One drawback to traditional round taxiway lights is the difficulty pilots often face in determining the precise location of the edge of the taxiway surface using those lights. The technology behind blue taxiway lighting has changed little over the past 50 years, until a recent test of a new kind of lighting fixture began at Ohio’s Cleveland Hopkins Airport (CLE) in February. This involves the new Pavement Edge Light Safety System (Pelss) from Lumin Aerospace.
The runway edge lights on four of the seven active runways at Chicago O’Hare International Airport (ORD) went dark on April 11 in the middle of an evening traffic rush. The runways affected were 22 Right, 32 Right and both 27 Left and Right, causing air traffic delays and flight cancellations. Some lights went out completely while others flickered for nearly an hour. A spokesman for the City of Chicago’s Department of Aviation said the cause of the outage is unknown.
“This is a milestone in the history of business aviation,” said NBAA president Ed Bolen during yesterday’s press luncheon, which heralded the launch of ABACE 2013 in partnership with the Shanghai Airport Authority. “We’re delighted to be back in Shanghai,” He added, referring to the fact the first ABACE was held in Shanghai back in 2005. “With that initial show, we planted a seed,” Bolen said. “Thanks to a visionary number of leaders here in Shanghai and throughout the Chinese government, we’ve been able to see that seedling grow.”
VistaJet is working hard to get its new Chinese joint venture up and running by the end of 2013. In January, the operator established an office in Hong Kong and it has now staffed this with a sales team. The next step will be to establish a representative office in Beijing with its joint venture partner and it has begun the licensing process to establish a Chinese air operators’ certificate (AOC) and register some of its aircraft in the country.
Signature Flight Support celebrated the launch of its sixth Signature TechnicAir at Washington Dulles International Airport early this month, at the same time announcing the facility’s certification as an Embraer authorized service center. TechnicAir Dulles will perform maintenance, repair and overhaul services for the full line of Embraer business jets.
Michelin and the FAA Safety Program (FAAST) have partnered to offer pilots and aircraft maintenance technicians a free online tire maintenance course titled The Impact of Tire Maintenance on Aircraft Safety. “Tire maintenance is often overlooked in aviation; this course will help reinforce this important part of aviation safety,” said Brad Beall, Michelin Aircraft Tire zone director for North and South America.
A change in FAA policy that allows the use of GPS approaches at alternate airports should be welcome news for pilots. “Operators are now permitted to file a flight plan for a GPS approach at either the destination or an alternate, but not both,” according to NBAA. The new policy took effect on April 4. Previously pilots could fly GPS approaches only at the destination airport.
Remember the spate of sleeping controllers and the angst it all caused at 800 Independence Avenue and 1200 New Jersey Avenue?
The ForeFlight team has released a major update to the ForeFlight Mobile iPad app–Version 5–featuring a new hazard advisor with terrain and obstacle awareness, new runway advisor features such as a traffic pattern advisor, runway winds and automatic display of taxi diagrams. The terrain map and Hazard Advisor work only on newer iPads (iPad mini, 2 and later) and iPhones (4 and later).
The FAA has certified four new SafeRoute flight-deck applications on a US Airways A330 designed to provide “enhanced operational safety,” as it integrates with the agency’s NextGen system. The airline partnered with ACSS, an L-3 Communications/Thales joint venture, and Eurocontrol to complete the installation.