As we round the corner past the U.S. Labor Day weekend, thoughts of cold-weather operation begin to make their unwelcome presence felt, especially among operators of unhangared aircraft. Cranking up a mechanically complex aircraft on a subzero morning can put lifetime-limiting stresses on drivetrains. This is especially true when it comes to rotorcraft, with their high number of crucial moving parts.
News and information on safety procedures and concerns.
As the global marketplace continues to reduce the size of the world, we not only embrace the languages, cuisine and customs of other cultures; we find ourselves in turn embraced by a growing array of deadly airborne pathogens. The most recent was SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome), which some health officials believe will reappear this winter.
The Regional Airline Association last month lambasted the FAA for the agency’s highly publicized drop test of an ATR 42-300 turboprop in Atlantic City, N.J. The FAA said the July 30 test would help it assess the need for dynamically tested seats
South St. Paul, Minn.-based Ballistic Recovery Systems on July 24 performed a touchdown condition test on an OMF Symphony 160 fuselage. In the test, a conforming fuselage of the Part 23 two seater–sand bagged to simulate a mtow of 2,150 pounds–was hoisted to 8.5 feet and dropped by releasing the tow cable. Although no parachute was involved, the test created a descent rate calculated for a 5,000-foot density altitude.
The FAA last month approved upgraded flammability standards for thermal and acoustic insulation materials used in Part 25 (transport category) aircraft. Revised standards include new tests and criteria that address flame propagation and entry into the cabin of an external fire.
Sikorsky announced this week that it has sold two S-92 helicopters to the International Handling Co. (IHC). The contract includes the option to purchase four additional S-92 helicopters configured for offshore oil missions.
Delivery of the first aircraft is expected to take place in 2010. IHC, an Azerbaijan-based operator, plans to expand its service to the growing offshore oil industry based in Eurasia.
Safe Flight Instrument Corp. has announced that Aeronautical Accessories, an affiliate of Bell Helicopter Textron, has obtained an STC allowing installation of Safe Flight’s Exceedence Warning System for the Bell 206B JetRanger. Safe Flight’s Exceedence Warning System continually monitors torque and exhaust gas temperature and provides pilots with a tactile annunciation when limits are being reached or exceeded.
It is impossible to ignore the role technology has played in making the art of powered, heavier-than-air flight incrementally safer for the successive generations of aviators who have laid witness to a remarkable 100-year history.
Gulfstream, which has been engaged in a dispute with the FAA over whether its new Gulfstream 550 could be certified with the traditional four elliptical window emergency exits, has now apparently satisfied the agency’s concerns in the form of a requirement for “an evacuation crewmember” on all flights carrying 10 or more passengers.
The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating two recent runway incursions at Teterboro (N.J.) Airport (TEB). The probe will focus on a June 25 incident involving a Learjet 45 and a July 9 ground incursion involving a NetJets Dassault Falcon 2000 and a Cessna 172.