The airline boarding process, Leap-1A engine compressor stalls, the $19 billion Kennedy Airport transformation project, SpaceX Starlink Internet connectivity on planes, an update on the oldest skydiver, another Australia Desk report, and great listener mail.
Check your group: United Airlines to reintroduce window, middle aisle boarding this month – saves 2 minutes!
United economy passengers might benefit from a boarding process where passengers with window seats get on first, then the middle seat passengers, and finally the aisle seats. The airline thinks this will shorten boarding by two minutes.
According to the airline, beginning October 26, 2023, boarding will take place in this order:
- Preboarding: Customers with disabilities and unaccompanied minors, active duty military, Global Services members, families with children under two, and Premier 1K members
- Group 1: United Polaris business, United first, United business, Premier Platinum, Premier Gold and Star Alliance Gold
- Group 2: Premier Silver, Star Alliance Silver, Chase, and certain other credit card holders and paid Premier Access
- Group 3: Window seats, exit row seats and non-revenue passengers
- Group 4: Middle seats
- Group 5: Aisle seats
- Group 6: Basic economy on domestic flights and those between the U.S. and the Caribbean or Central America excluding Panama City and San Salvador
After reports of three high-pressure compressor stalls resulting in aborted take-offs, and two stalls resulting in turnbacks, the FAA released a proposed rule that would require increased inspections of CFM International Leap-1A turbofans. The stalls were “induced by high levels of non-synchronous vibration” and involved wear on the engines’ number three bearing spring finger housings.
The Wikipedia Compressor Stall page provides more information on this topic.
Kennedy Airport is undergoing a $19 billion transformation project. Under the public/private redevelopment program, John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) will get two giant new terminals, expansion and modernization of existing terminals, streamlined roadways, and local retail and dining. See A New JFK for the latest information.
In addition to personal services, SpaceX’s Starlink offers commercial connectivity options: fixed, mobile, maritime, and aviation. According to the Starlink website, the aviation package is available for Gulfstream and Bombardier jets. In April 2022, Hawaiian Airlines announced that the airline would fit Starlink to its A321neos, A330s, and future Boeing 787-9s. Now the airline says that this has been pushed back to early 2024.
Dorothy Hoffner was found dead by staff at the senior living community. She apparently died in her sleep.
The Australia Desk returns after a few months away, and much has happened, both in aviation circles and a little closer to home.
Steve returns to the microphone following his recent journey with open heart surgery, the result of a heart attack in early September. The aviation podcast community was so generous in their support during this time, and we take a moment to speak to that and express our appreciation.
For those who may be interested, Steve chronicled his experience in a blog, which can be found at http://proceedaspect.com
In aviation news this week, Qantas has been transporting Australian citizens out of Israel on behalf of the federal government, due to the escalating conflict there. At the time of recording, one 787 flight had been completed, while a second was aborted due to security concerns. That flight was rescheduled. The 787s take passengers to London and then on to Australia using A380s.
Former Air New Zealand CEO Christopher Luxon is now the country’s Prime Minister following this weekend’s elections, following a shift into politics in recent times. The news comes as the nation’s flag carrier experiences financial stresses due largely to the escalating price of fuel, exacerbated by ongoing wranglings with Pratt & Whitney over engine issues, and a post-covid travel credit hangover.
The Australian Maritime Safety Authority is on a recruitment drive, offering multiple aircrew roles on their Dash 8 and Challenger 604 fleet. Find out more here:
An Australian man is at the centre of a recent incident which resulted in a Scoot 787 flight from Singapore to Perth being turned around and given an RSAF F-15 escort back to Changi.
The team at Paul Bennet Airshows have had a grand time at the recent Australian Aerobatic Championships, held at Narromine in New South Wales. Paul took out the Freestyle Championship, while many other team members swept the awards categories as well.
Your Pizza Shop, 1200 8’th Ave SW, Largo, Florida. Join Brian and Micah for a meetup on Sunday, November 12, starting at 4 p.m.
Listener Michael’s RC Aircraft
This is just a small sampling of the foam, balsa, and fiberglass electric-powered radio-controlled aircraft that Michael has built. When he’s not working on models, Michael is a helicopter pilot and flight test engineer.
Hosts this Episode
Max Flight, Brian Coleman, David Vanderhoof, Max Trescott, and Rob Mark. Contribution by Grant McHerron and Steve Visscher.