Tag Archives: United Airlines

473 Equator Aircraft P2 Xcursion

The CEO of Equator Aircraft talks about the P2 Xcursion high-performance hybrid amphibious aircraft. In the news, debris from the Air France engine failure is found in Greenland, American Airlines is apparently destined to be profitable forever, and Boeing plans to acquire Aurora Flight Sciences.

Equator Aircraft P2 Xcursion

The P2 Xcursion. Photo courtesy Equator Aircraft.

Guest

Tomas Brødreskift is the CEO Equator Aircraft, which is developing the P2 Xcursion, a high-performance hybrid amphibious aircraft.

Tomas decided to develop a float wing amphibious aircraft at design school. After that, he knew he had to find a way to continue, and so without money or any grasp of the complexity involved, Tomas started building and designing the aircraft, learning as he progressed.

Equator Aircraft logoMost of the design was based on things he saw in other planes, and he added a few of his own ideas. As for building the aircraft, Thomas was lucky to have his father join in, along with many other volunteers, and it has ended up being a volunteer / open source project. The project has now accumulated over 30,000 work hours and 7 years from the first concept.

Tomas became interested in aviation at a very early age, growing up in the 80’s watching VHS tapes of Burt Rutan. Tomas’ father built and flew a Long EZ and at the age of 7 Tomas started to build his own aircraft. He started flying gliders and took his PPL in 2002. Tomas interned at Airbus in Germany for a short while where he realized big companies were not the right fit for him. Luckily he met an awesome retired aircraft designer, G. Poeschel, and got totally inspired by his mind and his aircraft.

News

Debris recovered in Greenland from Air France plane forced to land in Labrador

Some engine pieces from the Air France plane have been recovered in Greenland and are being sent to investigators at France’s BEA.

Airlines Won’t Ever Lose Money Again? Boasts By American’s CEO Dismiss History

At the recent American Airlines annual meeting with Wall Street analysts at company headquarters, chairman and CEO Doug Parker said, “I don’t think we’re ever going to lose money again. We have an industry that’s going to be profitable in good and bad times.” It wasn’t clear if Parker was talking about American Airlines, the entire airline industry.

Boeing to Acquire Aurora Flight Sciences to Advance Autonomous Technology Capabilities

Boeing announced that it plans to acquire Aurora Flight Sciences Corporation, which develops and manufactures advanced aerospace platforms, specializing in autonomous systems technologies and robotic aircraft. Terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

United Airlines tweeted Yankees-Indians scores to a fan with bad in-flight Wi-Fi

United Airlines turned around a negative situation.

Airline Story of the Week

Operation Care-Lift: Spirit, Lufthansa Technik Team Up for Puerto Rico Relief Flights: A First Person Account Onboard

Flying badly needed supplied into Puerto Rico. See the Operation Puerto Rico Care-Lift GoFundMe page and United Airlines stepping up to help relief effort in Puerto Rico.

Trip Report

Francois and Brian at Thaba Tholo.

Francois and Brian at Thaba Tholo. Note the wildlife in the background.

Brian was hosted by listener Francois at his game farm, Thaba Tholo. They talk about what it’s like to operate an airstrip in the South African bush, and the special aircraft that have visited the strip.

Then, listener Eoin talks with Brian in Hamburg, Germany about being a flight attendant at “Harp Jet” and his promotions in the growing airline.

Mentioned

Red Stewart Airfield

Canada Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner near Hyderabad on Sep 19th 2017, ATC tries to divert aircraft despite several Mayday calls following two diversions

Credit

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

472 The Martin Aircraft Jetpack

The chief test pilot for Martin Aircraft Company tells us about the Martin Jetpack. Also, the major engine failure of Air France Flight 66, the Emirates A380 that descended below the glideslope on approach, dumping and subsidization claims against Bombardier, a Boeing 737 near miss, and the Airbus Laminar Flow Wing Demonstrator.

Guest

Prospero “Paco” Uybarreta is head of Aircrew & Testing, and the chief test pilot for Martin Aircraft Company Ltd. The Martin Jetpack is an optionally piloted hovering air vehicle currently being developed and tested in New Zealand.

Paco explains the recent interest in personal VTOL air vehicles and describes the use cases. He also tells us about how the Martin Jetpack is more of a small vehicle platform than a backpack-style jetpack. We look at how the regulatory agencies treat vehicles like this, safety considerations, and why the Jetpack operates in both manned and unmanned modes.

Paco has been an experimental test pilot for the U.S. Air Force, Bombardier Aerospace, and Scaled Composites. He is a graduate of the U.S. Air Force Test Pilot School and has over 4,400 total pilot hours in 44 different aircraft types with 1,000 instructor pilot hours, 600 flight test hours, and 460 combat hours.

He holds FAA ATPL, Transport Canada ATPL, FAA CFII, and CAA CPL and Cat 1 Test Pilot certificates, with multiple type ratings in Boeing, Bombardier, Beechcraft, and Mitsubishi jet aircraft, and an AV-L39C Experimental Authorization. Paco was the 2015 recipient of the prestigious Iven C. Kincheloe Award for outstanding flight test accomplishments with Bombardier Commercial Aircraft.

Paco has been signed off by the New Zealand CAA as a Category 1 test pilot for the Martin Jetpack, which means he is able to conduct manned flight tests of the Martin Jetpack now that it has been awarded experimental aircraft status. He is also approved to train a team of pilots to act as test pilots for the new prototype aircraft. To that end, Paco has designed a test pilot course based on CAA requirements. This includes six hours of academic learning and ten hours of Jetpack simulator training in techniques and maneuvers along with actual flight training.

Learn more about the Martin Jetpack at the Martin Aircraft website, and follow the company on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, and LinkedIn.

Aviation News

Air France A380 Makes Emergency Landing After Engine Blows Apart

Air France flight 66 flying from Paris to Los Angeles with 497 PAX experienced a major engine failure at 37,000 feet. The plane diverted to Goose Bay airport in Canada without incident. Photographs published by the passengers show the fan, fan case, and the forward portion of the nacelle missing from the Engine Alliance GP7200. See: Air France Press release: Information About Flight AF066 Paris Los Angeles on 30 September 2017 and Engine breaks up on Air France Airbus A380, forcing emergency landing in Canada.

Engine Alliance GP7200 engine.

Engine Alliance GP7200. Red oval shows the missing portion of the engine. Engine rendering courtesy Engine Alliance.

Engine Alliance (EA) is a 50-50 joint venture between GE and Pratt & Whitney. The Fan Module is built by Pratt & Whitney and the Low Pressure Compressor (LPC) is built by Safran Aero Boosters.

Serious Moscow A380 incident investigated

The Emirates General Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA) is investigating an Emirates Airbus A380 that “descended below the glideslope on approach” to Moscow’s Domodedovo Airport. Emirates flight EK131 descended to 400 feet at 14.8 kilometers from the runway, aborted the approach, made a second unsuccessful attempt to land, then finally landed safely.

Bombardier C Series faces stiff penalty in initial trade ruling

The U.S. Commerce Department is sympathetic to Boeing’s complaint that Bombardier is “dumping” CSeries passenger jets at below manufacturing cost. That was not unexpected. But what wasn’t expected is the preliminary decision to recommend a 220% tariff on Bombardier. See: US government recommends 220% import tariff on CSeries.

WTO to Probe Canadian Jet Subsidies in New Blow to Bombardier

Brazil asked the World Trade Organization to investigate Canada’s alleged use of more than $3 billion in government subsidies. Brazil claims the loans, equity infusions, grants, and tax credits offered to Bombardier harmed Embraer.

Airliner Reportedly Narrowly Avoids Hitting Glider

A United Airlines Flight 246 flying from Vancouver to Chicago reportedly had to take evasive action to avoid colliding with a glider. The pilot had to execute a climb 400 feet and banked the Boeing 737 hard to the right.

Airbus’s ‘Blade’ Laminar Flow Wing Demonstrator Takes Flight

BLADE is an acronym for Breakthrough Laminar Aircraft Demonstrator in Europe, an EU-sponsored Clean Sky aeronautical research program. BLADE looks to achieve a 50 percent reduction in wing friction and up to 5 percent lower CO2 emissions. The Airbus A340 named Flight Lab made its first test flight in France with two transonic laminar outer wings and a flight-test-instrumentation station in the cabin. Airbus news release: European laminar flow research takes a new step with Airbus’ BLADE Flight Lab.

Airbus BLADE test aircraft.

Airbus BLADE test aircraft. Image courtesy Airbus.

Airline Story of the Week

Air India pilot becomes world’s youngest female commander of a Boeing 777

At age 30, Anny Divya became the youngest woman captain of a Boeing 777. See also: Air India’s all-female crew makes history with round-the-world flight.

Mentioned

Fog grounds planes at Huntington Beach air show practice

Listener Anurag created a Power BI dashboard from air crash data starting from 1908: Accidents and Fatalities Trends. He also posted the LinkedIn article Visualising a century of aircraft accidents with Power BI.

Listener Joe built a Vans RV-7A over a period of 4 ½ years and then this past summer flew it to all 48 contiguous states in the span of a two-week vacation. Nevada County couple builds plane and travels to each of the 48 contiguous states. See Joe’s 4-part series on his Rough and Ready Aerospace blog: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4.

Elon Musk proposes city-to-city travel by rocket, right here on Earth

BFR | Earth to Earth

Credit

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

 

463 Boom Supersonic

The founder and CEO of Boom Supersonic explains commercial supersonic air travel. In the news, we look at a push out of FAA reauthorization, a court ruling on airline seat size, a NASA supersonic demonstrator, a couple of aircraft carriers, and United Airlines.

Boom Supersonic

Boom Supersonic

Guest

Blake Scholl is founder and CEO of Boom Supersonic, the Denver startup seeking to build a commercially viable supersonic passenger aircraft.

We talk about the restrictions that have prevented supersonic flights over the United States, and how modern manufacturing methods allow supersonic airplanes to be built with much lower operating costs than was the case with the Concorde.

Blake describes how Boom aims to build a small supersonic airliner that is accessible and affordable, and not “a flying gas can with a billionaire in the front of it.” We look at the tradeoff between loudness and efficiency, as well as propulsion and airframe issues, and the objectives of the “Baby Boom” demonstrator. First flight of that ⅓ scale aircraft is targeted for late 2018.

Boom looks to have the full size 55-seat supersonic airplane in air at the end 2020, with first delivery to launch customer Virgin in late 2023. Blake tells us that Boom has 76 pre-orders across 5 airlines.

Prior to establishing Boom Supersonic, Blake held leadership roles at Amazon.com, and he was co-founder and CEO at Kima Labs, which was acquired by Groupon. Blake is an avid pilot and holds a BS in Computer Science from Carnegie Mellon University.

Isaac Alexander at Boom Supersonic HQ June 2017, looking through the aircraft in virtual reality.

Isaac Alexander at Boom Supersonic HQ June 2017, looking through the aircraft in virtual reality.

Boom Supersonic engine model.

Boom Supersonic engine model.

Aviation News

House pushes back must-pass aviation bill to September

Rep. Bill Shuster (R-Pa.) says House action on the FAA reauthorization bill will be pushed back to September.

Citizens for Ontime Flights radio ad takes BizAv to task for paying nothing:

Court Rules the FAA Must Reconsider Regulating Airline Seat Size

The Flyers Rights passenger group asked FAA to write rules governing seat space. The FAA rejected the request, saying it was a comfort issue, not a safety issue. Now a three-judge federal appeals court in Washington has sided with Flyers Rights and it goes back to the FAA for a better response.

NASA Has a Way to Cut Your Flight Time in Half

A small-scale model of the NASA/Lockheed supersonic jet was tested in the wind tunnel in June. NASA will take bids in August to construct a 94 ft. demonstration model, and expects to spend $390 million to build and test the demo plane.

Aircraft carrier Ford successfully lands and launches its first flight

The USS Gerald R. Ford launched and recovered its first fixed-wing flight, an F/A-18F Superhornet from the Air Test and Evaluation Squad based at Patuxent River, Maryland. The carrier employs new technology, including the advanced arresting gear system (AAG) and an electromagnetic launch system, (EMALS).

Up close with a US super carrier and the pilots fresh from combat operations

The USS George HW Bush is participating with the Royal Navy in the Saxon Warrior exercise. Lt Cdr Michael Tremel of the Strike Fighter Squadron VFA-87 Golden Warriors shot down a Syrian Su-22 Fitter, the first US air-to-air kill since a USAF F-16 shot down a Serbian MiG-29 in 1999, during the Kosovo campaign.

United Airlines Reports Second-Quarter 2017 Performance

UAL reported second-quarter revenue of $10.0 billion, net income of $818 million, diluted earnings per share of $2.66, pre-tax earnings of $1.3 billion, and pre-tax margin of 12.7 percent.

Mentioned

ABCI (Aviation Business Consultants Inc.) is looking for great aviation freelance writers who can create press releases, articles, and blog posts for aviation industry clients.

Politico Morning Transportation

Aviation Geek Fest Seattle 2017 is Happening! – AirlineReporter

Tesla Model S is being used as chase car to launch spy planes on Royal Air Force base

Video: U-2 Spy Plane Vertical Take Offs at RAF Fairford

Three High School Students Awarded Founder’s Innovation Prize

Credit

Intro music courtesy Brother Love from his Album Of The Year CD. Outtro by Bruno Misonne from The Sound of Flaps. All Boom Supersonic photos courtesy Isaac Alexander.

 

460 Aviation Social Media and Freelance Writing

Dan Pimentel tells us about the #Oshbash social media meetup coming up at Airventure Oshkosh 2017. We also look into freelance writing for aviation publications and the Airplanista Aviation Blog. In the news, we talk about support for supersonic civil air travel in the FAA reauthorization bills before Congress, ATC privatization, United Airlines in the press again, and Turkey’s first female professional acrobatics pilot.

Guest

Dan Pimentel

Dan Pimentel

Dan Pimentel is a long-time aviation journalist, photographer, and graphic designer. He is the founder/publisher/editor of the Airplanista Aviation Blog, and you can find his features, columns and news items in publications like Flying Magazine, AOPA Pilot, EAA Sport Aviation, Air & Space Smithsonian, HAI’s Rotor Magazine, Cessna Flyer, and Piper Flyer Magazine.

Dan tells us about the Airplanista #Oshbash Social Media Meetup and Networking Event at Airventure Oshkosh 2017. This year’s #Oshbash is sponsored by Aircraft Spruce & Specialty.

We also explore freelance writing for aviation publications, look at the process, and learn some tips for success. Along the way, we discuss ATC privatization, rivets and clecos, preserving EAA history, the importance of collegiate aviation programs, and how airshow performers physically and mentally prepare for the task.

College Aviation Programs Are a Pilot Pipeline

Fitness Secrets of the Airshow Stars

Aircraft Spruce’s Jim Irwin to sponsor #Oshbash 2017

We also touch on ATC positions available at FAA. See: The FAA Shines Light On Women of ATC

Aviation News

Congress Eyes Future of Supersonic Travel

Since 1973, there has been a ban on supersonic travel in the U.S. over land. However, both FAA reauthorization bills in Congress direct the FAA to revisit that restriction and determine if changes need to be made. An amendment to the House bill directs the FAA to “consider the needs of the aerospace industry and other stakeholders when creating policies, regulations, and standards that enable the safe commercial deployment of civil supersonic aircraft technology and the safe and efficient operation of civil supersonic aircraft.”

United gave toddler’s seat away and made his mom hold him for 3-hour flight

A middle school teacher traveling from Hawaii to a teacher’s conference in Boston purchased a ticket for herself, and one for her two-year-old 25-pound son. Waiting onboard the Houston to Boston leg, she was told another passenger had a valid boarding pass for the son’s seat. Rather than make a scene, the boy flew on her lap for the 3 ½ hour flight. According to a United spokesman, the boy’s boarding pass scan had been unsuccessful and he wasn’t logged in to the system. His seat was released to a standby passenger.

Turkish female acrobatics pilot gives jaw-dropping performance at airshow

26-year-old Semin Öztürk is Turkey’s first female professional aerobatics pilot. She flew to great acclaim at a recent air show organized by the International Sportive Aviation Center and featuring 25 acrobatic pilots from Turkey. She began flying when she was 12 years old and her father was also an aerobatics pilot.

Semin Öztürk Aerobatics 2016

Mentioned

Elderly flight passenger throws coins into engine for “luck,” delays take-off for hours

A bizarre misunderstanding of flight patterns at JFK

Privatizing Air Traffic Control: Constitutionally Speaking

The KC30A RAAF tanker and two F/A18s at Australian International Airshow, courtesy Philip from Melbourne, Australia.

The KC30A RAAF tanker and two F/A18s at Australian International Airshow, courtesy Philip from Melbourne, Australia.

Listen to Episode 54: The Boy Who Loved to Fly from The Way I Heard It podcast with Mike Rowe. (Thanks Jodi Bromer!)

Alan Joyce pie-thrower Tony Overheu fined, ‘banished from church’ after attack on Qantas boss

Credit

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

 

 

449 Aviation Cybersecurity

An aviation cybersecurity expert explains the topic, the NTSB reports about the failure to share weather-related information with pilots, United Airlines ties executive compensation to customer satisfaction, Airbus and SITA introduce a new cybersecurity service, and oxygen generation troubles for a military jet trainer.

Guest

Aviation cybersecurity expert Dr. Remzi Seker.

Dr. Remzi Seker

Dr. Remzi Seker is Professor of Computer Science and Ph.D. Program Coordinator, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science and Master’s Program Coordinator, Cybersecurity Engineering at the Embry-Riddle College of Engineering. He’s also Director of the Cybersecurity and Assured Systems Engineering (CyBASE) Center, and Program Coordinator, MS Cybersecurity Engineering.

Remzi has expertise in cybersecurity and privacy in computer networks as well as integrated systems, embedded system security, cyber security in aviation and aerospace systems, cybersecurity in automobiles, and also digital forensics.

We look at protecting old systems, developing new secure systems, evaluating the exposure to threats, and isolating the flight control systems from the IFE and internet connectivity systems. Remzi explains the importance of aviation and cybersecurity professionals sharing common terminology, and the role of social engineering in aviation cybersecurity. Remzi also explains the aviation cybersecurity programs at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University.

Remzi’s noteworthy achievements include serving as a member of the RTCA Special Committee (SC) 216 that developed two standards:

  • Airworthiness Cybersecurity issues in development and production of aircrafts (DO-326A)
  • Information Security Guidance for Continuing Airworthiness (DO-355 / ED 204 in Europe) for airline operators.

He served as a Department of Homeland Security Software Assurance (SwA) Forum Working Group Member, and a Subject Matter Expert for the Information Assurance Technology Analysis Center. Remzi also served on the reference computer science curriculum board formed by ACM and the IEEE Computer Society, was the lead person for Operating Systems Knowledge Area, and was a member of the subcommittee that designed the first Information Assurance (Cybersecurity) Knowledge Area.

Remzi was Associate Editor for the Computers and Electrical Engineering Journal, program Co-Chair for IEEE’s 16th International Symposium on High Assurance Systems Engineering, and General Co-Chair, of the First International Workshop on Service Assurance in System Wide Information Management (SASWIM 2017).

Remzi participated on the panel at Embry-Riddle’s Lift, Off the Page: A Panel Discussion on Aviation Cybersecurity.

Aviation News

NTSB Calls for Changes to Pirep Creation and Dissemination Education Efforts

The NTSB has found that failure by ATC to share weather-related information with pilots is a weakness in the system. The NTSB recently released a Special Investigation Report: Improving Pilot Weather Report Submission and Dissemination to Benefit Safety in the National Airspace System.

United Airlines to tie executive pay to customer satisfaction

A US Securities and Exchange Commission filing states, “United’s management and the board take recent events extremely seriously and are in the process of developing targeted compensation program design adjustments to ensure that employees’ incentive opportunities for 2017 are directly and meaningfully tied to progress in improving the customer experience.”

Airbus and SITA Join Forces to provide Advanced Cybersecurity Services for Air Transport Industry

Airbus CyberSecurity and SITA have launched Security Operations Center Services to “provide airlines, airports and other air transport industry stakeholders with information about unusual cyber activity that may impact their businesses.” The Center Service is the first of a new portfolio of cybersecurity products and services being developed by SITA to help airlines and airports identify, detect, and react to aviation cybersecurity threats.

Two new European initiatives aim to improve aviation cybersecurity

The European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) has signed a memorandum of cooperation with the European Union’s Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-EU) to establish a European Centre for Cyber Security in Aviation (ECCSA).

Temporary Fix Identified for T-45C Trainer Oxygen System Failures; Students Still Can’t Land On Carriers Until Permanent Solution Found

New Problems Hit T-45; Navy Tightens Flight Limits

The T-45C Goshawk trainer has encountered failures with the On Board Oxygen Generator System (OBOGS), leading to an operational pause to determine the cause.

Listener Recordings

Trevor’s memorable flight, and Hillel’s good news about the 2017 Innovations in Flight event.

Mentioned

AvGeekFests.com calendar of aviation events.

Predicting When Commercial Airliners Will Be Torn Down

Credit

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

448 Aerial Firefighting with the Global SuperTanker

Aerial firefighting with a Boeing 747-400, airline policies for overbooking and bumping passengers, Mar-a-Lago air restrictions for presidential visits, and F-16 fighter service life.

The Global SuperTanker in Chile for aerial firefighting operations.

The Global SuperTanker in Chile for aerial firefighting operations. Courtesy Global SuperTanker Services, LLC, (c) Bill Gabbert.

Guests

Capt. Tom Parsons, Assistant Chief Supervisor/Pilot and Scott Olson, VP Maintenance for Global SuperTanker Services, LLC. The company was formed in 2015 and acquired a B747-400 to use for aerial firefighting and other operations.

We talk about the kinds of missions the Global SuperTanker can fly, and Tom and Scott explain the aircraft modifications, the loading and delivery system, and the recent activity in Chile fighting wildfires. We also learn about the coordination required for all the air and ground participants in this kind of operation.

Related resources:

Aviation News

The passenger who was violently removed from the United Express flight operated by Republic Airways intends to take legal action. The man’s lawyer claimed his client lost two teeth and his nose was broken. We discuss the resulting media storm, airline practice of overbooking flights, and the procedure for bumping passengers.

United is promising to make major customer service changes

JetBlue Founder Backs Overbooking After United Flight Fiasco

Here’s why overbooking flights is actually a good thing

Delta CEO: Overbooking Flights is a ‘Valid Business Process’

Passengers removed from overbooked flights on US airlines – in data

The 10 Worst Airlines for Overbooking

In other news:

FAA: 5 aircraft violated Mar-a-Lago air restrictions during Trump stay

U.S. Air Force extends F-16 fighter’s service life

US Air Force chief ambivalent on F-15 Eagle retirement

Mentioned

The Organization of Black Aerospace Professionals (OBAP)

Jet engine thrust reverser examples:

Credit

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

447 Airline Reporter David Parker Brown

We talk about commercial aviation with the editor-in-chief and founder of Airline Reporter. Also, the violent removal of a passenger from a flight, the new Boeing venture-capital group, the 50th anniversary of the Boeing 737 first flight, more seats for the A380, and a lawsuit to stop the Planes of Fame Air Show. Plus, reports from Sun ‘n Fun 2017, memorable flights, and a new aviation podcast.

Guest

David Parker Brown is editor-in-chief and founder of Airline Reporter. With a team of over 30 writers located in 18 different cities, AirlineReporter.com is a goto resource for aviation, travel, and airline industry content. This is quality material by passionate AvGeeks. As for David, he has written, consulted, and presented on many airline and travel topics since 2008. He caught the aviation bug at an early age, and has been blogging since 1999.

Aviation News

United CEO apologizes after video of O’Hare passenger dragged from flight goes viral

United Express flight 3411 operated by Republic Airways and departing O’Hare International Airport was overbooked. But four Republic crew members needed to get onboard so they could deadhead to work. One passenger refused to give up his seat and was violently removed by an aviation security officer.

This Startup Backed By JetBlue And Boeing Plans On Flying Electric Planes By The Early 2020s

Boeing launches venture-capital arm, invests in local electric-airplane firm

Boeing has recently formed a division called HorizonX as a small venture-capital group to invest in companies with interesting technologies. HorizonX is led by Steve Nordlund, formerly the head of drone company InSitu, which was acquired by Boeing in 2008. As examples of technology areas that HorizonX might invest in, Nordlund pointed to autonomous vehicles, artificial intelligence, machine learning, and additive manufacturing. Initial investments were with Upskill, an augmented reality company, and Zunum Aero that is developing small hybrid-electric aircraft.

Boeing 737, Which ‘Took the Aviation World by Storm,’ Marks 50 Years of Flight

The Boeing 737 first flight took place 50 years ago, in April 1967, and entered airline service in February 1968 at Lufthansa. See the Boeing 737 Technical Site for history and data.

Airbus Carves Out Space on A380 Flagship to Fit 80 More Seats

Airbus is offering customers some A380 configuration changes that result in additional seats. These include removing an upper-deck stowage area, moving the main staircase, 11-abreast on the main deck, 9-abreast in premium-economy, a rear spiral staircase, and moving the pilot rest area.

Lawsuit seeks to halt annual Planes of Fame Air Show in Chino

Chino Airport Tenants: Let A Coalition Oversee The Air Show

A group of Chino Airport tenants are suing the Planes of Fame Air Museum (another tenant) to halt this year’s Planes of Fame Air Show May 6-7. Chino Airport is a county-owned airport in San Bernardino County, California. The plaintiffs allege the air show negatively impacts their business. The tenants bringing suit want the County of San Bernardino to appoint a coalition of tenants to oversee future air shows at the Chino Airport. Find a petition at: Don’t Let them Stop Your Air Show!

Sun ‘n Fun 2017

Airplane Geeks Reporter-at-large Launchpad Marzari reports from Sun ‘n Fun International Fly-In Expo, held April 4 – 9, 2017. He talks with John and Martha King from King Schools, and Michelle McGuire from Mutt Muffs which provides hearing protection for dogs.

Listener Recording

Listener Mike Smith tells us about two of his most memorable flights. Watch Airventure Oshkosh 2015 Trip and Airventure 2016 in my Sonex.

Mentioned

Wings over Pittsburgh, May 13-14, 2017.

Northeastern Pennsylvania Air Show Aug 12-13, 2017 at Wilkes-Barre/Scranton International Airport.

AOPA Hangar Talk 18 with Max Trescott.

Aviation News Talk is Max Trescott’s new general aviation podcast.

Video: Spitfire – Public Service Broadcasting Live At Brixton

Utah Patrick sent in two articles that provide more details about Thomas Hudner and Jesse Brown: U.S. veteran in North Korea to find remains of fellow aviator and Six Decades Later, a Second Rescue Attempt.

Plan Your Trip for EAA AirVenture Oshkosh.

A pilot’s view of the world – Amazing photographs from the cockpit.

Milano Malpensa, a unique place to admire the flowing of time

 

436 Flying Magazine’s Stephen Pope

We talk with Stephen Pope, the Editor-in-Chief of Flying magazine. In the news, we look at a United Airlines computer problem, tracking passengers moving through the airport, the search for MH 370 concludes, ADS-B capable satellites, the latest Mitsubishi MRJ delay, B-2 bombers fly a 30-hour mission, testing tiltrotors, a possible lead in the 1971 hijacking by D.B. Cooper, and a tribute to Gene Cernan.

Guest

Flying magazine's Editor in Chief Stephen Pope

Stephen Pope, Editor in Chief, Flying magazine

Stephen Pope is Editor-in-Chief of Flying magazine. We talk about Light Sport Aircraft, third class medical reform, and flying with the Garmin G1000 NXi. Steve also explains how Flying is changing its look, content, website, and e-news product to compete with digital aviation news outlets. We also get some good suggestions for those who might consider aviation journalism as a career choice, either full-time or freelance.

Steve is an award-winning aviation journalist and commercial pilot with multi-engine, instrument, and seaplane ratings. He has been writing for aviation magazines for more than 20 years on a wide range of flying topics.

Steve learned to fly at age 15 in a Piper Cub at Trinca Airport, a small grass strip in northern New Jersey. He worked as a line boy at the 60th Street Heliport in New York City and for First Aviation at Teterboro Airport. After soloing at 16, earning his private pilot’s license at 17, and gaining his instrument rating a year later, Steve enrolled at the University of Maryland as a journalism major, where he received his degree and completed an editorial internship with AOPA Pilot magazine.

After graduating, Stephen joined the editorial staff of Aviation International News, a business aviation trade magazine. During his 15 years with AIN he moved up the ranks to become Senior Editor directing avionics and technology coverage, Editor-in-Chief of Convention Publications and, in his last role with the company, Editor-in-Chief of Business Jet Traveler magazine. He joined the staff of Flying in 2010.

Steve has won seven Aerospace Journalist of the Year awards, including being named overall Aerospace Journalist of the Year in 2007. He has also won three NBAA Gold Wing Journalism Awards and has written for Barron’s, The Wall Street Journal, and many other publications.

Aviation News

United Airlines resumes flights after temporary ground order

A computer problem with Aircraft Communications Addressing and Reporting System (ACARS) temporarily grounded all domestic United Airlines mainline flights.

Cool or Creepy? Houston Airports now Tracking Phone Signals to Provide Checkpoint Data

Houston airports are now monitoring Bluetooth signals from travelers’ phones. This lets the airport track checkpoint wait times in real-time. In a news release, Houston airport spokesperson Bill Begley said, “The tracking is anonymous and uses a variety of filters to ensure both anonymity and accuracy, and then uses that data to provide an average time for travelers passing through the checkpoints.”

Search Ends For Malaysian Flight 370

In an MH370 Joint Communique, the Australian Government announced that the search for MH370 has been suspended. “The decision to suspend the underwater search has not been taken lightly nor without sadness,” the joint statement read. “We remain hopeful that new information will come to light and that at some point in the future the aircraft will be located.”

Aireon Launch Begins New Era for Satellite-Based Aircraft Surveillance

The recent successful SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket launch put the first 10 Iridium Next satellites into low-Earth orbit. Each satellite carries an ADS-B receiver to be part of Aireon’s global ADS-B-based aircraft-tracking system, operational by the second quarter of 2018.

Mitsubishi delays MRJ deliveries by two years

In its January 23 press release, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries announced “that MHI and Mitsubishi Aircraft Corporation will adjust the first delivery of the Mitsubishi Regional Jet (MRJ) from mid-2018 to mid-2020. The change is due to revisions of certain systems and electrical configurations on the aircraft to meet the latest requirements for certification.” See MRJ’s Latest Development Status and the Advancing the MRJ project PDF.

All we know about the U.S. B-2 bombers 30-hour round trip mission to pound Daesh in Libya

Two U.S. Air Force B-2 Spirit bombers flew a long-duration mission from the 509th Bomb Wing at Whiteman Air Force Base.

Unique Tiltrotor Test Rig To Begin Operational Runs At NASA Ames

NASA’s Ames Research Center in Silicon Valley, California is preparing for the first functional trial of a new Tiltrotor Test Rig.

New Lead on D.B. Cooper — May have Worked for Boeing!

New clues may point to the identity of the 1971 hijacker who disappeared with the ransom money, never to be found.

The Aviation Minute

Rob Mark takes a look at the Aireon launch and aircraft tracking.

Contributor Recording

Our Main(e) Man Micah brings us God Bless You Gene Cernan.

Credit

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

431 The Seattle Aerospace Scene

A Seattle Times aerospace reporter tells us about the Boeing 777X, the 787 Dreamliner, the Boeing manufacturing processes, and more. In the news, inflight WiFi phone calls, air traffic controllers behaving badly, an audit of privatized flight service, United Airlines helps young dance competitors, and a seaplane with an impressive paint job. We also have a listener report about the Canadian Fixed-Wing Search and Rescue Program.

Guest

Dominic GatesDominic Gates is the aerospace reporter for the Seattle Times. We discuss a variety of topics, including the recent Boeing 777 production rate cut due to softening demand and the production requirements for 777X flight test aircraft. We talk about the business decline of the 747 and the Air Force One replacement. Also, the requirement to restart 787 Dreamliner flight control modules and 787-10 final assembly in South Carolina. We look at globalization issues and Boeing’s strategy to rely on an extensive supply chain. Dominic also tells us about some of his memorable stories and scoops, as well as those that impacted labor.

Originally from Northern Ireland, Dominic taught high school calculus in Ireland and in Africa. He met his future wife and in 1992 moved to Seattle, where he switched careers to journalism. Dominic originally established himself as a journalist by freelancing, but eventually joined the Seattle Times as aerospace reporter in January 2003, his first newspaper job.

The Boeing beat is the highest-profile business beat at the Times and as the aerospace reporter, Dominic has broken many high-impact stories. His tenure at the Times coincides exactly with the story of the 787 Dreamliner. In 2003, just a month into the job, he broke the story in March that Boeing would hold a competition among the states for the final assembly location of its 7E7 airplane. On December 5 of that year, he revealed that Boeing’s 7E7 team was recommending Everett for final assembly. Ten days later, Boeing’s board made it official. Ever since, he has closely tracked the many twists and turns of the 787 story.

Dominic attends the European Air Shows each year and makes regular reporting trips to airplane leasing conferences, to Boeing plants around the U.S., including Charleston, and to Boeing suppliers, such as Spirit in Wichita. He has toured and written about the Airbus final assembly plants in Toulouse, the Airbus wing factory in Wales, and the Bombardier CSeries wing plant in Belfast.

Find Dominic on Twitter as @dominicgates, on Facebook, and at the Seattle Times.

News

Feds could allow Wi-Fi phone calls on airline flights

The Chicago Tribune reports that The U.S Department of Transportation announced it could see allowing WiFi phone calls if airlines tell customers about the policy when they buy their tickets. This is so customers who don’t want to sit next to others making calls could make other travel arrangements.

DOT Proposes Rule to Protect Airline Passengers From Being Unwillingly Exposed to Voice Calls on Aircraft

U.S. Secretary of Transportation Anthony Foxx said, “Consumers deserve to have clear and accurate information about whether an airline permits voice calls before they purchase a ticket and board the aircraft. Today’s proposal will ensure that air travelers are not unwillingly exposed to voice calls, as many of them are troubled over the idea of passengers talking on cell phones in flight.”

Members of the public can comment on the NPRM at www.regulations.gov, docket number DOT-OST-2014-0002. 60 days. Look for DOT-OST-2014-0002-1795.

Air traffic controllers take a nap and grab a snack while pilots’ calls go unanswered

The Boise Idaho Police Department says that after two helicopter pilots were unable to contact controllers, officers entered the Boise Airport air traffic control tower. One controller was sleeping and the other controller had left the tower and smelled of marijuana.

Privatizing Flight Service Saved Money, Faces New Challenges

The Department of Transportation’s Office of the Inspector General has released the report titled, FAA Achieved Most of the Anticipated Cost Savings from Contracting Out Flight Service Stations, but Needs to Determine the Future Direction of the Program [PDF], finding that the FAA has saved or avoided costs of approximately $2.13 billion over a 13-year period, and has implemented effective controls. The Office did make three recommendations to the FAA to help develop its future approach to providing flight services.

How United Airlines stepped up big time to help stranded young tap dancers

United Airlines came to the assistance of a group of American dancers trying to reach a major tap dance competition in Germany. The group was stranded in Boston over the Thanksgiving holiday due to the Lufthansa pilot strike, and United arranged for flights to transport the dancers to Germany in time for the competition. See Results – IDO World Tap Dance Championships 2016 for the ultimate outcome.

Seattle’s ‘Wild Orca’ Seaplane Attracts Attention

Seattle’s Kenmore Air Harbor is raising awareness of the plight of caged whales with a beautiful paint job.

Listener Recording

Kevin talks about Airbus winning the Canadian Fixed-Wing Search and Rescue Program with their C-295. Competing with Airbus was the C-27J Spartan and the Embraer KC-390.

How did search-and-rescue mission to Igloolik go wrong?

That Others May Live: In The Air With Canada’s Search And Rescue Technicians

Mentioned

Aerospace Industries Association (AIA)

Would You Like To Fly? by Jennifer Adams in Jetwhine.com. Jennifer blogs at Tales From the Terminal.

Photos: Kish, Iran (OIBK) – International Iran Airshow, 17 November 2016 by Paul Filmer.

International Iran Airshow

Credit

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

 

 

430 Captain Nick: Born to Fly

We talk with an Airbus captain and former military pilot. In the news, a charter flight runs out of fuel and crashes, first delivery of the Bombardier CS300, an airline pilot suffers a heart attack, managing massive amounts of aviation data, charging for overhead bins, an autopilot system for general aviation, and a big pay raise for Delta pilots. Also, flying the Diamond DA42NG, and remembering December 7, 1941 and the 75th anniversary of that day.

airBaltic Bombardier CS300

airBaltic CS300. Photo courtesy Bombardier.

 

Guest

Captain Nick Anderson

Captain Nick Anderson

Captain Nick Anderson always wanted to be an airline pilot. He joined the Air Cadets at age 13, went solo in a glider at 17, gained a flying scholarship at age 18 and earned a Private Pilot’s Licence.  Capt. Nick joined the RAF at age 21 and trained on the Chipmunk, Jet Provost, Folland Gnat, and Hawker Hunter.  He then streamed to fighters and posted to No 43 (F) Sqn, The Fighting Cocks, flying the F4 Phantom FG1.

During a 19 year career, Capt. Nick moved from the Phantom to the Hawk T1 trainer as an A1 fast jet Qualified Flying Instructor, then back to the Phantom to become a Qualified Weapons Instructor.  He then moved to Australia on an exchange tour flying the F/A 18 for the No 77 Sqn RAAF, and finally back to the UK to fly the Panavia F3 Tornado Air Defence Variant.

After obtaining his Air Transport Pilot’s Licence and leaving the military, Capt. Nick joined an airline, flying the Airbus A340-300, Airbus A340-600, and the Airbus A330-300 on long haul flights.

Currently, you can hear Capt. Nick and his Plane Tails segment on the Airline Pilot Guy podcast with Captain Jeff, Dr. Steph, and Miami Rick. Find Capt. Nick on Twitter, Facebook, and at his website Nick Anderson Photographic.

News

Pilot told Colombia controllers plane ran out of fuel before crash

Not Enough Fuel: The Disgusting Truth About LaMia Flight 2933

Brazilian soccer team’s airline was warned it didn’t have enough fuel before taking off on fatal flight

LaMia charter flight 2933 from Santa Cruz de la Sierra in Bolivia to Medellín in Colombia crashed November 28, 2016, killing 71 of the 68 passengers and 9 crew. Apparently, the Avro RJ-85 did not have sufficient fuel for the route flown.

World’s first Bombardier CS300 aircraft arrives in Riga

Exclusive: On Board the Delivery Flight of the first CS300 to airBaltic

airBaltic, the national airline of Latvia, became the first airline to take delivery of the Bombardier CS300. Commercial operations are set to begin December 14, 2016.

Airline pilot suffers heart attack at Glasgow Airport

The captain of a KLM flight about to leave Glasgow for Amsterdam suffered a heart attack as the plane taxied to the runway. The crew and a passenger resuscitated the pilot. He was listed in stable condition at the hospital.

GE Aviation Launches Configuration Data Exchange to Reduce Maintenance Costs

#PaxEx Podcast: Diving into big data as IoT of aviation takes flight

Why bizav is also a key market for GE’s new data exchange

The Configuration Data Exchange connects aviation companies and provides a “data pipeline” for operations, maintenance, and configuration data. The two-way asset data flow can support airlines, MROs, lessors, OEMs, and parts brokers. In #PaxEx Podcast #41, industry consultant Michael Denis explains why operators need to know how to process the data and make it meaningful.

Travelers react to United Airlines plan to charge extra fee for use of overhead bins

United Airlines has a new ticket option called “Basic Economy,” which allows passengers to bring only one small item on board, which must fit under the seat. Checked bags incur a fee.

New Autopilot STC Project Follows EAA’s Lead

The STC Group is leading a project to certify the Trio Pro Pilot autopilot system in Cessna 172 and 182 aircraft. This is a “two-axis system with full navigation capabilities, envelope protection, return-to-level and 180 degree turn features for unintended IMC encounters.”

Delta pilots get 30 percent raise by 2019 in new contract

Eighty two percent of the pilots voting have ratified a new four-year contract, retroactive to the beginning of 2016. Delta’s 13,000 pilots get an immediate 18% pay raise, and a cumulative 30% percent by Jan. 1, 2019.

The Airplane of the Week

Remembering December 7, 1941, the 75th anniversary of the day that will live in Infamy, and a few of the people who were there: Lt. Phillip Rasmussen and his P-36A, P-40 Pilots George Welsh and Kenneth M. Taylor, Nakajima B5N2 “Kate” pilot Mitsuo Fuchida.

Mentioned

Diamond DA42NG – Max Trescott has been flying a new Diamond and tells us his reaction.

Diamond DA42

Diamond DA42. Photo courtesy Diamond Aircraft.

12 Planes of Christmas An online giving campaign from the Commemorative Air Force.

Shark US – VLOG 1 – Cheese Burgers and Milkshakes at the Robin’s Nest Flying the Shark US to the Robin’s Nest Cafe at Shannon Airport (KEZF) in Fredericksburg, Virginia for a “$100 hamburger.”

The RV-4 VH-NOJ Jon Johanssen flew around the world is now preserved at the South Australian Aviation Museum.

Air Tractors in action as water bombers during a bad bushfire north of Adelaide South Australia during November 2015.

Air Tractor

Credit

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