According to a story in the New York Times, Airbus is recommending to all operators of its Airbus A330 and A340 wide-body planes replace the pitot tubes made by Thales with those from Goodrich. The move comes in anticipation of a safety directive from the European Air Safety Agency in the wake of the Air France flight 447 crash. Pitot tubes on Airbus 320 models were recommended to be replaced two years ago, the Times says.
Airbus and EASA say that this is a precautionary measure since the exact cause of the crash of Air France Flight 447, while suspected to involve pitot tubes, is not yet proven.
In other Air France 447-related news, Airbus indicated that it is willing to fund an extended search for the crash's flight data recorder and wreckage, the New York Times says.
According to the Times,
"Investigators this month abandoned the audio search for the flight recorders’ 'pingers,' which are designed to emit a signal for 30 to 40 days, but they have continued to hunt using diving equipment and sonar scanners towed by a French frigate. Those efforts are due to go on until Aug. 22."
The Airbus offer will help extend the search if nothing is found by the 22nd of August.
Robert N. Charette is a Contributing Editor to IEEE Spectrum and an acknowledged international authority on information technology and systems risk management. A self-described “risk ecologist,” he is interested in the intersections of business, political, technological, and societal risks. Charette is an award-winning author of multiple books and numerous articles on the subjects of risk management, project and program management, innovation, and entrepreneurship. A Life Senior Member of the IEEE, Charette was a recipient of the IEEE Computer Society’s Golden Core Award in 2008.