• In January 2006, two pilots flying an American Eagle Saab 340 out of San Luis County Regional Airport in San Luis Obispo, Calif., nearly lost control after the autopilot shut off during icing conditions on climb-out. The Saab 340 lost 5,000 feet during the recovery.
Ever since the crash of American Eagle Flight 4184 (an ATR 72) in Roselawn, Ind., on Oct. 31, 1994, the NTSB has been recommending that the FAA enact a new rule that the Board believes might have prevented these accidents. As a result of the crash of Flight 4184, the NTSB recommended that the FAA “prohibit the use of the autopilot” during encounters with icing conditions.
Safe Flight Instrument (Booth No. 5130) has been selected to provide the speed-control system for Quest’s Kodiak turbine single.
L-3 Avionics Systems said last month that its new Trilogy ESI-1000 electronic standby instrument has received TSO approval and an approved model list STC allowing installations of the product in most light general aviation aircraft. Designed to serve as an all-in-one backup instrument for glass cockpits, Trilogy is touted as the first solid-state electronic standby product for smaller Part 23 airplanes.
The FAA issued Information for Operators (InFO) 09005 last week, urging proper pilot training for boot operation and maintaining airspeed in de-icer-boot-equipped airplanes.
Preliminary airplane performance modeling and simulation conducted by the NTSB show that icing had a minimal effect on the stall speed of the Colgan Air Bombardier Q400 that crashed outside Buffalo on February 12, killing all 49 occupants and one person on the ground, the Safety Board said today.
Embraer is paying for a service bulletin to replace flap-controller units in the first 10 to 20 Phenom 100 very light jets. The new controller units will have updated software to fix a “nuisance failure” problem that causes the flaps not to work. “The failure does not actually exist,” explained Embraer’s Mauricio Martins de Almeida Filho, “but the system interprets it as a ‘flap fail’ condition and triggers a fail-safe shutdown.
Despite intensified speculation about an impending collapse, Eclipse Aviation remained in business as this issue went to press, with company leaders still seeking new sources of funding and anticipating the long-awaited FAA certification of the Garmin 400W navigator upgrade and European Aviation Safety Agency certification of the airplane.
Cessna 550 Citation Bravo, Kent, UK, Feb. 5, 2008–No one was injured when the Citation Bravo encountered wind shear on approach to Biggin Hill Airport. Airspeed fell below 100 knots and the autopilot pitched the nose up to maintain the glideslope. The right wing dropped in a stall but the ATP-rated pilot recovered and continued the approach. The aircraft bounced on landing.
The Citation S550-based Sierra Super S-II completed a 36-minute maiden flight September 26 at Sierra’s Uvalde, Texas modification center. The flight demonstrated the “dramatic” improvements of the dual fadec-controlled Williams FJ44-3A engines, the company said.