At about 2.20 pm on March 21, China Eastern Airlines Flight 5735 plummeted more than 20,000 feet in just over a minute. It fell vertically to the ground with 132 passengers on board.

As the New York Times reported on April 4, aviation experts have paid attention to the aircraft’s vertical position at impact.

John Goglia, a retired N.T.S.B. board member, said that the natural tendency of commercial airplanes is to level off in flight.

In addition, according to Peter Marosszeky, who is now the managing director of Aerospace Developments, a research and development company in Sydney, Australia, to achieve a true nosedive, the horizontal stabilizers on either side of the aircraft’s tail must be under constant, intense force.

The horizontal stabilizers control a plane’s pitch. The question is whether the nose of the plane was pushed down due to a technical malfunction or a pilot’s decision.

Martin Craigs, the chairman of the Aerospace Forum Asia, a Hong Kong-based trade group for aviation equipment suppliers, said that the plane’s ability to fly almost exactly straight down, without gliding or fluttering, shows that “it’s clearly not a terrorist bomb.” He also did not rule out a deliberate crash.

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