Latest News

October 1, 2014, 6:00 AM

Jet Engines

Among manufacturers of turbofans for business aircraft, Williams retains the number-one slot in product support but is not alone at the top this year, sharing the honors with Rolls-Royce, which moves up from the number-three slot it held last year.

October 1, 2014, 5:14 AM

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.

October 1, 2014, 4:40 AM

It could have happened to any two professional pilots flying a nonprecision approach, in darkness, into weather that turned out to be worse than they expected after a night of back-side-of-the-clock flying. But the NTSB’s September 9 hearing into the Aug. 14, 2013 crash of UPS Flight 1354, an Airbus A300-600, on approach to Birmingham, Ala. (BHM), proved that even crews flying heavy jets can lose situational awareness and get just as far behind on nonprecision approach as King Air crews, especially when a handful of other factors also come into play.

October 1, 2014, 3:45 AM

The issue of FAA delays in approving letters of authorization (LOAs) for operations such as RVSM continues to fester. At this month’s NBAA Convention, the FAA’s Roger Sultan will join attorney David Norton of Shackelford, Melton, McKinley & Norton to help pilots and aircraft operators understand the LOA process, learn how recent changes might accelerate LOA approvals and give feedback about their experiences obtaining LOAs.

October 1, 2014, 3:30 AM

I pulled the Eclipse 550’s throttles back and allowed the jet to slow down. The autopilot and autothrottles were turned off, but as we neared the stall, an audio alert sounded (“STALL”), the autothrottles kicked in and automatically advanced power to maximum continuous thrust and the airspeed climbed back to a safe level as I simultaneously unloaded the wings. After leveling off, I reset the throttles and resumed normal cruise speed.

October 1, 2014, 3:05 AM

On the heels of statements of dissatisfaction by senior U.S. Air Force officials about the current delay of more than two years in producing the critical Mission Data Unit (MDU) of the DOD’s future GPS III satellite program, the USAF issued a Sources Sought ultimatum to GPS III contractor Lockheed Martin and its subcontractor Excelis. Such a declaration–essentially advising the contractor to improve performance and indicating that the agency is investigating other sources for the work–was a bombshell event for the aerospace community.

October 1, 2014, 2:45 AM

The rewrite of the EASA’s CS-23 and the FAA’ s Part 23 rules (known as the “CS/Part 23 Reorganization” initiative) is taking shape, and at a workshop last month in Brussels European authorities expressed unconditional support for the effort. Manufacturers of light aircraft (up to 12,500 pounds) are propelling this effort to establish more practical rules.

October 1, 2014, 2:15 AM

There had to be a way of delivering the latest in business jet technology without doing a clean-sheet design,” said Jay Heublein, executive v-p of global sales and marketing for Nextant Aerospace, explaining the reasoning behind the Nextant 400XTi remanufacturing of the Beechjet 400/Hawker 400XP.

October 1, 2014, 2:10 AM

At last year’s NBAA show, whatever good news could be unearthed about business aviation was dampened by the dismal impact of the government sequestration, effects of which are still evident. While the political machinations emanating from Washington, D.C., this year seem to have abated somewhat, there is still a threat of a government shutdown, but so far, at least, there have been no big eruptions of user fee proposals to mar this year’s show. Attacks on business aviation seem to have abated, too, perhaps because the government has more important items on its agenda.

October 1, 2014, 1:55 AM

Greg Maitlen pivoted the Bell 407GX carefully as we approached a ridge slightly lower than nearby 10,064-foot Mount San Antonio (also known as Mount Baldy), the highest peak in southern California’s tinder-dry San Gabriel mountain range. Maitlen, Bell Helicopter’s regional sales manager for the mountain U.S., was piloting a demo of the 407GX’s new flight manual supplement allowing carriage of a heavier payload in hot-and-high conditions. The new AFM supplement was certified in July and involves no changes to the 407GX other than placing the new FMS-12 supplement in the helicopter.

Pages

 
X