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April 29, 2023

DOJ and DOT Jointly Probe Southwest Airlines

As Dirty and Wrong as It Sounds

The U.S. Department of Justice has thrown-in with an ongoing U.S. Department of Transportation probe into Southwest Airlines’ 2022 holiday travel season operational woes—a trifecta of overbooked, delayed, and canceled flights thitherto unseen in modern times.

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Two U.S. Army Apache Helicopters Collide Near Fairbanks

Three Service-Members Lost

On Thursday, 27 April 2023, two AH-64 Apache attack helicopters assigned to the U.S. Army’s 1st Attack Reconnaissance Battalion, 25th Aviation Regiment went down in the vicinity of Healy, Alaska. The helicopters, each crewed by two Army Aviators, collided while returning to Fairbanks, Alaska’s Fort Wainwright after a training flight. Two of the four servicemembers expired at the crash-site, a third succumbed during transport to a Fairbanks hospital. The fourth suffered injuries of unknown severity.

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NetJets Sued by Its Own Pilots

Of Rights Challenged and Sabers Rattled

The NetJets Association of Shared Aircraft Pilots (NJASAP)—the labor union representing the three-thousand-plus aviators currently in NetJets’ employ—has filed a lawsuit against the air-charter and fractional ownership powerhouse in the United States District Court for the Southern District of Ohio. The suit accuses NetJets of attempting to suppress union-related pilot speech in violation of federal labor law.

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Airborne 04.21.23: Starship FLIES!, An-124 Stranded, AEA-LIVE NPI This Monday!

Also: Sikorsky Gives Up, Kodiak 900 EASA TC, AA5 Tail Separation, Natilus Flies

Starship flew... for a bit. The 33 Raptor engines of SpaceX’s Super Heavy first-stage booster fired as one, filling the Boca Chica morning with the din and fiery fury of cryogenic liquid methane and oxygen combusting under 790 atmospheres -- in a flight that lasted four minutes. The Toronto Pearson International Airport (YYZ) is charging a stranded Antonov An-124 cargo aircraft an exorbitant parking fee of nearly one-penny-per-second. The 226-foot-long cargo plane has been stuck at YYZ since Canada closed its airspace to Russian-owned aircraft on 27 February 2022. we’r

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Japanese Private Sector Moon Mission Fails

Hysuton, Mondai ga Hassei Shimashita

Japanese lunar exploration start-up ispace has failed in a valiant effort to land the first privately funded exploratory platform on the surface of Earth’s moon. ispace set forth in a statement: "It has been determined that there is a high probability that the lander eventually made a hard landing on the Moon's surface.”

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Reliable Robotics and NASA Complete Unique Flight Tests

Collected Data to Validate New Detect & Avoid Tech

Founded in 2017 by CEO Robert Rose and CTO Jureg Frefel for purpose of bringing safe, certified automation systems to commercial aviation, Mountain View, California-based Reliable Robotics announced on 25 April 2023 that it had completed flight testing to substantiate the viability of utilizing extant Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Primary Surveillance Radar (PSR) data to improve the safety of the U.S. National Airspace System (NAS).

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RAA Applauds Flight Education Access Act

Too Little Too Late

The Regional Airline Association (RAA) has applauded the introduction of the Flight Education Access Act introduced by Senators Baldwin (Democrat, Wisconsin) and Sullivan (Republican, Arkansas) and Congressional Representatives Allred (Democrat, Texas); Chavez DeRemer (Republican, Oregon); and Cohen (Democrat-Tennessee). The bipartisan, bicameral legislation is intended to improve accessibility to pilot careers.

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Sonex Announces Dual-Stick Option for B-Models

Stick Shift

Sonex announced that a new dual-stick option has been made available for the company’s Sonex, Waiex, and Xenos B models. The dual-stick configuration will be available as both a forward fit option for new aircraft and a retrofit package by which Sonex owners may convert extant specimens of the aforementioned models to dual-flight-controls.

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Universal Avionics Completes Connected FMS TSO

Connectivity Ecosystem Cybersecurity Vetted

Universal Avionics announced it had successfully completed Technical Standard Order (TSO) certification for its Connected FMS. The effort validates the cloud-based Connectivity Ecosystem's maturity, robustness, and compliance with applicable cybersecurity requirements.

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Airborne 04.21.23: Starship FLIES!, An-124 Stranded, AEA-LIVE NPI This Monday!

Also: Sikorsky Gives Up, Kodiak 900 EASA TC, AA5 Tail Separation, Natilus Flies

Starship flew... for a bit. The 33 Raptor engines of SpaceX’s Super Heavy first-stage booster fired as one, filling the Boca Chica morning with the din and fiery fury of cryogenic liquid methane and oxygen combusting under 790 atmospheres -- in a flight that lasted four minutes. The Toronto Pearson International Airport (YYZ) is charging a stranded Antonov An-124 cargo aircraft an exorbitant parking fee of nearly one-penny-per-second. The 226-foot-long cargo plane has been stuck at YYZ since Canada closed its airspace to Russian-owned aircraft on 27 February 2022. we’r

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Classic Aero-TV: CubCrafters NX Cub-A Stunning Effort To Build The ‘Perfect Cub'

From 2021 (YouTube Version): We Were Blown Away At How Well The Nosewheel Was Adapted To The X Cub Airframe

It should not be a secret to any one of you, that with thousands of hours of taildragger time, and only a few real scares in the process, does the thought of putting a nose wheel on a cub was anathema -- and potentially a deadly sin. That is... Until I flew the CubCrafters NX Cub. The CubCrafters folks are one of the most accomplished artisans in the Cub World, which is saying a lot,  because the art and craft of building, rebui

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ANN's Daily Aero-Linx (04.29.23)

Aero Linx: The National Waco Club The National Waco Club is recognized as the oldest “Type Club” in the United States.  Membership is open to anyone with a love for Waco airplanes, be it a current owner, former owner, employee, or anyone who appreciates the beautiful airplanes built by the Waco Aircraft Company.

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ANN's Daily Aero-Term (04.29.23): Lost Communications

Lost Communications

Loss of the ability to communicate by radio. Aircraft are sometimes referred to as NORDO (No Radio). Standard pilot procedures are specified in 14 CFR Part 91. Radar controllers issue procedures for pilots to follow in the event of lost communications during a radar approach when weather reports indicate that an aircraft will likely encounter IFR weather conditions during the approach.

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Aero-News: Quote of the Day (04.29.23)

“The aircraft owners and customers we fly engage our pilots in conversations every day, including about their jobs and a wide variety of other topics. It is only natural that they would ask us for basic information about our current labor dispute when they see picketers. Referring to a union website is a professional and legal way to respond to their questions. We believe NetJets’ discriminatory ban on union-related speech is unprofessional and illegal.” Source: NJASAP President Captain Pedro Leroux explaining some background on the lawsuit they filed  against the air-charter and fractional ownership powerhouse in the United States District Court for the Southern District of Ohio.  

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