Unfortunately there are no "whistle-blower" laws in Austria so Mr. Mangan and his family aren't doing too well.A year ago, Mangan told European aviation authorities that he believed there were problems with a computer chip on the Airbus A380, the biggest and costliest commercial airliner ever built. The A380 is a double-decked engineering marvel that will carry as many as 800 passengers double the capacity of Boeing Co.'s 747. It is expected to enter airline service next year.
Mangan alleges that flaws in a microprocessor could cause the valves that maintain cabin pressure on the A380 to accidentally open during flight, allowing air to leak out so rapidly that everyone aboard could lose consciousness within seconds.
It's a lethal scenario similar to the 1999 crash that killed professional golfer Payne Stewart and five others when their Learjet lost cabin pressure and they blacked out. The plane flew on autopilot for hours before crashing in South Dakota.