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December 21, 2021

Archer's Maker eVTOL Completes Hover Test

Important, if Delayed, Milestone For United Airlines' Chosen Taxi

Archer Aviation has completed the first important hover test of their upcoming Maker aircraft, a two-seater electric VTOL. The brief flight consisted of the company's proprietary propulsion system making its first successful lift off unassisted.  The developmental mule received its FAA Special Airworthiness Certificate in Early December, the company finally moved its aircraft from the digital drawing board into the prototype phase. The Maker faces stiff competition in a market that has consistently marched onwards, only reaching hover tests this late in the game could see the tortoise v. hare adage play out in the market once again.

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Screwed Again... Flight Training Fixes Left Out of Legislation

EAA On Flight Training Policy Fix -- 'Try Again'

The hopes for a 2021 congressional fix to the FAA’s flight training policy that has caused confusion and consternation among pilots were scuttled last week, when a bipartisan amendment was cut from the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) sent to the president for his signature. The flight training provision, which was included in the House version of the bill and had been introduced in the Senate, would restore the flight training policy to the interpretation followed by the FAA for decades prior to this year. The agency’s change in July 2021 came from FAA legal staff following a court’s non-precedent ruling in a case involving flight training in warbird aircraft.

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Airborne-Unmanned 12.14.21: H1 eVTOL, Valkyrie Systems, Airspeeder Racers

Also: FAA Accepts DRL, NASA Explores, All-In-One Drone Pad, Parrot UAS

Doroni Aerospace introduced its showroom model, digital replica, and 1:1 scale propulsion system to investors during a webinar. The H1 is an electric, multirotor vertical takeoff aircraft with seating for 2. The H1 is slated to carry up to 500 lbs of cargo when piloted remotely, or a pilot and up to 200 pounds of passenger/payload. It will include an energy dissipating, lightweight body with cabin air bags, an emergency parachute, and an anti-collision avoidance system. AFWERX, the Air Force research laboratory's innovation arm, has selected the companies to move forward with its HS

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ALPA Casts Doubt On Pilot Shortage During Senate Hearing

'Major ALPA Carriers Have Approximately The Same Number Of Pilots Currently As They Did Pre-Pandemic'

ALPA has issued a statement in response to the robust discussion on pilot supply that took place late last week during the Senate Commerce Committee hearing on airline industry oversight: “The suggestion by network carriers that a lack of available pilots is the reason for leaving smaller markets is absurd and simply incorrect. The major ALPA carriers have approximately the same number of pilots currently as they did pre-pandemic....

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Military Jet Fuel Leak Contaminates Water Supply

3,000 Military Members And Their Families Have Been Evacuated From Their Homes

The U.S. Navy has found itself at the center of a mess, as 3,000 military members and their families have been evacuated from their homes under suspicion of a fuel leak in their potable water supply. Honolulu is a major fueling point for naval operations, and concerns arose regarding the integrity of storage integrity after locals began complaining of smells and oily residue in their tap water. The problem is only the most recent in a long running dispute between local government authorities and Naval brass, where worries of underground fuel tanks and nearby water tables.

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FAA Okays Camden Spaceport

3rd East Coast Launch Site Approved For Vertical Lifts

The United States will open its newest rocket launch site with the addition of Camden County, Georgia's upcoming Spaceport Camden. The former alternate for the Apollo program has resumed its place in the aerospace landscape with the issuance of a launch site operator licence by the FAA. The multi-user, vertical lift, commercial launch site can see as many as 12 small launches per year, in current shape. The addition of the 13th licensed spaceport in the USA is also the 3rd to be operated on the East Coast. The market for satellite launches has seen continual progress, and the commercial space race has only grown in size as companies spring up to capitalize on the trillion dollar new front

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Qatar Airways Files Suit Over A350 Issues

A350XWB Premature Surface Degradation Problems Filed in English Court

Qatar's ongoing dispute with Airbus is now official, with a suit being filed in London's High Court. The move significantly heats up the fracas between the two only days after Airbus said that independent legal assessment would be sought to settle the matter. Qatar has had 21 of its relatively new Airbus A350s grounded by the Qatar Civil Aviation Authority citing premature degradation of certain surface areas, materials, and paint applications. In August, the airline had hoped “that Airbus treats this matter with the proper attention it requires,” according to CEO Akbar Al Baker at the time.

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Classic Aero-TV: Ralph Maloof Revs Up - Innovations For Homebuilt A/C Engines

From 2016: A VW Bug Engine Conversion Has Matured Into an Engine for the Airplane Homebuilder…

While at EAA AirVenture 2016, ANN News Editor, Tom Patton, visited with the folks at RevMaster and talked with Ralph Maloof, who is an aeronautical engineer and inventor. The first thing we find out in this interview is that the RevMaster engine is based on the Volkswagen Bug engine, but it is not simply a Volkswagen engine with slight modifications to make it fit in an airplane. Maloof says it has been modified to the point that it is really designed for aircraft use, not for automobile use. Maloof goes on to describe the changes that have been made t

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NTSB Prelim: Cessna 182L

The Accident Pilot Stated That He Thought The Clouds Would Clear Up And They Should Continue

On December 3, 2021, about 1823 central standard time, a Cessna 182L, N182NS, was destroyed when it was involved in an accident near Bonnerdale, Arkansas. The non-instrument rated private pilot was fatally injured. The airplane was operated as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 91 personal flight. The accident airplane was the lead airplane in a flight of two that departed Mendin, Louisiana (MNE), about 1738, destined for Clarksville, Arkansas (H35). The non-instrument rated pilot of the second airplane stated that before departure from MNE, they both reviewed the enroute weather and he recalled the cloud layers were reported scattered at 1,

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AD: Viking Aircraft Limited Airplanes

AD 2021-24-18 Requires Determining Service Life Limits For The Wing Strut Fitting On The Main Spar

The FAA is adopting a new airworthiness directive (AD) for all Viking Air Limited Model DHC-3 airplanes. This AD results from mandatory continuing airworthiness information (MCAI) originated by an aviation authority of another country to identify and correct an unsafe condition on an aviation product. The MCAI identifies the unsafe condition as fatigue damage of the wing strut lug fitting components and the fuselage to wing strut attachment (tie-bar). This AD requires determining service life limits for the wing strut fitting on the main spar and for the tie-bar and following instructions for removal and replacement of affected parts. The FAA is issu

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AD: Daher Aerospace

AD 2021-25-10 Requires Modifying The Oil Cooler Air Induction Duct

The FAA is adopting a new airworthiness directive (AD) for certain Daher Aerospace (type certificate previously held by SOCATA) (Daher) Model TBM 700 airplanes. This AD results from mandatory continuing airworthiness information (MCAI) originated by an aviation authority of another country to identify and correct an unsafe condition on an aviation product. The unsafe condition that is the subject of the MCAI is ice accumulation on the oil cooler air inlet duct fin. This AD requires modifying the oil cooler air induction duct. The FAA is issuing this AD to address the unsafe condition on these products. This AD is effective January 24, 2022.

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ANN's Daily Aero-Linx (12.21.21)

Aero Linx: The International Federation of Air Traffic Controllers' Association IFATCA is an international collective of air traffic controller associations. It was established in 1961 and is the largest and most comprehensive representative body for air traffic control in the world. The International Federation of Air Traffic Controllers' Association was constituted in Amsterdam on 19th and 20th October 1961, as a result of the efforts of a group of air traffic controllers to federate and further the interests of the air traffic control profession at the international level. Over the next decades, membership kept growing to total some 130 associations from all continents and over 50,000 air traffic

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ANN's Daily Aero-Term (12.21.21): Hover Taxi

Hover Taxi Used to describe a helicopter/VTOL aircraft movement conducted above the surface and in ground effect at airspeeds less than approximately 20 knots. The actual height may vary, and some helicopters may require hover taxi above 25 feet AGL to reduce ground effect turbulence or provide clearance for cargo slingloads.

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Aero-News: Quote of the Day (12.21.21)

“It’s disappointing that the bipartisan amendment to the NDAA was left out of the final bill sent to the White House, as it was an excellent opportunity to fix a matter that the FAA’s leadership even admitted was a frustration and not safety related. While the LODA process is a temporary Band-Aid, we’re not done with this matter and will pursue all avenues to enable aircraft owners in experimental and limited category aircraft to receive training essential to safety in their own aircraft.” Source: Sean Elliott, EAA vice president of advocacy and safety, discussing details about how the hopes for a 2021 congressional fix to the FAA’s flight training policy that has caused confusion and consternation

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