It had been a routine flight, right up to the moment that the captain dialed 24,000 into the altitude preselect controller and we began our descent. As I rolled the vertical-speed wheel into a nose-down command, the Citation VII responded slowly, but eventually began a healthy 2,500-fpm descent as we left FL 350 for 240.
Walking away from a wage settlement endorsed by their own union leadership, 8,000 rank and file members of Local 712 of the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace workers had shut down the assembly lines for Bombardier Regional Jets and, as of press time, effectively stymied production of both Challenger business jets and RJs by stopping fabrication of critical subassemblies for those aircraft.
Three of the eight U.S. Marine Corps officers charged with wrongdoing in the MV-22 Osprey tiltrotor scandal have been found liable to some of the administrative charges. The other five officers and men were cleared of charges that they participated in a scheme to falsify maintenance records. (It should be stressed that being found in violation of a charge is not, under the code of military justice, the equivalent of criminal conviction.)
With the Republicans retaking control of the Senate when the 108th Congress convenes early next month, some recognizable names will be moving back into the leadership positions they were forced to vacate when former GOP Sen. Jim Jeffords of Vermont became an independent and allied with the Democrats in the middle of last year.
Converting a piston twin into a turboprop single may seem like a bizarre idea, but an international team of technicians and engineers in Russia and Switzerland has combined its expertise to produce just such a transmutation. [Beech created the Lightning experimental prototype in the mid-1980s by placing a Garrett TPE331 in the nose of a Baron 58P airframe.–Ed.]
Steel-jawed ex-Navy Top Guns may be disappointed to learn about the plan to fully automate aircraft carrier deck landings, in the interest of safety and efficiency. After all, surely, deck landings are pretty straightforward: you just fly the arrester hook hanging out behind your F-14 or F/A-18 through an imaginary three-foot-square box located 14 ft above the stern, and you’re virtually home.
The Bush Administration has proposed spending $759 billion next year for government agencies and programs other than Social Security, but more than half has been earmarked (not to be confused with pork-barrel earmarking) for the military, homeland security and foreign aid.
Attempting to rescue injured climbers on Oregon’s highest peak in an accident that left three dead, a Sikorsky HH-60G Pave Hawk search-and-rescue Black Hawk assigned to the Air Force Reserve’s 304th Rescue Squadron crashed just 800 ft shy of the summit of 11,240-ft Mount Hood on May 30. At that height, the Pave Hawk was operating very near its 11,540-ft IGE maximum power hover ceiling.
When Singapore revealed that it had chosen the Gulfstream G550 business jet as its new airborne early warning (AEW) platform last April, Northrop Grumman officials were reportedly shocked. They had every confidence that the Republic of Singapore Air Force (RSAF) would select the E-2D, an upgraded version of the Hawkeye twin turboprop that had served the RSAF well for nearly 20 years.
In a fascinating presentation at the Global Air Power Conference in Singapore in mid-February, Israeli Air Force (IAF) commander Maj. Gen Elyezer Shkedy described the effort to defeat Palestinian and Hezbollah terrorism from the air. Shkedy showed video from various missile attacks, in an attempt to prove that Israel tries hard to avoid civilian casualties during air strikes.