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October 05, 2023

Airborne Affordable Flyers 10.05.23: Rotor X Scandal, MOSAIC Delay, Van's Update

 Also: Vertical Aviation Technologies, Young Eagles Milestone, Axe eVTOL, LODA NPRM

 
 
A couple of years ago, new ownership bought the Rotorway helicopter kit operation and rebranded it as Rotor X. Over the course of many months, we received numerous complaints about Rotor X, with reports of dozens of customers who claim to have bought helicopter kits or sub kits not gotten what they paid for. Some have paid in full, with amounts exceeding well in excess of $100,000, and received little or nothing (so far) in return. As expected, the FAA has extended the comment period 90 days for its NPRM titled “Modernization of Special Airworthiness Certification” that was published July 24, 2023. The comment period for the NPRM published

John G. Roncz Passes Away at 75

Celebrated Aeronautical Engineer Lauded Far and Wide

John G Roncz, 75, passed away peacefully on 27 September 2023 amidst family and close friends. Mr. Roncz was an honors graduate of the University of Notre Dame. His analytical mind and innovative thinking were instrumental in his aeronautical engineering career, during which Roncz made significant contributions to the field of aerodynamics, and contributed to the designs of upwards of fifty aircraft—to include the Rutan Voyager and the Virgin Atlantic GlobalFlyer, both enshrined in the Smithsonian Institution’s National Air and Space Museum.

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Crewed Flight Testing of Joby eVTOL Underway

Six Rotors Turning

Joby Aviation, the Toyota-backed designer and builder of electric Vertical Takeoff and Landing (eVTOL) aircraft, has commenced crewed flight-testing of its eVTOL prototype. To date, four members of Joby’s flight test team have piloted the company's pre-production aircraft, collectively completing a series of initial tests which comprised, in part, thrust-borne hovers and forward transitions to semi-thrust-borne flight.

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King School’s Inaugural Envision Flight Edu-Con a Success

Aviation Education Luminaries Gather in San Diego

Aviation leaders from flight-schools and aeronautical universities converged upon San Diego in late September 2023 for the inaugural Envision Flight Edu-Con symposium. The event provided a unique platform for aviation educators and professionals nationwide to exchange ideas, share experiences, and delve into the world of aviation teaching and training.

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FAA Extends MOSAIC Comment Period by 90-Days

Public Comments Now Accepted Through 22 January 2024

The Federal Aviation Administration has added an additional ninety-days to the comment period germane to the Notice of Proposed Rule-Making (NPRM) titled Modernization of Special Airworthiness Certification (MOSAIC). The comment period for the MOSAIC NPRM (published at 88 FR 47650) has been extended from 23 October 2023 to 22 January 2024. MOSAIC is a tortuously complex proposal eminently and urgently deserving of thoughtful and thorough review. The AEA encourages stakeholders to submit comments pertaining to MOSAIC as early as possible for purpose of affording the FAA opportunity to consider public opinion, and time to amend the proposal in a manner beholden thereto.

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Airborne 09.27.23: Airshow Threat, Ingenuity Record, Space Junk NPRM

Also: EarthX Batteries, Air India Official Suspended, Increase ATC Hiring Legislation, JetBlue Aircraft Lased

Congress may not approve a Fiscal Year 2024 (FY24) spending bill prior to the Sunday, 01 October deadline. The International Council of Air-Shows (ICAS) has issued an advisory setting forth the imminent closing of the egregiously-abused federal cash-pipeline will likely impact U.S. air-shows slated to take place in October and November 2023. NASA's Ingenuity helicopter, while executing a 16 September 2023 sortie, broke its own Martian altitude record, ascending 66-feet above Mars’s surface. This was the 59th flight, and the c

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Airborne 09.27.23: Airshow Threat, Ingenuity Record, Space Junk NPRM

Also: EarthX Batteries, Air India Official Suspended, Increase ATC Hiring Legislation, JetBlue Aircraft Lased

Congress may not approve a Fiscal Year 2024 (FY24) spending bill prior to the Sunday, 01 October deadline. The International Council of Air-Shows (ICAS) has issued an advisory setting forth the imminent closing of the egregiously-abused federal cash-pipeline will likely impact U.S. air-shows slated to take place in October and November 2023. NASA's Ingenuity helicopter, while executing a 16 September 2023 sortie, broke its own Martian altitude record, ascending 66-feet above Mars’s surface. This was the 59th flight, and the c

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Intuitive Machines Opens Lunar Production and Operations Center

New Houston Facility to Produce Nova-C Lunar-Lander

Intuitive Machines, LLC—the Houston, Texas-based supplier of space products and services germane to human exploration of Earth’s moon, Mars, and beyond—has opened a Lunar Production and Operations Center on Texas’s Houston Spaceport. The newly-opened 105,572-square-foot facility will serve as the operations center for Intuitive Machines’s lunar programs.

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DeKalb County Airport (GWB) Celebrates Runway Reopening

Newly-Extended Runway Promises Increased Traffic & Revenues

DeKalb County, Indiana Airport (GWB) Fixed Base Operator (FBO) Sweet Aviation celebrated the reopening of the airport’s runway with a 29 September 2023 ribbon-cutting ceremony. DeKalb County Airport Manager Russ Couchman, BF&S Civil Engineers executive vice-president Paul Shaffer, and Airport Authority board president Jess Myers addressed event attendees, which included local, state, and federal elected officials, as well as members of the press—but was closed to the public.

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Walnut Ridge Regional Airport to Celebrate 81st Anniversary

Festivities to Include Rare CAF P-22 Recruit Trainer

The Walnut Ridge Regional Airport (ARG) will celebrate its 81st anniversary on 14 October 2023. The milestone event, to which all pilots, aircraft owners, aviation enthusiasts, and history buffs are cordially invited, will feature an appearance by the Commemorative Air Force’s (CAF) Ryan PT-22 aircraft. Assigned to the CAF’s Razorback Wing, the aircraft is a rare extant specimen of the PT-22 Recruit—as it was appositely dubbed by USAAC brass—the military iteration of the Ryan ST and the primary trainer aircraft utilized by the Army Air Corps throughout the 1930s and ‘40s.

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Rotor X/Rotorway Community Seeks Answers From Troubled Company

Numerous Reports of Undelivered Kits, Unsent Refunds, and Incomplete Deliveries Abound

News, Information, and Opinion by ANN CEO/Editor-In-Chief, Jim Campbell In covering the aviation community for the 50 years (yup, I’m getting old…), since my first articles appeared in sport aviation public publications at the tender age of 16, I have watched many a company come and go, while quite a few products turn out to be not what they were promised… And in some of the cases we've seen, they turned out to be deadly. Thankfully such horrific stories are in the very significant minority, with most of the stories creating dissatisfaction in the aviation community surrounding companies that either bit off more

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Classic Aero-TV: Seated On The Edge Of Forever -- A PPC's Bird's Eye View

From 2012 (YouTube Version): A Segment Of The Sport Aviation World That Truly Lives "Low And Slow"

Pity the life of ANN's Chief videographer, Nathan Cremisino... shoot the most exciting aircraft in the world, attend the most intriguing events in the aerospace community... and now and then, just fly along to geek out at how cool aviation, in all its many forms, can be. Yeah... Nathan has a hard life... as you can plainly see by this video shot at the Popular Rotorcraft Association Fly-In in Mentone, IN. The event, normally populated by rotorcraft, shared the skies with quite a few members of the powered parachuting community and it was clear that everyone

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NTSB Prelim: Robinson Helicopter R22 Beta

Helicopter Was Spinning In A Counterclockwise Motion For Several Full Rotations

On August 31, 2023, about 1525 eastern daylight time, a Robinson Helicopter R22 Beta, N2356M, was substantially damaged when it was involved in an accident near Kingston, New Jersey. The private pilot was fatally injured. The helicopter was operated as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 solo instructional flight. The pilot was an Israeli citizen and fixed-wing airline pilot. He held a private pilot certificate with a rotorcraft rating and had come to the United States to obtain a commercial pilot certificate with a rotorcraft rating.

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ANN's Daily Aero-Linx (10.05.23)

Aero Linx: Lake Amphibian Club

Our Lake club has always been a “type” club catering to owners and “wannabe” Lake owners. The original club was formed in 1988 and has been administered until 2015 by two husband and wife teams, Bill and Louise Goddard, and then Marc and Jill Rodstein. In 2016, the Lake Amphibian Club was restructured as a 501(c)7 charitable organization, registered in the State of Massachusetts, and run by a board of directors sharing the many tasks necessary to keep the Club running.

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ANN's Daily Aero-Term (10.05.23): Notice To Air Missions (NOTAM)

Notice To Air Missions (NOTAM) A notice containing information (not known sufficiently in advance to publicize by other means) concerning the establishment, condition, or change in any component (facility, service, or procedure of, or hazard in the National Airspace System) the timely knowledge of which is essential to personnel concerned with flight operations.

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Aero-News: Quote of the Day (10.05.23)

“Set against the backdrop of San Diego’s picturesque September, and coupled with the MCAS Miramar’s annual airshow, Envision Flight Edu-Con left an indelible mark on all attendees. This is just the beginning. Envision Flight Edu-Con will be a gathering point for aviation educators for years to come!”   Source: Brian Hough, King School’s Senior VP of Business Development and Sales, and the driving force behind the event, discussing the inaugural Envision Flight Edu-Con symposium.

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