We tackle the show without a guest, and take the opportunity to to fly largely unedited for a more raw, intimate episode.
We talk about flying ability based on gender and airliner recycling as alternative housing. On the technology front, we look at jet engine developments and the application of 3D printing to aerospace manufacturing.
Listener mail topics include aviation museums, the British Airways Future Pilot Programme, beer and wine on flights, good aviation books, and where you can buy your own bomber.
David even proposes an aviation cooking show and looks for recipes like Mitsubishi Meatballs, Boeing Bouillabaisse, Airbus Avocados, and Piasecki Pancakes. David also mentions a “dollar nineteen” airplane. Want to know what that is? Look it up on Emmanuel Gustin’s Aircraft Nicknames page.
Rob Mark’s Aviation Minute: The Transportation Security Administration and Weapons.
In this week’s Across the Pond segment:
We continue the discussion with Oussama Salah from Oussamas Take on developments in the Middle East ….but ‘spreading worldwide’ might be a better description. In our discussion this week we wonder if Alitalia will remain in one piece and where the growth stops, as Ireland and Switzerland get added attention.
Mary Kirby’s new Runway Girl Network is an online framework “where air transport intelligence meets the passenger experience.”
We talk with Mary about aircraft interiors, inflight connectivity driving operational benefits, airline seat size from a safety standpoint, and other topics that impact the passenger experience.
You’ll find content at the Runway Girl Network in four categories: passenger safety, passenger comfort, passenger connectivity, and passenger services.
“Lean into Aviation” highlights women in the industry and their accomplishments. The “#PaxEx Forum” presents articles written by industry thought leaders. The weekly “#PaxEx Podcast” is a thirty minute program where experts join in on a conversation about current passenger experience topics.
The Network features a hybrid model with both advertising-supported free content, and subscription-based premium content. You can follow Mary on Twitter as @RunwayGirl.
David Vanderhoof’s Aircraft of the Week: The Boeing Airplane that Created the DC-3: the B-247.
In this week’s Australia Desk:
Steve and Grant chat with Mike Yeo from The Base Leg blog about his trip to the Singapore Air Show. Topics include the A350, the 787, military display teams, China’s trade show presence but lack of airframes and general buzz from the show.
Jack Suchocki (a former Eastern Airlines Captain) is President of Eyewitness Animations. They create professional forensic animations and courtroom graphics, including aviation accident reconstruction. These are used for investigations and litigation. An example is the Asiana 214 crash video they produced. The animations are accurate with respect to the events, scale, and time. Clients include U.S. Government agencies, industry manufacturers and organizations, television networks, and many others.
We talk about where the data comes from for these animations constructed on personal computers and how they are used in accident litigation.
Pieter talks to Jesús Calderon, Air Traffic Controller in the Barcelona Tower about recent changes to airfield procedures, why he is taking his ATPL exams in London and why Barcelona has been busier than Madrid this summer. We also get an insight into what an Air Traffic Controller thinks about when he takes a commercial flight as a passenger.
Bill English is Investigator in Charge with the Office of Aviation Safety at the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) and he walks us through the NTSB investigation of the July 6, 2013 crash of Asiana Flight 214 at San Francisco International Airport, from the first call to the investigative hearing December 11, 2013.
Boarding the FAA airplane
We talk about the assembly of the team and go-bag preparation, gathering initial information, and transport to the site.
Bill continues with the on-site command post set up, securing the scene and harvesting perishable evidence.
Site access and support area
A major role of the Investigator in Charge is organizing the other agencies, manufacturers, support organizations, and other parties involved such as the airport authority, FBI, and Red Cross.
Command post getting ready for an evening debrief
Besides the key task of evidence gathering, the team must keep the public informed. That’s also an objective of the investigative hearing, which introduces factual information into the investigation and shows the public the progress being made.
Over the course of the next six months, all the information will be assembled into a final report containing analysis and conclusions, probable cause, and safety recommendations. At another public meeting, the draft report will be presented to the Board for their deliberation and adoption.
The NTSB is an independent Federal agency charged by Congress with investigating every civil aviation accident in the U.S. and significant accidents in other modes of transportation-railroad, highway, marine and pipeline.
Bill has been with the NTSB since 1999, and has been the lead investigator on numerous major aviation accidents in the US and around the world including the Continental Airlines 1404 accident in Denver, the 737/Legacy midair collision in Brazil, UPS flight 6 B747 fire in Dubai, a US Navy contracted B707 tanker, and most recently the Asiana Boeing 777 in San Francisco.
Bill is also the NTSB’s resource for unmanned aircraft investigations and developed the civil unmanned aircraft accident investigations manual. He worked for the FAA as an air traffic controller, quality assurance specialist, and in navigation procedure development.
He is a certified instrument flight instructor and commercial pilot in single and multi-engine airplanes, flew aerial observation, corporate, and electronics test aircraft and has extensive experience in flight inspection and advanced navigation technology.
Prior to joining the Board he was a contributing editor to IFR Magazine. Bill graduated from Embry-Riddle University in Aeronautical Science and his graduate work was in Geospatial Intelligence at Penn State.
This week, David Vanderhoof brings us a special Christmas story called, “Suzie the ChristmasCirrus!“
In this week’s Australia Desk:
It’s not just Rob who reckons an AusDesk can be produced by just saying how Qantas and Jetstar are in trouble. Steve and Grant have had enough too and, even though lots of column inches are being generated this week about the group’s woes, they’re not going to spend time discussing the issues as they’re pretty much as they were last week.
After all that, it’s time to shut down the AusDesk studio and head for the beach ‘cos it’s Christmas in Australia and the sun is shining, the temperatures climbing and the holidays are about to commence. Wishing you a great Christmas and New Year where-ever you are and what-ever the temperatures!
Guest Scott Winter is Assist Professor of Aviation Sciences, College of Aeronautics, Florida Institute of Technology. We talk about the aviation programs at Florida Tech, the research Scott is conducting, his experience working at Cirrus, and Flight Safety Foundation student chapters. Mixed in is some advice for those considering aviation careers, automated system trust concepts as they apply to passengers and pilots.
Scott completed his Doctorate degree from Purdue University in 2013, where his dissertation research focused on pilot decision-making in irreversible emergencies. He presently conducts research in 3 foundational areas: pilots’ transition and information processing in glass cockpit aircraft, training pilots in very light jet operations, and enhancement methods for pilot cognition and decision-making.
Prior to beginning his academic career, Dr. Winter worked in the Flight Standards and Operations Department at Cirrus Aircraft. During his time at Cirrus, he worked on designing various training manuals and educational tools. As a check airman, he oversaw the training and proficiency for company pilots. For two years, Dr. Winter served Cirrus as an international representative of the Flight Standards and Operations Department, where he obtained international flight experience in Europe, South America, the Caribbean, Australia, and South Africa.
David Vanderhoof’s Aircraft of the Week: the Noorduyn Norseman. (Image above)
In this week’s Australia Desk:
Rob’s got both Steve and Grant keeping their knees up this time, but that won’t help Qantas who are collapsing into a sea of red as they announce a $250-$300 million loss for the first half of the year.
The Qantas woes are even impacting Jetstar who are threatening to withdraw their flights from Avalon Airport and have confirmed they’ll be closing their Darwin base.
This week we welcome back Petar Voinovich from TangoSix to look at the main aerospace topics in Serbia. We first look at the intriguing relationship developing between the United Arab Emirates and Serbia which has resulted in Emirates investing a significant amount of money in the ailing Air Serbia. TangoSixPortal on Facebook and @tangosix on Twitter.
Benet Wilson returns to talk aviation: what to expect at this year’s AOPA Summit and what will be replacing the Summit in 2014, her flight training and the support from other aviators, even flying with children where Benet offers some suggestions based on her experience with her child (the “Princess of Planes”). Also, irritating things that passengers do on planes and Strange But True Aviation News.
Benet is the Social Media/eNewsletters Editor for the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA). She blogs at Aviation Queen and is AvQueenBenet on Twitter.
David Venderhoof’s Airplane of the Week: Voyager 1, the world’s first Interstellar ship. Launched in 1977 with a “Golden Record,” Voyager 1 has finally left the solar system and entered deep space. @NASAVoyager is the official account for NASA’s twin Voyager 1 & 2 spacecraft.
In this week’s Australia Desk:
At the recent AusFly event, Grant and Ben Jones caught up with Dick Smith (an Australian entrepreneur, pilot and adventurer) and Ryan Campbell (the youngest person to fly around the world) to record a quick chat about their trips around the world & how Dick advised Ryan.
Guest Kevin Hiatt is the CEO and President of the Flight Safety Foundation, an independent, non-profit, international organization engaged in research, auditing, education, advocacy and publishing to improve aviation safety. The Foundation’s mission is to pursue the continuous improvement of global aviation safety and the prevention of accidents.
Before joining the Foundation, Kevin was the Vice President for Corporate Safety and Security at World Airways, and before that Kevin was with Delta Air Lines for 26 years in a variety of positions, including Chief Pilot at the Atlanta International Pilot Crew Base.
We talk about the Asiana Flight 214 accident, how airliners have become more safe and how they might be made even safer. We touch on the dependency on automation, video capture in the cockpit, recording radio transmissions at small airports, upcoming Foundation events, drones in the airspace, and more.
Also, Kevin tells us about the new Legal Advisory Committee and the Safety Protection Task Force, seeking to protect the data from an accident so it is used only to improve aviation safety, and not as evidence in criminal court.
Several times each year, in cities all around the country, the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) conducts open briefings for pilots and other interested parties which cover all the latest updates on rule changes, legislative changes, policies and so on. On the night of recording, Grant had just returned from one such briefing and brings us a report on what was covered. Of particular interest was the proposed changes to pilots licenses which, among many other things, will allow CASA to directly license “recreational” pilots with a license similar to the US sport pilot license. We discuss how this change might affect the current issuer of these licenses, the Recreational Aviation Association of Australia, which is in a poor state at present.
In other news, Qantas has announced that it is looking very carefully at the latest fire related issues affecting the 787 fleet, with delivery of its own Dreamliner airframes not far away.
This week we look at the UK Airshow circuit after the loss of the US attendees through sequestration. It appears that the attending displays have stepped up to the challenge. Pieter discusses with Gareth Stringer, if the UK and Europe are being spoilt by the momentous displays being put on by the display pilots, an F16 Shootout and the RAF Typhoon burning up the skies. (We also wish we could bring David over as he would surely enjoy the spectacle).
Jeff Nielsen (“Capt. Jeff”) flies for a major legacy airline and produces the Airline Pilot Guy podcast, subtitled: The View From My Side of the Cockpit Door. Jeff served in the Air Force as a C-141B and T-37 Instructor Pilot, and in his commercial career has flown the B-727 (all seats), the L-1011 (as First Officer) and the “Mad Dog” MD-88/90 (as Captain). In Airline Pilot Guy, Jeff presents news and views from an airline pilot’s perspective, and answers listener questions about airlines and flying.
With Grant off this week due to illness, PCDU team member Ben Jones steps in to help bring us this report.
In the news, Virgin Australia issues a statement to the Australian Stock Exchange announcing it’s acquisition of Skywest is complete and right on cue, the first Skywest Fokker 100 in Virgin colours makes it debut in Perth.
The last RAAF F-111C to fly, A8-109, is transported by road from Queensland to Wollongong in New South Wales to take up residence at the Historical Aircraft Restoration Society (HARS). The aircraft, now fully decommissioned, has been fully repainted in 1980s era colour scheme.
Further news this week on Australia’s first two F-35 JSF airframes, designated AU-1 & AU-2. Lockheed says they are on schedule to be delivered by 2014, at which point RAAF aircrew can begin training.
The latest PCDU video is now online – Steve’s review of the RAAF KC-30A Multi Role Taker Transport, including footage of refuelling of two 77SQN Hornets over eastern Victoria RAAF Airbus KC30A Multi Role Tanker Transport.
F-22 at Australian International Airshow 2013 (Avalon) by Mick
Harriet Baskas writes the monthly At the Airport column for USA Today, as well as occasional features at NBCnrews.com and MSN Travel. She also manages the collection of online Airport Guides at USA Today.
We talk about the recent Travel Goods Show in Las Vegas and some of the products of interest to air travelers. Also, things airports have been doing to increase the experience like better restraurants and bars with broader appeal, a liquor store in baggage claim, and even free land lines that are advertiser supported. Rob even learns something interesting he didn’t know about Chicago’s O’Hare Airport! Rob even learns something interesting he didn’t know about Chicago’s O’Hare Airport!
Recorded at the end of the final day of Avalon 2013 – The Australian International Air Show. We talk to Eamon Hamilton, Public Affairs Officer for Air Lift Group, Royal Australian Air Force, about the Air Show from the RAAF perspective. We also include a brief discussion about the F-22 Raptor display over Avalon, the first time this aircraft has been displayed in Australia skies, and include a clip from our interview with the display pilot, Major Henry Schantz.
On the Southampton Airport miniseries this week we talk to the airport Fire Service. What are their capabilities, strength and how do they stay alert for the 1.7 million passengers that travel safely through the airport every year.
Guest Alan Klapmeier, the CEO of the Kestrel Aircraft Company talks with us about his single-engine turboprop Kestrel. We discuss the Kestrel’s capabilities, features and design objectives, and choice of the Honeywell TPE331-14GR engine. Also, the status of the program and when first flight is expected. We have an interesting conversation about form versus function in airplane design and what composite construction allows designers to do.
This aircraft features a glass cockpit with side-stick that creates an unusual amout of room. Attention was given to
how the pilot and the plane interact together – presenting information rather than data so pilots can be decision makers instead of processors of data. That has an impact on safety, but also comfort.
Alan also collects diecast model airplanes and has a collection that could easily be called giant. Follow @KestrelAircraft on Twitter.
David’s Aircraft of the Week is a bit of a surprise. It’s the Sopwith Triplane!
In this week’s Across the Pond segment:
We continue with the Southampton Airport mini-series this week and look at what’s required to keep the airport terminal clean and tidy by talking to Operations Manager Karren Pattar from Amey. Southampton achieved platinum in the 2012 Loo of the Year Awards (LOYA).