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March 06, 2024

Airborne 03.06.24: Piper M700 Cert!, Spirit/JetBlue NoGo, SWA Pauses Hires

 Also: Airbus Helicopters at HAI, USPA Summit, TRU Simulation, Scalewings Debuts 2

 
 
Piper Aircraft’s new M700 Fury achieved type certification by the FAA on February 29, 2024. The swift bird has a maximum cruise speed of 301 knots and a maximum range of 1,424 nautical miles. It is equipped with Pratt & Whitney’s PT6A-52 engine generating 700 shaft horsepower and the latest G3000 cockpit. The would-be merger between JetBlue Airways and Spirit Airlines is done for good, since the carriers fail to see a way where it could be completed within the shareholders' agreed-upon July 24th deadline. Despite their attempt to expediently handle the appeals process after the merger's blockage in court, both airlines feel that "te

Scalewings SW-51 Improved with More Power, Range

Mustang Now Offered With Aux Fuel Tanks and Rotax 916is

The Scalewings SW-51 Mustang has been further improved with some new options on the order form, thanks to factory upgrades and further design refinements. First off, the SW-51 can now be equipped with a Rotax 916iS, bringing 160 horsepower of turbocharged, fuel injected grunt to the front of the plane. It's a fine mill to combine with the Mustang, especially now that it's been given a new 2,000-hour time between overhaul. It's an all-around upgrade to the earlier 915iS, increasing TBO by 800 hours and adding 30% more torque while retaining the Rotax family's miserly fuel consumption. The Mustang can now also be had with a pair of added in-wing aluminum auxiliary fuel tanks, adding a tota

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JetBlue Pilots Continue the Contract Fight

With Merger Off the Table, Negotiations are Back On

JetBlue Airways pilots have announced they will continue the fight for a new collective bargaining agreement with the company following news that the Spirit/JetBlue merger is off. The Air Line Pilots Association will continue to represent them at the negotiating table by way of the negotiating committee, and the team has got its game face on to "to commence bargaining discussions for the pilot group’s next contract within the coming months." Justin Houck, chair of the JetBlue ALPA Master Executive Council, said that they had paused things while the merger was on the books, but now that it's gone they have to get back to business.

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Sunshine State Summit Brings USPA Fee Raises

Some Good News, Some Bad (Okay It’s Mostly Bad)

The United States Parachute Association met for its 2024 Winter Board of Directors Meeting, with good and bad news for membership. On the bad-news side, the USPA has increased fees across the board, with new memberships, renewals, licenses, and ratings seeing a 20% bump in cost across the board. The USPA has kept its 2018 pricing since instituting those rates, and says that it has to kick the fee schedule upwards to "keep in line with increased costs brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic and general cost-of doing business and inflation issues over the past six years."

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Crew 8 Starts A LONG Trip To The ISS

Successful Falcon Launch Powers NASA Crew Rotation

NASA's commercial crew rotation mission went smoothly for the 8th go-around, sending off a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket bearing astronauts Matthew Dominick, Michael Barratt, Jeanette Epps, and Alexander Grebenkin. The international crew (Well, technically international with a 3-NASA, 1-Roscosmos split) reached orbit aboard the automated SpaceX Crew Dragon spacecraft. The particular Dragon unit, named Endeavour, will stick with the International Space Station for a time before coming back with the Crew-7 members aboard. Until then, the ISS will be a bit crowded, with 11 people aboard.

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American Airlines Adds Even More MAX 10s to Fleet

Pity Order Gratefully Accepted By Boeing

American Airlines placed an order for 85 of the troubled 737-10 MAX model despite its hullabaloo with the blocked entry plug depressurizing in flight. Despite some pretty high profile black eyes for Boeing's quality procedures lately, American threw them some business for the lengthened narrowbody jet, which could well have been had at some pretty sweet deals at the moment. American decided to swap 30 of its previous orders for MAX 8 aircraft into orders for the MAX 10, meaning the carrier is now committed to a total of 115 of the aircraft.

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Aero-TV: Gogo Announces First International 5G Customer

Fractional Jet Company AirSprint Selects Gogo

Gogo Business Aviation remains at the forefront of rolling out 5G networking for in-flight internet, and NBAA is an ideal time to strut their stuff in front of the well-heeled bizjet crowd. Gogo’s VP of customer sales James Zanino took a bit of time out of the 1023 NBAA-BACE to chat about the company’s plans, developments and challenges. In October of 2023, Gogo announced AirSprint Inc., a Canadian Fractional Jet company, will begin upgrading its Cessna Citation CJ3+ and Embraer aircraft to Gogo 5G—making it Gogo's first Canadian fleet customer.

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QuikTrip Corp Buys Second Bell 429

Gas Station Chain Opts for Bell's VIP Transporter

A chain of convenience stores has grabbed a second Bell 429 helicopter for their fleet, bolstering their ability to ferry personnel between all 18 states they operate in. QuikTrip has seen increased success in recent years, swelling their footprint around the us to more than 1,400 locations. The 66-year old company started as a small Tulsa, Oklahoma grocer before beginning its long march through the gas station industry. Today, the Bell 429 remains their executive's favorite transport, allowing them to "efficiently attend to business needs while significantly reducing travel times." The firm's new VIP transporter joins more than 450 of the model in the global fleet, which has racked up more th

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Women in Corporate Aviation Opens 2024 Scholarship Applications

Group Looks to Empower Next Generation of Aviators

Women in Corporate Aviation is opening up its 2024 Spring Scholarship Program, citing a "record number of applications" for its Fall offerings. As such, WCA has continued to lean on a lengthening roster of members, sponsors, and volunteers to improve opportunities for young women in aviation. "One of our goals is to help provide scholarships to as many people as we can. We have made several significant changes for the spring scholarship program to help us reach out to even more deserving people," said the Spring Scholarship announcement. "To provide the maximum benefit of the network of WCA when applying for our scholarships, membership is required."

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Airborne-NextGen 02.27.24: Drone Arrest, Wisk-TX Air Taxi, New Glenn

Also: 800 Drones 4 Ukraine, Scheibel Wins, More Balloonacy, Collier Trophy Nom's

An enterprising Pennsylvania man has been making a living by offering his drone services to local deer hunters, tracking down the game they hit in an effort to make good on their kills (and eliminate undue suffering to some animals)  - a job the state arrested him for. Wisk Aero has entered into a partnership with the City of Sugar Land, Texas, to bring their electric, 12-engine VTOL aircraft to taxi service in the area. Wisk has been hard at work pursuing regulatory approval for their 4-seat, 6th generation air taxi, looking forward to starting Part 135 passenge

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Airborne-NextGen 02.27.24: Drone Arrest, Wisk-TX Air Taxi, New Glenn

Also: 800 Drones 4 Ukraine, Scheibel Wins, More Balloonacy, Collier Trophy Nom's

An enterprising Pennsylvania man has been making a living by offering his drone services to local deer hunters, tracking down the game they hit in an effort to make good on their kills (and eliminate undue suffering to some animals)  - a job the state arrested him for. Wisk Aero has entered into a partnership with the City of Sugar Land, Texas, to bring their electric, 12-engine VTOL aircraft to taxi service in the area. Wisk has been hard at work pursuing regulatory approval for their 4-seat, 6th generation air taxi, looking forward to starting Part 135 passenger opera

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Airborne 02.26.24: Onerous Piper AD, AEA LIVE Coverage, Belgian F-16 Demos

Also: More Balloonacy, Collier Trophy Nom's, Daher Internships, New Glenn Debut

Over-reach, maybe? EAA and the EAA Vintage Aircraft Association (VAA) have both filed comments opposing a sweeping airworthiness directive (AD) proposed by the FAA affecting almost every high-wing vintage Piper aircraft. The AD would require rudders built of 1025 carbon steel to be replaced with new rudders made from 4130N low-alloy steel. It’s THAT time of year... and we’re just weeks away from ANN’s annual LIVE webcast of the uber-exciting Aircraft Electronics Association Convention and Trade Show... where ALL the real cool things in the avionics wo

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Airborne 02.26.24: Onerous Piper AD, AEA LIVE Coverage, Belgian F-16 Demos

Also: More Balloonacy, Collier Trophy Nom's, Daher Internships, New Glenn Debut

Over-reach, maybe? EAA and the EAA Vintage Aircraft Association (VAA) have both filed comments opposing a sweeping airworthiness directive (AD) proposed by the FAA affecting almost every high-wing vintage Piper aircraft. The AD would require rudders built of 1025 carbon steel to be replaced with new rudders made from 4130N low-alloy steel. It’s THAT time of year... and we’re just weeks away from ANN’s annual LIVE webcast of the uber-exciting Aircraft Electronics Association Convention and Trade Show... where ALL the real cool things in the avionics world are

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NTSB Prelim: Cirrus Design Corp SR20

Airplane Exited The Left Side Of The Runway, Rolled Down A Small Hill, And Came To Rest In A Drainage Ditch

On July 14, 2023, at 1930 central day light time, a Cirrus SR20, N653GS, was substantially damaged when it was involved in an accident at Delaware County Regional Airport (MIE) in Muncie, Indiana. The pilot was not injured. The airplane was operated as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal flight. The pilot reported that upon touchdown, the airplane veered left, and the nosewheel began to shimmy. The pilot put in full right rudder to keep the airplane on the runway, but the airplane exited the left side of the runway, rolled down a small hill, and came to rest in a drainage ditch. 

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ANN's Daily Aero-Linx (03.06.24)

Aero Linx: The Indiana Aviation Hall of Fame, Inc. The Indiana Aviation Hall of Fame, Inc., was established to recognize, honor, and perpetuate the memory of those special individuals who have made an enduring contribution to aviation or aerospace in Indiana, the nation, or the world through achievement, leadership, exceptional service, innovation, or entrepreneurial spirit. The Indiana Aviation Hall of Fame, Inc., is a non-profit 501(c)(3) charitable organization.

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ANN's Daily Aero-Term (03.06.24): High Speed Taxiway

High Speed Taxiway A long radius taxiway designed and provided with lighting or marking to define the path of aircraft, traveling at high speed (up to 60 knots), from the runway center to a point on the center of a taxiway. Also referred to as long radius exit or turn-off taxiway. The high speed taxiway is designed to expedite aircraft turning off the runway after landing, thus reducing runway occupancy time.

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Aero-News: Quote of the Day (03.06.24)

“Boeing has systematically hollowed out the SPEEA Pilot Instructors Unit, replacing valued Boeing expertise with contractors. The resulting degradation in expert advice given to Boeing’s airline customers is another example of the safety-culture problem highlighted by the FAA.”

Source: A bit of well-deserved griping about the state of the deal between Boeing and some of its most important pilots, as noted by Ray Goforth, Executive Director of SPEEA, the Boeing union that oversees safety operations pilots.

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