On July 28, the day before the opening of this year’s EAA AirVenture Oshkosh show, EAA chairman Jack Pelton and Mac McClellan, director of publications, flew a specially refurbished Cessna Skyhawk from Fond du Lac, Wis., to Oshkosh. The Skyhawk has been turned into a “RedHawk Training Aircraft” in a new venture by simulator manufacturer Redbird Simulations and its flight training division Redbird Skyport. AirVenture visitors can see the RedHawk at the exhibit near the main gate.
News and issues concerning general aviation, specifically airplanes and helicopters powered by piston and alternative engines (i.e., non-turbine powered aircraft). Subjects include aircraft, engines, personnel, acquisitions, accidents, safety, security and training.
The Aviation Rulemaking Committee (ARC) report on recommended changes to general aviation aircraft certification regulations has been released, just in time for the opening of this year’s EAA AirVenture Oshkosh show on July 29. And, in what appears to be encouraging support from the federal government, new Department of Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx expressed support for the recommendations.
The FAA’s demand that the Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA) pay $447,924 for ATC services at this year’s AirVenture celebration in Oshkosh, Wis., stunned the entire aviation community, and ran contrary to the decades-long relationship between the two organizations. In the days leading up to EAA AirVenture 2013 (July 29-August 4), EAA board chairman, acting president and CEO Jack Pelton spoke with AIN about the association’s response, as well as changes at this year’s AirVenture and to EAA itself.
Activity in the light sport aircraft (LSA) arena is heating up, with more pilots trying the many modern aircraft spawned by this new category which was enacted by the FAA in 2004. While LSAs include a variety of aircraft types such as fixed-wing airplanes, powered parachutes, weight-shift-control aircraft, balloons, gliders, airships and gyroplanes, much of the LSA development has focused on the basic two-seat light sport airplane.
For many years, a small company named Lam Aviation has showcased its variable-geometry wing design at EAA AirVenture. Company founder Lawrence Lam (who passed away in 2010) even designed and built his own low-wing, retractable gear, single-engine airplane–the Wanderer–to demonstrate the concept and flew that airplane to Oshkosh three times.
Aviators seeking employment who happen to be visiting EAA AirVenture might want to stop by the Job Fair on Wednesday, July 31, from noon to 3 p.m. The Job Fair is being held at College Park, in the Education & Interactive Zone northeast of the Wittman Regional Airport control tower.
GreenWing International is preparing to market the eSpyder electric airplane in the U.S., first as an amateur-built kit then as a factory-built light sport aircraft (LSA). U.S. production of the eSpyder is expected to begin later this year. The eSpyder was certified in Germany in February and is based on the Flightstar Spyder ultralight airframe.
One of the most eagerly anticipated demonstrations at this year’s EAA AirVenture Oshkosh show is the first publicly planned flight of the Terrafugia Transition flying car. “This is the first public display of the Transition doing its thing,” said Richard Gersh, vice president of business development for Woburn, Mass.-based Terrafugia, although the company did host an invitation-only flight demo at Lawrence Airport near Boston last October.
General aviation interests are hailing the growth of the House General Aviation Caucus, which has reached a record total of 200 members of the House of Representatives, making it one of the largest and most active caucuses in Washington, D.C. Formed in 2009, the House GA Caucus–and its companion GA Caucus in the Senate–serves as an informal group of lawmakers, assembled to promote the role the industry plays in local communities and the national economy. Both caucuses work to inform debates about policies affecting the general aviation community.
The House of Representatives passed the Small Airplane Revitalization Act of 2013 on July 16. A companion bill has already been introduced in the Senate.