably explained by official reports scenarios. In view of that, execution of a new fully fledged repair investigation is recommended.

Keywords: abductive analysis; academic investigation; aircraft crash; air force one; aircraft safety engineering; airframe wreckage; blast; catastrophe; explosive damage; metallic fragments; Polish TU-154M; repair examination; Smolensk; TAWS.

DOI: 10.1504/IJFE.2017.10005136

International Journal of Forensic Engineering, 2017 Vol.3 No.4, pp.277 - 302

Received: 01 Oct 2016
Accepted: 14 Jan 2017

Published online: 23 Oct 2017 *

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