AOPA is celebrating its 75th anniversary today. Concerned that the growing influence of military air power would eclipse general aviation, five founders gathered on May 15, 1939, to establish AOPA, electing C. Townsend Ludington as the association’s first president. Then, as now, AOPA’s primary mission was to protect the freedom to fly for the growing population of general aviation pilots and aircraft owners. Today, AOPA is the world’s largest aviation member association, with representatives in Frederick, Md.; Washington, D.C.; Wichita; and seven regions across the U.S.
Duncan Aviation’s avionics team is validating STCs in response to Aircell’s announcement that Gogo Biz will be available in portions of Canada this year. Duncan has completed 11 STCs to date.
Aviation associations are mourning the loss of former Rep. Jim Oberstar, a staunch advocate for general aviation (GA) who represented Minnesota’s 8th district for a quarter century. His district included Cirrus Aircraft. Oberstar died on Friday at the age of 79.
Several aviation industry groups, including NBAA, expressed strong support for two Senate security bills: S.1893, the Transportation Security Acquisition Reform Act; and S.1804, the Aviation Security Stakeholder Participation Act. The former would streamline the TSA’s acquisition process and allow for better congressional oversight of TSA resources.
Ellen Saracini, widow of United Airlines Flight 175 captain Victor Saracini, has not relented in her attempts to see secondary security barriers installed on all airliners while also trying to ensure the barrier equipment already installed on some transport aircraft is not removed.
Domestic and international operators now have 24/7 access to $35 million worth of Falcon and Gulfstream parts through a partnership between Duncan Aviation and Global Trade Group. “By pairing with Duncan Aviation, we’re able to get parts in the hands of our customers even faster,” said Pat Cuiffo, owner of Global Trade Group.
As part of enhanced collective measures agreed to by member countries in April, NATO has deployed more fighters to eastern Europe in response to the continuing crisis in Ukraine. France and Canada have dispatched aircraft this week, while a new NATO multinational team is taking over the enhanced air defense detachment in the Baltic republics.
Pilots flying within 100 miles of San Antonio, Texas, should remain extremely vigilant for the large number of military training aircraft in the area, some flying as low as 500 feet agl at 400 knots. The ceiling of the training boxes often extends to 18,000 feet. This safety reminder came from Major Cheryl Buehn, chief of flight safety for the U.S. Air Force’s 12th Flying Training Wing, based at Randolph AFB in San Antonio.
A proposed Learjet 45 FAA airworthiness directive is prompted by reports of non-conforming windshield supports (coupe rails). It would require a general visual inspection to detect gouging and scratches and to determine if a radius has been removed; an ultrasound inspection to measure the dimensions of the lower coupe rails; an eddy current inspection to detect cracks of the lower coupe rails; replacement of the lower coupe rails if necessary; and revision of the maintenance or inspection program, as applicable.
Australia will order 58 more Lockheed Martin F-35A Lightning II fighters for $12.4 billion, the government said on April 23. Including jets the country has already ordered, the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) will be able to field three squadrons of the fifth-generation fighter.