Ethiopian Airlines crash: 'Pitch up, pitch up!'

Inaccurate information from an outside sensor led the MCAS anti-stall feature to force the nose of the Lion Air plane down over and over again

Inaccurate information from an outside sensor led the MCAS anti-stall feature to force the nose of the Lion Air plane down over and over again

Candles were lit in tribute to Ethiopian Airlines plane crash victims at the United Nations Environment Assembly, in Nairobi.

When the MCAS system notices that a plane has stalled, it tilts the nose of the aircraft in order to correct the error.

The conversation happened when the plane was just 450ft (137m) off the ground as the aircraft begun to point downwards, according to the paper.

The Wall Street Journal - which says it's spoken to people close to the ongoing investigation - says the information it has "paints a picture of a catastrophic failure that quickly overwhelmed the flight crew".

Data from the angle-of-attack sensor incorrectly activated the automated system that pushed the plane into an irreversible nose-dive on March 10, The New York Times reported, citing unnamed individuals briefed on the contents of the plane's black box.

The last moments of the doomed flight appear to indicate problems with the new plane's automatic anti-stall system which has also been implicated in the downing of a Lion Air flight in Indonesia that killed all 189 people on board in October.

Garima Sethi, the wife of the Lion Air flight pilot, pushed for months for Boeing to ground the 737 Max 8, and believe the Ethiopia crash.

Ethiopian authorities have promised to submit the preliminary report on Flight 302 by mid-April but have already said that there are "clear similarities" between the two 737 Max crashes.

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The airline and authorities have refused to comment on leaks from the investigation.

The Federal Aviation Administration received black box flight data from Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 on Thursday, indicating that the MCAS anti-stall system was activated shortly before the crash. TUI said it was planning for the planes to remain grounded until at least the middle of July, costing it upwards of 200 million euros ($224 million) in core profit, with "considerable uncertainty" about when the 737 MAX would return to service.

As part of the upgrade, Boeing will install an extra warning system on all 737 Max aircraft.

Neither of the two planes that were involved in the fatal crashes carried the alert systems, which are created to warn pilots when sensors produce contradictory readings.

It was yet another blow to the aviation giant, which just this week unveiled a fix to the Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System (MCAS).

An official report into the disaster by Ethiopian authorities is expected to be released imminently.

The aviation company has tried to restore its battered reputation, even while continuing to insist that the MAX is safe.

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