Green Flight International last month conducted the first flight of a jet using 100-percent biodiesel fuel. The experimental test flight was flown by an L-29, a military aircraft that is rated to fly on a variety of fuels, including heating oil, making it a “preferred platform” for testing biodiesel in jet engines.
Virtually all cargo-dedicated airplanes will be required to have traffic alert and collision avoidance systems type II (TCAS II) installed by December 31 next year under rulemaking published last month. Under a previous rule, the TCAS requirement was based on passenger seating capacity and therefore excluded cargo-only airplanes.
David “Bruce” Johnson has been appointed director of the FAA’s Air Traffic Service (ATS) division, with Linda Schuessler as his deputy director. Johnson replaces Bill Peacock, who retired May 2 after 30 years with the FAA. Schuessler takes over from Jeff Griffith, who retired late last year.
After reading Bill Wagstaff’s article on heli-logging in AIN, I feel compelled to respond. I lived and worked on Vancouver Island for over 20 years. Thanks to that experience, I think I can inject another perspective to the issue of the environment and economic soundness of heli-logging.
While Bombardier’s Wichita Learjet facility remains idle until next month during a planned, but unprecedented, four-month plant shutdown, company managers and machinists union representatives are “talking” about how to reduce production costs. According to a Bombardier spokesman, the Wichita facility ranks dead last in cost efficiency out of the company’s six aerospace manufacturing plants.
• About 400 Jet Commanders, Westwinds, Astras and Astra SP/SPXs are the subject of a proposed AD aimed at preventing cockpit fires resulting from a possibly defective oxygen shutoff valve that can create overheating in the system. Aviation authorities in Israel say they have reports of two incidents of fire in the cockpit of an 1124 and 1124A when the copilot turned on the system while the aircraft was taxiing.
• The Los Angeles board of airport commissioners has authorized airport staff members to begin advertising for qualified companies to perform Part 161 noise mitigation studies for Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) and Van Nuys Airport (VNY). The separate studies are not expected to be completed for three to five years.
The FAA has revised the regulations covering temporary flight restrictions by creating a separate set of conditions to cover sporting events and airshows (new FAR 91.145) and revising the existing rules to apply only to disaster and hazard areas (retitled FAR 91.137).
The European Regions Airline Association (ERA) has demanded a “balanced approach” to environmental controls in the European Union transport industry following the publication of its new study on the noise performance of the continent’s regional airline fleet. The “Growing Quieter” report concluded that the noise generated by the average regional aircraft is about half what it was in the early 1970s.
Jan. 1, 2006, is the date for the implementation of the International Civil Aviation Organization’s (ICAO) Chapter 4 noise limits. The latest noise and emissions standards (European terminology uses “Chapter” to correspond with the U.S.