Aviation Investigation Report A98H0003
1.14.7 Airflow Patterns
Airflow patterns in the MD-11 are affected by the aircraft configuration. In the forward portion of the aircraft, this configuration includes the valve position of individual air outlets in the cockpit and throughout the cabin, and the position of the louvres in the bottom part of the cockpit door. Also, all MD-11s are equipped with a smoke barrier installed laterally across the aircraft in the attic area above the cockpit aft wall (see Figure 3). Inspection of Swissair MD-11s showed that the smoke barrier was sealed relatively tightly in some aircraft, while in others there were gaps in the barrier at the edges and at the seams where conditioned air ducts pass through the barrier. These gaps allowed air to flow past the smoke barrier. The holes in the barrier, designed to permit the engine fire shut-off cables to pass through the barrier, would also be a path for smoke to pass between the cabin and cockpit. Additional information on airflow is included in Section 1.16.3.
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