AIN Blogs

October 16, 2014 - 11:04am
Curt Epstein
NASA researchers inspect the damage to a CH-46 fuselage which was intentionally dropped from a gantry as part of an ongoing series of helicopter crash survivability tests.

OK, so it wasn’t an accident; it’s just that the NASA folks are getting rather good at intentionally crashing helicopters. The latest in its series of engineered rotorcraft crashes was conducted earlier this month when the agency dropped the more than four-and-a-half-ton fuselage of a former U.S. Navy CH-46 Sea Knight helicopter for the second time in little more than a year.

October 1, 2014 - 5:14am
John Goglia

One of the things we talk about in the Current Topics in Aviation course I co-teach at Vaughn College of Aeronautics is how to report safety issues without being labeled a whistleblower or, worse, being fired. It’s an important issue for anyone entering a field where safety is so important and the “penalties” for being labeled a whistleblower can be high. Even the federal Whistleblower Protection Act covers only a small segment of the industry: airlines and their contractors. Some states might also have some protections for workers.

September 30, 2014 - 9:51am
Jeff Burger
Doctors without Borders, a charity featured in BJT's Giving Back department, aids a suspected Ebola victim.

The audience demographics of Business Jet Traveler—the AIN sister publication that I edit—are eye-popping.

September 19, 2014 - 11:58am
Charles Alcock

The latest round of economic sanctions imposed against Russia by the U.S. and European Union (EU) did not directly target the civil aerospace and air transport sectors, but they may yet inflict collateral damage on these industries. The U.S. sanctions, announced on September 12, included the Rostec defense group, which has ambitions in the civil sector, such as its planned joint venture with Canada’s Bombardier to build Q400 regional airliners in Russia.

September 4, 2014 - 12:37pm
Matt Thurber
Pipistrel Alpha

One-hundred octane low-lead avgas (100LL) is on its way out. Despite the fact that studies by the Environmental Protection Agency have failed to demonstrate a clearly higher risk attributable to lead emissions by piston-engine 100LL-burning aircraft, lead is poisonous in any concentration.

September 4, 2014 - 12:26pm
Jeff Burger

Every time you turn around these days, you hear about another person on a medically restricted diet. The reasons range from lactose intolerance to autoimmune conditions to life-threatening allergies.

September 1, 2014 - 12:15am
John Goglia

Senator James Inhofe (R-Okla.), father of the original Pilot’s Bill of Rights (PBOR), is proposing some amendments and additions to his original law. According to a press release issued by the senator’s office at the end of June, “[T]he first Pilot’s Bill of Rights was a victory for the aviation community and made possible by the support of pilots and industry leaders across the nation.

August 8, 2014 - 2:54pm
Matt Thurber
Michael Huerta

The FAA mandate to equip with ADS-B OUT avionics is coming in fewer than 5.5 years, and many owners and operators are still waiting to upgrade their aircraft, either because they’re hoping prices will drop and technology will improve or they aren’t sure they’ll be keeping their aircraft beyond the deadline.

August 1, 2014 - 1:23am
John Goglia

I’ve been thinking a lot about complacency since the crash of a Gulfstream IV on takeoff from Hanscom Field in Bedford, Mass., that left seven people dead. Any accident, especially one with fatalities, affects those of us who have spent our entire lives and careers in aviation. But one that occurs at an airport where we regularly work has a particular impact. The accident investigation continues, but the National Transportation Safety Board has already issued a preliminary report that raises some troubling questions about whether the pilots conducted a routine flight control check.

July 8, 2014 - 7:39pm
Matt Thurber

This has got to stop. We all know that FAA inspectors at the Flight Standards District Office (FSDO) level are overworked and that FAA regulations, policies, procedures and programs impose impossible requirements on agency personnel. But when a drop-dead simple piece of paperwork that needs an approval signature hits the desk and gets delayed for some obscure confounded reason, causing the grounding of a multimillion-dollar jet, well, this simply has got to stop.

 
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