Air transport industry groups and the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) have agreed a framework for developing a binding mandate for aircraft tracking. At a two-day meeting that concluded on May 13 at ICAO’s Montreal headquarters, participants agreed to encourage voluntary expansion of flight monitoring by airlines ahead of an initial set of proposed new requirements being submitted to the United Aviation body by the end of September.
Air traffic control
Calgary, Canada-based Flyht Aerospace Solutions has developed the Dragon, a low-cost Iridium-based portable satcom system that draws on the company’s expertise in airborne telecom. Selling for less than $10,000, Dragon allows pilots and passengers to communicate using voice or data, without the need for an expensive certification and installation approval program.
Unconfirmed reports have surfaced that claim a military U-2 high-altitude reconnaissance aircraft operating far above civilian airways might have been responsible for an April 30 computer failure at the FAA’s Los Angeles Center. Both the center’s primary and backup radar computer systems failed at the same time, causing nationwide air-traffic backups into and out of Southern California. Some believe the U-2’s ultra-high altitude might have confused the ATC computers.
Cerritos. Mention the town’s name to any pilot who has flown around Southern California for more than a few years and you get a nod of instant recognition. On Aug. 31, 1986, an Aeromexico DC-9 inbound to Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) collided with a Piper Archer taking off from Zamperini Field in nearby Torrance. The wreckage fell onto Cerritos in southeast Los Angeles County, killing all 67 aboard both aircraft and 15 people on the ground.
The FAA issued a Special FAR on Friday that prohibits “certain flight operations” in a portion of the Simferopol Flight Information Region (FIR) by all U.S. airlines and commercial operators, and–with narrow exceptions–those with a U.S. airman certificate and operators of U.S.-registered civil aircraft.
The European Parliament has voted to extend the mission of the Single European Sky ATM Research (Sesar) Joint Undertaking (SJU) by eight years, until 2024. The organization expects the European Union Council of Ministers, the second chamber of the EU legislature, will adopt the final act extending its life this summer.
The FAA said yesterday that it will delay by one year the April 22, 2014, compliance deadline to implement pilot training and qualification, airspace and other operational provisions in the new helicopter safety rule.
Pilots and New York Tracon sector air traffic controllers recently began using the new GPS-X RWY 6 instrument approach to Teterboro (TEB) when that airport’s RWY 6 ILS is out of service. The approach was created to provide better traffic separation between TEB arrivals and traffic landing RWY 29 at nearby Newark Liberty International Airport (EWR).
The FAA announced on Tuesday that the ADS-B network in the U.S. has been completed, with all 634 ground stations now online. “This upgrade is an important step in laying the foundation for the NextGen system, which provides air traffic controllers a much more precise view of the airspace, gives pilots much more awareness and information, and as a result strengthens the safety and efficiency of our system,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. “This state-of-the-art satellite system is already providing controllers with visibility in places not previously covered by radar.”
Last year Avion Pacific celebrated its 20th anniversary at the ABACE show in Shanghai, and since then the company has performed even better than company founder Wu Zhengdong expected. “Last year was the best ever for us,” he said.
Avion Pacific, headquartered in Shenzhen, sold seven Sikorsky S-92 and nine S-76D helicopters and half a dozen Beechcraft King Airs last year. Deliveries of the helicopters will take place this year.