Regarding Pan Am's fateful Flight 103, I am totally struck by the fact that it was reported that only a "faint noise" was heard on the cockpit voice recorder before the failure of the plane's power system (Part I, Dec. 24).
Surely the FAA must recognize that no competent communications engineer could be so negligent to fail to incorporate an independent battery backup to power the recorder for those precious few minutes. This would probably eliminate much of the guesswork, time and expense that was required to determine the cause of catastrophes like this.
The cost, weight and displacement of an internal battery backup system would be totally insignificant when compared to the magnitude of the problem which it could solve and the world would be a safer, better place. FAA, please wake up, this is the 20th Century and a problem like this should never occur.
MARWIN H. GONSIOR