Tag Archives: safety

450 A Worldwide LGBT Aviation Community

Airline pilot Kathy Dulson tells us about the National Gay Pilots Association, and we discuss the recent flurry of airline public relations disasters. Also, an all-female UPS crew, the Blue Angels touch in the air, some airlines are dropping the “two persons in the cockpit” rule, and runway safety problems at Santa Monica.

Guest

Kathy Dulson

Kathy Dulson

Kathy Dulson is a Boeing 757/767 pilot for a major legacy airline based in Los Angeles. She has been involved in aviation for 29 years with four different airlines, starting in customer service and airline operations before pursuing her dream of flight. Kathy has been an airline pilot since 2002 flying the Saab 340, Canadair Regional Jet, Airbus 320, and now Boeing 757/767.

Kathy is also on the Board of Directors of the National Gay Pilots Association (NGPA), a non-profit organization that promotes advocacy and outreach, pilot careers, aviation safety, and social and professional networking. She is also a member of Women in Aviation International, the Ninety-Nines, and ISA+21.

Our conversation includes a discussion of the advocacy the NGPA provides on behalf of LGBT members of the airline community. We look at the sponsorship provided by airlines and the scholarships offered, as well as the local chapters with flight schools and universities, membership in NGPA, and the role of allies.

Find the NGPA on Twitter and Facebook.

Aviation News

Are Airline CEOs Finally Getting The Message A Big Change Is Needed?

The writer attributes incidents like the violent removal of a United passenger to a procedure-based industry that prevents a culture where frontline employees are empowered to make situational decisions.

That airline customer relations issues are prevalent in the news is evidenced by this list of stories that came up on the first page of a Google News search for the word “airline.”

Delta Airlines Pilot Hits Passenger At Atlanta Airport, Returns To Work

A pilot for Delta Airlines was caught on video hitting a passenger at Hartsfield–Jackson Atlanta International Airport. The passenger was brawling with another woman at the time.

Is It Time for Airlines to Stop Overselling Flights?

George Hobica says overselling makes air travel look bad, and “It’s time for the airlines to stop this or for the DOT or Congress to do it for them.”

First all-female crew to fly UPS plane at Thunder

Thunder Over Louisville is an annual airshow and fireworks display that kicks off the Kentucky Derby Festival. UPS was an event sponsor and a UPS 757 was part of the airshow. What makes this unique is that this was the first UPS crew flying in Thunder Over Louisville comprised of all women – flight and ground crew.

Blue Angels jets swap paint in close call over Pensacola

Two United States Navy Blue Angels airplanes touched during a flyover with the Air Force Thunderbirds near Pensacola Beach, Florida.

German airlines drop safety rule prompted by Germanwings crash

After the 2015 Germanwings crash where the pilot flew the plane into the ground, a “two person in the cockpit” rule was widely discussed. A rule change was advocated by the European Aviation Safety Agency, but last year EASA changed the requirement and allowed individual airlines make their own determination. The German aviation association BDL has announced that effective June 1, 2017, airlines will return to their original cockpit safety procedures.

Safety Problems Identified in Shortened Runway Plan at Santa Monica

Plans to shorten Santa Monica’s Runway 03/21 per the city’s January agreement with the FAA may create a number of potential safety issues.

Mentioned

A First Look Inside The New Private VIP Terminal At Los Angeles International Airport

The International Society of Women Airline Pilots

Wings Over Pittsburgh Air Show, May 13-14, 2017. Bags/Prohibited Items List.

Airline Pilot Guy Episode 269

Innovations in Flight Family Day and Outdoor Aviation Display

Larry Page-backed Kitty Hawk shows off its flying electric ‘car,’ available later this year

Video: Introducing the Kitty Hawk Flyer

Lilium shows maiden flight of world’s first working prototype of an electric VTOL jet

Video: The Lilium Jet – The world’s first all-electric VTOL jet

Credit

Intro music courtesy Brother Love from his Album Of The Year CD. Outtro by Bruno Misonne from The Sound of Flaps.

AirplaneGeeks 401 Aviation Accidents as Emergent Properties of Complex Systems

We explore aviation accidents as emergent properties of complex systems, and discuss: the Southwest Airlines Pilots’ Association complaints about pilot wages, a survey on frequent flier rewards programs, an NPRM that would change FAR Part 61, third class medical reform in yet more legislation, and a two seat Robinson R44. David has an onfire history segment and Rob talks TSA.

Guest

Captain Shem Malmquist has a broad aviation experience ranging from teaching aerobatics and instructing in a wide variety of both general aviation and transport aircraft, to academic research and safety investigation.

Captain Shem Malmquist, FRAeS

Captain Shem Malmquist, FRAeS

We talk with Shem about improvements that have made air travel safer, and the gaps we now face for identifying problems that might arise in the future. Shem explains how aviation accidents currently present themselves as interactions of complex components. Resilience engineering is an example of a different approach to how we look at complex accidents. We discuss flight simulators, mitigating lithium battery risk, and autonomous vehicles, including both manned and unmanned aircraft.

Shem worked as an instructor and evaluator on several transport aircraft and has served as flight crew on the Embraer EMB-110, Shorts 360, B-727, DC-8, B-747 and MD-11. He continues to work a full flight schedule, mostly international long haul flights.

Shem has been part of the Air Line Pilot Association’s (ALPA) National Charting and Instrument Procedures Committee (CHIPS), and he was selected by his airline to be the chairman of both the airline’s Safety Committee and the Aircraft Design and Operations Committee.

As Flight Duty Officer, he led several initiatives, including a volcanic ash avoidance plan, air security procedures, and a number of regulatory compliance issues. Shem completed NTSB’s accident investigation training and acted as Party Coordinator for an MD-11 accident in Newark, New jersey, and he was on the “go-team” for an MD-11 accident in Narita Japan.

Last year, Shem was a keynote speaker at FAA’s InfoShare and has presented at several International Society of Air Safety Investigators (ISASI) events. He has also authored numerous articles on various issues involving flight safety and operations covering a broad range of topics from technical to human factors.

Shem earned a Masters (MSc) degree in Human Factors in Aeronautics through the Florida Institute of Technology, and a Bachelors of Science (BSc) from Embry-Riddle University. He is an elected Fellow of the Royal Aeronautical Society, a full member of the International Society of Air Safety Investigators (ISASI), and a member of AIAA, IEEE, and SAE where he also serves on three committees: Flight Deck Handling Quality Standards for Transport Aircraft, Aerospace Behavior Engineering Technology, and Lithium Battery Packaging Performance.

Related Resources:

David Woods, Professor, Integrated Systems Engineering, The Ohio State University. Complexity in Human, Natural and Engineered Systems.

Sidney Dekker, professor at Griffith University in Brisbane, Australia, author on human factors and safety: Field Guide to Understanding Human Error.

Air Transport Safety Articles A collection of articles written by Shem Malmquist FRAeS.

Airline Safety and Accident Investigation Community on Facebook.

Driverless Cars and the Myths of Autonomy by David A. Mindell, MIT Professor of engineering and the history of technology, author of Our Robots, Ourselves: Robotics and the Myths of Autonomy.

News

Southwest Pilots Sue City of Chicago Over Billboard Advertising

SWAPA billboard

SWAPA billboard

The Southwest Airlines Pilots’ Association (SWAPA) wanted to make a point about pilot wages on a billboard at Chicago Midway International Airport. City Hall told them they could not post their message, so the union filed suit against the city of Chicago, claiming an unconstitutional restriction on their First Amendment rights and asking for a temporary restraining order to allow the pilots to display the ad. As a result, a Judge orders Chicago to allow Southwest pilots billboard at Midway.

The Best and Worst Frequent-Flier Rewards Programs for 2016

Switchfly-Reward-Infographic-2016The Switchfly Reward Seat Availability Survey conducted by consulting firm IdeaWorks found that for the third year in a row, free seats open for booking increased. “Overall, I think the consumer is being better served than the year before,” says Jay Sorensen, president of IdeaWorks.

Switchfly CEO Daniel Farrar said, “This survey reflects the fact that airlines can’t afford to take their customers for granted. 21st century consumers are savvy and plugged-in. They know when their loyalty programs are offering them a real value and when they are not delivering; and they don’t have time for loyalty programs that aren’t delivering, especially in such a competitive space. Increasingly, consumers expect a personalized booking, travel and reward experience. Every time a customer interacts with the brand – online, offline or mobile – the user experience must be on-point. Airlines must make this happen and ensure that zero customers have a bad experience anywhere along the booking or redemption path.”

See Southwest and airberlin Top Reward Rankings but Turkish Airlines and Air China Rise High [Ideaworks press release, PDF]

Proposed Part 61 changes would benefit GA

The FAA has published a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) that would change FAR Part 61 which governs the certification of pilots, flight instructors, and ground instructors. AOPA is supportive of the proposed changes, which include “increased use of aviation training devices (ATDs) for maintaining instrument currency, the option to use new technically advanced aircraft instead of older complex or turbine aircraft for single-engine commercial pilot training, and giving credit for hours accumulated during sport pilot training toward earning a recreational or private pilot certificate.”

Defense Bill Includes Medical Reform Language

Third class medical reform from the Pilot’s Bill of Rights 2 keeps getting into legislation: As standalone legislation in the Senate, again as part of the Senate’s FAA reauthorization bill, and now by the Senate Armed Services Committee in the National Defense Authorization Act.

FAA Approves Two-Place R44

The FAA has certified Robinson’s two-place R44 Cadet The Cadet is essentially an R44 Raven, but with the rear seats removed for more cargo space. Maximum gross weight is reduced to 2200 pounds, engine power is derated to 210 hp takeoff and 185 hp continuous.

The Aircraft of the Week

Aviation Historian David Venderhoof comments on The F-35 Stealth Fighter’s Dirty Little Secret Is Now Out in the Open.

On the Mark

Rob is talking about why he likes something the TSA did … well, sort of.

Mentioned

Breastfeeding pilots file discrimination charges

Tell Frontier Airlines: Sexism Won’t Fly – ACLU petition.

Breastfeeding pilots’ claims against airline seen as advance

Pilots And ACLU Sue Airline Over Breast Milk Pumping At Work

and

Air Data System Failure Involving Airbus A320-243 A6-EYJ [PDF] from the Australian Transport Safety Bureau.

Credit

Intro music courtesy Brother Love from his Album Of The Year CD. Outtro by Bruno Misonne from The Sound of Flaps.

AirplaneGeeks 400 That’s a Lot of Episodes

John Croft

John Croft in the NASA Langley simulator

John Croft, Senior Editor at Aviation Week & Space Technology joins us for our 400th episode. We discuss Safety Management Systems (SMS), the IATA 2015 Safety Report, challenges for a safety culture that embraces self-reporting, and flight simulator changes that include models for high-altitude, high-angle of attack regimes.

In the news, we discuss airline profits and complaints (both up), an aircraft leasing company IPO, thoughts on a B-52 engine upgrade, a female aviation pioneer, sonic booms, and PSA Airlines’ pilot hiring strategy.

John CroftGuest

John Croft is Senior Editor Avionics & Safety, Aviation Week & Space Technology. He’s a part-owner of a 1978 Piper Archer II, a certified flight instructor, instrument instructor, multi-engine rated commercial pilot, and former NASA engineer. He specialized in avionics and control systems for Earth-orbiting satellites, including the Extreme Ultraviolet Explorer and Rossi X-Ray Timing Explorer.

After leaving NASA in 2000, John earned a Master’s Degree in Journalism from the University of Maryland and went on to work for several aerospace publications, including Flight International as Americas Editor before joining Aviation Week in 2012.

News

Airlines report record profits even as customer complaints soar

In 2015, fuel prices came down 35%, baggage fees amounted to $3.8 billion, and reservation change fees were $3 billion. At the same time, average fares were down 3.8%, yet U.S. passenger airlines enjoyed $25.6 billion in profits in 2015 vs. $7.5 billion in 2014. But formal complaints grew 30%.

Top aircraft leasing firm’s IPO to raise $1.5b

Many airlines lease the airplanes they operate, from companies like ILFC, AerCap, GCAS, and BOC Aviation. Singapore-based BOC Aviation Ltd, is owned by the Bank of China, and they are looking at a possible IPO which could raise as much as $1.5 billion.

P&W still pushing upgrade of B-52’s original TF33 engine

Boeing B-52 bombers are powered by Pratt & Whitney TF33 engines, 1950’s engine technology. They are loud, smoky, and burn a lot of fuel. There has been talk in the past of replacing each pair of TF33’s with a single new-technology engine, but such a re-engining would be very expensive. Instead, P&W military engines president Bennett Croswell is proposing a TF33 upgrade package that would lower the cost of maintenance.

Colorado Native Honored For Flying Through Glass Ceiling

Emily Hanrahan Warner became the first female airline pilot in the United States, and she’s now been inducted in the Irish American Hall of Fame. On April 10, 1973, Warner became the first woman hired by an American carrier and in 1976, she became America’s first female airline captain.

Honeywell, NASA Test Sonic Boom Technology

Under NASA’s Commercial Supersonic Technology (CST) project, Honeywell was awarded a contract in 2015 to overcome supersonic boom issues. Honeywell has developed a predictive display that tell pilots when a sonic boom is developing.

Seeking 500 pilots a year, PSA Airlines sweetens the pot

PSA AIrlines Inc. needs to hire 500 new pilots per year. To attract more pilots they will offer a $20,000 retention bonus to active first officers and a $250 monthly allowance for pilots to offset the cost of commuting hotel expenses.

Mentioned

IATA 2015 Safety Report [PDF]

Pilot Error Movie Trailer – A fictional drama film is inspired by the true story of Air France 447.

Credit

Intro music courtesy Brother Love from his Album Of The Year CD. Outtro by Bruno Misonne from The Sound of Flaps.

AirplaneGeeks 392 Aviation Safety with Todd Curtis

Dr. Todd Curtis, founder of AirSafe.com, talks about about MH370 on the second anniversary of its loss, laser and drone threats to aviation safety, an aviation maintenance competition, and improving the quality of media reporting of aviation accidents. In the news, we discuss supersonic planes, all-woman commercial flights, the longest flights, and air service to Cuba.

Guest

Dr. Todd Curtis

Dr. Todd Curtis

Todd Curtis is an aviation safety analyst, author, and publisher. He founded AirSafe.com in 1996 to provide the public with useful information about airline safety, fear of flying, plane crashes, TSA security, and other issues of concern to the traveling public.

While an airline safety engineer at Boeing, Todd was directly involved in many plane crash investigations, including TWA flight 800, and he was part of the engineering development team for the 777.

In addition to writing several books on aviation safety and security, Todd has also written the book Parenting and the Internet. He’s been a frequent on-air aviation expert on CNN, CBS, NBC, ABC, MSNBC, Fox News, CBC, BBC, Discovery Channel, NPR, and many other major news media outlets around the world.

See:

Visit AirSafe.com for airline safety and security information, as well as information about fear of flying, flying with cash, child travel, the airline complaint process, baggage tips, and much more. Follow @airsafe on Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube.

News

QueSST X-plane concept, courtesy Lockheed Martin

QueSST X-plane concept, courtesy Lockheed Martin

NASA selects Lockheed Martin to design supersonic X-plane

Under the preliminary design phase of the quiet supersonic technology (QueSST) program, Lockheed Martin will lead a team to design a half-scale supersonic X-plane that uses boom-suppression technology. NASA administrator Charles Bolden said, “Now we’re continuing that supersonic X-plane legacy with this preliminary design award for a quieter supersonic jet with an aim toward passenger flight.”

NASA plans to start building the supersonic X-plane in 2019, with first flight scheduled in 2020. The acoustic survey would begin in 2021 in southern California and continue for several years. The Lockheed Martin team includes subcontractors GE Aviation and Tri Models Inc.

World’s longest all-women operated flight is ready for take off

In celebration of International Women’s Day, Air India set the record for the longest all-women operated and supported flight, which flew non-stop on March 6 from New Delhi to San Francisco. The cabin crew, cockpit crew, check-in staff, and customer care staff were all women

Air India will operate 20 all-women domestic flights on March 8

Air India said it would fly 20 all-women domestic flights March 8 to commemorate International Women’s Day. Every year, International Women’s Day is celebrated by Air India with all-women crews on selected international and domestic sectors.

Boeing 777 Flies Seven of the World’s 10 Longest Airline Routes

The longest flight in the world is the 8,819 mile flight between Dubai and Auckland, New Zealand. Emirates inaugurated the route with an A380, but switched to the 777-200LR the next day. Of the ten longest flights in the world, the B777 is used on seven of them, and the A380 flies the other three.

Starting June 1, 2016, United will begin the 8,446-mile San Francisco-Singapore service with a 787-9, making it the third-longest flight in the world, and the longest scheduled flight by any U.S. carrier.

These Are All the Proposed Flights From America to Cuba

The U.S. and Cuba have agreed to permit 110 daily flights between the two countries: twenty daily flights to Havana, and ten daily flights to nine other international airports. The deadline for airlines to submit applications to the Department of Transportation for proposed flight routes has expired, and eight airlines applied.

Listener Recording

My Favorite Airplane – Yet Again, by Micah, our Main(e) Man.

Mentioned

Airplane Geeks Podcast Archive

Aviation Geek Fest Seattle 2016

Bjorn’s Corner: Engine architectures

Leading Edge Photography

Why did the half-plane, half-helicopter not work?

Credit

Opening music courtesy Brother Love from his Album Of The Year CD. Outtro by Bruno Misonne from The Sound of Flaps.

AirplaneGeeks 370 NASA Aviation Safety Reporting System

The NASA Aviation Safety Reporting System, the European Aviation Safety Agency takes issue with pilot license renewal practices in Germany, medical requirements under the Pilot’s Bill of Rights, ICAO creates a site for aircraft tracking, the consequences for air traffic controllers who make mistakes, and the first woman cleared to fly the F-35A Lightning II.

Guest

Linda Connell

Linda Connell

Guest Linda Connell is Director of the NASA Aviation Safety Reporting System and a Research Psychologist for NASA Ames Research Center. The ASRS collects and acts on voluntarily submitted aviation safety incident/situation reports from pilots, controllers, and others.

Linda has been working at NASA Ames Research Center since 1981, and has participated in a number of studies with domestic and international research teams exploring human factor issues in aviation environments.

A Registered Nurse and member of the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association, Linda continues to evaluate proactive aviation safety information on a variety of topics, including pilot/controller voice communication, emergency medical helicopter operations, aviation maintenance, cabin safety, and technology applications in aviation environments.

We talk with Linda about the formation of the ASRS, the process to collect safety data in a way that guarantees immunity, the analysis of the data and how subcontractors are utilized, and the 10 day window. We also discuss the alerts process and how to submit reports.

News

EU Challenging Germany’s Air Safety Authorities Post Germanwings Crash

The European Aviation Safety Agency says license renewal practices for pilots in Germany favor privacy over safety. Noting that Germany has addressed some of the concerns, the EU says others remain.  If Germany does not comply with the Commission’s demands, it could be taken to court.

Pilot’s Bill Of Rights Changes; One-Time Medicals For Some

The Pilot’s Bill of Rights introduced earlier this year by Sen. Jim Inhofe, R-Okla. was designed to waive the third-class medical for private pilots flying light aircraft. Now the bill has changed to include:

  • An online aeromedical course every two years.
  • Logbook entries that certify the pilot has seen their personal doctors at least once every four years (and received any needed treatment for medical conditions).
  • A one-time medical for new pilots and pilots who haven’t had a medical in the last 10 years.

ICAO starts aircraft tracking information web page

The International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) has created a Global Tracking Initiatives web page to serve as “a repository of documents related to aircraft tracking.” The page presents a timeline of events and documents. Adoption of a 15-minute aircraft tracking Standard is expected at the end of 2015.

Air traffic controllers making major errors remain on job, including at IAH

KPRC-TV in Houston, Texas reports that “air traffic controllers who have made major errors have been allowed to stay on the job, without loss of rank or pay.”  This has occurred at George Bush Intercontinental Airport in Houston, and at other airports. KPRC reporter Joel Eisenbaum asked, “So you can make an error that causes a plane to crash and you’re not losing your job?”

The FAA response was, “The FAA has learned through experience that a non-punitive safety culture encourages employees to share information and engage in frank and open discussions about situations that they might otherwise be reluctant to bring to a supervisor’s attention. In cases involving willful neglect or dereliction of duties by an employee, the agency does not hesitate to take the appropriate measures as defined under agency policies and collective bargaining agreements.”

Textron Aviation customer Wheels Up completes capital raise

The New York-based private aviation membership company Wheels Up has an order for 105 Beechcraft King Air 350i’s, and has raised $115 million in capital for business expansion.

Boeing’s new tanker achieves first flight

Boeing flew the KC-46A Paine Field in Everett, Washington for a four hour first flight. The KC-46A is based on the Boeing 767 commercial airliner.

Other Segments

Lieutenant Colonel Christine “Grinder” Mau

Lieutenant Colonel Christine “Grinder” Mau

  • David attended the Joint Base Andrews’ open house on September 19th 2015, where he interviewed Lieutenant Colonel Christine “Grinder” Mau, Deputy Commander for the Operations Group of the 33rd Fighter Wing. Col. Mau was the first woman cleared to fly the F-35A Lightning II, and one of only 52 women fighter pilots in the USAF. She talks about what it’s like to fly the F-35A, and believing in your dreams.
F-35A and R2D2

F-35A and R2D2

  • Micah gives us some thoughts on the late Alan Purwin.
  • Brian talks with listener Hendrik in Hamburg, Germany.

Mentioned

Listener Photo

Michael sends this photo from his Cirrus SR22T looking over Los Angeles on airway V186 from the Paradise VOR to Van Nuys VOR, September 17, 2015. The light in the top right of the picture is a 777 going into LAX.

Cirrus SR22T looking over Los Angeles

Credit

Opening and closing music courtesy Brother Love from the Album Of The Year CD. You can find his great music at brotherloverocks.com.

AirplaneGeeks 361 A Solar Impulse Pilot, a Cirrus Pilot, and an Oshkosh Debrief

Solar Impulse 2 Hawaii

We interview Solar Impulse 2 pilot André Borschberg, and Rob gives us an AirVenture Oshkosh 2015 debrief. We also talk with Rick Beach, the Safety Chair of the Cirrus Owners and Pilots Association.

Guest André Borschberg

The Solar Impulse 2 is attempting to become the first solar powered aircraft to fly around the world. This is a privately financed effort led by Swiss engineer and businessman André Borschberg and Swiss psychiatrist Bertrand Piccard. They are also the pilots for the Solar Impulse, but since the plane has only one seat, they’ve been alternating legs on this around the world trip. In this episode we talk with André Borschberg, who flew the most recent leg from Japan to Hawaii over a period of five days, setting a new world record for solo flight.

Andre_Borschberg_HawaiiThe Solar Impulse 1 first flew in 2009, and was designed to fly for up to 36 hours. In July 2010, it became the first solar plane to fly for more than 24 hours, including nearly 9 hours of night flight. In 2013, it flew a multi-stop flight across the entire United States.

The Solar Impulse 2 carries over 17,000 solar cells which can generate 66 kW of power during peak sunlight. It’s 73 feet long, has a wingspan of 236 feet, and weighs just 5,100 pounds.

The aircraft carries 1400 pounds of Lithium-ion batteries that drive four 17.4 horsepower electric motors, each swinging a 13-foot long propeller. Maximum speed is 77 knots, though typically the plane flies at 33 knots at night to save power when the aircraft is running off just battery power.

During the daytime, when maximum power is available, the batteries are charged to 100% of capacity and the aircraft climbs to about 29,000 feet. At night, the aircraft is allowed to slowly drift down to about 6,000 feet, to minimize the drain on the batteries. Even so, the batteries typically discharge to about 15% to 20% of total capacity before the sun comes up and the cycle is repeated.

Solar Impulse 2

The real limit to how far the Solar Impulse can fly is the pilot. On multi-day flights, the pilots take 20 minute naps that only about 2 ½ hours during a 24-hour period. Yoga and other exercises are used to maintain alertness.

Guest Rick Beach

Rick is Aviation Safety Chair of the Cirrus Owners and Pilots Association. He wanted to understand how pilot behavior needed to change to fully take advantage of the innovative safety features on the Cirrus and other aircraft. Rick wanted to know why pilots were crashing and he found that it was because of the way pilots were making risk assessments.

Cirrus-1

Rick has a life-long interest in aviation, but didn’t start pilot training until 2001 when he bought a Cirrus SR22 based on its safety and technology features, as well as the strong pilots and owners community. Rick now has over 3500 hours in the Cirrus.

Cirrus, of course, has an airframe parachute system and Rick began studying Cirrus accidents to uncover reasons why pilots did not use the system. He even coined the phrase “Pull Early, Pull Often!” to encourage pilots to use the system before the situation turned dire.

Rick chaired the Cirrus Pilot Proficiency Program, encouraged Cirrus Aircraft to focus on telling the story of successful parachute saves, and has participated in three NTSB investigations contributing operational knowledge of Cirrus pilot procedures and especially training.

Now Rick is working on a concept for the Cirrus Owners and Pilots Association (COPA) University to expand their safety activities, funded in part by a charitable COPA Safety and Education Foundation.

AirVenture Oshkosh 2015

Rob attended AirVenture Oshkosh 2015 and was an instructor at the EAA Pilot Proficiency Center. He gives us his observations from the event.

Society of Aviation and Flight Educators – SAFE is a member-oriented organization of aviation educators fostering professionalism and excellence in aviation.

NASA-Pioneered Automatic Ground-Collision Avoidance System Operational

Third Class Medical Reform heated up during Oshkosh week:

Drones got a lot of attention with Jack Pelton underscoring their importance. Embry-Riddle was there to talk about their drone degree and a drone cage was set up for demonstrations. Ghost Drone and other Chinese manufacturers exhibited their products.

The Australia News Desk

The boys are back in the studio and Grant’s trying VERY hard not to explode over the news that Qantas is doing very well thanks to Alan Joyce. It’s not that they haven’t turned the corner and improved their stock price, it’s more that they’ve done it despite Joyce’s previous management disasters.

Meanwhile, Qantas’ competitor Virgin Australia got the gong for most punctual domestic carrier in June. Nice to see as they’ve been out of the running for a while.

And if you missed last week’s full Australia News Desk report….and trust us, you did…you can find it over here: Episode 360: Grant Made it to Fiji.

Mentioned

Lou Lenart

Lou Lenart

Lou Lenart is one of the men featured in “Above and Beyond,” Nancy Spielberg’s documentary film about Jewish pilots from the U.S. who established Israel’s air defenses. Lenart died from congestive heart failure at age 94. In AirplaneGeeks 348 we talked with Harold Livingston, who also appears in the Spielberg documentary.

Credit

Opening and closing music courtesy Brother Love from the Album Of The Year CD. You can find his great music at brotherloverocks.com.

 

AirplaneGeeks 336 Airplane Pre-Buy

Beechcraft King Air F90 and Don Sebastion

The airplane pre-buy process, an update on some recent aviation accidents, the safest seats on an airplane, ICAO  proposes an aircraft tracking standard, FAA Amends ADS-B Rule for General Aviation, building the Boeing 777x wing, and some aviation technology.

Guest

Don Sebastian is President of Aviation Consulting Services Incorporated and has performed over 2,000 pre-buys and flight tests. He was a member of the 82nd Airborne Division, and holds a CFII and helicopter commercial and instrument ratings. Don testifies as an expert witness and has eight lecture tours under his belt. Outside of aviation, Don contributes his energy to a variety of community and charitable activities.

We talk with Don about the airplane pre-buy process: making a squawk list for the buyer, conducting flight tests, log book reviews, and maintenance record reviews.

IMG_3016

To speak with Don about your airplane purchase, call:

+1 (910) 315-0099.

News

Preliminary Report on the Cirrus SR-22 Ditching near Hawaii

The NTSB released a preliminary report on the January 25, 2015 recovery parachute deployment over the waters near Maui, Hawaii. The pilot was unable to transfer fuel from the aft auxiliary fuel tank.

Surviving a Plane Crash: Does Where You Sit Make a Difference?

A University Of Greenwich, London study examined over 100 seating charts from plane crashes. People sitting close to the emergency exit rows were much more likely to survive.

ICAO Safety Conference Proposes New Aircraft Tracking Standard

The International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) is recommending a performance-based tracking standard using existing and planned technologies and procedures. Aircraft flying in remote areas that do not have air traffic radar surveillance would report their position every 15 minutes. This can be achieved through onboard Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Contract (ADS-C), or Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B), and other connectivity solutions.

Industry Group Opposes ICAO’s New Aircraft Tracking Standard for Business Jets

The International Business Aviation Council (IBAC) says the ICAO tracking standard should exempt aircraft with 19 passenger seats or less.

FAA Amends ADS-B Rule

The FAA has corrected the May 2010 final rule on ADS-B requirements for general aviation. The rule required that ADS-B equipment must meet the requirements of certain TSOs. Now the FAA says the equipment must “meet the performance requirements” in those TSOs.

Boeing’s 777X Wing Plant Sprouts Steel

Orginally, the composite wing for the 777X was to be manufactured in Japan. Boeing decided to keep the technology in Washington State and is building a 1.3M square foot plant at a cost of $1B to build and equip.

Formula One technology to be used in jet engines

UK industry and government project funding includes using McLaren’s Formula 1 gearbox expertise future jet engines, and landing gear using electric motors to taxi without burning fuel.

Full scale mach 5.5 cruising Sabre engine on track for 2019

Reaction Engines says they’ll have a static demonstration of the SABRE engine by 2019. The engine uses proprietary pre-coolers and starts in air-breathing mode up to Mach 5.5. It then transitions to rocket engine mode.up to Mach 25 using stored liquid oxygen.

Airplane of the Week

Avro Canada C-102 Jetliner

Avro Canada C102 Jetliner by Jamie Dodson. The jetliner that never was.

The Australia News Desk

Qantas’ first 747-400 VH-OJA is being donated to the Historical Aircraft Restoration Society (HARS) at Wollongong where the arrival is likely to be rather spectacular.

Virgin Australia are closing off their New Zealand based Pacific Blue operations.

The outback’s version of The Onion newspaper has run an amusingly false story of a pilot who tried to land on top of Ayres Rock (aka Uluru).

The Aviation Minute

Rob Mark talks about pilot wages.

Airplane Geeks on Ice

Report 7 by Juan Fernandez from McMurdo Bay brings to a close the Airplane Geeks on Ice series about aviation in Antarctica. Be sure to visit Juan’s Photo Gallery for some great photographs and videos.

Mentioned

Credit

Opening and closing music courtesy Brother Love from the Album Of The Year CD. You can find his great music at brotherloverocks.com.

AirplaneGeeks 332 Inflight Entertainment with Spafax

Spafax at APEX

Creating content for airlines, a Chinese naval fighter emerges, strong airline passenger demand, record Boeing and Airbus deliveries, United flight attendants file OSHA complaint, the world’s safest airlines, and on-time performance at airports.

Guest

Al St. Germain is Senior Vice President, USA for Spafax, one of the leading inflight entertainment providers in the world.  Spafax provides content for over 30 different airlines, overseeing licensing, programming, fulfillment and technical services.  In addition to that role, Al serves as publisher of APEX Experience, the official media platform for the Airline Passenger Experience Association, one of the industry’s leading trade groups.

Prior to Spafax, Al worked at both Delta and United in roles ranging from brand management to product development.  At United, he worked particularly closely with the Onboard Services Group.

Al started his career at noted branding firm Landor Associates, where he managed design projects ranging from airline liveries to airport counters to snack bags, all for Delta Air Lines.  Al was also part of the original team that came up with Delta Song.

APEX Experience

Visit Spafax.com and follow them on Twitter at @Spafax. Al tweets at @alstg. Find the APEX Experience blog at blog.apex.aero and on Twitter at @theAPEXassoc.

Mentioned in the Conversation

News

First photo of the fully operative Chinese rivals to the US Navy F-18

The Chinese naval fighter Shenyang J-15 Flying Shark is operational. This carrier jet is believed to be based on the Soviet-designed Sukhoi Su-33.

IATA: Healthy Passenger Demand in November – Domestic Markets Driving Growth

IATA released the latest air passenger numbers, and they look good. RPK (revenue passenger kilometers) is up 6.0% over November 2013. November capacity up 5.4% and load factor up to 76.7%. All this is mostly driven by growth in domestic markets, particularly in China and India.

Boeing reports record orders, deliveries to airlines in 2014

Boeing and Airbus both set records for airplane deliveries in 2014. Boeing delivered 723 commercial airplanes, a company record. Airbus is reported to have broken their record also, but the official statement isn’t out. In 2014, Boeing booked 1,432 orders worth $232.7B at list price. Boeing’s commercial order book shows 5,789 airplanes at year-end, a company high.

Fired United Airlines flight attendants say they were spooked by this message 

In July 2014, someone drew in the oil film on one of the engines of a United flight scheduled from San Francisco to Hong Kong. Thirteen flight attendants saw that as a threat, refused to fly, and were subsequently fired for insubordination.

Now they want to be rehired and filed a whistleblower complaint with OSHA, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, under the Wendell H. Ford Aviation Investment and Reform Act for the 21st Century, which protects employees from retaliation for opposing violation of air-safety or air-security standards.

World’s Safest Airlines for 2015

Safety and product rating review website Airline Ratings.com has announced its top ten safest airlines, and also its top ten safest low cost airlines.

OAG Punctuality League 2014: On-time performance results for airlines and airports

Aviation Intelligence company OAG announced their on time performance ratings in their Punctuality League 2014 report.

The Australia News Desk

Captain Jack Curtis. Photo from Aero Australia Magazine.

Captain Jack Curtis. Photo from Aero Australia Magazine.

The boys received the sad news of the passing of Captain Jack Curtis, an icon in the aviation scene down under, particularly in relation to DC-3s. In this week’s segment, they give us an interview Grant recorded with Jack in November 2013. He was a great pilot and a top bloke. Blue skies, Jack!

Airplane Geeks on Ice

Report 3 by Juan Fernandez from McMurdo Bay in Antarctica. Listener Vic was inspired to send us the link to a video of a DC-3 rescue in Antarctica.

Visit AirplaneGeeks.com/ice for more information and great photos.

Mentioned

Skytrans Dash8-102-VH-QQF-5 by ryanhothersall

Skytrans Dash8-102-VH-QQF-5 by ryanhothersall

787 nose stand

Credit

Opening and closing music courtesy Brother Love from the Album Of The Year CD. You can find his great music at brotherloverocks.com.

 

AirplaneGeeks 309 – Airways News

B25 Mitchell of the Royal Netherlands Dutch Historic Flight lining up at RNAS Yeovilton

Airchive.com and Airways Magazine working together, airline citations over passenger rights, airline safety, and announcements from AirVenture Oshkosh.

Guest

Guest Chris Sloan is the founder of Airchive.com and president and founder of 2C Media, a television production and promotion company. Previously, Chris held senior level executive positions with NBC, TLC, and USA Networks.

Chris produced “International Airport 24/7: Miami” on the Travel Channel, and oversaw the TLC documentary on the building of the Airbus A-380 featuring John Travolta.

We talk about changes at Airchive.com and their cross-promotion with Airways magazine, which is becoming more feature driven.  Airchive.com will become AirwaysNews.com and deliver the digital product.

Also, Chris tells us about the challenges producing Airport 24/7 and other aviation programs he has in the works. We talk about  aviation shows on TV, thoughts on an all-aviation television channel, and how different markets demand different aviation programming.

News

Passenger rights rules lead to jump in U.S. airline citations

The LA Times looked at U.S. Department of Transportation records for citations issued against airlines and travel agencies from 2010 to 2013. 521 citations were issued in that time period, almost twice the annual rate for the previous four years. Airlines were cited airlines 181 times for violating rules of unfair and deceptive practices, like advertising fares that were not available. Mistreating disabled passengers resulted in the largest fines.

Elsewhere:

Netherlands and Germany fine foreign airlines over ETS

Swiss Regulator Fines Airlines $11M For Price-Fixing

Despite All the Recent Accidents, Flying is Still Very Safe

It’s been a bad time recently for commercial aviation: MH70 still missing, MH17 shot down by a missile over Ukraine, TransAsia ATR-72 crashed a Taiwanese in heavy rains killing 40, aAn Air Algerie MD-83 with 116 on board crashed in Mali.

Flight Bans Show Skittishness Over Trouble Spots

Airlines are acting ahead of their regulatory agencies.

How Israel persuaded the Airlines that Ben Gurion is Safe

Israel’s Civil Aviation authorities sent a memo to international airline regulators and airlines, describing that Ben-Gurion is safe. In part, the memo says, “The Iron dome launch batteries covering Ben-Gurion Airport operate under a specific set of procedures which I cannot go into in detail due to security reasons. I would like to note, however, that out of over 2,250 rockets fired from Gaza into Israeli territory… not a single one has landed in Ben-Gurion Airport.”

News from AirVenture Oshkosh 2014

AeroVue Cockpit Retrofit Launched By BendixKing

There’s A New Light Sport Amphib Coming To The Block

Cessna Introduces Turbo Skyhawk JT-A

Brown Aviation Lease and Redhawk Aero Partner to Address High Cost Flight Training Combining Hardware, Software and Services

Premier Launches Diesel Cessna 172 Upgrade Program

David Vanderhoof’s Aircraft of the Week

Lockheed M21and D21

The Tagboard Senior Trend 30, and the M/D-21 – the MACH 3.5 drone that had a serious disaster in July 1966. See a video of the accident: SR71 Sistership, The MD21 Blackbird Accident and JC-130 Recovery.

The Australia News Desk

The first two RAAF F-35s are unveiled in Texas, and Qantas are once again considering splitting their International and Domestic arms, as the proposed changes to the Qantas Sale Act just aren’t enough in their eyes.

Find more from Grant and Steve at the Plane Crazy Down Under podcast, and follow the show on Twitter at @pcdu. Steve’s at @stevevisscher and Grant at @falcon124.

Across the Pond

This week Pieter is at the home of the Fleet Air Arm, Royal Navy Air Station Yeovilton in Somerset in the UK, for their annual Air Show. There are no flying Swordfish this year but the Royal Navy Historic Flight Sea Fury certainly starts off the display with a growl in the hands of Lt Commander Chris Gotke. Visitors from the Army and RAF, as well as Germany, France, Switzerland, Denmark, Jordan and Belgium made it a truly international show. This years theme follows the naming of HMS Queen Elizabeth and is all about operating at sea.

Find Pieter on Twitter as @Nascothornet, on Facebook at XTPMedia, and at the Aviation Xtended podcast.

Mentioned

Carl Valeri’s Aviation Careers Podcast.

Credit

Opening and closing music courtesy Brother Love from the Album Of The Year CD. You can find his great music at www.brotherloverocks.com.

Episode 257 – The Flight Safety Foundation

Turkish F-16

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.

See the Flight Safety Foundation on the Web, on Twitter, and on Facebook.

The week’s aviation news:

Royal Australian Navy - Image courtesy of Australian Aviation Magazine

In this week’s Australia Desk:

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.

Jetstar awaits probe into 787 Dreamliner fire at Heathrow

The Royal Australian Navy has formally commissioned the new fleet of of MHR-90 “Taipan” helicopters, and reactivating 808 Squadron in the process.

Navy commissions 808SQN and MRH 90 helicopter

Find more from Grant and Steve at the Plane Crazy Down Under podcast, and follow the show on Twitter at @pcdu. Steve’s at @stevevisscher and Grant at @falcon124. Australia Desk archives can be found at www.australiadesk.net.

In this week’s Across the Pond segment:

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).

Airshow Review – Scorcher! RAF Waddington International Airshow 2013

Find Pieter on Twitter as @Nascothornet, on Facebook at XTPMedia, and at the Aviation Xtended podcast.

Mentioned:

Opening and closing music courtesy Brother Love from the Album Of The Year CD. You can find his great music at www.brotherloverocks.com.