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September 9, 2014, 3:10 PM

Worldwide business and general aviation avionics sales climbed to $652.1 million in the second quarter, up 2.7 percent from $635 million in the same period a year ago, according to the latest data from the Aircraft Electronics Association. Combined with first-quarter sales of $651.7 million, total worldwide sales of avionics exceeded $1.3 billion in the first half, a gain of 6.8 percent year-over-year.

September 9, 2014, 3:00 PM

The FAA selected four unleaded aviation fuels yesterday for the first phase of testing at the agency’s William J. Hughes Technical Center. The goal is for government and industry to work together to have a new unleaded fuel ready for general aviation use by 2018. Shell and Total, with one fuel each, and Swift Fuels, with two fuels, will now work with the FAA on phase-one testing, which will begin this fall and conclude later next year.

September 9, 2014, 2:55 PM

Quest Aircraft received FAA approval to install the Garmin GFC 700 autopilot into its Kodiak turboprop single. The GFC 700–which provides flight director, autopilot, yaw damper, automatic and manual electric trim capabilities–integrates with the Kodiak’s G1000 avionics system. Standard features of the GFC 700 include electronic stability protection, which prevents the airplane from decelerating below established minimum airspeeds and allows for coupled go-arounds. Deliveries of Kodiaks equipped with the Garmin GFC 700 will begin in the fourth quarter.

September 9, 2014, 2:55 PM

Helicopter leasing company Milestone Aviation Group signaled its intention to offer stock to the public–an initial public offering (IPO)–yesterday in a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. No date for the IPO has been set, nor has any valuation been placed on shares to be offered. Milestone was founded by former NetJets CEO and founder Richard Santulli in 2010 with an initial capitalization of $500 million. The company’s current fleet is valued at $2.2 billion and it has more than 145 helicopters on order worth $3.4 billion.

September 9, 2014, 2:50 PM

To help sustain the talent pipeline and nurture newcomers to the industry, NBAA will debut its young business aviation professionals program during its Soar networking event next month at the 2014 NBAA Convention in Orlando, Fla. “Soar is dedicated to building relationships and a sense of community between emerging leaders across the industry,” said NBAA project manager of operations Brian Koester.

September 9, 2014, 2:45 PM

To improve situational awareness and gather more specific data about helicopter movements and helicopter noise, the FAA is requesting that pilots of civil helicopters operating under VFR at or below 6,000 feet in the Los Angeles Basin squawk transponder code 1205 between September 1 and Feb. 27, 2015. Law enforcement and other first-responder helicopters have been asked to squawk 1206. However, both rotary- and fixed-wing pilots should continue to squawk 1201 when flying in the L.A. Special Flight Rules Corridor.

September 9, 2014, 2:02 PM
Raytheon Exoatmospheric Kill Vehicle

A Pentagon “quality assurance assessment” of Raytheon’s exoatmospheric kill vehicle (EKV), part of the Ground-Based Midcourse Defense (GMD) System, identified 48 “nonconformances” that could affect the reliability of the system, which is designe

September 9, 2014, 10:18 AM

Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 broke apart above eastern Ukraine on July 17 as the result of structural damage caused by penetration of the Boeing 777-200 by a “large number of high-energy objects,” according to a preliminary Dutch Safety Board report issued Tuesday.

September 8, 2014, 2:30 PM

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) believes methane gas expelled from an offshore oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico caused the partial power failure on a Bell 206-L3 helicopter departing the MP61A platform on March 24, 2011. The pilot experienced the power failure at about 4:55 p.m., shortly after liftoff. The NTSB attributed the power loss to an engine compressor stall after it ingested methane gas during takeoff.

September 8, 2014, 2:11 PM

The final report by Indonesia’s National Transportation Safety Committee (NTSC) on the April 13, 2013 crash of a Lion Air Boeing 737 in Bali cited the airliner’s pilots and their loss of situational awareness as the primary cause of the accident. Four people were seriously injured when the aircraft crashed into water just short of the runway although no lives were lost.

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