Airborne 05.28.21: HondaJet Elite S, Air Race Derby, Autonomous King Air | Aero-News Network
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Wed, Jun 02, 2021

Airborne 05.28.21: HondaJet Elite S, Air Race Derby, Autonomous King Air

Also: Boeing Fine, Pilot Records Database, Next CAP National Commander, Mexican Safety Rating

Honda Aircraft Company has unveiled a new and upgraded aircraft, the "HondaJet Elite S," at a virtual product launch event themed "Innovation Continues: Elite S." The HondaJet Elite S features several upgrades that expand operational capability and improve flight operation.

With an increased maximum takeoff weight of 200 lbs., customers can now fly up to 120 nm further at a higher payload, or take an additional passenger during their typical mission. Additionally, the new avionics features of FAA DataComm and ACARS replace traditional voice commands with text-based messaging to improve the clarity and efficiency of communications. Combined with the newly introduced Advanced Steering Augmentation System (ASAS), the Elite S further reduces pilot workload. Piper is sponsoring a team of dedicated aviators for the 2021 Air Race Classic. The Piper sponsored team, named “Tres Aviadoras” consists of three passionate aviators who seek to inspire and champion women in aviation. This year’s race will be an Air Derby format, where participants are able to choose their own 5-leg, one-day route. Team members, Elise Wheelock, Captain Olga Custodio and Captain Tammie Jo Shults, will launch their route from Boerne, TX the second week of June. The team will fly a normally aspirated, piston powered, Piper Pilot 100i. Merlin Labs has raised $25 million in funding from GV (formerly Google Ventures) and First Round Capital in order to pursue a 55-aircraft partnership with Dynamic Aviation, and their King Air fleet. Merlin is reportedly building a certifiable autonomy system for complex fixed-wing aircraft. The company claims to have demonstrated hundreds of autonomous missions on multiple aircraft types, including complex twin turboprop aircraft. All this -- and MORE in today's episode of Airborne!!!

Airborne 05.28.21 is chock full of info in this Daily News Episode, Friday, May 28th, 2021... Presented by Aero-TV veteran videographer and Airborne Host Kimberly Kay. Kimberly is supported by ANN Chief Videographer Nathan Cremisino, as well as ANN CEO/Editor-In-Chief Jim Campbell. This episode covers:

  • Honda Aircraft Unveils New HondaJet Elite S
  • Piper Supporting Unique Women’s Air Race Classic Team
  • Merlin Labs Raises $$$, Working To Build Autonomous King Air Fleet 
  • Adding Insult To Injury: Boeing to Pay at Least $17M to FAA
  • Pilot Privacy At Risk? FAA Completes Rule Establishing Pilot Records Database
  • BGen Phelka Named Next CAP National Commander
  • FAA Downgrades Mexican Safety Rating

Get Comprehensive, Real-Time, 24/7 coverage of the latest aviation and aerospace stories anytime, at And be sure to join us again tomorrow, for the next edition of "Airborne Unlimited" here on Aero-TV. Thanks for watching. See you, again, tomorrow!

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