Hughes 369D, Columbus, Mont., May 28, 2007 – The Dylan Aviation Hughes 369 lost power and crashed, killing one crewmember. The pilot and another crewmember received serious injuries and the helicopter was destroyed. The helicopter was flying from Billings in VMC and the planned destination was not determined. Evidently, the ELT was not activated in the crash.
Hughes 369A, Moulton, Ala., May 13, 2007 – The commercial pilot was killed and the helicopter was destroyed when it crashed in the Bankhead National Forest in Alabama in VMC. The pilot had just bought the helicopter and was ferrying it from Florida to Kansas. He had stopped for fuel at Sylacauga, Ala.
Eurocopter AS 350B3, Yellow Pine, Idaho, Aug. 13, 2006–The NTSB determined that the U.S. Forest Service contract pilot’s intentional low-altitude flight and his failure to maintain an adequate altitude to clear the trees was the cause of the crash of the AS 350, which killed all four on board.
The Solar Impulse has made significant progress toward its goal of being the first solar-powered aircraft to fly at night. Led by psychiatrist and accomplished aeronaut Bertrand Piccard, the team began construction of the 200-foot-wingspan prototype in late April. Flight tests are scheduled to start next year.
Speaking at an International Civil Aviation Organization meeting on emissions held in Montreal, FAA Administrator Marion Blakey told several hundred government aviation officials and industry representatives that perceptions that aviation does not care about the environment and that it is responsible for a great deal of greenhouse gases are incorrect.
Shipping giant UPS and partner Aviation Communication and Surveillance Systems (ACSS) last month submitted the approval paperwork to the FAA for a suite of ADS-B (automatic dependent surveillance-broadcast) avionics intended to streamline busy operations at UPS’s Louisville, Ky. hub.
The European Space Agency (ESA) has launched the early development phase of the Single European Sky Iris program, a research initiative designed to improve air traffic management through satellite-based air-to-ground communication links. If the early development proposals are approved by the ESA Council next year, system development will begin in mid 2009.
As a sign of possible things to come for business aviation, the European Commission and the FAA announced on Monday a joint initiative to reduce aircraft emissions and combat climate change.
France and Germany’s militaries signed an accord to study future helicopter capabilities that could be available by 2020. The countries are interested in developing a transport helicopter larger than the NH90 medium twin.
Alcan and Airbus have signed a long-term agreement covering the supply of high-performance aluminum products for the entire range of Airbus aircraft, including the A380 and new A350XWB.