AVweb Flash

  • After a contentious battle with the FAA over the design and certification specifications of the ADS-600-B system, NavWorx says it is now shipping a reworked version of the system, the ADS600-B 2.0. But the system is only for experimental aircraft.

  • The innovation that took AirVenture 2008 by storm may be headed for oblivion as shares for the company that now controls the Martin Jetpack have been suspended from trading on the Australian Stock Exchange. The company couldn’t meet its statutory reporting requirements by the Aug. 31 deadline so the stock, which was trading at six cents AUS, was wiped off the board.

  • A Boeing 747-400 SuperTanker whose owners have been disputing a rule of the U.S. Forest Service that keeps them from flying fought a fire in the U.S. for the first time last week, contracted by the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection. The SuperTanker can drop more than 19,000 gallons of water or retardant at a time. “In six days of firefighting, the SuperTanker has flown 14 sorties, and made 22 drops of 248,025 gallons of retardant on four fires in California,” company spokesman Lewis Lowe told AVweb on Wednesday.

  • As Hurricane Irma bears down on what may be a landfall somewhere in Florida, aircraft owners across the state are considering whether to move their airplanes or just lash them down and hope for the best.

  • United Technologies (UTC) announced a deal to buy Rockwell-Collins over the weekend, growing United Technologies already huge aerospace portfolio. UTC already owns, among others, Pratt & Whitney, the jet engine manufacturer. The $23 billion purchase price for Rockwell-Collins will be among the biggest aerospace acquisitions ever.

  • The Virginia State Police helicopter that crashed on Aug. 12, killing both officers on board, was flying at 2,200 feet when it abruptly turned to the right and began to dive, says radar data acquired by the NTSB. The NTSB interviewed nearly 40 witnesses who generally confirmed that the helicopter “began a rolling oscillation, began to spin (rotate about the vertical axis), and then descended in a 45° nose down attitude, while continuing to spin until it was lost from sight below the tops of the surrounding trees.”

  • The FAA announced in December that it had revamped its airworthiness standards for general aviation airplanes, and as of Aug. 30, those new rules are now officially in effect. The FAA says the new Part 23 will enable faster installation of innovative, safety-enhancing technologies into small airplanes, while reducing costs for the aviation industry. The change in thinking at the FAA already has enabled manufacturers to more quickly install new avionics and safety-enhancing devices.

  • Airbus’ Perlan II glider set the altitude record for soaring on Sunday by riding a mountain wave in Argentina. According to the Argentinian online news site clarin.com, the glider reached at least 52,172 feet on a flight from El Calafate Airport in Tierra del Fuego, near the southern tip of South America.

  • Controller: Cessna 123, traffic, opposition direction, five miles, at 4,000 feet … Cessna 123: Looking for traffic, Cessna 123 … Controller: Cessna 123, Love Field, six miles, 12 o’clock … Cessna 123: Cessna 123 looking for Love … Pause … Cessna123: That didn't come out right, did it … Controller: No but we hope you find Love, ... and the airport ... Alan Werner

  • One Aviation has announced the first flight of the wing that will hold up its EA700, known as the Eclipse Canada until recently. Details of the flight are unavailable because of technical issues with their news release but the flight follows reports of an original version of the aircraft appearing last week with the distinctive new wing.

  • The all-time piston single speed record was set Saturday when Steve Hinton Jr. flew Voodoo, a highly modified P-51 Mustang, at an average speed of 531.53 mph over four runs at Clarks Ranch in remote central Idaho.

  • The British-designed, but now Bentonville, Arkansas manufactured GameBird GB1 received its FAA Part 23 type certificate on Wednesday. The GB1 is certified for unlimited aerobatics—plus or minus 10G. To be certified to that staggering load factor, a GB1 airframe was tested repeatedly to plus then minus 11.7G, with three trips to plus and minus 16G, culminating in a test to 19G with the airframe heated to 160 degrees to soften the carbon fiber—all without failure.

  • Historical allies AOPA and the National Air Transportation Association (NATA) are now pitted against each other in an unusual battle over airport access, fuel costs and fees. AOPA, along with “seven affected pilots” have filed a Part 13 complaint with the FAA against three Signature FBOs in Key West, FL, Asheville, NC and Waukegan, IL

  • The U.S. Commerce Department has set Sept. 25 to issue its opinion on whether Bombardier’s sale of CSeries airliners to Delta Airlines was “dumping.” That term normally refers to the cut-rate sale of produce, lumber or other commodities between countries when one country has a surplus it’s looking to eliminate.

  • Water landings in amphibious aircraft are no cause for alarm, but that’s a message still making its way to the general public. An aircraft reported to local police as having crashed off the coast of Maine last week was just an Icon A5 setting down in a routine water landing. Derek Tam-Scott, Icon Aircraft’s head of communications, tells AVweb that calls to police reporting A5 water landings are not uncommon.

  • Sierra Nevada Corporation’s Dream Chaser left the ground at Edwards Air Force Base on Wednesday but the real testing is just about to begin, more than 35 years after the idea for a small, reusable was given form by the Soviet Union.

  • Some holiday goers in a riverside community in the south of France got an air show plus some drama on Sunday when an air tanker taking off from the Rhone River hit a barge’s mast with its wing. “It is a miracle that there have been no [deaths],” a spokesman for the harbor office at Vallabregues told local media.

  • Better fuel management by aviators could prevent an average of 50 general aviation accidents a year, the NTSB said in a GA Safety Alert issued Tuesday. “The idea of running out of fuel in an aircraft is unthinkable, and yet, it causes more accidents than anyone might imagine,” the alert notes. “Fuel management is the sixth leading cause of general aviation accidents in the U.S.” Pilot error contributed to 95 percent of the fuel-management-related accidents, equipment issues contributed to just 5 percent.

  • For the first time since Sept. 11, 2001, a major international airport is opening its terminals to non-passengers without special permission. Starting Sept.5, visitors to Pittsburgh International will be able to access the secure side of the airport by obtaining a “myPITpass” from an airport kiosk, which will require scanning a photo ID to run the visitor’s name against a TSA no-fly list.

  • While flying back to my home airport, KAVQ, I heard this exchange from two pilots entering the non-towered airport airspace … Cherokee: Cherokee 1234 entering left downwind for runway 12, full stop … A Grumman Tiger pilot was also entering left downwind making a similar call … Cherokee pilot: Grumman aircraft, we will swing wide since you are faster to allow you to land first … Grumman pilot: No problem, I'm retired.  Grumman number two to land behind the Cherokee … And so they did … John Winter

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